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Body Parts You Didn’t Know Have Names

Do you know the name of the groove between the bottom of your nose and your upper lip? Or that smooth surface between your eyebrows? Has anyone told you what the top of your head is called?

If you’re convinced that these anatomical parts don’t have names, you’d be surprised to learn that they do – and their names sound weird enough, you’d think they come straight from a sci-fi flick.

Although you don’t have to remember the names of these lesser-known body parts, knowing them could be an excellent conversation starter.

woman scratching her back

Acnestis

Have you ever faced the feeling that you have the urge to scratch your own back but couldn’t? It’s right in the middle and always seems out of reach that you need extra help from a scratcher. That part is called “acnestis.”

Anatomical snuffbox

The anatomical snuffbox refers to the hollow space under your thumb whenever you make a thumbs-up sign. The part got its name in the late 18th and early 19th century, during which people used to inhale snuff by placing it on that very part of the body.

Antitragus

You may be already familiar with the tragus, the flap sitting in front of your ear canal, which you press on when closing your ears. The antitragus refers to the cartilage projection across the tragus.

Canthus

Another “yes, there’s an actual name for it” word. Canthus refers to the point of your eye in the inner and outer corners where the top lid meets the lower one.

Columella nasi

It refers to the skin by the septum, separating the nostrils and just above the lips.

Glabella

It sounds like a new planet from a Star Wars movie, but it simply refers to the flat and smooth area above your nose and between your eyebrows.

Gowpen

Whenever you’re making “cupped hands” while grabbing some soil or asking for some more M&M’s, there’s actually a word for them – gowpen. It’s most likely Scottish in origin.

Lingual frenulum

The part attaching your tongue to the bottom of your mouth is called the lingual frenulum.

Lunula

Have you noticed the whitish semi-circle at the base of your fingernails? It actually has a name, “lunula.” It’s from the Latin word luna, which means “moon,” explaining the crescent shape.

Niddick

This funny-sounding name refers to the nape of the neck. The name is more familiar in some regions of England, not surprisingly.

Pate

It’s not to be confused with the famous French paste pâté. Instead, that’s what you call for the crown of your head.

Philtrum

It refers to the vertical groove extending from your upper lip up to the bottom of your nose. It literally means “love charm” in Greek.

Popliteal fossa

You may have wondered at one point whether there’s a name for the back of your knees. Fortunately, there is. It’s called popliteal fossa, the hollow space behind your knee where your leg bends.

Purlicue

It is the space between your forefinger and thumb.

Rasceta

It refers to the creases in the underside of your wrist. If “rasceta” sounds too scientific for you, you may simply call them “skin folds.”

Suprasternal notch

No, it’s not like the latest smartphone fad to put a notch on your screen. Instead, it refers to the visible depression between your neck and two collarbones.

The human body is indeed a complicated but always fascinating structure. There are even parts of our body that we no longer need today.

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