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[dih-his-uh ns] /dɪˈhɪs əns/
Biology. the release of materials by the splitting open of an organ or tissue.
Botany. the natural bursting open of capsules, fruits, anthers, etc., for the discharge of their contents.
Surgery. the bursting open of a surgically closed wound.
Origin of dehiscence
1820-30; < New Latin dēhiscentia, equivalent to Latin dēhiscent- stem of dēhiscēns, present participle of dēhiscere (see dehisce) + -ia; see -ence
Related forms
dehiscent, adjective
nondehiscent, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for dehiscent
  • Fruit a capsule, fleshy or dry, dehiscent or indehiscent, sometimes berrylike.
British Dictionary definitions for dehiscent


(of fruits, anthers, etc) opening spontaneously to release seeds or pollen
Derived Forms
dehiscence, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for dehiscent



1828, from Modern Latin dehiscentia, from dehiscentem (nominative dehiscens), present participle of dehiscere "to gape, open, split down" (of the earth, etc.), from de- (see de-) + hiscere, inchoative of hiare "to yawn" (see yawn (v.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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dehiscent in Medicine

dehiscence de·his·cence (dĭ-hĭs'əns)
A bursting open or splitting along natural or sutured lines.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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dehiscent in Science
The spontaneous opening at maturity of a plant structure, such as a fruit, anther, or sporangium, to release its contents. Compare indehiscence.

dehisce verb
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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