• synonyms


or coe·lome ce·lom

[see-luh m]
noun, plural coe·loms, coe·lo·ma·ta [si-loh-muh-tuh] /sɪˈloʊ mə tə/. Zoology.
  1. the body cavity of higher metazoans, between the body wall and intestine, lined with a mesodermal epithelium.
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Origin of coelom

1875–80; < Greek koílōma cavity, equivalent to koilō-, variant stem of koiloûn to hollow out (verbal derivative of koîlos hollow) + -ma noun suffix denoting result
Related formscoe·lom·ic [si-lom-ik, -loh-mik] /sɪˈlɒm ɪk, -ˈloʊ mɪk/, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for coelom

Historical Examples

British Dictionary definitions for coelom


esp US celom

  1. the body cavity of many multicellular animals, situated in the mesoderm and containing the digestive tract and other visceral organs
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Derived Formscoelomic or esp US celomic (sɪˈlɒmɪk), adjective

Word Origin

C19: from Greek koilōma cavity, from koilos hollow; see coel-
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

coelom in Medicine


  1. The cavity formed by the splitting of the embryonic mesoderm into two layers; in mammals it then forms into the peritoneal, pleural, and pericardial cavities.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

coelom in Science


  1. The body cavity that forms from the mesoderm during the embryonic development of more complex animals. The coelom suspends the gut in fluid in the middle of the body, protecting it from gravity and allowing great increases in body size. The presence or absence of a coelom is important for the classification of animal phyla. See more at deuterostome protostome.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.