vallecula

noun

val·​lec·​u·​la va-ˈle-kyə-lə How to pronounce vallecula (audio)
və-
plural valleculae va-ˈle-kyə-ˌlē How to pronounce vallecula (audio)
və-,
-ˌlī
: an anatomical groove, channel, or depression
especially : one between the base of the tongue and the epiglottis
vallecular adjective

Word History

Etymology

borrowed from New Latin vallēcula, going back to Latin, "small valley," from vallēs, vallis "valley" (of uncertain origin) + -cula, diminutive suffix

First Known Use

1859, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of vallecula was in 1859

Dictionary Entries Near vallecula

Cite this Entry

“Vallecula.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/vallecula. Accessed 23 Jul. 2024.

Medical Definition

vallecula

noun
val·​lec·​u·​la va-ˈlek-yə-lə How to pronounce vallecula (audio)
plural valleculae -ˌlē How to pronounce vallecula (audio)
: an anatomical groove, channel, or depression: as
a
: a groove between the base of the tongue and the epiglottis
b
: a fossa on the underside of the cerebellum separating the hemispheres and including the inferior vermis
vallecular adjective
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