Word Hoard

Friday, May 11, 2007

Get a Handle on Things


I was watching the English Patient for the first time last week. There is a scene where Ralph Fiennes character points to the nook in his lover's neck where the collar bones join and declares that he owns it, whatever it is called.

I've always appreciated that part of the anatomy too. So I was prompted to ask my student worker who is a nursing student and was taking A&P at the time what it was called. I heard "mandibulum," but she's a mumbler so I don't doubt that she was correct in saying manubrium. I guess technically the spot I'm thinking of is the presternal notch.

Bartleby.com says that it comes from Latin for handle. It is a bit of an odd place to grab someone, but I suppose it would work for a while.

We are all sculptors and painters, and our material is our own flesh and
bones. -Henry David Thoreau, naturalist and author (1817-1862)



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