diaphragm
noun Etymology: Middle English diafragma, from Late Latin diaphragma, from Greek, from diaphrassein to barricade, from dia- + phrassein to enclose Date: 14th century 1. a body partition of muscle and connective tissue; specifically the partition separating the chest and abdominal cavities in mammals 2. a dividing membrane or thin partition especially in a tube 3. a. a more or less rigid partition in the body or shell of an invertebrate b. a transverse septum in a plant stem 4. a device that limits the aperture of a lens or optical system — compare iris diaphragm 5. a thin flexible disk (as in a microphone or loudspeaker) that vibrates when struck by sound waves or that vibrates to generate sound waves 6. a molded cap usually of thin rubber fitted over the uterine cervix to act as a mechanical contraceptive barrierdiaphragmatic adjectivediaphragmatically adverb

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Diaphragm — Di a*phragm, n. [L. diaphragma, Gr. ?, fr. ? to fence by a partition wall; dia through + ?, ?, to fence, inclose; prob. akin to L. fareire to stuff: cf. F. diaphragme. See {Farce}.] 1. A dividing membrane or thin partition, commonly with an… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Diaphragm — Diaphragm. См. Диафрагма. (Источник: «Металлы и сплавы. Справочник.» Под редакцией Ю.П. Солнцева; НПО Профессионал , НПО Мир и семья ; Санкт Петербург, 2003 г.) …   Словарь металлургических терминов

  • diaphragm — late 14c., from L.L. diaphragma, from Gk. diaphragma partition, barrier, muscle which divides the thorax from the abdomen, from diaphrassein to barricade, from dia across (see DIA (Cf. dia )) + phrassein to fence or hedge in. The native word is… …   Etymology dictionary

  • diaphragm — ► NOUN 1) a dome shaped muscular partition separating the thorax from the abdomen in mammals. 2) a taut flexible membrane in mechanical or acoustic systems. 3) a thin contraceptive cap fitting over the cervix. 4) a device for varying the… …   English terms dictionary

  • diaphragm — [dī′ə fram΄] n. [ME diafragma < LL diaphragma < Gr < dia , through + phragma, a fence < phrassein, to enclose] 1. the partition of muscles and tendons between the chest cavity and the abdominal cavity; midriff: see LUNG 2. a) any… …   English World dictionary

  • Diaphragm — Contents 1 Optics and photography 2 Acoustics 3 Other 4 …   Wikipedia

  • diaphragm — /duy euh fram /, n. 1. Anat. a. a muscular, membranous or ligamentous wall separating two cavities or limiting a cavity. b. the partition separating the thoracic cavity from the abdominal cavity in mammals. 2. Physical Chem. a. a porous plate… …   Universalium

  • diaphragm — 1. The musculomembranous partition between the abdominal and thoracic cavities. SYN: diaphragma (2) [TA], interseptum, midriff, phren (1). 2. A thin disk pierced with an opening, used in a microscope, camera, or other op …   Medical dictionary

  • diaphragm — n. 1) (in anatomy) a thin musculomembranous dome shaped muscle that separates the thoracic and abdominal cavities. The diaphragm is attached to the lower ribs at each side and to the breastbone and the backbone at the front and back. It bulges… …   The new mediacal dictionary

  • diaphragm — 1. noun /ˈdaɪəˌfræm/ a) In mammals, a sheet of muscle separating the thorax from the abdomen, contracted and relaxed in respiration to draw air into and expel air from the lungs; also called thoracic diaphragm. b) Any of various membranes or… …   Wiktionary

  • diaphragm — n. contraceptive device to insert a diaphragm * * * [ daɪəfræm] [ contraceptive device ] to insert a diaphragm …   Combinatory dictionary

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