Meaning of “germ” in the English Dictionary

"germ" in British English

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germnoun

uk /dʒɜːm/ us /dʒɝːm/

germ noun (ORGANISM)

C1 [ C usually plural ] a very small organism that causes disease:

Wash your hands so you don't get germs on the food.
Rats and flies spread germs.

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(Definition of “germ” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"germ" in American English

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germnoun

us /dʒɜrm/

germ noun (ORGANISM)

[ C usually pl ] a very small organism that causes disease:

The patient has little natural resistance to germs.

germ noun (ORIGIN)

[ C ] the origin of something that develops, esp. a cell from which grain grows or the beginning of an idea:

Alejandro’s suggestion was the germ of an idea.

(Definition of “germ” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

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