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[ov-yuh-leyt, oh-vyuh-leyt-] /ˈɒv yəˌleɪt, ˈoʊ vyəˌleɪt-/
verb (used without object), ovulated, ovulating. Biology.
to produce and discharge eggs from an ovary or ovarian follicle.
Origin of ovulate
First recorded in 1860-65; ovule + -ate1
Related forms
ovulation, noun
[ov-yuh-luh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee, oh-vyuh-] /ˈɒv yə ləˌtɔr i, -ˌtoʊr i, ˈoʊ vyə-/ (Show IPA),
multiovulate, adjective
multiovulated, adjective
preovulatory, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for ovulation
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • It is necessary to point out that they do not depend on ovulation (expulsion of the egg).

    The Sexual Question August Forel
  • As menstruation is normally associated with ovulation, this must cease.

  • This period of activity is repeated regularly once a month, and it constitutes the process of ovulation and menstruation.


    William J. Robinson
  • ovulation consists in the formation of an ovum or egg by one of the ovaries once a month.

  • The other sexual organs of a woman have special and periodic functions, such as, menstruation and ovulation.

  • When the function of ovulation ceases the body has to find a new way to dispose of the internal secretion of the ovary.

    Outwitting Our Nerves Josephine A. Jackson and Helen M. Salisbury
  • It is not, however, necessary that these processes should in the case of all animals occur at the same time as ovulation.

British Dictionary definitions for ovulation


(intransitive) to produce or discharge eggs from an ovary
Derived Forms
ovulation, noun
Word Origin
C19: from ovule
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 ovulation

1848, from Modern Latin ovulum (see ovule) + -ation.



1888, back-formation from ovulation. Related: Ovulated; ovulating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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ovulation in Medicine

ovulation o·vu·la·tion (ō'vyə-lā'shən, ŏv'yə-)
The discharge of an ovum from the ovary.

ovulate o·vu·late (ō'vyə-lāt', ŏv'yə-)
v. o·vu·lat·ed, o·vu·lat·ing, o·vu·lates
To produce ova; discharge eggs from the ovary.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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ovulation in Science
  (ō'vyə-lā'shən, ŏv'yə-lā'shən)   
The release of an egg cell (ovum) from the ovary in female animals, regulated in mammals by hormones produced by the pituitary gland during the menstrual cycle.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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ovulation in Culture
ovulation [(ov-yuh-lay-shuhn, oh-vyuh-lay-shuhn)]

The periodic release of an ovum from the ovaries (usually from only one ovary). After the ovum is released, it travels into the fallopian tube, and from there is moved to the uterus. Ovulation generally happens approximately two weeks into the menstrual cycle.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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