[noo-mohn-yuh, -moh-nee-uh, nyoo-]

noun Pathology.

inflammation of the lungs with congestion.
Also called lobar pneumonia. an acute disease of the lungs, caused by the bacterium Streptococcus pneumoniae and characterized by fever, a cough with blood-tinged phlegm, and difficult breathing.

Origin of pneumonia

1595–1605; < New Latin < Greek pneumonía. See pneumon-, -ia Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for pneumonia

Contemporary Examples of pneumonia

Historical Examples of pneumonia

  • Others had pneumonia and were wasting beneath the stress of their frightful cough.

    The Downfall

    Emile Zola

  • And you shan't die of pneumonia or—or drownin' if I can help it.

    Thankful's Inheritance

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • For two weeks he lay, fighting off the threatened attack of pneumonia.

    Cy Whittaker's Place

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • We had been married but a few years when he died—of pneumonia.


    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • A sudden chill, a sudden cold, and then the grim word, pneumonia!

    The Dominant Strain

    Anna Chapin Ray

British Dictionary definitions for pneumonia



inflammation of one or both lungs, in which the air sacs (alveoli) become filled with liquid, which renders them useless for breathing. It is usually caused by bacterial (esp pneumococcal) or viral infection

Word Origin for pneumonia

C17: New Latin from Greek from pneumōn lung
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 pneumonia

c.1600, from Modern Latin, from Greek pneumonia "inflammation of the lungs," from pneumon "lung," altered (perhaps by influence of pnein "to breathe") from pleumon "lung," literally "floater," probably cognate with Latin pulmo (see pulmonary), from PIE *pleu- "to flow, to swim" (see pluvial). Alteration in Greek perhaps by influence of pnein "to breathe."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

pneumonia in Medicine




An acute or chronic disease marked by inflammation of the lungs and caused by viruses, bacteria, or other microorganisms and sometimes by physical and chemical irritants.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

pneumonia in Science



An acute or chronic disease marked by inflammation of the lungs, especially an infectious disease caused by viruses, bacteria, or other pathogens, such as mycoplasmas. Individuals with pneumonia often have abnormal chest x-rays that show areas with fluid in the infected part of the lungs.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

pneumonia in Culture



A disease characterized by inflammation of the lungs. Pneumonia can be caused by many factors, including bacterial infections, viral infections, and the inhalation of chemical irritants.

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.