[ vee-luh ]
/ ˈvi lə /


plural of velum.


Definition for vela (2 of 3)


[ vee-luh, vey- ]
/ ˈvi lə, ˈveɪ- /

noun, genitive Ve·lo·rum [vee-lawr-uh m, -lohr-, vey-] /viˈlɔr əm, -ˈloʊr-, veɪ-/ for 1. Astronomy.

the Sail, a southern constellation: one of the subordinate constellations into which Argo is divided.
U.S. Aerospace. one of a series of reconnaissance satellites designed to detect nuclear explosions.

Origin of Vela

< Latin, plural of vēlum sail

Definition for vela (3 of 3)


[ vee-luh m ]
/ ˈvi ləm /

noun, plural ve·la [vee-luh] /ˈvi lə/, for 1, 2, ve·lum for 3.

Biology. any of various veillike or curtainlike membranous partitions.
Anatomy. the soft palate.See under palate(def 1).
Meteorology. a thin cloud, large in horizontal area, that is draped over or penetrated by cumuliform clouds.

Origin of velum

First recorded in 1765–75, velum is from the Latin word vēlum sail, covering Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for vela

British Dictionary definitions for vela (1 of 2)


/ (ˈviːlə) /

noun Latin genitive Velorum (viːˈlɔːrəm)

a constellation in the S hemisphere, close to Puppis and Carina and crossed by the Milky Way, that has four second-magnitude stars and a young bright pulsar

British Dictionary definitions for vela (2 of 2)


/ (ˈviːləm) /

noun plural -la (-lə)

zoology any of various membranous structures, such as the ciliated oral membrane of certain mollusc larvae or the veil-like membrane running around the rim of a jellyfish
anatomy any of various veil-like bodily structures, esp the soft palate
botany another word for veil (def. 6)

Word Origin for velum

C18: from Latin: veil
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 vela



1771, from Latin velum "a sail, awning, curtain, covering" (see veil (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for vela


[ vēləm ]

n. pl. ve•la (-lə)

An anatomical structure resembling a veil or curtain.veil velamen
greater omentum
A serous membrane or membranous envelope or covering.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.