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[suh-rinj, sir-inj] /səˈrɪndʒ, ˈsɪr ɪndʒ/
a small device consisting of a glass, metal, or hard rubber tube, narrowed at its outlet, and fitted with either a piston or a rubber bulb for drawing in a quantity of fluid or for ejecting fluid in a stream, for cleaning wounds, injecting fluids into the body, etc.
any similar device for pumping and spraying liquids through a small aperture.
verb (used with object), syringed, syringing.
to cleanse, wash, inject, etc., by means of a syringe.
Origin of syringe
late Middle English
1375-1425; new singular formed from Late Latin sȳringēs, plural of sȳrinx syrinx; replacing late Middle English syring < Medieval Latin syringa
Related forms
syringeful, adjective
unsyringed, adjective


[sir-ingks] /ˈsɪr ɪŋks/
noun, plural syringes
[suh-rin-jeez] /səˈrɪn dʒiz/ (Show IPA),
Ornithology. the vocal organ of birds, situated at or near the bifurcation of the trachea into the bronchi.
(initial capital letter) Classical Mythology. a mountain nymph of Arcadia who was transformed, in order to protect her chastity from Pan, into the reed from which Pan then made the panpipe.
a panpipe.
a narrow corridor in an ancient Egyptian tomb.
1600-10; (< Latin) < Greek sŷrinx pipe, pipelike object Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for syringes
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The allusion to the catacombs in comparison with the syringes is evident.

    Pagan and Christian Rome Rodolfo Lanciani
  • Getting the syringes, he jumped into his cab, and was driven to the Professor's.

    A Rock in the Baltic Robert Barr
  • Volleys of Rose-water and other perfumes were also discharged by means of syringes.

  • syringes are so made that they can be sterilised by boiling.

    Manual of Surgery Alexis Thomson and Alexander Miles
  • They want to know what you've done to them, what this new curse is that you bring in your syringes.

    Star Surgeon Alan Nourse
British Dictionary definitions for syringes


/ˈsɪrɪndʒ; sɪˈrɪndʒ/
(med) an instrument, such as a hypodermic syringe or a rubber ball with a slender nozzle, for use in withdrawing or injecting fluids, cleaning wounds, etc
any similar device for injecting, spraying, or extracting liquids by means of pressure or suction
(transitive) to cleanse, inject, or spray with a syringe
Word Origin
C15: from Late Latin, from Latin: syrinx


noun (pl) syringes (sɪˈrɪndʒiːz), syrinxes
the vocal organ of a bird, which is situated in the lower part of the trachea
(in classical Greek music) a panpipe or set of panpipes
(anatomy) another name for the Eustachian tube
Derived Forms
syringeal (sɪˈrɪndʒɪəl) adjective
Word Origin
C17: via Latin from Greek surinx pipe


(Greek myth) a nymph who was changed into a reed to save her from the amorous pursuit of Pan. From this reed Pan then fashioned his musical pipes
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 syringes



early 15c., from Late Latin syringa, from Greek syringa, accusative of syrinx "tube, hole, channel, shepherd's pipe," related to syrizein "to pipe, whistle, hiss," from PIE root *swer- (see susurration). Originally a catheter for irrigating wounds, the application to hypodermic needles is from 1884.



c.1600, the instrument itself known from 14c. in English, from Late Latin syrinx, from Greek syrinx "shepherd's pipe." Used of vocal organs of birds from 1872.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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syringes in Medicine

syringe sy·ringe (sə-rĭnj', sēr'ĭnj)

  1. An instrument used to inject fluids into the body or draw them from it.

  2. A hypodermic syringe.

syrinx syr·inx (sēr'ĭngks)
n. pl. syr·inx·es or sy·rin·ges (sə-rĭn'jēz, -rĭng'gēz)
A pathological tube-shaped cavity in the brain or spinal cord.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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syringes in Science
A medical instrument used to inject fluids into the body or draw them from it. Syringes have several different forms. Bulb syringes are usually made of rubber and work by squeezing the bulb to expel a fluid from it, as in ear irrigation. Needle syringes have hypodermic needles attached to plastic or glass tubes that contain plungers to create force or suction.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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