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a combining form meaning “mind,” “diaphragm,” used in the formation of compound words:
Also, especially before a vowel, phren-.
Origin of phreno-
< Greek phreno-, combining form representing phrḗn mind, diaphragm Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for phreno-


combining form
mind or brain: phrenology
of or relating to the diaphragm: phrenic
Word Origin
from Greek phrēn mind, diaphragm
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 phreno-

before vowels phren-, word-forming element meaning "mind," also "diaphragm," from Greek phreno-, comb. form of phrene properly "diaphragm, muscle which parts the abdomen from the thorax;" in Homer extended to "parts around the heart, breast," hence "heart" (as a seat of passions), "mind, seat of thoughts, wits, senses," of unknown origin.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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phreno- in Medicine

phreno- or phren- or phreni-

  1. Mind: phrenoplegia.

  2. Diaphragm: phrenogastric.

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