[am-puhl-uh, -poo l-uh]
See more synonyms for ampulla on
noun, plural am·pul·lae [am-puhl-ee, -poo l-ee] /æmˈpʌl i, -ˈpʊl i/.
  1. Anatomy. a dilated portion of a canal or duct, especially of the semicircular canals of the ear.
  2. Zoology, Botany. any flask-shaped structure.
  3. Ecclesiastical.
    1. a vessel for the wine and water used at the altar.
    2. a vessel for holding consecrated oil.
  4. a two-handled bottle having a somewhat globular shape, made of glass or earthenware, used by the ancient Romans for holding oil, wine, or perfumes.
  5. Ichthyology. ampulla of Lorenzini.

Origin of ampulla

< New Latin, Latin, equivalent to amphor(a) amphora + -la diminutive suffix, with normal vowel reduction and Greek ph rendered as p Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for ampulla

Historical Examples of ampulla

British Dictionary definitions for ampulla


noun plural -pullae (-ˈpʊliː)
  1. anatomy the dilated end part of certain ducts or canals, such as the end of a uterine tube
  2. Christianity
    1. a vessel for containing the wine and water used at the Eucharist
    2. a small flask for containing consecrated oil
  3. a Roman two-handled bottle for oil, wine, or perfume
Derived Formsampullaceous (ˌæmpʊˈleɪʃəs) or ampullaceal, adjectiveampullar (æmˈpʊlə) or ampullary (æmˈpʊlərɪ), adjective

Word Origin for ampulla

C16: from Latin, diminutive of amphora
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

Word Origin and History for ampulla

late 14c., type of globular ancient Roman vessel; see ampoule.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

ampulla in Medicine


[ăm-pulə, -pŭlə]
n. pl. am•pul•lae (-pulē, -pŭlē)
  1. A dilated portion of a canal or duct, as in the semicircular canal of the ear.
Related formsam•pullar adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.