1. Anatomy. either of two knobs at the top of the femur, the greater on the outside and the lesser on the inside, serving for the attachment of muscles between the thigh and pelvis.
  2. Zoology. any similar prominence on the femur in many other vertebrates.
  3. Entomology. (in an insect) the usually small second segment of the leg, between the coxa and femur.

Origin of trochanter

1605–15; < New Latin < Greek trochantḗr ball on which the hip bone turns in its socket
Related formstro·chan·ter·ic [troh-kuh n-ter-ik] /ˌtroʊ kənˈtɛr ɪk/, tro·chan·ter·al, adjectivesub·tro·chan·ter·ic, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for trochanter

Historical Examples of trochanter

British Dictionary definitions for trochanter


  1. any of several processes on the upper part of the vertebrate femur, to which muscles are attached
  2. the third segment of an insect's leg

Word Origin for trochanter

C17: via French from Greek trokhantēr, from trekhein to run
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 trochanter

1610s, from French trochanter (16c.), from Greek trokhanter, from trekhein "to run" (see truckle (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

trochanter in Medicine


  1. Any of several bony processes on the upper part of the femur.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.