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noun, plural cer·vix·es, cer·vi·ces [ser-vahy-seez, sur-vuh-seez] /sərˈvaɪ siz, ˈsɜr vəˌsiz/. Anatomy.
  1. the neck, especially the back part.
  2. any necklike part, especially the constricted lower end of the uterus.

Origin of cervix

1375–1425; late Middle English < Latin cervīx neck, nape, uterine cervix
Related formscer·vi·cal [sur-vi-kuh l] /ˈsɜr vɪ kəl/, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for cervix


noun plural cervixes or cervices (səˈvaɪsiːz)
  1. the technical name for neck
  2. any necklike part of an organ, esp the lower part of the uterus that extends into the vagina

Word Origin

C18: from Latin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for cervix


early 15c., "ligament in the neck," from Latin cervix "the neck, nape of the neck," from PIE *kerw-o-, from root *ker- (see horn (n.)). Applied to various neck-like structures of the body, especially that of the uterus (by 1702), where it is shortened from medical Latin cervix uteri (17c.). Sometimes in medical writing 18c.-19c. cervix of the uterus to distinguish it from the neck sense.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

cervix in Medicine


n. pl. cer•vix•es
  1. The neck.
  2. collum
  3. A neck-shaped anatomical structure, such as the narrow outer end of the uterus.

cervix in Science


  1. A neck-shaped anatomical structure, especially the narrowed, lower end of the uterus that extends into the vagina.

cervix in Culture


The narrow outer end of the uterus. A portion of the cervix extends into the vagina. (See reproductive systems.)

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.