a·re·o·la (ə-rēə-lə, âr′ē-ōlə)
n. pl. a·re·o·lae (-lē′) or a·re·o·las
1. A small ring of color around a center portion, as about the nipple of the breast or the part of the iris surrounding the pupil of the eye.
2. A small space or interstice in a tissue or part, such as the area bounded by small veins in a leaf or the wing of an insect. In both senses also called areole.
[Latin āreola, small open space, diminutive of ārea, open place; see AREA.]
a·reo·lar, a·reo·late (-lĭt) adj.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.