• synonyms


[gas-trok-nee-mee-uh s, gas-truh-nee-]
noun, plural gas·troc·ne·mi·i [gas-trok-nee-mee-ahy, gas-truh-nee-] /ˌgæs trɒkˈni miˌaɪ, ˌgæs trəˈni-/. Anatomy.
  1. the largest muscle in the calf of the leg, the action of which extends the foot, raises the heel, and assists in bending the knee.
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Origin of gastrocnemius

1670–80; < New Latin < Greek gastroknēm(ía) calf of the leg + Latin -ius noun suffix
Related formsgas·troc·ne·mi·al, gas·troc·ne·mi·an, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for gastrocnemius

Historical Examples of gastrocnemius

  • On the tibiotarsus, the peroneus and gastrocnemius muscles were measured.

    Phylogeny of the Waxwings and Allied Birds

    M. Dale Arvey

  • The gastrocnemius, when it contracts, extends the foot on the leg.

  • Then she raised one of them, and her fingers explored the common tendon of the soleus and gastrocnemius.

    Gray youth

    Oliver Onions

  • Then it accompanies the gastrocnemius, and becomes tendinous where the tendo-Achillis commences.

  • It is on the external aspect of the latter we perceive it, between the peroneals and the gastrocnemius or tendo-Achillis.

Word Origin and History for gastrocnemius


1670s, from Latinized form of Greek gastroknemia "calf of the leg," from gaster "belly" (see gastric) + kneme "leg." So called for its form. Related: Gastrocnemical.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

gastrocnemius in Medicine


(găs′trŏk-nēmē-əs, găs′trə-)
n. pl. gas•troc•ne•mi•i (-mē-ī′)
  1. A muscle with its origin from the lateral and medial condyles of the femur, with insertion with the soleus muscle by the Achilles tendon into the lower half of the posterior surface of the calcaneus, with nerve supply from the tibial nerve, and whose action causes plantar flexion of the foot.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.