or fon·ta·nelle

[ fon-tn-el ]
/ ˌfɒn tnˈɛl /

noun Anatomy.

one of the spaces, covered by membrane, between the bones of the fetal or young skull.

Origin of fontanel

1375–1425; late Middle English fontinel < Middle French fontanele little spring, diminutive of fontaine fountain Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for fontanelle

British Dictionary definitions for fontanelle


mainly US fontanel

/ (ˌfɒntəˈnɛl) /


anatomy any of several soft membranous gaps between the bones of the skull in a fetus or infant

Word Origin for fontanelle

C16 (in the sense: hollow between muscles): from Old French fontanele, literally: a little spring, from fontaine fountain
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

Medicine definitions for fontanelle



Any of the soft membranous gaps between the incompletely formed cranial bones of a fetus or infant.soft spot
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.