|—n , pl vacuums, vacua|
|1.||Compare plenum a region containing no matter; free space|
|2.||a region in which gas is present at a low pressure|
|3.||the degree of exhaustion of gas within an enclosed space: a high vacuum; a perfect vacuum|
|4.||a sense or feeling of emptiness: his death left a vacuum in her life|
|5.||short for vacuum cleaner|
|6.||(modifier) of, containing, measuring, producing, or operated by a low gas pressure: a vacuum tube; a vacuum brake|
|7.||to clean (something) with a vacuum cleaner: to vacuum a carpet|
|[C16: from Latin: an empty space, from vacuus empty]|
vacuum vac·u·um (vāk'yōō-əm, -yōōm, -yəm)
n. pl. vac·u·ums or vac·u·a (-yōō-ə)
Absence of matter.
A space empty of matter.
A space relatively empty of matter.
A space in which the pressure is significantly lower than atmospheric pressure.
|vacuum (vāk'ym) Pronunciation Key
Plural vacuums or vacuua
The absence of matter.
Note: In the natural world, air will flow into regions of vacuum, giving rise to the saying “Nature abhors a vacuum.”
Note: The saying is extended informally: in politics, a lack of leadership may be referred to as a vacuum, which will presumably be filled by others rushing in.