• synonyms


[ley-bruh m, lab-ruh m]
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noun, plural la·bra [ley-bruh, lab-ruh] /ˈleɪ brə, ˈlæb rə/.
  1. a lip or liplike part.
  2. Zoology.
    1. the anterior, unpaired member of the mouthparts of an arthropod, projecting in front of the mouth.
    2. the outer margin of the aperture of a shell of a gastropod.
  3. Anatomy. a ring of cartilage about the edge of a joint surface of a bone.
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Origin of labrum1

1810–20; < Latin: lip; akin to labium


[ley-bruh m]
noun, plural la·bra [ley-bruh] /ˈleɪ brə/. Archaeology.
  1. an ornamented bathtub of ancient Rome.
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Origin of labrum2

< Latin lābrum basin, contraction of lavābrum bathtub, equivalent to lavā(re) to wash + -brum instrumental suffix
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for labrum

Historical Examples

  • It will be remembered that the labrum is provided with a groove.

    Insects and Diseases

    Rennie W. Doane

  • The labrum is considered by some authorities to be the hypopharynx.

    The Flea

    Harold Russell

  • They make the puncture and are interlocked with the labrum to form a sucking tube.

    The Flea

    Harold Russell

  • There are teeth on each side of the central notch of the labrum.

  • The labrum or upper-lip is fulvous; and the antenn are piceous.

British Dictionary definitions for labrum


noun plural -bra (-brə)
  1. a lip or liplike part, such as the cuticular plate forming the upper lip of insects
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Word Origin

C19: New Latin, from Latin
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 labrum


lip or lip-like part, 1816, in various anatomical and zoological uses, from Latin labrum, cognate with labium "lip" (see lip (n.)). Also noted mid-15c. as the name of some herb.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

labrum in Medicine


n. pl. la•bra (-brə)
  1. A lip-shaped anatomical edge, rim, or structure.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.