Definitions

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

  • n. Physiology The process by which food is converted into substances that can be absorbed and assimilated by the body. It is accomplished in the alimentary canal by the mechanical and enzymatic breakdown of foods into simpler chemical compounds.
  • n. Physiology The result of this process.
  • n. Physiology The ability to digest food.
  • n. The process of decomposing organic matter in sewage by bacteria.
  • n. Assimilation of ideas or information; understanding.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The process, in the gastrointestinal tract, by which food is converted into substances that can be utilized by the body.
  • n. The result of this process.
  • n. The ability to use this process.
  • n. The processing of decay in organic matter assisted by microorganisms.
  • n. The assimilation and understanding of ideas.
  • n. generation of pus; suppuration

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The act or process of digesting; reduction to order; classification; thoughtful consideration.
  • n. The conversion of food, in the stomach and intestines, into soluble and diffusible products, capable of being absorbed by the blood.
  • n. Generation of pus; suppuration.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Order; arrangement.
  • n. The physiological process of converting the food from the state in which it enters the mouth to that in which it can pass from the alimentary canal into the blood-vessels and lymphatics.
  • n.
  • n. The function or power of assimilating nutriment.
  • n. In botany: The process carried on in leaves under the action of light, resulting in the decomposition of carbonic acid and the evolution of oxygen.
  • n. In insectivorous plants, an action of secreted fluids upon insects or other organic matter, similar to the process of digestion in animals.
  • n. In chem.: The operation of exposing bodies to heat to prepare them for some action on each other.
  • n. The action ofa solvent on any substance, especially under the influence of heat and pressure; solution; liquefaction. See digester .
  • n. The act of methodizing and reducing to order; coördination.
  • n. The process of maturing an ulcer or a wound, and disposing it to generate pus; maturation.
  • n. The process of dissolution and preparation of substances for manure, as in compost.

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

  • n. learning and coming to understand ideas and information
  • n. the process of decomposing organic matter (as in sewage) by bacteria or by chemical action or heat
  • n. the organic process by which food is converted into substances that can be absorbed into the body

Etymologies

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