noun, plural boluses.
Pharmacology, Veterinary Medicine. a round mass of medicinal material, larger than an ordinary pill. Abbreviation: bol.
a soft, roundish mass or lump, especially of chewed food.

1595–1605; < Late Latin bōlus clod of earth < Greek bôlos clod, lump; see bole2 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
bole or bolus2 (bəʊl)
1.  a reddish soft variety of clay used as a pigment
2.  a moderate reddish-brown colour
[C13: from Late Latin bōlus lump, from Greek bōlos]
bolus or bolus2
[C13: from Late Latin bōlus lump, from Greek bōlos]

bolus (ˈbəʊləs)
n , pl -luses
1.  a small round soft mass, esp of chewed food
2.  an intravenous injection of a single dose of a drug over a short period
3.  obsolete a large pill or tablet used in veterinary and clinical medicine
4.  another word for bole
[C17: from New Latin, from Greek bōlos clod, lump]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

bolus bo·lus (bō'ləs)
n. pl. bo·lus·es

  1. A round mass.

  2. A round medicinal preparation, such as a large pill or tablet, that is usually of a soft consistency and not prepackaged.

  3. A soft mass of chewed food within the mouth or alimentary canal.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Encyclopedia Britannica


food that has been chewed and mixed in the mouth with saliva. Chewing helps to reduce food particles to a size readily swallowed; saliva adds digestive enzymes, water, and mucus that help chemically to reduce food particles, hydrate them for taste, and lubricate them for easy swallowing. The term bolus applies to this mixture of food and solutions until they are passed into the stomach. Once the bolus reaches the stomach, mixes with gastric juices, and becomes reduced in size, the food mass becomes known as chyme.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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