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[kok-siks] /ˈkɒk sɪks/
noun, plural coccyges
[kok-sahy-jeez, kok-si-jeez] /kɒkˈsaɪ dʒiz, ˈkɒk sɪˌdʒiz/ (Show IPA)
a small triangular bone forming the lower extremity of the spinal column in humans, consisting of four ankylosed rudimentary vertebrae.
a corresponding part in certain animals.
Origin of coccyx
1605-15; < New Latin < Greek kókkyx cuckoo, from its resemblance to a cuckoo's beak
Related forms
[kok-sij-ee-uh l, -sij-uh l] /kɒkˈsɪdʒ i əl, -ˈsɪdʒ əl/ (Show IPA),
intercoccygeal, adjective
precoccygeal, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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British Dictionary definitions for coccyx


noun (pl) coccyges (kɒkˈsaɪdʒiːz)
a small triangular bone at the end of the spinal column in man and some apes, representing a vestigial tail
Derived Forms
coccygeal (kɒkˈsɪdʒɪəl) adjective
Word Origin
C17: from New Latin, from Greek kokkux cuckoo, of imitative origin; from the likeness of the bone to a cuckoo's beak
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
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Word Origin and History for coccyx

1610s, from Latin coccyx, from Greek kokkyx "cuckoo" (from kokku, like the bird's English name echoic of its cry), so called by ancient Greek physician Galen because the bone in humans supposedly resembles a cuckoo's beak.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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coccyx in Medicine

coccyx coc·cyx (kŏk'sĭks)
n. pl. coc·cy·ges (kŏk-sī'jēz, kŏk'sĭ-jēz')
The small triangular bone located at the base of the spinal column, formed by the fusion of four rudimentary vertebrae, and articulating above with the sacrum. Also called tailbone.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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coccyx in Science
Plural coccyges (kŏk-sī'jēz, kŏk'sĭ-jēz')
A small triangular bone at the base of the spine in humans and apes. It is composed of several fused vertebrae. Also called tailbone.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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