pellet

[pel-it]
noun
1.
a small, rounded or spherical body, as of food or medicine.
2.
a small wad or ball of wax, paper, etc., for throwing, shooting, or the like.
3.
one of a charge of small shot, as for a shotgun.
4.
a bullet.
5.
a ball, usually of stone, formerly used as a missile.
6.
Also called cast. Ornithology. a small, roundish mass of matter regurgitated by certain predatory birds, consisting of the indigestible remains, as the fur, feathers, and bones, of the prey.
7.
(in Romanesque architecture) a hemispherical or disklike carved ornament.
8.
Heraldry. ogress2.
verb (used with object)
9.
to form into pellets; pelletize.
10.
to hit with pellets.

Origin:
1325–75; Middle English pelet < Middle French pelote < Vulgar Latin *pilotta, diminutive of Latin pila ball. See pill1, -et

pelletlike, adjective
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
pellet (ˈpɛlɪt)
 
n
1.  a small round ball, esp of compressed matter: a wax pellet
2.  a.  an imitation bullet used in toy guns
 b.  a piece of small shot
3.  a stone ball formerly used as a catapult or cannon missile
4.  ornithol cast, Also called: casting a mass of undigested food, including bones, fur, feathers, etc, that is regurgitated by certain birds, esp birds of prey
5.  a small pill
6.  a raised area on coins and carved or moulded ornaments
 
vb
7.  to strike with pellets
8.  to make or form into pellets
 
[C14: from Old French pelote, from Vulgar Latin pilota (unattested), from Latin pila ball]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

pellet
mid-14c., from O.Fr. pelote "small ball" (11c.), from V.L. *pilotta, dim. of L. pila "ball," perhaps originally "ball of hair," from pilus "hair."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

pellet pel·let (pěl'ĭt)
n.

  1. A small pill; a pilule.

  2. A small rod-shaped or ovoid mass, as of compressed steroid hormones, intended for subcutaneous implantation in body tissues to provide timed release over an extended period of time.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Example sentences
If the birds found a moth, they were rewarded with a food pellet.
With the upturn in pellet stoves, we've started producing wood pellets here.
On the right is a pre-production plastic pellet also known as a mermaid's tear.
Similarly, the metal pellet idea fails to consider the electricity that goes
  into turning bauxite into aluminum.
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