1. The part of the body of a human or quadruped on either side of the backbone and between the ribs and hips.
2. One of several cuts of meat, such as tenderloin, taken from this part of an animal's body, typically including the vertebrae of the segment from which it is taken.
a. The region of the hips, groin, and lower abdomen.
b. The reproductive organs.
[Middle English loine, from Old French loigne, from Vulgar Latin *lumbea (carō), loin (meat), feminine of *lumbeus, of the loin, from Latin lumbus, loin.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.