from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The portion of the human leg between the hip and the knee.
  • n. The corresponding part of the hind leg of a quadruped or other vertebrate animal.
  • n. The second segment of a bird's leg, containing the tibia and fibula.
  • n. The femur of an insect's leg.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The proximal segment of the hind limb between the knee and the trunk. See femur.
  • n. The coxa, or femur, of an insect.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To carve (a pigeon or other small bird).
  • n. That part of the leg which is between the hip and the knee in man, and the corresponding part of the hind limb of other animals; the femoral region, determined by the extent of the thigh-bone or femur; the femur.
  • n. In ornithology: The flank, or the feathers overlying this region of the body, corresponding to the thigh proper, which is deeply buried in the common integument of the body.
  • n. Loosely, the next joint of the leg; the crus; the drumstick: especially said when the feathers of this part are conspicuous in length or in color, as the “flag” of a hawk.
  • n. In entomology, the third joint or segment of any one of the six or eight legs of a true insect, or of an arachnidan; the femur, between the trochanter and the tibia or shank.
  • n. The lower and larger part of the stalk of a plant; the stock or trunk.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. the upper joint of the leg of a fowl
  • n. the part of the leg between the hip and the knee


Middle English, from Old English thēoh; see teuə- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)



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