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kidney

[kid-nee]
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noun, plural kid·neys.
  1. Anatomy. either of a pair of bean-shaped organs in the back part of the abdominal cavity that form and excrete urine, regulate fluid and electrolyte balance, and act as endocrine glands.
  2. Zoology. a corresponding organ in other vertebrate animals or an organ of like function in invertebrates.
  3. the meat of an animal's kidney used as food.
  4. constitution or temperament: He was a quiet child, of a different kidney from his boisterous brothers.
  5. kind, sort, or class: He is only at ease with men of his own kidney.
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Origin of kidney

1275–1325; Middle English kidenei, kidenere (singular), kideneres, kideneren (plural); origin uncertain; perhaps a compound based either on nere (singular), neres (plural) kidney (Old English *nēore; compare Old High German nioro, Old Norse nȳra); or ei (singular), eiren (plural) egg1, Old English ǣg (singular), ǣgru (plural) (by association with the organ's shape); for the first element compare dial. kid pod (akin to cod2)
Related formskid·ney·like, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for kidneys

spunk, caliber, grit, stamina, courage, temperament, fortitude, bravery, position, line, place, category, kind, description, nature, brand, breed, character, strain, assortment

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British Dictionary definitions for kidneys

kidney

noun
  1. either of two bean-shaped organs at the back of the abdominal cavity in man, one on each side of the spinal column. They maintain water and electrolyte balance and filter waste products from the blood, which are excreted as urineRelated adjectives: nephritic, renal
  2. the corresponding organ in other animals
  3. the kidneys of certain animals used as food
  4. class, type, or disposition (esp in the phrases of the same or a different kidney)
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Derived Formskidneylike, adjective

Word Origin for kidney

C14: of uncertain origin
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 kidneys

kidney

n.

early 14c., of unknown origin, originally kidenere, perhaps a compound of Old English cwið "womb" (see bowel) + ey "egg" (see egg (n.)) in reference to the shape of the organ. Figurative sense of "temperament" is from 1550s. Kidney bean is from 1540s, so called for its shape.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

kidneys in Medicine

kidney

(kĭdnē)
n. pl. kid•neys
  1. Either of a pair of organs in the dorsal region of the vertebrate abdominal cavity, functioning to maintain proper water and electrolyte balance, regulate acid-base concentration, and filter the blood of metabolic wastes, which are then excreted as urine.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

kidneys in Science

kidney

[kĭdnē]
  1. Either of a pair of organs that are located in the rear of the abdominal cavity in vertebrates. The kidneys regulate fluid balance in the body and filter out wastes from the blood in the form of urine. The functional unit of the kidney is the nephron. Wastes filtered from the blood by the nephrons drain into the ureters, muscular tubes that connect each kidney to the bladder. See also nephron.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

kidneys in Culture

kidneys

A pair of organs, the principal parts of the excretory system, located above the waistline at the back of the abdominal cavity. The kidneys filter waste materials from the blood, excreting these wastes in the form of urine; they also regulate the amounts of water and other chemicals in body fluids.

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The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.