[hahy-oid]Anatomy, Zoology
  1. Also hy·oi·dal, hy·oi·de·an. noting or pertaining to a U-shaped bone at the root of the tongue in humans, or a corresponding bone or collection of bones in animals.
  1. the hyoid bone.

Origin of hyoid

1700–10; < New Latin hȳoïdes < Greek hȳoeidḗs, shaped like the letter hypsilon (i.e. upsilon), equivalent to hȳ- (derivative of letter name hŷ, variant of ŷ; see upsilon) + -oeidēs -oid
Related formspost·hy·oid, adjectivesub·hy·oid, adjectivesub·hy·oid·e·an, adjective
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Historical Examples of hyoidean

British Dictionary definitions for hyoidean


adjective Also: hyoidal, hyoidean
  1. of or relating to the hyoid bone
noun Also: hyoid bone
  1. the horseshoe-shaped bone that lies at the base of the tongue and above the thyroid cartilage
  2. a corresponding bone or group of bones in other vertebrates

Word Origin for hyoid

C19: from New Latin hӯoïdes, from Greek huoeidēs having the shape of the letter upsilon, from hu upsilon + -oid
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 hyoidean



1811, from French hyoïde (16c.), from Modern Latin hyoides, from Greek hyoeides "shaped like the letter U," from hu "letter U" (in later Greek called upsilon) + -oeides "like" (see -oid).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

hyoidean in Medicine


  1. Shaped like the letter U.
  2. Of or relating to the hyoid bone.
  1. The hyoid bone.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.