any of various, usually liquid, preparations of gum, glue, or the like, used as an adhesive.
any of various gummy secretions or gelatinous substances present in plants.

Origin of mucilage

1350–1400; Middle English muscilage < Middle French musillage < Late Latin mūcilāgō a musty juice, akin to mūcēre to be musty. See mucor Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for mucilage

adhesive, glue, paste, gum, substance

Examples from the Web for mucilage

Historical Examples of mucilage

  • It had been well rubbed in, too, made of a plastic adherence by the addition of mucilage.


    W. A. Fraser

  • Sue says she believes it's mucilage, and I think she's right.

  • Under the dribble of the mucilage the fire in his eyes had flickered and sunk.

    The Paliser case

    Edgar Saltus

  • It had been stuck there by a drop of mucilage, and the mucilage was still wet.

    The Brand of Silence

    Harrington Strong

  • Mucilage, paste, stationery; the half-dozen sorts of envelopes and letter-heads.

    The Job

    Sinclair Lewis

British Dictionary definitions for mucilage



a sticky preparation, such as gum or glue, used as an adhesive
a complex glutinous carbohydrate secreted by certain plants
Derived Formsmucilaginous (ˌmjuːsɪˈlædʒɪnəs), adjectivemucilaginously, adverbmucilaginousness, noun

Word Origin for mucilage

C14: via Old French from Late Latin mūcilāgo mouldy juice; see mucid
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 mucilage

late 14c., mussillage, "viscous substance found in vegetable material," from Old French mucilage (14c.), from Late Latin mucilago "musty or moldy juice" (4c.), from Latin mucere "be musty or moldy," from mucus "mucus" (see mucus). Meaning "adhesive" is first attested 1859.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

mucilage in Medicine




A viscid preparation consisting of a solution of a plant-based gum in water and used in pharmacy as an excipient.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.