See more synonyms for larynx on
noun, plural la·ryn·ges [luh-rin-jeez] /ləˈrɪn dʒiz/, lar·ynx·es.
  1. Anatomy. a muscular and cartilaginous structure lined with mucous membrane at the upper part of the trachea in humans, in which the vocal cords are located.
  2. Zoology.
    1. a similar vocal organ in other mammals.
    2. a corresponding structure in certain lower animals.

Origin of larynx

1570–80; < New Latin < Greek lárynx Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for larynx


noun plural larynges (ləˈrɪndʒiːz) or larynxes
  1. a cartilaginous and muscular hollow organ forming part of the air passage to the lungs: in higher vertebrates it contains the vocal cords

Word Origin for larynx

C16: from New Latin larynx, from Greek larunx
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 larynx

1570s, from Middle French larynx (16c.), from Modern Latin, from Greek larynx (genitive laryngos) "the upper windpipe," probably from laimos "throat," influenced by pharynx "throat, windpipe."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

larynx in Medicine


n. pl. lar•ynx•es
  1. The part of the respiratory tract between the pharynx and the trachea, having walls of cartilage and muscle and containing the vocal cords enveloped in folds of mucous membrane.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

larynx in Science


Plural larynges (lə-rĭnjēz) larynxes
  1. The upper part of the trachea in most vertebrate animals, containing the vocal cords. The walls of the larynx are made of cartilage. Sound is produced by air passing through the larynx on the way to the lungs, causing the walls of the larynx to vibrate. The pitch of the sound that is produced can be altered by the pull of muscles, which changes the tension of the vocal cords. Also called voice box
Related formslaryngeal adjective
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

larynx in Culture



The specialized upper portion of the trachea that contains the vocal cords; the voice box.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.