noun, plural bi·ceps·es [bahy-sep-siz] /ˈbaɪ sɛp sɪz/, bi·ceps. Anatomy.

either of two flexor muscles, one (biceps brachii) located in the front of the upper arm and assisting in bending the arm, and the other (biceps femoris) located on the back of the thigh and assisting in bending the leg.

Origin of biceps

1625–35; < Latin: two-headed, having two parts, equivalent to bi- bi-1 + -ceps (stem -cipit-), combining form of caput head




a biceps muscle, especially the one at the front of the upper arm.

Origin of bicep

First recorded in 1955–60; back formation from biceps Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

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British Dictionary definitions for biceps


noun plural -ceps

anatomy any muscle having two heads or origins, esp the muscle that flexes the forearmRelated adjective: bicipital

Word Origin for biceps

C17: from Latin: having two heads, from bi- 1 caput head
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 biceps

1630s (adj.), from Latin biceps "having two parts," literally "two-headed," from bis "double" (see bis-) + -ceps comb. form of caput "head" (see capitulum). As a noun meaning "biceps muscle," from 1640s, so called for its structure. Despite the -s, it is singular, and classicists insist there is no such word as bicep.



false singular of biceps (q.v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

biceps in Medicine



n. pl. biceps

A muscle with two heads or points of origin.
The biceps brachii.
The biceps femoris.
Related formsbi•cipi•tal (-sĭpĭ-tl) adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

biceps in Science



Either of two muscles, biceps brachii of the arm or biceps femoris of the leg, each with two points of origin. The biceps of the arm bends the elbow, while the biceps of the leg helps to bend the knee as part of the hamstring.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.