A small cavity or chamber within a body or organ, especially:
a. The chamber on the left side of the heart that receives arterial blood from the left atrium and contracts to force it into the aorta.
b. The chamber on the right side of the heart that receives venous blood from the right atrium and forces it into the pulmonary artery.
c. Any of the interconnecting cavities of the brain.
[Middle English, from Old French ventricule, from Latin ventriculus, diminutive of venter, belly.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2019 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.