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[proh-too-ber-uhns, -tyoo-, pruh-]
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  1. the condition, state, or quality of being protuberant.
  2. a protuberant part or thing; projection or bulge.
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Origin of protuberance

First recorded in 1640–50; protuber(ant) + -ance
Related formspro·tu·ber·an·tial [proh-too-buh-ran-shuhl, -tyoo-] /proʊˌtu bəˈræn ʃəl, -ˌtyu-/, adjectivenon·pro·tu·ber·ance, noun

Synonyms for protuberance

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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for protuberance

knob, protrusion, process, projection, bulge, swelling, prominence, jutting, tumor, bump, excrescence, jut, outthrust

Examples from the Web for protuberance

Historical Examples of protuberance

  • Folioles: leaf-like processes from a margin or protuberance.

    Explanation of Terms Used in Entomology

    John. B. Smith

  • Caruncle: a soft, naked, fleshy excrescence or protuberance.

  • You have, on the side of your temple, a protuberance, which I have noticed in the crania of inventors.

  • The word means knob or protuberance, especially that in the center of a shield.

    Lady of the Lake

    Sir Walter Scott

  • The hump in front, he says, was derived from the protuberance of the heavy cuirass.

    The Heritage of Dress

    Wilfred Mark Webb

Word Origin and History for protuberance


1640s, from Late Latin protuberantem (nominative protuberans), present participle of protuberare "to swell, bulge, grow forth," from Latin pro- "forward" (see pro-) + tuber "lump, swelling" (see tuber).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

protuberance in Medicine


  1. Something, such as a bulge, knob, or swelling, that protrudes.
  2. The condition of being protuberant.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.