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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Vent \Vent\ (v[e^]nt), n. [OE. fent, fente, a slit, F. fente a slit, cleft, fissure, from fendre to split, L. findere; but probably confused with F. vent wind, L. ventus. See Fissure, and cf. Vent to snuff.] 1. A small aperture; a hole or passage for air or any fluid to escape; as, the vent of a cask; the vent of a mold; a volcanic vent. [1913 Webster] Look, how thy wounds do bleed at many vents. --Shak. [1913 Webster] Long 't was doubtful, both so closely pent, Which first should issue from the narrow vent. --Pope. [1913 Webster] 2. Specifically: [1913 Webster] (a) (Zool.) The anal opening of certain invertebrates and fishes; also, the external cloacal opening of reptiles, birds, amphibians, and many fishes. [1913 Webster] (b) (Gun.) The opening at the breech of a firearm, through which fire is communicated to the powder of the charge; touchhole. [1913 Webster] (c) (Steam Boilers) Sectional area of the passage for gases divided by the length of the same passage in feet. [1913 Webster] 3. Fig.: Opportunity of escape or passage from confinement or privacy; outlet. [1913 Webster] 4. Emission; escape; passage to notice or expression; publication; utterance. [1913 Webster] Without the vent of words. --Milton. [1913 Webster] Thou didst make tolerable vent of thy travel. --Shak. [1913 Webster] To give vent to, to suffer to escape; to let out; to pour forth; as, to give vent to anger. To take vent, to escape; to be made public. [R.] Vent feather (Zool.), one of the anal, or crissal, feathers of a bird. Vent field (Gun.), a flat raised surface around a vent. Vent piece. (Gun.) (a) A bush. See 4th Bush, n., 2. (b) A breech block. [1913 Webster]