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 (kŏl′yə-mĕl′ə, kŏl′ə-)
n. pl. col·u·mel·lae (-mĕl′ē)
Any small columnlike structure in various plants and animals, often forming the central axis of development for the organism or an anatomical structure.

[Latin, diminutive of columna, column; see column.]

col′u·mel′lar (-mĕl′ər) adj.
col′u·mel′late′ (-mĕl′āt′) adj.


n, pl -lae (-liː)
1. (Biology) biology
a. the central part of the spore-producing body of some fungi and mosses
b. any similar columnar structure
2. (Zoology) Also called: columella auris a small rodlike bone in the middle ear of frogs, reptiles, and birds that transmits sound to the inner ear: homologous to the mammalian stapes
[C16: from Latin: diminutive of columna column]
ˌcoluˈmellar adj


(ˌkɒl yəˈmɛl ə)

n., pl. -mel•lae (-ˈmɛl i)
1. any of various small, columnlike structures of animals or plants; rod or axis.
2. the middle ear bone of amphibians, reptiles, and birds.
[1575–85; < Latin, diminutive of columna column; see -elle]
col`u•mel′lar, adj.
col`u•mel′late (-ɪt, -eɪt) adj.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.columella - a small column (or structure resembling a column) that is a part of a plant or animal
pillar, tower, column - anything that approximates the shape of a column or tower; "the test tube held a column of white powder"; "a tower of dust rose above the horizon"; "a thin pillar of smoke betrayed their campsite"
References in periodicals archive ?
Three different electron- dense layers form the pollen grain wall: ectexine with interrupted tectum, columellae and foot layer; endexine and intine still in formation.
Exine sculpturing is reticulate and heterobrochate (lumina of different sizes) with some free standing columellae in the lumina (Fig.
The pollen of Mutisieae and Stifftieae is microechinate, echinate, or almost psilate in some members of Mutisieae; the exine is distinctly bilayered but commonly with a compact ectosexine constituted by columellae very thickly disposed and an endosexine with columellae clearly distinguishable, stout and ramified (Hansen, 1991b; Telleria et al.
Its most interesting feature was the profusion of not only the cut columellae of whelks, but the hundreds of small bits broken out of the anterior end of gigantic hard clams.
Pollen with exine structure heterogeneous, most genera with compact ectosexine constituted by very densely arranged columellae, and endosexine with stout, ramified columellae; exine surface perforate, microechinate to echinate.
This pattern is characterized by having much broader columellae than noted for the Anthemoid pattern present in Mutisioideae (Skvarla et al.
The columellae are usually aggregated under the spines.
triaperturate, has a clavate exine deriving from reduced columellae and