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[pawnch, pahnch] /pɔntʃ, pɑntʃ/
a large and protruding belly; potbelly.
the belly or abdomen.
the rumen.
Origin of paunch
1325-75; Middle English paunche < Anglo-French, for Middle French pance < Latin panticēs (plural) bowels
Related forms
paunched, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for paunch
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • You puff and blow like a seal when you come upstairs; your paunch rises and falls like a diamond on a woman's forehead!

    Melmoth Reconciled Honore de Balzac
  • I dared not retort, but I looked so hard at his paunch that the General smiled.

    The Cavalier George Washington Cable
  • Take a freshly-killed hare, save the blood, paunch and skin it.

    Dressed Game and Poultry la Mode Harriet A. de Salis
  • If it hit en in the paunch, it's 'not out' and the fella must have suffered.

    From a Cornish Window Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch
  • It seems true that this sailor-man has a paunch like the great water duct of St. Michel.

British Dictionary definitions for paunch


the belly or abdomen, esp when protruding
another name for rumen
(nautical) a thick mat that prevents chafing
verb (transitive)
to stab in the stomach; disembowel
Word Origin
C14: from Anglo-Norman paunche, from Old French pance, from Latin panticēs (pl) bowels
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 paunch

late 14c. (late 12c. in surnames), from Old French pance (Old North French panche) "belly, stomach," from Latin panticem (nominative pantex) "belly, bowels" (cf. Spanish panza, Italian pancia); possibly related to panus "swelling" (see panic (n.2)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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paunch in Medicine

paunch (pônch, pänch)
The belly, especially a protruding one; a potbelly.

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