Definition of velum in English:


nounplural noun vela/ˈvēlə/ /ˈvilə/

  • 1A membrane or membranous structure, typically covering another structure or partly obscuring an opening.

    1. 1.1Anatomy The soft palate.
      ‘The back of the tongue lies opposite the soft palate or velum when the tongue is in a state of rest, and sounds made with the back include velar consonants and back vowels.’
      • ‘This technique allows for closure of the velum, thus excluding nasal NO contamination during expiration.’
      • ‘For ‘mouth breathing’ protocols, patients were instructed with a technique aimed at achieving velum closure of the nasopharynx and asked to practice it prior to testing.’
    2. 1.2Zoology A membrane, typically bordering a cavity, especially in certain mollusks, medusae, and other invertebrates.
      ‘Scyphozoan medusae differ from those of hydrozoans in lacking a velum.’
      • ‘Adult heteromorphs show wide velum; the velum in tecnomorphs is narrower.’
      • ‘Free-living medusoid hydrozoans can be hard to tell from scyphozoans, but hydrozoan medusae generally have a muscular shelf, or velum, projecting inward from the margin of the bell.’
      • ‘This fact, together with the fragility of the velum, may cause problems for identification of growth stage and sex of the particular specimen.’
      • ‘Its multispiral, heavily sculptured, darkly colored shell, plus its large four-lobed velum, point to a different type of snail, one of the neogastropods.’
    3. 1.3Botany The veil of a toadstool.



/ˈvēləm/ /ˈviləm/


Mid 18th century from Latin, literally ‘sail, curtain, covering, veil’.