American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. Any of several folds of the peritoneum that connect the intestines to the dorsal abdominal wall, especially such a fold that envelops the jejunum and ileum.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. In anatomy, a fold or duplicature of peritoneum investing the intestine or other abdominal viscus wholly or in part, and serving to retain such viscus in its proper position in the abdominal cavity. It consists of two layers of peritoneum, separated in that part of their extent which is wrapped around the viscus, in the rest of their extent lying closely apposed, but still having between them the vessels, nerves, and lymphatics which go to the viscus, together with, usually, a quantity of fat. In man the mesentery of the intestine is connected by its root to the spinal column for a distance of about six inches, from the left side of the second lumbar vertebra to the right sacro-iliac synchondrosis; its breadth, or the distance from the vertebræ to the intestinal border, is about four inches. The term mesentery is sometimes restricted to the reflection of peritoneum which keeps the small intestine in position, in which case the similar foldings about other viscera have special names, as mesoarium, mesocæcum, mesocolon, mesoduodenum, mesogastrium, mesometry, mesorchium, mesorectum, mesovarium. See these words. Also
- n. In zoology, some structure like a mesentery; a perivisceral or mesenteric septum. In Actinozoa, one of the several membranous partitions which radiate from the wall of the gastric sac to that of the body vertically across the somatic or perivisceral cavity, which is thus divided into a corresponding number of mesenteric chambers.
- n. anatomy The membrane that attaches the intestines to the wall of the abdomen, maintaining their position in the abdominal cavity, and supplying them with blood vessels, nerves, and lymphatics.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. (Anat.) The membranes, or one of the membranes (consisting of a fold of the peritoneum and inclosed tissues), which connect the intestines and their appendages with the dorsal wall of the abdominal cavity. The mesentery proper is connected with the jejunum and ilium, the other mesenteries being called
mesocæcum, mesocolon, mesorectum, etc.
- n. (Zoöl.) One of the vertical muscular radiating partitions which divide the body cavity of Anthozoa into chambers.
- n. a double layer of peritoneum that attaches to the back wall of the abdominal cavity and supports the small intestines
- From Ancient Greek μέσος (mesos, "middle") + ἔντερον (enteron, "gut") (Wiktionary)
- Middle English mesenterie, from Medieval Latin mesenterium, from Greek mesenterion : meso-, meso- + enterion, diminutive of enteron, entrails; see en in Indo-European roots. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“The so-called mesentery is also a membrane; and extends continuously from the long stretch of intestine to the great vessel and the aorta.”
“The mesentery is a delicate, narrow membrane about twenty feet long.”
“The mesentery is a membrane beginning loosely on the loins, and thence extending to all the intestines; which it preserves from twisting by their peristaltic motion.”
“The whole of the gut is attached to the body by a suspensory mechanism called the mesentery, which connects the 20m or so of gut loops to the underside of the spinal column within the abdomen over a length of a few centimetres.”
“What couldn't be stopped was the ooze from the man's belly where the ripping tushes had laid open skin, muscles, mesentery, and gut alike.”
“Five pieces of colon, and mesentery the lining of the inner abdomen.”
“I, and indeed others, have sometimes found valves in the emulgent veins, and in those of the mesentery, the edges of which were directed towards the vena cava and vena portae.”
“Perhaps it will not, therefore, be found unreasonable, if we say that the veins, by means of their orifices, absorb some of the things that are applied externally and carry this inwards with the blood, not otherwise, it may be, than those of the mesentery imbibe the chyle from the intestines and carry it mixed with the blood to the liver.”
“Again, other veins branch off from the big vein; one to the omentum, and another to the pancreas, from which vein run a number of veins through the mesentery.”
“The mesentery is over the bowels; this also is membranous and broad, and turns to fat.”
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