Pronunciation: (em'brē-ō"), [key]
—n., pl. -os,
1. the young of a viviparous animal, esp. of a mammal, in the early stages of development within the womb, in humans up to the end of the second month. Cf. fetus.
2. Bot.the rudimentary plant usually contained in the seed.
3. any multicellular animal in a developmental stage preceding birth or hatching.
4. the beginning or rudimentary stage of anything: He charged that the party policy was socialism in embryo.
a combining form representing embryo in compound words: embryology. Also, esp. before a vowel,embry-.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.