Definition of lung in English:

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Pronunciation: /lʌŋ/


Each of the pair of organs situated within the ribcage, consisting of elastic sacs with branching passages into which air is drawn, so that oxygen can pass into the blood and carbon dioxide be removed. Lungs are characteristic of vertebrates other than fish, though similar structures are present in some other animal groups.
Example sentences
  • Less commonly, bowel cancer can spread to other, more distant organs such as the lung or brain.
  • This is a hospital test where a narrow tube with a light and lens on the end is passed down the trachea and into the lung.
  • After nasal epithelial cells, the lung is the second organ in contact with cadmium chloride.



Pronunciation: /ˈlʌŋfʊl/
Pronunciation: /ˈlʌŋf(ə)l/
noun (plural lungfuls)
Example sentences
  • We've all copped a lungful of black exhaust belching out of a diesel truck.
  • The girl inhaled a lungful of the sweet scent given off by the blossoms in the cherry tree hanging above her.
  • He picked the short smoke back up, held it gingerly between his forefinger and thumb and sucked the last lungful, casually, as if an admission to murder were of no significance.


Example sentences
  • All plethodontids are also lungless (lunglessness and reduced lungs are independently derived in the few other salamander species showing this character).
  • This was how, he believed, lungs originally arose in a lungless world, and feathers in a featherless one.
  • A fetus's soul, then, is about as developed as its huge-headed, stub-fingered, lungless and minute body.


Old English lungen, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch long and German Lunge, from an Indo-European root shared by light2; compare with lights.

  • light from Old English:

    The two words spelled light have different sources. The light referring to the rays that stimulate sight shares an ancestor with Greek leukos ‘white’ (found in leukaemia (mid 19th century) a disease that affects the white blood cells), and Latin lux (source of lucid (late 16th century)). The light referring to weight comes from the same ancient root as lung (Old English)—the lightness of the lungs distinguishes them from other internal organs. This sense of light survives in lights (Middle English), the lungs of sheep, pigs or bullocks, used as food, especially for pets. If someone does something that creates a tense or exciting situation, people might say that they light the blue touch-paper. A touch-paper is a type of fuse that will burn slowly when touched by a spark. It is now only used with fireworks, but in the past would also have been a means for igniting gunpowder. The word lighten (Middle English) ‘shed light on’ is the source of lightning (Middle English).

Words that rhyme with lung

among, bung, clung, dung, flung, hung, outflung, rung, shantung, slung, sprung, strung, stung, sung, swung, tongue, underslung, wrung, young

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: lung

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