Definition of frenulum in US English:



  • 1A small fold or ridge of tissue that supports or checks the motion of the part to which it is attached, in particular a fold of skin beneath the tongue, or between the lip and the gum.

    • ‘He would not have expected any damage to the frenulum during a competent attempt at intubation of a child.’
    • ‘Idly running her tongue across the fraenulum, she thinks about work, and how many others in her office of twenty-six people do this.’
    • ‘The frenulum is the piece of tissue connecting the tongue to the bottom.’
    • ‘Unexplained injuries to protected parts of the body such as the buttocks, thighs, torso, frenulum, ears and neck are suggestive of child abuse.’
    • ‘During this operation, the surgeon essentially lengthens the frenulum to allow greater freedom of movement.’
    1. 1.1Entomology (in some moths and butterflies) a bristle or row of bristles on the edge of the hind wing that keeps it in contact with the forewing.
      • ‘In the past, butterflies were distinguished from moths in that they flew during the day, possessed clubbed antennae, were brightly colored, and lacked a frenulum (a wing coupling mechanism found in most moths).’


Early 18th century: modern Latin, diminutive of Latin frenum ‘bridle’.