See more synonyms for fibula on
noun, plural fib·u·lae [fib-yuh-lee] /ˈfɪb yəˌli/, fib·u·las.
  1. Anatomy. the outer and thinner of the two bones of the human leg, extending from the knee to the ankle.
  2. Zoology. a corresponding bone, often rudimentary or ankylosed with the tibia, of the leg or hind limb of an animal.
  3. a clasp or brooch, often ornamented, used by the ancient Greeks and Romans.

Origin of fibula

1665–75; < New Latin; Latin fībula bolt, pin, clasp, probably < *fīvibula, equivalent to fīv(ere), early form of fīgere to fasten, fix + -i- -i- + -bula suffix denoting instrument; the bone so called from its resemblance to the tongue of a clasp
Related formsfib·u·lar, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for fibula

Historical Examples of fibula

British Dictionary definitions for fibula


noun plural -lae (-ˌliː) or -las
  1. the outer and thinner of the two bones between the knee and ankle of the human legCompare tibia
  2. the corresponding bone in other vertebrates
  3. a metal brooch resembling a safety pin, often highly decorated, common in Europe after 1300 bc
Derived Formsfibular, adjective

Word Origin for fibula

C17: from Latin: clasp, probably from fīgere to fasten
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 fibula

1670s, "clasp, buckle, brooch;" 1706 as "smaller bone in the lower leg," from Latin fibula "clasp, brooch," related to figere "to fasten, fix" (see fix (v.)).

Used in reference to the outer leg bone as a loan-translation of Greek perone "small bone in the lower leg," originally "clasp, brooch; anything pointed for piercing or pinning;" the bone was so called because it resembles a clasp like a modern safety pin.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

fibula in Medicine


n. pl. fib•u•las
  1. The outer, narrower, and smaller of the two bones of the human lower leg, extending from the knee to the ankle, and articulating with the tibia above and the tibia and talus below.calf bone
Related formsfibu•lar (-lər) adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

fibula in Science


Plural fibulae (fĭbyə-lē′) fibulas
  1. The smaller of the two bones of the lower leg or lower portion of the hind leg. See more at skeleton.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.