Leg: Wikis

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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Diagram of an insect leg.

A leg is a limb on an organism's body that supports the rest of the animal above the ground between the ankle and the hip and the groin. and is used for locomotion. The end of the leg farthest from the animal's body is often either modified or attached to another structure that is modified to disperse the animal's weight on the ground (see foot). In bipedal vertebrate animals, the two lower limbs are usually referred to as the "legs" and the two upper limbs as "arms" or "wings" as the case may be.

In the anatomy of vertebrates, including human beings (see human leg), leg is also used to refer to the entire limb, but its precise definition refers[1][2][3] only to the segment between the knee and the ankle. In vertebrate and human anatomy this segment is also called the shank,[4][5] and the front (anterior) of the segment is called the shin or pretibia.

Most animals have an even number of legs. Many taxonomic groups are characterized by the number of legs their members possess.

Notes

  1. ^ "Leg". Medical Subject Headings (MeSH). National Library of Medicine. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/cgi/mesh/2007/MB_cgi?mode=&term=Leg&field=entry. Retrieved 2009-04-18. 
  2. ^ "leg". Dorland's Medical Dictionary for Healthcare Consumers. Elsevier. http://www.mercksource.com/pp/us/cns/cns_hl_dorlands_split.jsp?pg=/ppdocs/us/common/dorlands/dorland/five/000058188.htm. Retrieved 2009-04-18. 
  3. ^ Merriam-Webster Dictionary leg
  4. ^ Kardong, Kenneth V. (2009). Vertebrates: Comparative anatomy, function, evolution (5th. ed.). McGraw-Hill. p. 340. ISBN 978-0-07-304058-5. 
  5. ^ Merriam-Webster Dictionary shank
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A leg is a weight bearing and locomotive structure, usually having a columnar shape. During locomotion, legs function as "extensible struts"[1] - the combination of movements at all joints can be modeled as a single, linear element capable of changing length and rotating about an omnidirectional "hip" joint.

As an anatomical animal structure it is used for locomotion. The distal end is often modified to distribute force (such as a foot). Most animals have an even number of legs.

As a component of furniture it is used for the economy of materials needed to provide the support for the useful surface, the table top or chair seat.

Contents

Terminology

Many taxa are characterized by number of legs:

  • Tetrapod
  • Arthropoda: 4, 6 (Insecta), 8, 12, or 14
    • Some arthropods have more than a dozen legs; a few species possess over 100. Despite what their names might suggest,
      • Centipedes may have less than 20 or more than 300 legs.
      • Millipedes have fewer than 1,000 legs, but up to 750.

Tetrapod legs

In tetrapod anatomy, leg is used to refer to the entire limb. In human medicine its precise definition refers[2][3][4] only to the segment between the knee and the ankle. This segment is also called the shank,[5][6] and the front (anterior) of the segment is called the shin or pretibia.

In bipedal tetrapods, the two lower limbs are referred to as the "legs" and the two upper limbs as "arms" or "wings" as the case may be.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ http://jeb.biologists.org/cgi/content/abstract/20/2/88
  2. ^ "Leg". Medical Subject Headings (MeSH). National Library of Medicine. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/cgi/mesh/2007/MB_cgi?mode=&term=Leg&field=entry. Retrieved 2009-04-18. 
  3. ^ "leg". Dorland's Medical Dictionary for Healthcare Consumers. Elsevier. http://www.mercksource.com/pp/us/cns/cns_hl_dorlands_split.jsp?pg=/ppdocs/us/common/dorlands/dorland/five/000058188.htm. Retrieved 2009-04-18. 
  4. ^ Merriam-Webster Dictionary leg
  5. ^ Kardong, Kenneth V. (2009). Vertebrates: Comparative anatomy, function, evolution (5th. ed.). McGraw-Hill. p. 340. ISBN 978-0-07-304058-5. 
  6. ^ Merriam-Webster Dictionary shank


1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010
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From LoveToKnow 1911

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Wiktionary

Up to date as of January 15, 2010
(Redirected to leg article)

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

See also -leg

Contents

English

Legs.

Etymology

From Old Norse leggr (Swedish lägg, Icelandic leggur, Norwegian legg).

Pronunciation

Noun

Singular
leg

Plural
legs

leg (plural legs)

  1. The lower limb of a human being or animal that extends from the groin to the ankle.
  2. (anatomy) The portion of the lower appendage of a human that extends from the knee to the ankle.
  3. A part of garment, such as a pair of trousers/pants, that covers a leg.
  4. A stage of a journey.
  5. (nautical) A distance that a sailing vessel does without changing the sails from one side to the other.
  6. (nautical) One side of a multiple-sided (often triangular) course in a sailing race.
  7. A single game or match played in a tournament or other sporting contest.
  8. One of the two sides of a right triangle that is not the hypotenuse.
  9. A rod-like protrusion from an inanimate object, supporting it from underneath.

Derived terms

Translations

See also

Verb

Infinitive
to leg

Third person singular
legs

Simple past
legged

Past participle
legged

Present participle
legging

to leg (third-person singular simple present legs, present participle legging, simple past and past participle legged)

  1. To put a series of three or more options strikes into the stock market.
  2. To remove the legs from an animal carcass.
  3. To build legs onto a platform or stage for support.

Derived terms

Anagrams


Danish

Etymology

From Old Norse leikr.

Pronunciation

  • IPA: /lɑj/, [lɑjˀ]
  • Homophones: lej

Noun

leg c. (singular definite legen, plural indefinite lege)

  1. play, game
  2. (zoology) spawning (fish)

Inflection


Dutch

Verb

leg

  1. (first-person singular indicative present tense of leggen) lay, put

German

Verb

leg(e)

  1. (first-person singular indicative present tense of legen) lay, put

Icelandic

Pronunciation

Noun

leg n. (genitive singular legs, plural leg)

  1. uterus

Declension

Derived terms


Romanian

Pronunciation

Verb

leg

  1. first-person singular present tense form of lega.
  2. first-person singular subjunctive form of lega.

Swedish

Noun

leg (also legg) n.

  1. (slang) Short form of legitimation: any kind of ID card.

Torres Strait Creole

Etymology

From English leg.

Noun

leg

  1. lower leg, foot

Synonyms

  • ngar (western dialect)

Simple English


A leg is something used to support things; to hold them up. Birds and humans have two legs. Some objects, for example tables and chairs, also have legs to hold them up.

Animals normally have 2 or 4 legs (vertebrates, which are animals with a backbone), or 6, 8, or 12 (arthropods, for example insects and spiders). Centipedes and millipedes have a lot more legs, but not exactly a hundred or a thousand as their names make people who do not know them think. Humans have 2 legs, complete with feet.

Biped is an animal with two legs and quadruped is an animal with four legs.

People also use the word "leg" in idioms, for example:

  • you do not have a leg to stand on (that means "you have no support; you have no chance in this discussion")
  • to leg it (to run)
  • to pull someone's leg (to play a little joke on someone for fun by trying to make them believe something that is not true)
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