[ vur-teks ]
/ ˈvɜr tɛks /

noun, plural ver·tex·es, ver·ti·ces [vur-tuh-seez]. /ˈvɜr təˌsiz/.

the highest point of something; apex; summit; top: the vertex of a mountain.
Anatomy, Zoology. the crown or top of the head.
Craniometry. the highest point on the midsagittal plane of the skull or head viewed from the left side when the skull or head is in the Frankfurt horizontal.
Astronomy. a point in the celestial sphere toward which or from which the common motion of a group of stars is directed.
  1. the point farthest from the base: the vertex of a cone or of a pyramid.
  2. a point in a geometrical solid common to three or more sides.
  3. the intersection of two sides of a plane figure.



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Origin of vertex

First recorded in 1560–70; from Latin: “a whirl, top (of the head),” equivalent to vert(ere) “to turn” + -ex (stem -ic- ) noun suffix


vertex , vortex Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for vertex

British Dictionary definitions for vertex

/ (ˈvɜːtɛks) /

noun plural -texes or -tices (-tɪˌsiːz)

the highest point
  1. the point opposite the base of a figure
  2. the point of intersection of two sides of a plane figure or angle
  3. the point of intersection of a pencil of lines or three or more planes of a solid figure
astronomy a point in the sky towards which a star stream appears to move
anatomy the crown of the head

Word Origin for vertex

C16: from Latin: highest point, from vertere to turn
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 vertex

[ vûrtĕks′ ]

n. pl. ver•tex•es

The highest point; the apex.
The topmost point of the vault of the skull; the crown of the head.
The portion of the fetal head bounded by the planes of the trachelobregmatic and biparietal diameters, with the posterior fontanel at the apex.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Scientific definitions for vertex

[ vûrtĕks′ ]

Plural vertices (vûrtĭ-sēz′) vertexes

The point at which the sides of an angle intersect.
The point of a triangle, cone, or pyramid that is opposite to and farthest away from its base.
A point of a polyhedron at which three or more of the edges intersect.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.