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[oh-vuh m] /ˈoʊ vəm/
noun, plural ova
[oh-vuh] /ˈoʊ və/ (Show IPA)
Cell Biology.
  1. the female reproductive cell or gamete of animals, which is capable of developing, usually only after fertilization, into a new individual.
  2. the female reproductive cell or gamete of plants.
Architecture. an oval ornament, as in an egg-and-dart molding.
Origin of ovum
1700-10; < Latin ōvum egg1; cognate with Greek ōión Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for ovum


noun (pl) ova (ˈəʊvə)
an unfertilized female gamete; egg cell
Word Origin
from Latin: egg
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 ovum

(plural ova), 1706, from Latin ovum "egg," cognate with Greek oon, Old Norse egg, Old English æg, all perhaps from PIE root *awi- (see egg (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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ovum in Medicine

ovum o·vum (ō'vəm)
n. pl. o·va (ō'və)
The female reproductive cell or gamete; egg.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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ovum in Science
Plural ova
The mature reproductive cell of female animals, produced in the ovaries. See more at egg.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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