1. A small, medicated candy intended to be dissolved slowly in the mouth to lubricate and soothe irritated tissues of the throat.
a. A four-sided planar figure with a diamondlike shape; a rhombus that is not a square.
b. Something having this shape, especially a heraldic device.
[Middle English, rhombus, from Old French losenge, perhaps akin to Provençal lausa, flagstone, roofing slate (from a source akin to Latin lausiae, stone chips, perhaps of Celtic origin ) or from Arabic lawzīnaj, confection made from almonds (from Middle Persian lawzēnak : lawz- ultimately from early Aramaic *lawz-, almond; see lwz in the Appendix of Semitic roots + Middle Persian -ēnak, n. suffix).]
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.