disease germ

From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Germ \Germ\ (j[~e]rm), n. [F. germe, fr. L. germen, germinis,
   sprout, but, germ. Cf. Germen, Germane.]
   1. (Biol.) That which is to develop a new individual; as, the
      germ of a fetus, of a plant or flower, and the like; the
      earliest form under which an organism appears.
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            In the entire process in which a new being
            originates . . . two distinct classes of action
            participate; namely, the act of generation by which
            the germ is produced; and the act of development, by
            which that germ is evolved into the complete
            organism.                             --Carpenter.
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   2. That from which anything springs; origin; first principle;
      as, the germ of civil liberty.
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   3. (Biol.) The germ cells, collectively, as distinguished
      from the somatic cells, or soma. Germ is often used in
      place of germinal to form phrases; as, germ area, germ
      disc, germ membrane, germ nucleus, germ sac, etc.
      [Webster 1913 Suppl.]

   4. A microorganism, especially a disease-causing bacterium or
      virus; -- used informally, as, the don't eat food that
      falls on the floor, it may have germs on it.

   Disease germ (Biol.), a name applied to certain tiny
      bacterial organisms or their spores, such as {Anthrax
      bacillus} and the Micrococcus of fowl cholera, which
      have been demonstrated to be the cause of certain
      diseases; same as germ[4]. See Germ theory (below).

   Germ cell (Biol.), the germ, egg, spore, or cell from which
      the plant or animal arises. At one time a part of the body
      of the parent, it finally becomes detached, and by a
      process of multiplication and growth gives rise to a mass
      of cells, which ultimately form a new individual like the
      parent. See Ovum.

   Germ gland. (Anat.) See Gonad.

   Germ stock (Zool.), a special process on which buds are
      developed in certain animals. See Doliolum.

   Germ theory (Biol.), the theory that living organisms can
      be produced only by the evolution or development of living
      germs or seeds. See Biogenesis, and Abiogenesis. As
      applied to the origin of disease, the theory claims that
      the zymotic diseases are due to the rapid development and
      multiplication of various bacteria, the germs or spores of
      which are either contained in the organism itself, or
      transferred through the air or water. See {Fermentation
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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Disease \Dis*ease"\, n. [OE. disese, OF. desaise; des- (L. dis-)
   + aise ease. See Ease.]
   1. Lack of ease; uneasiness; trouble; vexation; disquiet.
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            So all that night they passed in great disease.
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            To shield thee from diseases of the world. --Shak.
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   2. An alteration in the state of the body or of some of its
      organs, interrupting or disturbing the performance of the
      vital functions, and causing or threatening pain and
      weakness; malady; affection; illness; sickness; disorder;
      -- applied figuratively to the mind, to the moral
      character and habits, to institutions, the state, etc.
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            Diseases desperate grown,
            By desperate appliances are relieved. --Shak.
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            The instability, injustice, and confusion introduced
            into the public counsels have, in truth, been the
            mortal diseases under which popular governments have
            every where perished.                 --Madison.
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   Disease germ. See under Germ.

   Syn: Distemper; ailing; ailment; malady; disorder; sickness;
        illness; complaint; indisposition; affection. --
        Disease, Disorder, Distemper, Malady,
        Affection. Disease is the leading medical term.
        Disorder mean? much the same, with perhaps some slight
        reference to an irregularity of the system. Distemper is
        now used by physicians only of the diseases of animals.
        Malady is not a medical term, and is less used than
        formerly in literature. Affection has special reference
        to the part, organ, or function disturbed; as, his
        disease is an affection of the lungs. A disease is
        usually deep-seated and permanent, or at least
        prolonged; a disorder is often slight, partial, and
        temporary; malady has less of a technical sense than the
        other terms, and refers more especially to the suffering
        endured. In a figurative sense we speak of a disease
        mind, of disordered faculties, and of mental maladies.
        [1913 Webster]
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