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[fawr-niks] /ˈfɔr nɪks/
noun, plural fornices
[fawr-nuh-seez] /ˈfɔr nəˌsiz/ (Show IPA).
any of various arched or vaulted structures, as an arching fibrous formation in the brain.
Origin of fornix
1675-85; < Latin: vault, arch
Related forms
fornical, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for fornices
Historical Examples
  • Allusion has already been made to the fornices under the circus.

    The History of Prostitution William W. Sanger
  • Their name, fornices, at last became synonymous with lupanar, and we have borrowed from it our generic word fornication.

    The History of Prostitution William W. Sanger
  • These arcade dens were called "fornices," from which comes our generic fornication.

    The Satyricon, Complete Petronius Arbiter
British Dictionary definitions for fornices


noun (pl) -nices (-nɪˌsiːz)
(anatomy) any archlike structure, esp the arched band of white fibres at the base of the brain
Derived Forms
fornical, adjective
Word Origin
C17: from Latin; see fornicate²
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 fornices



1680s, from Latin fornix "arch, vaulted chamber" (see fornication).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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fornices in Medicine

fornix for·nix (fôr'nĭks)
n. pl. for·ni·ces (-nĭ-sēz')

  1. An arch-shaped structure, especially the arch-shaped roof of an anatomical space.

  2. The compact bundle of white fiber by which the hippocampus of each cerebral hemisphere projects to the opposite hippocampus and to the septum, the anterior nucleus of the thalamus, and the mamillary body.

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