1. Anatomy, Zoology. of or relating to an alveolus or to alveoli.
  2. Phonetics. articulated with the tongue touching or close to the alveolar ridge, as English t, d, n; gingival.
  1. Phonetics. an alveolar sound.

Origin of alveolar

First recorded in 1790–1800; alveol- + -ar1
Related formsal·ve·o·lar·ly, adverbin·ter·al·ve·o·lar, adjectivepost·al·ve·o·lar, adjectivepseu·do·al·ve·o·lar, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for alveolar

Historical Examples of alveolar

British Dictionary definitions for alveolar


  1. anatomy of, relating to, or resembling an alveolus
  2. denoting the part of the jawbone containing the roots of the teeth
  3. (of a consonant) articulated with the tongue in contact with the projecting part of the jawbone immediately behind the upper teeth
  1. an alveolar consonant, such as the speech sounds written t, d, and s in English
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 alveolar

"pertaining to alveoli," 1799, from Modern Latin alveolus "socket of a tooth" (see alveolus).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

alveolar in Medicine


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