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Stomach (with mucosal surface partly exposed)

Alternative forms[edit]


From Middle English stomak, from Old French estomac, from Latin stomachus, from Ancient Greek στόμαχος ‎(stómakhos), from στόμα ‎(stóma, mouth). Displaced native Middle English mawe ‎(stomach, maw) (from Old English maga), Middle English bouk, buc ‎(belly, stomach) (from Old English buc ‎(belly, stomach), see bucket).



stomach ‎(plural stomachs)

  1. An organ in animals that stores food in the process of digestion.
  2. (informal) The belly.
  3. (obsolete) Pride, haughtiness.
    • 1590, Edmund Spenser, The Faerie Queene, II.vii:
      Sterne was his looke, and full of stomacke vaine, / His portaunce terrible, and stature tall […].
    • 1613, William Shakespeare, The Life of King Henry the Eighth, IV. ii. 34:
      He was a man / Of an unbounded stomach, ever ranking / Himself with princes;
    • John Locke
      This sort of crying proceeding from pride, obstinacy, and stomach, the will, where the fault lies, must be bent.
  4. (obsolete) Appetite.
    a good stomach for roast beef
  5. (figuratively) Desire, appetite (for something abstract).
    I have no stomach for a fight today.


Derived terms[edit]




stomach ‎(third-person singular simple present stomachs, present participle stomaching, simple past and past participle stomached)

  1. (transitive) To tolerate (something), emotionally, physically, or mentally; to stand or handle something.
    I really can’t stomach jobs involving that much paperwork, but some people seem to tolerate them.
    I can't stomach her cooking.
  2. (obsolete, intransitive) To be angry.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Hooker to this entry?)
  3. (obsolete, transitive) To resent; to remember with anger; to dislike.
    • 1607, William Shakespeare, The Tragedy of Antony and Cleopatra, III. iv. 12:
      O, my good lord, / Believe not all; or, if you must believe, / Stomach not all.
    • L'Estrange
      The lion began to show his teeth, and to stomach the affront.
    • Milton
      The Parliament sit in that body [] to be his counsellors and dictators, though he stomach it.


stomach ‎(comparative more stomach, superlative most stomach)

  1. Pertaining to the gastrointestinal tract
  • stomach ulcer

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