Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun The outer membrane enclosing the embryo in reptiles, birds, and mammals. In placental mammals it contributes to the development of the placenta.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun In anatomy, the outermost fetal envelop; the external membrane which invests the embryo, forming in the higher vertebrates the outer layer of the bag of waters, and contributing to the formation of the placenta.
  • noun By analogy — The membrana putaminis or egg-pod of those eggs which have calcareous shells.
  • noun The external investment of the ovum of an insect, derived from the epithelial layer of the oviduct.
  • noun Same as corium.
  • noun In botany, the pulpy matter which fills the young ovule and is absorbed during development.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun The outer membrane which invests the fetus in the womb; also, the similar membrane investing many ova at certain stages of development.
  • noun The true skin, or cutis.
  • noun (Bot.) The outer membrane of seeds of plants.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun anatomy, biology The protective and nutritive membrane in higher vertebrates that attaches the fetus to the uterus.
  • noun biology, entomology The outer case of an insect egg.
  • noun botany The outer membrane of seeds of plants.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun the outermost membranous sac enclosing the embryo in higher vertebrates (reptiles, birds and mammals)

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Greek khorion; see gherə- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Late Latin chorion, from Ancient Greek χοριον ("membrane surrounding the fetus, afterbirth").

Examples

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