a. A surgical knife with a short, wide, pointed double-edged blade, used especially for making punctures and small incisions. Also called lance.
b. A small needle used to prick the skin, as to obtain blood samples for testing blood glucose levels, especially one designed to fit into a specially designed lancing device.
a. A lancet arch.
b. A lancet window.
[Middle English, from Old French, diminutive of lance, lance; see LANCE.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 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.