There are 2 main definitions of pupil in English:

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pupil1

Line breaks: pupil
Pronunciation: /ˈpjuːpɪl
 
, -p(ə)l
 
/

noun

1A person who is taught by another, especially a schoolchild or student in relation to a teacher: they are former pupils of the school will you take me on as your pupil?
More example sentences
  • He told delegates the primary school pupil had attacked four teachers.
  • The teachers also taught the pupils to sing one or two songs in a different language.
  • Teachers are seen by pupils not to teach but as a way they can justify themselves at the next inspection.
Synonyms
1.1British A trainee barrister.
Example sentences
  • If a person is a pupil working for a barrister, he or she is a danger to shipping.
  • Indeed, it is open to a pupil master to refuse to certify that a pupil has completed pupillage satisfactorily.
  • He could not see what happened to pupils who stood behind the appellant's desk.

Origin

late Middle English (in the sense 'orphan, ward'): from Old French pupille, from Latin pupillus (diminutive of pupus 'boy') and pupilla (diminutive of pupa 'girl').

More
  • The two words spelled pupil have entered English by different routes and acquired very different meanings, but they share a root, Latin pupa, which meant both ‘doll’ and ‘girl’. The first pupil was originally an orphan or ward under the care of a guardian, from which emerged the idea of someone taught by another. It came into English via Old French from Latin pupus ‘boy’ and pupa ‘girl’. The other pupil, the round opening in the centre of your eye, comes from the ‘doll’ meaning of pupa. People must have noticed the tiny images of themselves reflected in another person's eyes and thought they resembled little dolls (a similar idea is behind an old use of baby). In the 18th century pupa was borrowed directly from Latin as a term for an insect in its inactive immature form, between larva and adult.

Words that rhyme with pupil

duple, pupal, scruple

Definition of pupil in:

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There are 2 main definitions of pupil in English:

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pupil2

Line breaks: pupil
Pronunciation: /ˈpjuːpɪl
 
, -p(ə)l
 
/

noun

The dark circular opening in the centre of the iris of the eye, which varies in size to regulate the amount of light reaching the retina.
Example sentences
  • Muscles controlling the iris change the size of the pupil according to light conditions.
  • The pupils do not change size when a bright light is projected into them.
  • It varies the size of the pupil and the thickness of the lens of the eyes to adjust for brightness and for distance.

Origin

late Middle English: from Old French pupille or Latin pupilla, diminutive of pupa 'doll' (so named from the tiny reflected images visible in the eye).

More
  • The two words spelled pupil have entered English by different routes and acquired very different meanings, but they share a root, Latin pupa, which meant both ‘doll’ and ‘girl’. The first pupil was originally an orphan or ward under the care of a guardian, from which emerged the idea of someone taught by another. It came into English via Old French from Latin pupus ‘boy’ and pupa ‘girl’. The other pupil, the round opening in the centre of your eye, comes from the ‘doll’ meaning of pupa. People must have noticed the tiny images of themselves reflected in another person's eyes and thought they resembled little dolls (a similar idea is behind an old use of baby). In the 18th century pupa was borrowed directly from Latin as a term for an insect in its inactive immature form, between larva and adult.

Derivatives

pupillary

1
adjective
Example sentences
  • The cornea, the pupillary opening within the iris, the lens, and the aqueous and vitreous humor combine to form the refractive media of the eye.
  • A stimulant action on the parasympathetic portion of the oculomotor nucleus (third cranial nerve) is responsible for pupillary miosis.
  • She had pendular nystagmus, but pupillary and fundus examination showed nothing abnormal.

Definition of pupil in:

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