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cuneiform

[kyoo-nee-uh-fawrm, kyoo-nee-uh-] /kyuˈni əˌfɔrm, ˈkyu ni ə-/
adjective
1.
having the form of a wedge; wedge-shaped.
2.
composed of slim triangular or wedge-shaped elements, as the characters used in writing by the ancient Akkadians, Assyrians, Babylonians, Persians, and others.
3.
written in cuneiform characters:
cuneiform inscription.
4.
Anatomy. noting or pertaining to any of various wedge-shaped bones, as of the tarsus.
noun
5.
cuneiform characters or writing.
6.
a cuneiform bone.
Also, cuniform.
Origin
1670-1680
1670-80; < Latin cune(us) a wedge + -i- + -form
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for cuneiform
  • From bureaucratic cuneiform to monumental hieroglyphs, early writing systems were mostly divorced from speech.
  • Five to three thousand years ago cuneiform was state of the art.
  • cuneiform characters are written either with patterns of small impressed triangles or with incised pictographs.
British Dictionary definitions for cuneiform

cuneiform

/ˈkjuːnɪˌfɔːm/
adjective
1.
Also cuneal. wedge-shaped
2.
of, relating to, or denoting the wedge-shaped characters employed in the writing of several ancient languages of Mesopotamia and Persia, esp Sumerian, Babylonian, etc
3.
of or relating to a tablet in which this script is employed
4.
of or relating to any of the three tarsal bones
noun
5.
cuneiform characters or writing
6.
any one of the three tarsal bones
Word Origin
C17: probably from Old French cunéiforme, from Latin cuneus wedge
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 cuneiform
adj.

1670s, "wedge shaped," from French cunéiforme (16c.), from Latin cuneus "a wedge, wedge-shaped thing," of unknown origin, + French -forme (see form (n.)). Applied to characters in ancient Middle Eastern inscriptions made with wedge-shaped writing tools; first used in this sense by German physician and traveller Engelbert Kämpfer (1681-1716); in English from 1818. As a noun from 1862.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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cuneiform in Medicine

cuneiform (kyōō'nē-ə-fôrm', kyōō-nē'-)
adj.

  1. Wedge-shaped.

  2. Of, relating to, or being a wedge-shaped bone or cartilage.

n.
A wedge-shaped bone, especially one of three such bones of the foot.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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