[ ahn-lah-guh ]
/ ˈɑn lɑ gə /

noun, plural an·la·gen [ahn-lah-guh n] /ˈɑn lɑ gən/, an·la·ges. (sometimes initial capital letter)

Embryology. an embryonic area capable of forming a structure: the primordium, germ, or bud.
Psychology. an inherited predisposition to certain traits or to a particular character development.

Nearby words

  1. ankylosing spondylitis,
  2. ankylosis,
  3. ankylostomiasis,
  4. ankyroid,
  5. anlace,
  6. anlaut,
  7. ann,
  8. ann arbor,
  9. ann, cape,
  10. ann.

Origin of anlage

1890–95; < German Anlage foundation, basis, as noun derivative of anlegen to lay on or out, apply, equivalent to an- on + legen to lay1 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for anlage

British Dictionary definitions for anlage


/ (ˈænˌlɑːɡə) /

noun plural -gen (-ɡən) or -ges

another word for primordium

Word Origin for anlage

German: predisposition, layout

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 anlage



"basis of a later development" (plural anlagen), 1892, from German anlage "foundation, basis," from anlagen (v.) "to establish," from an "on" + legen "to lay" (see lay (v.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for anlage


n. pl. an•la•ges

The initial clustering of embryonic cells from which a part or an organ develops; primordium.
A genetic predisposition to a given trait or personality characteristic.

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