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See more synonyms for pharynx on Thesaurus.com
noun, plural pha·ryn·ges [fuh-rin-jeez] /fəˈrɪn dʒiz/, phar·ynx·es. Anatomy.
  1. the tube or cavity, with its surrounding membrane and muscles, that connects the mouth and nasal passages with the esophagus.
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Origin of pharynx

1685–95; < New Latin < Greek phárynx throat, akin to pháranx gulf, chasm
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for pharynx

esophagus, larynx, gullet, maw, passage, gorge, pharynx, trachea, windpipe, thorax, fauces, throat, voice

Examples from the Web for pharynx

Historical Examples of pharynx

  • Yet this wonderful appliance had neither tongue nor teeth, larynx nor pharynx.

    Heroes of the Telegraph

    J. Munro

  • It is just cephalad to the anterior end of the pharynx and to the hypophysis.

  • Thus the opening from the larynx into the pharynx is closed.

  • No foreign body was palpable with the finger in the pharynx.

  • Just back of the pharynx is the esophagus which leads to the beginning of the stomach.

    Insects and Diseases

    Rennie W. Doane

British Dictionary definitions for pharynx


noun plural pharynges (fæˈrɪndʒiːz) or pharynxes
  1. the part of the alimentary canal between the mouth and the oesophagusCompare nasopharynx Related adjective: pharyngeal
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Word Origin for pharynx

C17: via New Latin from Greek pharunx throat; related to Greek pharanx chasm
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 pharynx


1690s, from Greek pharynx (genitive pharyngos) "windpipe, throat," related to pharanx "cleft, chasm."

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

pharynx in Medicine


n. pl. phar•ynx•es
  1. The upper section of the alimentary canal that extends from the mouth and nasal cavities to the larynx.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

pharynx in Science


Plural pharynges (fə-rĭnjēz) pharynxes
  1. The passage that leads from the cavities of the nose and mouth to the larynx (voice box) and esophagus. Air passes through the pharynx on the way to the lungs, and food enters the esophagus from the pharynx.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.