One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
The solid central part of a vertebra, to which the arches and processes are attached.
- ‘Nearly all of the vertebrae within this sequence are complete, with the centra and neural arches fused.’
- ‘Although this is a small specimen, fusion of the neural arches to the centra, as well as advanced ossification of the girdle elements indicate that the individual was an adult.’
- ‘On the dorsal side of the centrum is the neural arch, through which the nerve cord or spinal cord passes.’
- ‘In contrast to the cervical vertebral centra, the dorsal centrum is shorter and more mildly opisthocoelous.’
- ‘Many of the vertebrae of the Ada Ophiacodon are represented by isolated centra or neural arches, or a suture clearly defines the boundary between these two elements.’
Mid 19th century: from Latin.
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