Vital capacity
Vital Vi"tal, a. [F., fr. L. vitalis, fr. vita life; akin to vivere to live. See {Vivid}.] 1. Belonging or relating to life, either animal or vegetable; as, vital energies; vital functions; vital actions. [1913 Webster]

2. Contributing to life; necessary to, or supporting, life; as, vital blood. [1913 Webster]

Do the heavens afford him vital food? --Spenser. [1913 Webster]

And vital virtue infused, and vital warmth. --Milton. [1913 Webster]

3. Containing life; living. ``Spirits that live throughout, vital in every part.'' --Milton. [1913 Webster]

4. Being the seat of life; being that on which life depends; mortal. [1913 Webster]

The dart flew on, and pierced a vital part. --Pope. [1913 Webster]

5. Very necessary; highly important; essential. [1913 Webster]

A competence is vital to content. --Young. [1913 Webster]

6. Capable of living; in a state to live; viable. [R.] [1913 Webster]

Pythagoras and Hippocrates . . . affirm the birth of the seventh month to be vital. --Sir T. Browne. [1913 Webster]

{Vital air}, oxygen gas; -- so called because essential to animal life. [Obs.]

{Vital capacity} (Physiol.), the breathing capacity of the lungs; -- expressed by the number of cubic inches of air which can be forcibly exhaled after a full inspiration.

{Vital force}. (Biol.) See under {Force}. The vital forces, according to Cope, are nerve force (neurism), growth force (bathmism), and thought force (phrenism), all under the direction and control of the vital principle. Apart from the phenomena of consciousness, vital actions no longer need to be considered as of a mysterious and unfathomable character, nor vital force as anything other than a form of physical energy derived from, and convertible into, other well-known forces of nature.

{Vital functions} (Physiol.), those functions or actions of the body on which life is directly dependent, as the circulation of the blood, digestion, etc.

{Vital principle}, an immaterial force, to which the functions peculiar to living beings are ascribed.

{Vital statistics}, statistics respecting the duration of life, and the circumstances affecting its duration.

{Vital tripod}. (Physiol.) See under {Tripod}.

{Vital vessels} (Bot.), a name for latex tubes, now disused. See {Latex}. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Vital capacity — is the maximum volume of air that a person can exhale after maximum inhalation.It can also be the maximum volume of air that a person can inhale after maximum exhalation. A person s vital capacity can be measured by a spirometer which can be a… …   Wikipedia

  • vital capacity — n the breathing capacity of the lungs expressed as the number of cubic inches or cubic centimeters of air that can be forcibly exhaled after a full inspiration * * * the maximum volume of air that a person can exhale afer maximum inhalation. It… …   Medical dictionary

  • vital capacity — n. the volume of air that can be forcibly expelled from the lungs after the maximum amount has been breathed in …   English World dictionary

  • vital capacity — gyvybingumas statusas T sritis ekologija ir aplinkotyra apibrėžtis Organizmo gebėjimas išsaugoti, pratęsti savo ir savo rūšies egzistavimą. atitikmenys: angl. vigour; vital capacity; vitaly vok. Lebensfähigkeit, f; Lebenskraft, f rus.… …   Ekologijos terminų aiškinamasis žodynas

  • vital capacity — noun Date: 1852 the breathing capacity of the lungs expressed as the number of cubic inches or cubic centimeters of air that can be forcibly exhaled after a full inspiration …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • vital capacity — noun the maximum amount of air that can be exhaled after a maximum inhalation (usually tested with a spirometer); used to determine the condition of lung tissue • Hypernyms: ↑capacity, ↑content, ↑diagnostic test, ↑diagnostic assay …   Useful english dictionary

  • vital capacity — Physiol. the greatest amount of air that can be forced from the lungs after maximum inhalation. [1850 55] * * * …   Universalium

  • vital capacity — noun the greatest volume of air that can be expelled from the lungs after taking the deepest possible breath …   English new terms dictionary

  • vital capacity — the maximum volume of air that a person can exhale after maximum inhalation. It is usually measured on an instrument called a spirometer …   The new mediacal dictionary

  • vital capacity — vi′tal capac′ity n. phl the greatest amount of air that can be forced from the lungs after maximum inhalation • Etymology: 1850–55 …   From formal English to slang

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