decussate

verb
de·cus·sate | \ˈde-kə-ˌsāt, di-ˈkə-ˌsāt\
decussated; decussating

Definition of decussate 

(Entry 1 of 2)

decussate

adjective
de·cus·sate | \ˈde-kə-ˌsāt, di-ˈkə-sət\

Definition of decussate (Entry 2 of 2)

: arranged in pairs each at right angles to the next pair above or below decussate leaves

Did You Know?

Verb

The history of decussate leads us back to the intersection of decem, a word meaning "ten," and ass-, a form that refers to a unit of weight and specifically to a copper coin cut to a half-ounce. In the Roman numeral system the number 10 is represented by X, an intersection of two lines. A man named Sir Thomas Browne coined decussate in the 17th century to discuss the crossing fibers that make up human anatomy-for instance, skin tissue. The word continues to be found primarily in scientific contexts today.

First Known Use of decussate

Verb

1658, in the meaning defined above

Adjective

circa 1823, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for decussate

Verb

Latin decussatus, past participle of decussare to arrange crosswise, from decussis the number ten, numeral X, intersection, from decem + ass-, as unit — more at ace

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about decussate

Listen to Our Podcast about decussate

Statistics for decussate

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for decussate

The first known use of decussate was in 1658

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for decussate

decussate

verb
de·cus·sate | \ˈdek-ə-ˌsāt, di-ˈkəs-ˌāt \
decussated; decussating

Medical Definition of decussate 

: to intersect in the form of an X

More from Merriam-Webster on decussate

See words that rhyme with decussate

Comments on decussate

What made you want to look up decussate? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

evasion of direct action or statement

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Great Scrabble Words—A Quiz

  • scrabble-tiles-that-read-scrabble-quiz
  • Which of the following Q-without-U words means the number five in cards or dice?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Citation

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

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!