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1590s, "pertaining to the throat or neck" (especially in reference to the great veins of the neck), from Modern Latin jugularis, from Latin iugulum "collarbone, throat, neck," diminutive of iugum "yoke," related to iungere "to join," from PIE *yeug- "to join" (cf. Sanskrit yugam "yoke," yunjati "binds, harnesses," yogah "union;" Hittite yugan "yoke;" Greek zygon "yoke," zeugnyanai "to join, unite;" Old Church Slavonic igo, Old Welsh iou "yoke;" Lithuanian jungas "yoke," jungiu "fastened in a yoke;" Old English geoc "yoke;" probably also Latin iuxta "close by"). As a noun, 1610s, from the adjective.
jugular jug·u·lar (jŭg'yə-lər)
Of, relating to, or located in the region of the neck or throat. n.
A jugular vein.
[1960s+; based on the phrase go for the jugular]