cranium

noun
cra·​ni·​um | \ ˈkrā-nē-əm How to pronounce cranium (audio) \
plural craniums or crania\ ˈkrā-​nē-​ə How to pronounce cranium (audio) \

Definition of cranium

: skull specifically : the part of the skull that encloses the brain : braincase Among the physical characters that distinguish them from other early humans are the long, low sweep of the Neanderthal cranium— James Shreeve "Hey, big head!" Mahorn shouted. Aguirre does, in fact, have an extraordinary cranium.— Jeff Coplon You don't "watch" a film like Fight Club; you mainline a deluge of visual and sonic information (including a hefty chunk of the IKEA catalog) straight into your cranium. — Jeff Gordinier

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Synonyms for cranium

Synonyms

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Examples of cranium in a Sentence

the cranium of a Neanderthal is striking for its brow ridges
Recent Examples on the Web The last evidence of cranium removal shows up in the archaeological record around the same time as the earliest cremations, around 7000 BCE. Kiona N. Smith, Ars Technica, "This 9,000-year-old skeleton is the oldest cremation in the Near East," 17 Aug. 2020 Two came off the cleats of Dudukovich and the middle goal came from her cranium, with the assist from freshman Nicki Klosterman. Scott Springer, The Enquirer, "Lakota West gains revenge on MND in girls soccer to move to regional final," 4 Nov. 2020 The examiners divined that while Maceo’s skeleton resembled that of a man of African descent, his cranium was more European. Griffin Black, Scientific American, "The Whitewashing of Black Genius," 12 Oct. 2020 Furthermore, the cranium belongs to a 2- or 3-year-old child, for which comparisons are scarce. Brian Handwerk, Smithsonian Magazine, "In Groundbreaking Find, Three Kinds of Early Humans Unearthed Living Together in South Africa," 2 Apr. 2020 Based on fracture patterns, damage to the cat’s mandibles likely happened at the time of death, while large-scale damage to the left side of the cranium happened sometime in the thousands of years after the animal had been mummified. Matt Simon, Wired, "Ever Seen Inside a Mummified Cat? Well Now You Have," 20 Aug. 2020 And often people removed the skull (cranium) of the dead person before burial—but not always. Kiona N. Smith, Ars Technica, "This 9,000-year-old skeleton is the oldest cremation in the Near East," 17 Aug. 2020 Fill your cranium with the sweet harmonic tones of The Beach Boys or the insane control of Laura Marling’s voice. Billy Cadden, Popular Science, "Things to carry inside the perfect work bag," 2 July 2020 This music’s secret tension might be the sound of Lil Baby trying to keep everything inside his cranium. Chris Richards, Washington Post, "Lil Baby’s inside voice is the sound of a restless American summer," 5 Aug. 2020

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

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First Known Use of cranium

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for cranium

Medieval Latin, from Greek kranion; akin to Greek kara head — more at cerebral

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Time Traveler for cranium

Time Traveler

The first known use of cranium was in the 15th century

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Statistics for cranium

Last Updated

5 Dec 2020

Cite this Entry

“Cranium.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cranium. Accessed 20 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for cranium

cranium

noun
cra·​ni·​um | \ ˈkrā-nē-əm How to pronounce cranium (audio) \
plural craniums or crania\ -​nē-​ə \

Kids Definition of cranium

1 : skull
2 : the part of the skull enclosing the brain

cranium

noun
cra·​ni·​um | \ ˈkrā-nē-əm How to pronounce cranium (audio) \
plural craniums or crania\ -​nē-​ə How to pronounce cranium (audio) \

Medical Definition of cranium

: skull specifically : braincase

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Comments on cranium

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