• synonyms


noun Pathology.
  1. a condition in which the neck is twisted and the head inclined to one side, caused by spasmodic contraction of the muscles of the neck.
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Origin of torticollis

1805–15; < New Latin, equivalent to Latin tort(us) twisted (see tort) + -i- -i- + coll(um) neck + -is noun suffix
Also called wryneck.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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Historical Examples of torticollis

British Dictionary definitions for torticollis


  1. pathol an abnormal position of the head, usually with the neck bent to one side, caused congenitally by contracture of muscles, muscular spasm, etc
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Derived Formstorticollar, adjective

Word Origin for torticollis

C19: New Latin, from Latin tortus twisted (from torquēre to twist) + collum neck
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 torticollis


1811, Modern Latin, from Latin tortus "crooked, twisted" (see tortuous) + collum "neck" (see collar (n.)).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

torticollis in Medicine


  1. A contracted state of the neck muscles producing an unnatural position of the head.wryneck
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Related formstor′ti•collar (-kŏlər) adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.