- The bones below the mouth (the mandible) and the bone above the mouth just above the mouth (the maxilla). The word jaw came from the Anglo-Saxon ceowan meaning to chew.
* * *1. One of the two bony structures, in which the teeth are set, forming the framework of the mouth. 2. Common name for either the maxillae or the mandible. [A.S. ceowan, to chew]- Hapsburg j. prognathism and pouting lower lip, characteristic of the Hispano-Austrian imperial dynasty.- j. winking a paradoxical movement of eyelids associated with movements of the j..- lock-j. SYN: trismus.- lower j. SYN: mandible.- lumpy j. SYN: actinomycosis.- upper j. SYN: maxilla.
* * *jaw 'jȯ n1) either of two complex cartilaginous or bony structures in most vertebrates that border the mouth, support the soft parts enclosing it, and usu. bear teeth on their oral margin:b) a lower structure that consists of a single bone or of completely fused bones and that is hinged, movable, and articulated by a pair of condyles with the temporal bone of either side called also inferior maxillary bone, lower jaw, mandible2) the parts constituting the walls of the mouth and serving to open and close it usu. used in pl.3) any of various organs of invertebrates that perform the function of the vertebrate jaws
* * *n.either the maxilla (upper jaw) or the mandible (lower jaw). The jaws form the framework of the mouth and provide attachment for the teeth.
* * *(jaw) either the mandible or the maxilla, the two bony structures in the head of vertebrates; in dentate species they bear the teeth, enabling carnivores to seize their prey and others to bite and chew food.
Medical dictionary. 2011.