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cusp

[kuhsp] /kʌsp/
noun
1.
a point or pointed end.
2.
Anatomy, Zoology, Botany. a point, projection, or elevation, as on the crown of a tooth.
3.
Also called spinode. Geometry. a point where two branches of a curve meet, end, and are tangent.
4.
Architecture. a decorative device, used especially in Gothic architecture to vary the outlines of intradoses or to form architectural foils, consisting of a pair of curves tangent to the real or imaginary line defining the area decorated and meeting at a point within the area.
5.
Astronomy. a point of a crescent, especially of the moon.
6.
Astrology.
  1. the zodiacal degree that marks the beginning of a house or a sign.
  2. Informal. a person born on the first day of a sign.
7.
a point that marks the beginning of a change:
on the cusp of a new era.
Origin
1575-1585
1575-85; < Latin cuspis a point
Related forms
cuspal, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for cusp
  • My life's dream of becoming a professor was on the cusp of coming true.
  • We are on the cusp of a change in our understanding of the nature of all things, and human beings in particular.
  • These are perfect non-fiction books for elementary-aged children who are on the cusp between picture books and chapter books.
  • So already the reader is at several veiled removes even as the speaker intimates that she's on the cusp of making a revelation.
  • More and more too are withdrawing to care for elderly parents at a time when they are on the cusp of the higher echelons.
  • We're on the cusp of a new chapter for the auto industry.
  • It is also a novel, set on the cusp of the millennium, in which our society's anxieties are played out in microcosm.
  • Another group is on the cusp of the next round but teams need a combination of positive results to ensure progress.
  • Today, on the cusp of what could be the cruelest month, the crisis has calmed.
  • The struggle to overcome infertility has brought researchers to the cusp of altering humanity's genetic heritage.
British Dictionary definitions for cusp

cusp

/kʌsp/
noun
1.
any of the small elevations on the grinding or chewing surface of a tooth
2.
any of the triangular flaps of a heart valve
3.
a point or pointed end
4.
(geometry) Also called spinode. a point at which two arcs of a curve intersect and at which the two tangents are coincident
5.
(architect) a carving at the meeting place of two arcs
6.
(astronomy) either of the points of a crescent moon or of a satellite or inferior planet in a similar phase
7.
(astrology) any division between houses or signs of the zodiac
Word Origin
C16: from Latin cuspis point, pointed end
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 cusp
n.

1580s, from Latin cuspis "point, spear, pointed end, head," of unknown origin. Astrological use is earliest.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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cusp in Medicine

cusp (kŭsp)
n.

  1. A pointed or rounded projection on the chewing surface of a tooth.

  2. A triangular fold or flap of a heart valve.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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