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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 ?
El mismo autor senala tambien a Cuvierina columnella y Hyalocylis striata al oeste y norte de Isla de Pascua (130-150[grados]W).
(48) Pointing to the proliferation of models, Dempsey, 37, asks "What could Lucretius's didactic poem De rerum natura, Ovid's Fasti, a didactic poem of the Roman calendar, a lyric invocation by Horace, Seneca's philosophical essay De beneficiis and Hesiod's Georgics have, after all, in common?" Hartt, 335, also stresses the complexity of imitation in Botticelli's painting: "A treasury of classical sources has been amassed for most of the elements in the painting, drawn from the ancient writers Horace, Ovid, Lucretius and Columnella." One could also add the tenth book of Apuleius's Metamorphosis, which is central to Gombrich's interpretation of the painting.