[ too-ber-kuh l, tyoo- ]
/ ˈtu bər kəl, ˈtyu- /


a small rounded projection or excrescence, as on a bone or on the surface of the body.
  1. a small, firm, rounded nodule or swelling.
  2. such a swelling as the characteristic lesion of tuberculosis.
Botany. a tuberlike swelling or nodule.

Origin of tubercle

From the Latin word tūberculum, dating back to 1570–80. See tuber1, -cle1 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for tubercle

British Dictionary definitions for tubercle

/ (ˈtjuːbəkəl) /


any small rounded nodule or elevation, esp on the skin, on a bone, or on a plant
any small rounded pathological lesion of the tissues, esp one characteristic of tuberculosis

Word Origin for tubercle

C16: from Latin tūberculum a little swelling, diminutive of tuber
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

Medical definitions for tubercle

[ tōōbər-kəl ]


An anatomical nodule.tuberculum
A small elevation on the surface of a tooth.
A nodule or swelling, especially a mass of lymphocytes and epithelioid cells forming the characteristic granulomatous lesion of tuberculosis.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Scientific definitions for tubercle

[ tōōbər-kəl ]

A small rounded projection, swelling, or lump, as on the roots of legumes or on bodily tissue, especially the cluster of inflammatory cells that form in the lungs in tuberculosis.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.