[ kuh-pich-uh-luh m ]
/ kəˈpɪtʃ ə ləm /

noun, plural ca·pit·u·la [kuh-pich-uh-luh] /kəˈpɪtʃ ə lə/.

Biology. any globose or knoblike part, as a flower head or the head of a bone.

Nearby words

  1. capitularies,
  2. capitulary,
  3. capitulate,
  4. capitulation,
  5. capitulationism,
  6. capiz,
  7. caplet,
  8. caplin,
  9. capnomancy,
  10. capo

Origin of capitulum

1715–25; < Latin, equivalent to capit- (stem of caput) head + -ulum, neuter of -ulus -ule Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for capitulum

British Dictionary definitions for capitulum


/ (kəˈpɪtjʊləm) /

noun plural -la (-lə)

a racemose inflorescence in the form of a disc of sessile flowers, the youngest at the centre. It occurs in the daisy and related plants
anatomy zoology a headlike part, esp the enlarged knoblike terminal part of a long bone, antenna, etc

Word Origin for capitulum

C18: from Latin, literally: a little head, from 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 capitulum



used in various senses in English; Latin, literally "little head," diminutive of caput "head," also "leader, guide, chief person; summit; capital city; origin, source, spring," figuratively "life, physical life;" in writing "a division, paragraph;" of money, "the principal sum," from PIE *kaput- "head" (see head (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for capitulum


[ kə-pĭchə-ləm ]

n. pl. ca•pit•u•la (-lə)

A small head or rounded articular extremity of a bone.
Related formsca•pitu•lar adj.

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

Science definitions for capitulum


[ kə-pĭchə-ləm ]

Plural capitula

A small knob or head-shaped part, such as a protuberance of a bone or the tip of an insect's antenna.
An inflorescence consisting of a compact mass of small stalkless flowers, as in the English daisy. The yellow central portion of the capitulum of a daisy consists of disk flowers, while the outer white, petallike structures are actually ray flowers. The capitulum is the characteristic inflorescence of the composite family (Asteraceae) of flowering plants.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.