Definition of meconium in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /mɪˈkəʊnɪəm/


[mass noun] Medicine
The dark green substance forming the first faeces of a newborn infant.
Example sentences
  • Infants who pass thin meconium, which is yellow to light green and watery, are more likely to be healthy at birth.
  • In 95 percent of newborns, meconium is passed by 24 hours of age.
  • The question as to why some infants may discharge meconium in times of stress and other infants do not has not been well studied.


Early 18th century: from Latin, literally 'poppy juice', from Greek mēkōnion, from mēkōn 'poppy'.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: meco|nium

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.