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a combining form occurring in loanwords from Greek, meaning “five” (Pentateuch); on this model, used in the formation of compound words (pentavalent).
Also, especially before a vowel, pent-.
Origin of penta-
< Greek pent-, penta-, comb. forms representing pénte five Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for penta-


combining form
five: pentagon, pentameter, pentaprism
Word Origin
from Greek pente five
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 penta-

word-forming element meaning "five, containing five," from Greek penta- (before a vowel pent-), comb. form of pente "five," related to Aeolian pempte (see five), with -a- by analogy of hepta-, ennea-, deka-.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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penta- in Medicine

penta- or pent-

  1. Five: pentameter.

  2. Containing five atoms, molecules, or groups: pentose.

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