Definition of papilla in English:


nounplural noun papillae/-ˈpilˌē/ /-ˈpilˌī/

  • 1A small rounded protuberance on a part or organ of the body.

    ‘as food touches the tongue it comes into contact with the sensory papillae’
    • ‘The size and shape of the foliate papillae on the posterolateral margins of the tongue are variable.’
    • ‘Gross and histologic examination of the excised specimen revealed a pancreatic serous cystadenoma with multifocal papillae.’
    • ‘Red hypertrophic papillae can be found under the upper eyelid.’
    • ‘Within the dental papilla, the vessels are mostly orientated toward the cusp, but peripherally, fine-caliber vessels are observed.’
    • ‘In contrast, C. comptonensis microsporophyll heads have a cutinized hypodermis, and distinctly conical epidermal papillae with pointed apices.’
    1. 1.1A small fleshy projection on a plant.
      ‘When the flower opens, styles are short and the stigma papillae are undeveloped; pollen grains do not adhere.’
      • ‘A total of 75 taxa were examined for floral papillae and/or trichomes using light microscopy and/or low-vacuum scanning electron microscopy.’
      • ‘As the pollen presenters aged, the stigmatic papillae separated further forming a definite slit or groove.’
      • ‘The stigma consists of a long band of receptive tissue along the ventral side of the carpel, covered by long unicellular papillae.’
      • ‘In these plants, some sepals showed homeotic transformations to carpels, becoming fused and presenting ovules and stigmatic papillae.’



/pəˈpilə/ /pəˈpɪlə/


Late 17th century from Latin, literally ‘nipple’, diminutive of papula ‘small protuberance’.