Definition of philtrum in English:



  • 1The vertical groove between the base of the nose and the border of the upper lip.

    • ‘Nothing makes a man more adorable than a well-shaped philtrum.’
    • ‘Geordie leaned over and carefully daubed a Hitler moustache across Danny's philtrum.’
    • ‘Nevertheless, early correction may be indicated because the prolabium usually contains more than enough tissue to create a philtrum of normal size.’
    • ‘A 37-year-old woman presented for evaluation of a scar on her philtrum.’
    • ‘A flat or smooth philtrum can present in persons with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders.’
    • ‘The philtrum, on the upper lip, is bounded by ridges that run from under each nostril marking the fusion of the premaxilla and the lateral maxillary processes.’
    1. 1.1 The junction between the two halves of an animal's upper lip or nose.
      • ‘A midline groove called the philtrum divides the rhinarium into two, each half containing a nostril.’
      • ‘Two dogs were presented with dermal arteritis of the nasal philtrum associated with repeated episodes of bleeding.’
      • ‘Superficial ulcers appear on the dorsum of the tongue, hard palate, and nasal philtrum.’


Early 17th century (in sense ‘love potion’): Latin, from Greek philtron ‘love potion’.