[ am-puhl-uh, -poo l-uh ]
/ æmˈpʌl ə, -ˈpʊl ə /

noun, plural am·pul·lae [am-puhl-ee, -poo l-ee] /æmˈpʌl i, -ˈpʊl i/.

Anatomy. a dilated portion of a canal or duct, especially of the semicircular canals of the ear.
Zoology, Botany. any flask-shaped structure.
  1. a vessel for the wine and water used at the altar.
  2. a vessel for holding consecrated oil.
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.
Ichthyology. ampulla of Lorenzini.

Nearby words

  1. amplitude of accommodation,
  2. amply,
  3. ampoule,
  4. ampul,
  5. ampule,
  6. ampulla of lorenzini,
  7. ampulla of uterine tube,
  8. ampulla of vas deferens,
  9. ampullaceous,
  10. ampullar

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. 2019

Examples from the Web for ampulla

British Dictionary definitions for ampulla


/ (æmˈpʊlə) /

noun plural -pullae (-ˈpʊliː)

anatomy the dilated end part of certain ducts or canals, such as the end of a uterine tube
  1. a vessel for containing the wine and water used at the Eucharist
  2. a small flask for containing consecrated oil
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

Medicine definitions for ampulla


[ ăm-pulə, -pŭlə ]

n. pl. am•pul•lae (-pulē, -pŭlē)

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.