Visceral cranium

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The portion of the vertebrate skull derived from the embryonic pharyngeal arches that give rise to mandible, auditory ossicles, hyoid bone and distinct processes of the skull.


The skull consists of three distinct parts: neurocranium, dermatocranium and viscerocranium (or visceral cranium).

The cartilaginous viscerocranium includes elements of the fetal skull derived from the second and succeeding pharyngeal arches.

The membranous viscerocranium includes those derived from the first pharyngeal arch cartilage.