[awr-i-kuh l]
  1. Anatomy.
    1. the projecting outer portion of the ear; pinna.
    2. Also called auricular ear-shaped appendage projecting from each atrium of the heart.
    3. (loosely) the atrium.
  2. Botany, Zoology. a part like or likened to an ear.

Origin of auricle

First recorded in 1645–55, auricle is from the Latin word auricula the (external) ear, ear lobe. See auri-2, -cle1
Related formsau·ri·cled, adjective
Can be confusedauricle oracle Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for auricle

Historical Examples of auricle

British Dictionary definitions for auricle


    1. the upper chamber of the heart; atrium
    2. a small sac in the atrium of the heart
  1. Also called: pinna anatomy the external part of the ear
  2. Also called: auricula biology an ear-shaped part or appendage, such as that occurring at the join of the leaf blade and the leaf sheath in some grasses
Derived Formsauricled, adjective

Word Origin for auricle

C17: from Latin auricula the external ear, from auris ear
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 auricle

part of the ear, 1650s, from Latin auricula "ear," diminutive of auris (see ear (n.1)). As a chamber of the heart, early 15c., from Latin, so called from a perceived similarity in shape to an animal's ear.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

auricle in Medicine


  1. Atrial auricle.
  2. The projecting shell-like structure on the side of the head constituting, with the external acoustic meatus, the external ear.pinna
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

auricle in Science


  1. The visible part of the outer ear.
  2. An atrium of the heart.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.