Definition of tegmen in US English:


nounPlural tegmina

  • 1Entomology
    A sclerotized forewing serving to cover the hind wing in grasshoppers and related insects.

    • ‘Collecting sites were chosen on the basis of previous collecting experience, and crickets were identified on the basis of differences in body length, hind wing length, ovipositor length, and tegmina color.’
    • ‘Male grasshoppers court females by a producing a signal made by alternate stridulation, which is rubbing one hind leg against the tegmen, which produces sound.’
    • ‘Predators mistaking the pinnule tips for the tegmen could take bites out of the distal parts of the pinnules.’
  • 2Botany
    The delicate inner protective layer of a seed.

    • ‘The symptomless infected seeds carry thin and hyaline mycelium in the tegmen, endosperm, and space between the endosperm and embryo.’
    • ‘In the recurved margins of the seed, the tegmen was wedge-shaped.’
    • ‘By contrast, in treated dormant seed, the tegmen appears intact and not expanded.’
  • 3Anatomy
    A plate of thin bone forming the roof of the middle ear, a part of the temporal bone.

    • ‘At the blind end of this chamber, the bone forms the tegmen tympani.’
    • ‘The condition is usually related to tegmen erosion due to aberrant arachnoid granulations.’
    • ‘Another ligament attaches to the body of the incus and binds it to the roof of the middle ear (tegmen tympani).’
    • ‘A CT scan revealed a destructive process involving the right middle ear cavity that extended to involve the mastoid, attic, tegmen and bony component of the external auditory canal.’
    • ‘Middle cranial fossa exploration revealed two punched out defects in the dura, with generalised dural thinning, overlying the tegmen and mastoid dural plate, which were eroded.’


Early 19th century: from Latin, ‘covering’, from tegere ‘to cover’.