the thin, triangular, lidlike piece of cartilage that folds back over the opening of the windpipe during swallowing, thus preventing food, etc. from entering the lungs
Origin of epiglottisModern Latin ; from Classical Greek epigl?ttis: see epi- and amp; glottis
nounpl. ep·i·glot·tis·es or ep·i·glot·ti·des
The thin elastic cartilaginous structure located at the root of the tongue that folds over the glottis to prevent food and liquid from entering the trachea during the act of swallowing.
Origin of epiglottisGreek epigl&omacron;ttis : epi-, epi- + gl&omacron;ttis, glottis; see glottis.
- ep′i·glot′tal , ep′i·glot′tic
(plural epiglottises or epiglottides)
from New Latin, from Greek "epi-" on + "glottis"