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Cap"sule (kăp"s&ū;l), n. [L. capsula a little box or chest, fr. capsa chest, case, fr. capere to take, contain: cf. F. capsule.] 1. (Bot.) a dry fruit or pod which is made up of several parts or carpels, and opens to discharge the seeds, as, the capsule of the poppy, the flax, the lily, etc.
2. (Chem.) (a) A small saucer of clay for roasting or melting samples of ores, etc.; a scorifier. (b) a small, shallow, evaporating dish, usually of porcelain.
3. (Med.) A small cylindrical or spherical gelatinous envelope in which nauseous or acrid doses are inclosed to be swallowed.
4. (Anat.) A membranous sac containing fluid, or investing an organ or joint; as, the capsule of the lens of the eye. Also, a capsulelike organ.
5. A metallic seal or cover for closing a bottle.
6. A small cup or shell, as of metal, for a percussion cap, cartridge, etc.
Atrabiliary capsule. See under Atrabiliary. -- Glisson's capsule, a membranous envelope, entering the liver along with the portal vessels and insheathing the latter in their course through the organ. -- Suprarenal capsule, a ductless gland secreting epinephrine, norepinephrine, and steroid hormones, on the upper end of each kidney. It is also called the adrenal gland, glandula suprarenalis, suprarenal gland, epinephros, atrabiliary capsule, and adrenal capsule.