1. Resembling an egg in shape.
2. Resembling an ellipse in shape; elliptical.
1. An egg-shaped or elliptical form or figure.
2. An elliptical track, as for racing or athletic events.
[Medieval Latin ōvālis, from Latin ōvum, egg; see awi- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2022 by HarperCollins Publishers. 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.