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Ancient Greek ἀπόφυσις (apóphusis, offshoot), from ἀπό (apó) + φύειν (phúein) (to bring forth), from Proto-Indo-European base *bheu- (to exist, to grow). Equivalent to apo- +‎ -physis


apophysis (plural apophyses)

  1. (anatomy) A natural outgrowth, swelling or enlargement, usually of an organism; A protuberance on a bone.
    • 1836, E. A. Poe, Maelzel's Chess-Player
      Every bone in the real duck had its representative in the automaton, and its wings were anatomically exact. Every cavity, apophysis, and curvature was imitated, and each bone executed its proper movements.
  2. (botany) The external part of a cone scale.
  3. (geology) A branch of a dike or vein.

Derived termsEdit