1. Petrology, Mineralogy.
    1. a branching figure or marking, resembling moss or a shrub or tree in form, found on or in certain stones or minerals due to the presence of a foreign material.
    2. any arborescent crystalline growth.
  2. Anatomy. the branching process of a neuron that conducts impulses toward the cell.

Origin of dendrite

1720–30; < Greek dendrī́tēs pertaining to a tree, equivalent to dendr- dendr- + -ītēs -ite1 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for dendrite

Historical Examples of dendrite

British Dictionary definitions for dendrite


  1. Also called: dendron any of the short branched threadlike extensions of a nerve cell, which conduct impulses towards the cell body
  2. a branching mosslike crystalline structure in some rocks and minerals
  3. a crystal that has branched during growth and has a treelike form
Derived Formsdendritic (dɛnˈdrɪtɪk) or dendritical, adjectivedendritically, adverb

Word Origin for dendrite

C18: from Greek dendritēs relating to a tree
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 dendrite

mid-18c., from Greek dendrites "of or pertaining to a tree," from dendron "tree" (see dendro-). The mineral so called for its markings.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

dendrite in Medicine


  1. Any of the various branched protoplasmic extensions of a nerve cell that conducts impulses from adjacent cells inward toward the cell body.dendritic process dendron neurodendrite neurodendron
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

dendrite in Science


  1. Any of several parts branching from the body of a neuron that receive and transmit nerve impulses.
  2. A mineral that has a branching crystal pattern. Dendrites often form within or on the surface of other minerals and often consist of manganese oxides.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.