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See more synonyms for testes on Thesaurus.com
  1. plural of testis.
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noun, plural tes·tes [tes-teez] /ˈtɛs tiz/. Anatomy, Zoology.
  1. the male gonad or reproductive gland, either of two oval glands located in the scrotum.
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Origin of testis

1675–85; < Latin: “witness, spectator, testicle.” The sense “male gonad” is a loan translation from Greek parastátēs “bystander, supporter (at law),” in medical usage (in the dual and plural) “the (pair of) glands lying side by side, the testicles” (equivalent to para- para-1 + the combining form -statēs, from histánai “to make stand.”) Compare Greekprostátēs “one who stands in front, ruler,” in medical usage “the gland lying in front, the prostate
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for testes

genitalia, nuts, gonads, vulva, testes, stones, pudenda, ballocks, balls, cullions, rocks, heart, marrow, stomach, tongue, tripe, brains, chitlins, chitterlings

Examples from the Web for testes

Historical Examples of testes

  • Testes large, ovoid, granular; length of left testis 11.0 mm.

    Descriptions of New Hylid Frogs From Mexico and Central America

    William E. Duellman

  • Testes of mature individuals are pale yellow and slightly oblong.

  • Testes sunt permulti in utramque partem, sed brevitatis causa familia contenti erimus una.

    De Officiis

    Marcus Tullius Cicero

  • Testes of male will be found under fore end of pelvis and are white, in young bird, very small.


    Leon Luther Pray

  • Testes of three adult males measured 17, 19, and 22; of three females, none evidenced reproductive activity.

British Dictionary definitions for testes


  1. the plural of testis
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noun plural -tes (-tiːz)
  1. another word for testicle
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Word Origin for testis

C17: from Latin, literally: witness (to masculinity)
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 testes



(plural testes), 1704, from Latin testis "testicle," usually regarded as a special application of testis "witness" (see testament), presumably because it "bears witness" to virility (cf. Greek parastates, literally "one that stands by;" and French slang témoins, literally "witnesses"). But Buck thinks Greek parastatai "testicles" has been wrongly associated with the legal sense of parastates "supporter, defender" and suggests instead parastatai in the sense of twin "supporting pillars, props of a mast," etc. Walde, meanwhile, suggests a connection between testis and testa "pot, shell, etc."

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

testes in Medicine


n. pl. tes•tes (-tēz)
  1. The male reproductive gland, the source of spermatozoa and the androgens, normally occurring paired in an external scrotum.didymus orchis
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

testes in Science


Plural testes (tĕstēz)
  1. The primary reproductive organ of male animals, in which sperm and the male sex hormones (androgens) are produced. In most vertebrates, the testes are contained inside the body. In many mammals, however, the testes are enclosed in an external scrotum.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

testes in Culture



sing. testis (tes-tis)

The two organs in the male reproductive system that produce sperm and testosterone. The testes are housed in the scrotum.

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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.