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Middle ear

Definition

noun

The middle portion of the ear between the eardrum and the inner ear, consisting of the three auditory ossicles, which couple vibration of the eardrum into waves in the fluid and membranes of the inner ear.


Supplement

In mammals, the middle ear contains three tiny bones known as the ossicles: malleus, incus, and stapes. Their Latin names were derived from their distinctive shapes, hence, they are also referred to as the hammer, anvil, and stirrup, respectively.


Synonyms:


Compare: outer ear, inner ear


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