[ vil-uh s ]
/ ˈvɪl əs /

noun, plural vil·li [vil-ahy] /ˈvɪl aɪ/.

Anatomy, Zoology. one of the minute, wormlike processes on certain membranes, especially on the mucous membrane of the small intestine, where they serve in absorbing nutriment.
Botany. one of the long, soft, straight hairs covering the fruit, flowers, and other parts of certain plants.

Origin of villus

1695–1705; < Latin: shaggy hair, thick nap Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for villi

British Dictionary definitions for villi (1 of 2)

/ (ˈvɪlaɪ) /


the plural of villus

British Dictionary definitions for villi (2 of 2)

/ (ˈvɪləs) /

noun plural villi (ˈvɪlaɪ) (usually plural)

zoology anatomy any of the numerous finger-like projections of the mucous membrane lining the small intestine of many vertebrates
any similar membranous process, such as any of those in the mammalian placenta
botany any of various hairlike outgrowths, as from the stem of a moss

Word Origin for villus

C18: from Latin: shaggy hair
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 villi

[ vĭləs ]

n. pl. vil•li (vĭlī)

A minute projection arising from a mucous membrane, especially one of the vascular projections of the small intestine.
Such a projection of the chorion that contributes to placental formation in mammals.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Scientific definitions for villi

[ vĭləs ]

Plural villi (vĭlī)

A small projection on the surface of a mucous membrane, such as that of the small intestine.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.