Any of several inflammatory disorders of the intestines, especially the colon, characterized by abdominal pain, fever, and severe diarrhea often with blood and mucus in the stool, usually caused by infection with bacteria or parasitic protozoans.
[Middle English dissenterie, from Old French, from Latin dysenteria, from Greek dusenteriā : dus-, dys- + enteron, intestine; see en in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 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.