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[pee-nis] /ˈpi nɪs/
noun, plural penises, penes
[pee-neez] /ˈpi niz/ (Show IPA).
Anatomy, Zoology.
the male organ of copulation and, in mammals, of urinary excretion.
Origin of penis
First recorded in 1685-95, penis is from the Latin word pēnis tail, penis
Related forms
[peen-l, pee-nahyl] /ˈpin l, ˈpi naɪl/ (Show IPA),
[pee-nee-uh l] /ˈpi ni əl/ (Show IPA),
Can be confused
penal, penile. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for penile


of or relating to the penis


noun (pl) -nises, -nes (-niːz)
the male organ of copulation in higher vertebrates, also used for urine excretion in many mammals
Word Origin
C17: from Latin
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 penile



1670s, perhaps from French pénis or directly from Latin penis "penis," earlier "tail," from PIE *pes-/*pesos- "penis" (cf. Sanskrit pasas-, Greek peos, posthe "penis," probably also Old English fæsl "progeny, offspring," Old Norse fösull, German Fasel "young of animals, brood"). The proper plural is penes. The adjective is penial. In psychological writing, penis envy is attested from 1924.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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penile in Medicine

penile pe·nile (pē'nīl', -nəl)
Of or relating to the penis.

penis pe·nis (pē'nĭs)
n. pl. pe·nis·es or pe·nes (-nēz)
The male organ of copulation and of urinary excretion, formed by three columns of erectile tissue, two arranged laterally on the dorsum and one medianly below; the extremity is formed by an expansion of the corpus spongiosum, covered by a free fold of skin.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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penile in Science
Plural penises or penes (pē'nēz)
  1. The male reproductive organ of mammals and some reptiles and birds. In mammals, the penis contains the urethra, which carries urine from the bladder and releases sperm during reproduction.

  2. A similar organ found in the males of some invertebrate animals.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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penile in Culture

penis definition

The organ of the male reproductive system through which semen passes out of the body during sexual intercourse. The penis is also an organ of urination.

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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