GLOSSARY of Skullological Terminology

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GLOSSARY of Skullological Terminology Alveolus The socket into which the root of a tooth fits. Angle The lower back corner of the lower jaw. Anterior Towards the front. Ascending Ramus of Jaw The more or less vertical part of the jawbone which carries the joint with the skull. Brachycephalic Short-headed. Referring to breeds of dog such as boxers, with forshortened snouts. Braincase Part of the skull containing the brain. Bulla Bulbous part of the ear bones. Bunodont Low-crowned, rectangular gri
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  GLOSSARY of Skullological Terminology    AlveolusThe socket into which the root of a tooth fits.AngleThe lower back corner of the lower jaw.Anterior Towards the front.Ascending Ramus of JawThe more or less vertical part of the jawbone which carries the joint withthe skull.BrachycephalicShort-headed. Referring to breeds of dog such as boxers, withforshortened snouts.BraincasePart of the skull containing the brain.BullaBulbous part of the ear bones.BunodontLow-crowned, rectangular grinding teeth, typical of the molars of omnivores such as bears and primates.CaninesThe four teeth in the front corners of the mouth. Usually large andpointed in carnivores, but may be small or absent in herbivores. They arethe first teeth in the maxilla, called eye-teeth in humans.CarnassialsScissor-like teeth of carnivores specialised for shearing flesh. The lastupper premolars and first lower molars.Carnivore dentitionTooth pattern found in most meat-eaters, featuring prominent canineteeth with shearing carnassial cheek teeth.Cheek teethThe teeth behind the canines, usually divided into molars and premolars.ChoanaeWhere the rear edge of the palate has a central projection (e.g. in dogs),the choanae are the indentations on each side.Colonic LiteratureAcademic papers incorporating in their titles a superfluous subtitleseparated by a colon.Condylar processSmoothly rounded projection from the rear of the dentary where thelower jaw articulates with the skull.CondyleSmooth rounded projection of bone which forms a bearing or articulatingsurface in a moveable joint.Condylobasal lengthCoronoid processThe back part of the lower jaw which rises up.Cranium  The skull without the lower jaw.DentaryBone forming one side of the lower jaw.DentitionThe full set of teeth. Most mammals have specialised carnivore,herbivore or insectivore dentition. Dental formulas are given for most of the skulls illustrated.DiastemaA long natural gap in a row of teeth, especially that between the incisors(or canines) and the cheek teeth in herbivores.DolichocephalicLong headed. Referring to breeds of dog such as collies andgreyhounds.DorsalConcerning the top: e.g. dorsal view is a view from the top.EpiphysisThe smooth, rounded or curved area at the end of a bone, forming anarticulating surface of a joint. In young animals epiphyses are separatedfrom the main body of the bone by a layer of cartilage, to allow for growth. The timing of their fusion gives a clue as to the age of theindividual.EurokaryoticConforming to EU legislation on chromosome number.ForamenHole in a bone for nerves and blood vessels.Foramen magnumLarge opening in the back of the skull, through which the spinal cordleaves the brain. The occipital condyles lie on either side.Frontal bonesForm the top, front part of the braincase.Herbivore dentitionTooth pattern found in typical plant-eaters such as cattle and rabbits.Prominent incisors are separated from the cheek teeth by a longdiastema.Horn corePorous bone projecting from the frontal bone, on which the horn grows.IncisiformShaped like an incisor. In some herbivores, especially deer, the lower canine teeth form part of the row of incisors instead of being cylindricaland pointed.IncisorsFront teeth, between the canines. Upper incisors grow from thepremaxilla, but other upper teeth grow from the maxilla.Infraorbital foramenA large hole in the side of the maxilla, usually in front of or below theorbit.Insectivore dentitionTeeth mostly simple points, as in the hedgehog, mole and shrews.  Interorbital widthInterparietal boneLies between the parietal bones and the occipital bone. Useful inseparating rabbits and hares.Jaw lengthLacrimal boneForms the front edge of the orbit. Large and distinct in hoofed mammals,but small in most other species.Lacrimal pitA depression in the lacrimal bone.LagomorphThe group containing rabbits, hares and pikas.LateralConcerning the side. e.g. lateral view is a view from the side.top of pageLophodontA tooth with the cusps elongated to form narrow ridges.MaxillaBone forming the main part of the upper jaw on each side, supporting thecanines and cheek teeth.MolarsThe rear cheek teeth which do not have equivalent milk teeth.MustelidSub-group of the Carnivores, including stoats, polecats, badgers andotters.Nasal bonesForming the upper surface of the muzzle.Nasal lengthOccipital boneForming the back of the skull. Contains the foramen magnum.Occipital condylesSmooth, rounded knobs on each side of the foramen magnum, where theskull articulates with the first vertebra. Mammals have two occipitalcondyles, birds and reptiles have only one.Occipital crestA ridge formed where the parietal bones join the occipital bone, acrossthe top, back part of the skull.OrbitThe eye socket.Orbital diameter OrthodontNormal rodent upper incisors, pointing downwards. (see pro-odont)PalateThe surface forming the roof of the mouth.Parietal bones  Form the top, back part of the skull.Posterior Towards the rear.Postorbital processProjection from the frontal bone that marks the rear, upper edge of theeye socket.Postorbital constrictionPremaxillasBones forming the front tip of the upper jaw.PremolarsCheek teeth lying between the canines (or incisors, if canines areabsent) and the molars.Pro-odontRodent incisors which point forwards. (see orthodont)RamusThe main horizontal part of the lower jaw.RootThe part of a tooth embedded in the jaw. Teeth may have from 1 to 5roots.RootlessContinuously growing tooth which is the same in cross-section all theway down to the basewhere it is embedded in the jaw. The base of thetooth does not divide into roots.RostrumBones of the muzzle.Sagittal crestRidge running lengthwise along the top of the braincase.SelenodontTeeth with a crown pattern of longitudinal crescentic ridges.SutureImmovable joint between bones.Temporal RidgeRidge on the side of the cranium marking the upper limit of thetemporalis muscle. In some species they develope with age, and mayalso migrate towards the top of the skull to form an interparietalridge (e.g.badger).UnicuspidTeeth with a single cusp or point, e.g. the simple conical teeth of insectivores.VentralConcerning the underneath: e.g. a ventral view is a view from the bottom.Zygomatic ArchThe cheekbone. Curved bone forming an arch along the side of the skullbelow the orbit.Zygomatic width
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