- 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
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for villus
Villus: a short, hair-like or papillate process on the surface of certain absorbent and sensory organs.
Villi: soft hairs or papillate processes: plural of villus, q.v.
- 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
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
Word Origin and History for villus
1704, plural villi, from Latin villus "tuft of hair, shaggy hair" (see velvet).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
- 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.
- 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.