coccyx

[kok-siks]
noun, plural coccyges [kok-sahy-jeez, kok-si-jeez] .
1.
a small triangular bone forming the lower extremity of the spinal column in humans, consisting of four ankylosed rudimentary vertebrae. See diag. under spinal column.
2.
a corresponding part in certain animals.

Origin:
1605–15; < Neo-Latin < Greek kókkyx cuckoo, from its resemblance to a cuckoo's beak

coccygeal [kok-sij-ee-uhl, -sij-uhl] , adjective
intercoccygeal, adjective
precoccygeal, adjective
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
coccyx (ˈkɒksɪks)
 
n , pl coccyges
a small triangular bone at the end of the spinal column in man and some apes, representing a vestigial tail
 
[C17: from New Latin, from Greek kokkux cuckoo, of imitative origin; from the likeness of the bone to a cuckoo's beak]
 
coccygeal
 
adj

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

coccyx
1615, from Gk. kokkyx "cuckoo" (from kokku, like the bird's Eng. name echoic of its cry), so called by ancient Gk. physician Galen because the bone in humans supposedly resembles a cuckoo's beak.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

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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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
coccyx   (kŏk'sĭks)  Pronunciation Key 
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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Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

coccyx

curved, semiflexible lower end of the backbone (vertebral column) in apes and humans, representing a vestigial tail. It is composed of three to five successively smaller caudal (coccygeal) vertebrae. The first is a relatively well-defined vertebra and connects with the sacrum; the last is represented by a small nodule of bone. The spinal cord ends above the coccyx. In early adulthood the coccygeal vertebrae fuse with each other; in later life the coccyx may fuse with the sacrum. A corresponding structure in other vertebrates, such as birds, may also be called a coccyx.

Learn more about coccyx with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
The human coccyx is highly variable but is generally composed of three to five
  vertebrae.
Inspect your coccyx to see if you have a prehensile tail attached.
Of the nine spinal fractures, eight were lumbar compression fractures and one
  was a fracture of the coccyx.
Treatment of mature and immature teratomas that are not in the sacrum or coccyx
  is usually surgery followed by watchful waiting.
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