noun, plural pli·cae [plahy-see, -kee] /ˈplaɪ si, -ki/.

Zoology, Anatomy. a fold or folding.
Also called pli·ca po·lon·i·ca [puh-lon-i-kuh] /pəˈlɒn ɪ kə/. Pathology. a matted, filthy condition of the hair, caused by disease, vermin, etc.
(in medieval music) a vertical mark attached to a neume, standing for an interpolated melodic ornament.

Origin of plica

1675–85; < Medieval Latin: a fold, back formation from Latin plicāre to fold, ply2
Related formspli·cal, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for plica

Historical Examples of plica

  • It might be stricken with dry-rot, elephantiasis and plica polonica for ought I care.

  • Plica polonica, which is endemic in Russia, is almost cosmopolitan.

    Fungi: Their Nature and Uses

    Mordecai Cubitt Cooke

  • In German the plica polonica is called Alpzopf, or hobgoblin's tail.

    Myth and Science

    Tito Vignoli

  • Hair matted or clotted, either from neglect or from the disease known as the Plica Polonica.

  • And perhaps the very essence of the Plica Polonica may be the hairs growing hollow, and of an unnatural constitution.


    Robert Hooke

British Dictionary definitions for plica


noun plural plicae (ˈplaɪsiː)

Also called: fold anatomy a folding over of parts, such as a fold of skin, muscle, peritoneum, etc
pathol a condition of the hair characterized by matting, filth, and the presence of parasites
Derived Formsplical, adjective

Word Origin for plica

C17: from Medieval Latin: a fold, from Latin plicāre to fold; see ply ²
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

Medicine definitions for plica



n. pl. pli•cae (-kē)

A fold or ridge, as of skin or membrane.
false membrane
Related formsplical adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.