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Borrowed from Latin cuneus. Doublet of coin.


cuneus (plural cunei)

  1. (anatomy) A portion of the occipital lobe of the human brain, involved in visual processing.
  2. (architecture) One of a set of wedge-shaped divisions separated by stairways, found in the Ancient Roman theatre and in mediaeval architecture.




From Proto-Indo-European *h₂ḱū (sting) (which also gave culex (mosquito)), extended from *h₂eḱ- (sharp) (compare catus (sharp), acutus (sharp), cos (whetstone), Ancient Greek κῶνος (kônos, cone))



cuneus m (genitive cuneī); second declension

  1. wedge, wedge shape


Second declension.

Case Singular Plural
Nominative cuneus cuneī
Genitive cuneī cuneōrum
Dative cuneō cuneīs
Accusative cuneum cuneōs
Ablative cuneō cuneīs
Vocative cunee cuneī

Derived terms[edit]


See also[edit]


  • cuneus in Charlton T. Lewis and Charles Short (1879) A Latin Dictionary, Oxford: Clarendon Press
  • cuneus in Charlton T. Lewis (1891) An Elementary Latin Dictionary, New York: Harper & Brothers
  • cuneus in Charles du Fresne du Cange’s Glossarium Mediæ et Infimæ Latinitatis (augmented edition, 1883–1887)
  • cuneus in Gaffiot, Félix (1934) Dictionnaire Illustré Latin-Français, Hachette
  • Carl Meissner; Henry William Auden (1894) Latin Phrase-Book[1], London: Macmillan and Co.
    • to draw up troops in a wedge-formation: cuneum facere (Liv. 22. 47)
  • cuneus in Harry Thurston Peck, editor (1898) Harper's Dictionary of Classical Antiquities, New York: Harper & Brothers
  • cuneus in William Smith, editor (1854, 1857) A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography, volume 1 & 2, London: Walton and Maberly
  • cuneus in William Smith et al., editor (1890) A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities, London: William Wayte. G. E. Marindin