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[in-tur-stis] /ɪnˈtɜr stɪs/
noun, plural interstices
[in-tur-stuh-seez, -stuh-siz] /ɪnˈtɜr stəˌsiz, -stə sɪz/ (Show IPA)
an intervening space.
a small or narrow space or interval between things or parts, especially when one of a series of alternating uniform spaces and parts:
the interstices between the slats of a fence.
Roman Catholic Church. the interval of time that must elapse, as required by canon law, before promotion to a higher degree of orders.
an interval of time.
1595-1605; < Latin interstitium, equivalent to interstit-, variant stem of intersistere to stand or put between + -ium -ium
Related forms
intersticed, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for interstices
  • Human evolution, genetics, genomics and their interstices.
  • In these interminable interstices, audiences in the theater can take a popcorn break or enjoy a snooze.
  • It was the small print in the liturgy, a morbid recitation in the interstices of the worship.
  • Place and consolidate grout so as to provide a dense stone and mortar layer with all voids and interstices filled.
  • Most are segments of watersheds with adjacent interstices.
  • We are taking our direction from the legislation, and filling in the interstices appropriately.
  • The parties are, in effect, limited to bargaining in the interstices.
  • Woody vegetation planted in interstices yields an aesthetically pleasing structure.
  • Capillary pressure or suction is also determined by the interstices size or pore radii size.
British Dictionary definitions for interstices


noun (usually pl)
a minute opening or crevice between things
(physics) the space between adjacent atoms in a crystal lattice
Word Origin
C17: from Latin interstitium interval, from intersistere, from inter- + sistere to stand
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for interstices



early 15c., from Old French interstice (14c.) and directly from Latin interstitium "interval," literally "space between," from inter- "between" (see inter-) + stem of stare "to stand" (see stet). Related: Interstices.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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interstices in Medicine

interstice in·ter·stice (ĭn-tûr'stĭs)
n. pl. in·ter·stic·es (-stĭ-sēz', -sĭz)
A small area, space, or hole in the substance of an organ or tissue.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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interstices in Science
An opening or space, especially a small or narrow one between mineral grains in a rock or within sediments or soil.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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