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1816, "pertaining to the brain," from French cérébral (16c.), from Latin cerebrum "the brain" (also "the understanding"), from PIE *keres-, from root *ker- "top of the head" (see horn (n.)). Meaning "intellectual, clever" is from 1929. Cerebral palsy attested from 1824, originally a general term for cases of paralysis that seemed to be traceable to "a morbid state of the encephalon." Later used in a more specific sense from c.1860, based on the work of English surgeon Dr. William Little.
cerebral cer·e·bral (sěr'ə-brəl, sə-rē'-)
Of or relating to the brain or cerebrum.