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90s Slang You Should Know


[kruhks] /krʌks/
noun, plural cruxes, cruces
[kroo-seez] /ˈkru siz/ (Show IPA)
a vital, basic, decisive, or pivotal point:
The crux of the trial was his whereabouts at the time of the murder.
a cross.
something that torments by its puzzling nature; a perplexing difficulty.
Origin of crux
1635-45; < Latin: stake, scaffold, or cross used in executions, torment; figurative senses perhaps < New Latin crux (interpretum) (commentators') torment, a difficult passage in a text; cf. crucial
1. essence, heart, core, gist.


[kruhks] /krʌks/
noun, genitive Crucis
[kroo-sis] /ˈkru sɪs/ (Show IPA).
< Latin: a cross Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for crux
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The language is straightforward on the whole, almost the only crux being ii.

    Dante: His Times and His Work Arthur John Butler
  • The crux of the communication, like that of a school-girl's letter, comes last.

    East of Suez Frederic Courtland Penfield
  • The terminals are the crux of the whole great problem of handling suburban traffic.

    The Modern Railroad Edward Hungerford
  • They had come to the crux which Crashaw had wished to avoid.

    The Wonder J. D. Beresford
  • All this is valid enough; but it leaves the crux of the question untouched.

British Dictionary definitions for crux


noun (pl) cruxes, cruces (ˈkruːsiːz)
a vital or decisive stage, point, etc (often in the phrase the crux of the matter)
a baffling problem or difficulty
(mountaineering) the most difficult and often decisive part of a climb or pitch
a rare word for cross
Word Origin
C18: from Latin: cross


noun (Latin genitive) Crucis (ˈkruːsɪs)
the more formal name for the Southern Cross
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
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Word Origin and History for crux

1814, "cross," from Latin crux "cross" (see cross (n.)). Figurative use for "a central difficulty," is older, from 1718; perhaps from Latin crux interpretum "a point in a text that is impossible to interpret," in which the literal sense is something like "crossroads of interpreters." Extended sense of "central point" is from 1888.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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crux in Medicine

crux (krŭks, kruks)
n. pl. crux·es or cru·ces (krōō'sēz)
A cross or a crosslike structure.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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