- a highly vascular, glandular, ductless organ, situated in humans at the cardiac end of the stomach, serving chiefly in the formation of mature lymphocytes, in the destruction of worn-out red blood cells, and as a reservoir for blood.
- Obsolete. this organ conceived of as the seat of spirit and courage or of such emotions as mirth, ill humor, melancholy, etc.
- ill humor, peevish temper, or spite.
- Archaic. melancholy.
- Obsolete. caprice.
Origin of spleen
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for spleen
Internal organs like the spleen swell up and become as hard as sausages.Already Deadly in Africa, Could Ebola Hit America Next?
April 5, 2014
As with pretty much everything the former governor does, this is all about Venting the Spleen of Sarah.Sarah Palin Serves Up a Healthy Serving of Venom in Her Christmas Book
November 16, 2013
Not that Cheney, even at his frailest, ever failed to vent his spleen with impressive vigor.Dick Cheney Is Back and Rejuvenated, and That’s Bad News for the GOP
October 22, 2013
The shot damaged his liver, lungs, pancreas and spleen and has left him paralyzed from the waist down.Childhood Denied
October 2, 2013
The internal injuries cost him his spleen and part of his pancreas, but he could skate without those.The Fall and Rise of Skateboarder Danny Renaud
August 21, 2013
Which speaks of an intemperance in the splenetic parenchyma; that is to say, the spleen.The Imaginary Invalid
And there's Saunders, who talks about nothing but his spleen.The Stark Munro Letters
J. Stark Munro
As you will; let us go indoors by all means, for this moon gives me the spleen.Melomaniacs
On April 19, 1888, the spleen was removed, the wound healed by first intention.
The most recent work on extirpation of the spleen for tumours is from Hartmann and Vasquez.
- a spongy highly vascular organ situated near the stomach in man. It forms lymphocytes, produces antibodies, aids in destroying worn-out red blood cells, and filters bacteria and foreign particles from the bloodRelated adjectives: lienal, splenetic, splenic
- the corresponding organ in other animals
- spitefulness or ill humour; peevishnessto vent one's spleen
- archaic the organ in the human body considered to be the seat of the emotions
- archaic another word for melancholy
- obsolete whim; mood
Word Origin and History for spleen
c.1300, from Old French esplen, from Latin splen, from Greek splen, from PIE *splegh- (cf. Sanskrit plihan-, Avestan sperezan, Armenian p'aicaln, Latin lien, Old Church Slavonic slezena, Lithuanian bluznis, Old Prussian blusne, Old Irish selg "spleen"). Regarded in medieval physiology as the seat of morose feelings and bad temper. Hence figurative sense of "violent ill-temper" (1590s).
- A large, highly vascular lymphoid organ, lying to the left of the stomach below the diaphragm and serving to store blood, disintegrate old blood cells, filter foreign substances from the blood, and to produce lymphocytes.
- An organ in vertebrate animals that in humans is located on the left side of the abdomen near the stomach. The spleen is mainly composed of lymph nodes and blood vessels. It filters the blood, stores red blood cells (erythrocytes) and destroys old ones, and produces white blood cells (lymphocytes).
Idioms and Phrases with spleen
see vent one's spleen.