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[ahn-lah-guh] /ˈɑn lɑ gə/
noun, plural anlagen
[ahn-lah-guh n] /ˈɑn lɑ gən/ (Show IPA),
anlages. (sometimes initial capital letter)
Embryology. an embryonic area capable of forming a structure: the primordium, germ, or bud.
Psychology. an inherited predisposition to certain traits or to a particular character development.
Origin of anlage
1890-95; < German Anlage foundation, basis, as noun derivative of anlegen to lay on or out, apply, equivalent to an- on + legen to lay1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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British Dictionary definitions for anlagen


noun (pl) -gen (-ɡən), -ges
another word for primordium
Word Origin
German: predisposition, layout
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for anlagen



"basis of a later development" (plural anlagen), 1892, from German anlage "foundation, basis," from anlagen (v.) "to establish," from an "on" + legen "to lay" (see lay (v.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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anlagen in Medicine

anlage an·la·ge or An·la·ge (än'lä-gə)
n. pl. an·la·ges or an·la·gen (-gən)

  1. The initial clustering of embryonic cells from which a part or an organ develops; primordium.

  2. A genetic predisposition to a given trait or personality characteristic.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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