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

  • noun The act or practice of cutting into or otherwise injuring living animals for the purpose of scientific research.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun Dissection of a living body; the practice of anatomizing alive, or of experimenting upon living animals, for the purpose of investigating some physiological function or pathological process which cannot well be otherwise determined

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

  • noun The dissection of an animal while alive, for the purpose of making physiological investigations.

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

  • noun The action of cutting, surgery or other invasive treatment of a living organism for the purposes of physiological or pathological scientific investigation.

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

  • noun the act of operating on living animals (especially in scientific research)


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

[Latin vīvus, alive; see vivify + (dis)section.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Latin vivus alive + English section: compare French vivisection. See vivid, and section



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  • OK, I just love the "vi" sound. It gets me every time.

    December 8, 2006

  • I participated in the vivisection of a frog last year. We bathed it in cocaine first, so it died happy. I subsequently removed its heart, which continued beating for an hour afterwards.


    August 20, 2008

  • frogapplause, please look away NOW.

    August 20, 2008

  • Gentle Jane was as good as gold,

    She always did as she was told;

    She never spoke when her mouth was full,

    Or caught bluebottles their legs to pull,

    Or spilt plum jam on her nice new frock,

    Or put white mice in the eight-day clock,

    Or vivisected her last new doll,

    Or fostered a passion for alcohol.

    And when she grew up she was given in marriage

    To a first-class earl who keeps his carriage!

    -- W.S. Gilbert, Patience

    August 21, 2008