dura mater


du·​ra ma·​ter ˈdu̇r-ə-ˌmā-tər How to pronounce dura mater (audio)
: the tough fibrous membrane that envelops the brain and spinal cord external to the arachnoid and pia mater

Examples of dura mater in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Motif Neuroscience In a proof-of-concept experiment with a human volunteer who was already undergoing brain surgery, Robinson’s team demonstrated that their tiny device (about 9 millimeters across) could stimulate the brain through the dura mater. IEEE Spectrum, 16 Oct. 2023 In a preprint paper posted to the server medRxiv, neural engineers describe a tiny wireless device that could be implanted below the skull but above a protective membrane called the dura mater that surrounds the brain. IEEE Spectrum, 16 Oct. 2023 Today, neurosurgeons make a burr hole in the skull, which exposes the dura mater. Allison Futterman, Discover Magazine, 2 Nov. 2021 The accounts said Oliverson was believed to have fractured his skull and suffered an epidural hematoma, which sees blood build between the skull and dura mater, the outermost layer protecting the brain. Chantal Da Silva, NBC News, 17 Aug. 2022 An epidural hematoma involves bleeding from a ruptured blood vessel in the space between the skull and the covering around the brain, called the dura mater. Ashley Abramson, Health.com, 14 Feb. 2022 The inside, the dura mater, which means 'tough mother,' is a tough lining of skin around the brain. Miriam Fauzia, USA TODAY, 9 July 2020 Battlefield surgeons also treated head wounds by cutting away bone while trying not to puncture the brain’s delicate dura mater membrane. Lizzie Wade, Science | AAAS, 8 June 2018 Cerebrospinal fluid is produced continuously in the brain and is normally absorbed into the bloodstream through protrusions in the outer membrane of the brain, called the dura mater. Mark Lieber, CNN, 8 May 2018 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'dura mater.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English, from Medieval Latin, literally, hard mother

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of dura mater was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near dura mater

Cite this Entry

“Dura mater.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dura%20mater. Accessed 21 Feb. 2024.

Medical Definition

dura mater

du·​ra ma·​ter ˈd(y)u̇r-ə-ˌmāt-ər How to pronounce dura mater (audio) -ˌmät- How to pronounce dura mater (audio)
: the tough fibrous membrane lined with endothelium on the inner surface that envelops the brain and spinal cord external to the arachnoid and pia mater, that in the cranium closely lines the bone, does not dip down between the convolutions, and contains numerous blood vessels and venous sinuses, and that in the spinal cord is separated from the bone by a considerable space and contains no venous sinuses

called also dura

More from Merriam-Webster on dura mater

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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