[ling-gwuh l]


of or relating to the tongue or some tonguelike part.
pertaining to languages.
Phonetics. articulated with the aid of the tongue, especially the tip of the tongue, as d, n, s, or r.


Phonetics. a lingual sound.

Origin of lingual

1350–1400; Middle English: tongue-shaped surgical instrument < Medieval Latin linguālis. See lingua, -al1
Related formslin·gual·ly, adverbpre·lin·gual, adjectivepre·lin·gual·ly, adverb Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for lingual

Historical Examples of lingual

British Dictionary definitions for lingual



anatomy of or relating to the tongue or a part or structure resembling a tongue
  1. rareof or relating to language or languages
  2. (in combination)polylingual
articulated with the tongue


a lingual consonant, such as Scots (r)
Derived Formslingually, adverb
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 lingual

1640s, from Medieval Latin lingualis "of the tongue," from Latin lingua "tongue," also "speech, language," from Old Latin dingua, from PIE *dnghu- "tongue" (cf. Old English tunge, Gothic tuggo "tongue;" see tongue). Altered in Latin probably in part by association with lingere "to lick."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

lingual in Medicine




Of or relating to the tongue or any tonguelike part; glossal.
Next to or toward the tongue.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.