[ ves-uhl ]
/ ˈvɛs əl /
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See synonyms for: vessel / vessels / vesseled on Thesaurus.com


a craft for traveling on water, now usually one larger than an ordinary rowboat; a ship or boat.
an airship.
a hollow or concave utensil, as a cup, bowl, pitcher, or vase, used for holding liquids or other contents.
Anatomy, Zoology. a tube or duct, as an artery or vein, containing or conveying blood or some other body fluid.
Botany. a duct formed in the xylem, composed of connected cells that have lost their intervening partitions, that conducts water and mineral nutrients.Compare tracheid.
a person regarded as a holder or receiver of something, especially something nonmaterial: a vessel of grace; a vessel of wrath.



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Origin of vessel

1250–1300; Middle English <Anglo-French, Old French vessel, va(i)ssel<Latin vāscellum, equivalent to vās (see vase) + -cellum diminutive suffix
vesseled; especially British, vesselled, adjectiveun·ves·seled, adjective
vassal, vessel
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

British Dictionary definitions for vessel

/ (ˈvɛsəl) /


any object used as a container, esp for a liquid
a passenger or freight-carrying ship, boat, etc
an aircraft, esp an airship
anatomy a tubular structure that transports such body fluids as blood and lymph
botany a tubular element of xylem tissue consisting of a row of cells in which the connecting cell walls have broken down
rare a person regarded as an agent or vehicle for some purpose or qualityshe was the vessel of the Lord
C13: from Old French vaissel, from Late Latin vascellum urn, from Latin vās vessel
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

Medical definitions for vessel

[ vĕsəl ]


A duct, canal, or other tube that contains or conveys a body fluid such as blood or lymph.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Scientific definitions for vessel

[ vĕsəl ]

A blood vessel.
A long, continuous column made of the lignified walls of dead vessel elements, along which water flows in the xylem of angiosperms.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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