Illustrated Encyclopedia of Human Anatomic Variation: Opus V:
Glossary of Terms
Ronald A. Bergman, PhD
Adel K. Afifi, MD, MS
Ryosuke Miyauchi, MD
Peer Review Status: Internally Peer Reviewed
Their origin and definition related to the Skeleton.
The following abbreviations are used: G., Greek, and L.,
A| B| C|
D| E| F| G |
H| I | J | K | L| M
| N| O| P| Q |
R| S| T| U|
V| W | X| Y | Z
- (G. akron, tip, + omos, shoulder). The tip of the
- (L. ala, wing) A wing-like structure.
- (L.armus, fore-quarter of an animal; G. harmos, a shoulder
joint). The segment of the upper limb between the shoulder and
elbow. The term brachium (L., G. brachion) is preferred
- (L. asper, rough). The roughened surface of a bone.
- (L.,G. astragalus, ball of the ankle joint, dice). The
- (G. Atlas, from Greek mythology, a Titan who supported the
world on his shoulders). First cervical vertebra.
- (L. axis, axle; G. axon, axis). The odontoid or toothed
vertebra. The second cervical vertebra, about which the head
- (L. bifidus, cleft into two parts). Referring to a bone that
is more or less split or cleft.
- (G. carpus, wrist). The eight bones of the wrist proximal to
- (L. cervix, neck) Relating to the neck and to the "neck" of
any structure (bone or soft tissue).
- (L. clavicula, a small key). The collar bone, os
- (G. Kleis, clavicle). Relating to the clavicle.
- (G. kline, bed, + eidos, form). Bed-shaped or resembling a
- (G. kokkyx, a cuckoo, whose bill the bony structure is said to
resemble). Os coccygis.
- (L. concha, shell). Turbinate bones of the nose.
- (L. condylus; G. kondylos, knuckle). Rounded articular surface
of a bone extremity.
- (L. costa, rib). Referring to the ribs.
- (L. cubitus, elbow). Pertaining to the joint between the arm
- (L. dens, tooth) Referring to the tooth-like structure of the
axis, upon which the axis rotates.
- (L. dorsalis, from dorsum, back). Term once used for notation
of vertebra in the thoracic region, e.g., first dorsal
- (G. epistropheus, the pivot). Second cervical vertebra.
- (G. ethmos, sieve). Relating to the os ethmoidale. A
sieve-like structure, cribriforme.
- (L. femur, thigh). The thigh bone.
- (L. fibula, a clasp or buckle). A bone of the leg. The smaller
and more lateral of the two bones of the leg.
- (L. findere, to cleave). A fissure or deep cleft.
- (L. forare, to pierce). An aperture.
- (L. frons, front). Referring to the frontal bone.
- (G. hemi, half). A prefix indicating half of a structure.
- (L. humerus, shoulder). Referring to the bone of the brachium
or arm (between shoulder and elbow).
- (G. hyoeides, shaped like the Greek letter upsilon). A "U"- or
"V"-shaped structure. The os hyoideum.
- (L. Lacrima, a tear) Relating to tears, their secretion,
organ, and bone involved therewith. The os lacrimale.
- (L. lumbus, a loin). Referring to the region or those
vertebrae located between the thorax and pelvis.
- (L. lunatus, semilunar). Pertaining to the os lunatum of the
hand and foot.
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- (L. mandibula, a jaw). The jaw bone.
- (L. mandibulum, handle). The bone of the upper or superior
part of the sternum.
- (G. mastos, breast, + eidos, resemblance). Mastoid process of
- (L. maxilla, jaw bone). Relating to the upper jawbone or
- (L. nasus, nose) Os nasale.
- (L. occiput, back of the head). Os occipitale.
- (G. odous, a tooth, + eidos, form). See dens.
- (G. olene, ulna + kranion). Curved, pointed proximal end of
- (G. omos, shoulder). Related to the shoulder.
- (L. orbita, a circle). Referring to the cavity formed from
parts of seven bones.
- (L. os, bone). Referring to a bone.
- (L. palatum, palate). Os palatum.
- (L. pares, wall). The wall of any cavity. Os parietale.
- (L. patina, a small shallow disk). The kneecap. The large
sesamoid bone in the tendon of the extensors of the leg.
- (L., G. pyelos, an oblong trough, basin). Ring of bones at the
lower end of the trunk.
- ( L. petrous, rock-like; G. petra, stone). Petrous part of
- (L. from G. phalanx, line of soldiers). Bones of the fingers
- (G. pteryx, wing) A wing-like structure.
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- (L. radius, spoke of a wheel, a rod). The shorter and more
lateral of the two bones of the forearm.
- (L. sacrum, sacred bone). Os sacrum. So-named because it was
believed to resist natural disintegration after death and to serve
as the basis for the resurrected body.
- (L. scapula, shoulder blade; G. skaptein, to dig) The shoulder
- (L. sinus, cavity, channel, hollow) A cavity in a bone, e.g.,
- (G. sphen, wedge, + eidos, resemblance). Os sphenoidale.
- (L. squama, scale or plate-like structure). Squama of temporal
bone, for example.
- (G. sternon, the chest). The breast bone consisting of the
manubrium, body, and xiphoid process.
- (G. stylos, pillar or post). Styloid process of temporal
- (L. supra, above). Prefix denoting a position above the named
structure that follows it, e.g., suprasternal bones.
- (L. sutura, a seam, from suere, to sew). A specific type of
joint between two bones.
- (G. tarsos, sole of foot). Any tarsal bone.
- (L. tempus, time or temple) Temporal bone.
- (G. thorax, breastplate, the chest) Referring to the chest
formed of twelve vertebrae, 12 ribs, and sternum.
- (L., G. olene, elbow). The elbow bone. The larger and more
medial of the two bones of the forearm.
- (L. vertebra, joint; verto, to turn). In humans, one of the 33
bony segments of the spinal column.
- (L. vola, a concave or hollow surface). Pertaining to the palm
or sole. The flexor surface of the forearm, wrist, and/or
- (L. vomer, ploughshare). A flat, thin bone forming the nasal
- (G. xiphos, sword + eidos, resemblance). Sword-shaped distal
segment of the sternum; ensiform.
- (G. zygoma, a bar or bolt). Os zygomaticum.
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For my career and his; boundless admiration for my graduate
advisor and teacher, at the University of Illinois, Department of
Physiology, Champaign-Urbana, 1950-1955.
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