clav·​i·​cle ˈkla-vi-kəl How to pronounce clavicle (audio)
: a bone of the shoulder girdle typically serving to link the scapula and sternum

called also collarbone

clavicular adjective

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web In the pics, Davidson's clavicle and collar bones were missing the tiny inks dedicated to The Kardashians star, 42. Tracey Harrington Mccoy, Peoplemag, 1 Feb. 2023 In the recent photos, Davidson's clavicle and collar bones appear to be sans the tiny inks dedicated to the Kardashians star, 42. Michelle Lee, Peoplemag, 23 Jan. 2023 After the game, Texas head coach Steve Sarkisian said that Ewers has a clavicle strain and will be getting an MRI soon. Dallas News, 10 Sep. 2022 The clavicular head also connects to the medical clavicle (collarbone). David Otey, Men's Health, 6 Dec. 2022 Sarafina Bush’s costumes tend to involve some cutaway — either over the midriff (as for Kenita R. Miller, who is eight months pregnant) or the clavicle — a kind of pride-in-skin that makes the room glow with summer warmth. Helen Shaw, Vulture, 20 Apr. 2022 Formed by the humerus, scapula, and clavicle, multiple muscles help move these bones in a rhythm to allow for pain-free functional use of the arm. Perri O. Blumberg, Men's Health, 10 Nov. 2022 Sometimes, like in the case of the veteran’s shortened clavicle, the models help surgeons to meticulously rehearse a difficult surgery. Gabe Allen, Discover Magazine, 19 Sep. 2021 The serratus anterior and subclavius are also chest muscles, which rotate the scapula and anchors and depresses the clavicle, respectively. Brett Williams, Men's Health, 7 Dec. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'clavicle.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


French clavicule, from New Latin clavicula, from Latin, diminutive of Latin clavis; akin to Greek kleid-, kleis key, kleiein to close

First Known Use

1615, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of clavicle was in 1615

Dictionary Entries Near clavicle

Cite this Entry

“Clavicle.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Feb. 2023.

Kids Definition


clav·​i·​cle ˈklav-i-kəl How to pronounce clavicle (audio)
: a bone of the shoulder that joins the breastbone and the shoulder blade

called also collarbone

Medical Definition


clav·​i·​cle ˈklav-i-kəl How to pronounce clavicle (audio)
: a bone of the shoulder girdle that links the scapula and sternum, is situated just above the first rib on either side of the neck, and has the form of a narrow elongated S

called also collarbone

clavicular adjective

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