• synonyms


noun, plural la·cu·nae [luh-kyoo-nee] /ləˈkyu ni/, la·cu·nas.
  1. a gap or missing part, as in a manuscript, series, or logical argument; hiatus.
  2. Anatomy. one of the numerous minute cavities in the substance of bone, supposed to contain nucleate cells.
  3. Botany. an air space in the cellular tissue of plants.
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Origin of lacuna

1655–65; < Latin lacūna ditch, pit, hole, gap, deficiency, akin to lacus vat, lake1. Cf. lagoon
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for lacunae

interval, opening, cavity, space, hiatus, gap, break, interim, depression

Examples from the Web for lacunae

Historical Examples of lacunae

  • Therefore the lacunae I've undertaken to fill out are the national wants.

    The Tragic Muse

    Henry James

  • But even conventions which designedly are full of lacunae have their value.

  • We must also not forget that there are lacunae in the childs comprehension of what it perceives.

  • Apellicon filled in the lacunae, and brought out a new, but faulty, edition.

  • These errors and these lacunae are serious, however they originate, as the public is beginning to realise.

    The Forerunners

    Romain Rolland

British Dictionary definitions for lacunae


noun plural -nae (-niː) or -nas
  1. a gap or space, esp in a book or manuscript
  2. biology a cavity or depression, such as any of the spaces in the matrix of bone
  3. another name for coffer (def. 3)
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Derived Formslacunose, lacunal or lacunary, adjectivelacunosity (ˌlækjʊˈnɒsɪtɪ), noun

Word Origin for lacuna

C17: from Latin lacūna pool, cavity, from lacus lake
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 lacunae

plural of lacuna (q.v.).

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"blank or missing portion in a manuscript," 1660s, from Latin lacuna "hole, pit," diminutive of lacus "pond, lake" (see lake (n.1)). The Latin plural is lacunae. Related: Lacunal; lacunar; lacunose.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

lacunae in Medicine


n. pl. la•cu•nas
  1. An anatomical cavity, space, or depression, especially in a bone.
  2. An empty space or a missing part; a gap; a defect.
  3. An abnormal space between the strata or between the cellular elements of the epidermis.
  4. corneal space
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Related formsla•cunal adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.