columella

noun
col·​u·​mel·​la | \ ˌkäl-yə-ˈme-lə How to pronounce columella (audio) \
plural columellae\ ˌkäl-​yə-​ˈme-​(ˌ)lē How to pronounce columella (audio) , -​ˌlī \

Definition of columella

1 : the central column or axis of a spiral univalve shell
2a : the bony or partly cartilaginous rod connecting the tympanic membrane with the internal ear in birds and in many reptiles and amphibians
b : the bony central axis of the cochlea

Other Words from columella

columellar \ ˌkäl-​yə-​ˈme-​lər How to pronounce columella (audio) \ adjective

First Known Use of columella

circa 1755, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for columella

New Latin, from Latin, diminutive of columna

Learn More About columella

Time Traveler for columella

Time Traveler

The first known use of columella was circa 1755

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near columella

Columbus Day

columella

columellar muscle

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for columella

Cite this Entry

“Columella.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/columella. Accessed 21 Jan. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for columella

columella

noun
col·​u·​mel·​la | \ ˌkäl-(y)ə-ˈmel-ə How to pronounce columella (audio) \
plural columellae\ -​ˈmel-​(ˌ)ē also -​ˌī \

Medical Definition of columella

1 : any of various anatomical parts likened to a column:
a : the bony central axis of the cochlea
b : the lower part of the nasal septum
2 : the central sterile portion of the sporangium in various fungi (Mucor and related genera)

Other Words from columella

columellar \ -​ər How to pronounce columella (audio) \ adjective
columellate \ -​ˌāt, -​ət How to pronounce columella (audio) \ adjective

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Name that Thing: Flower Edition

Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!