(From lingo, to lick). The tongue, glot-ta, plectrum. This term is also applied to some vegetable substances, from their similarity in shape to the tongue. In animal bodies it is composed of two parts; the inferior is a mass of muscle; the upper surface is, towards the apex, full of papillae, which, when traced backward, become more irregular and flat, whence authors distinguish the papillae pyramidales, capitatae, and lenticulares; but each kind is a mass of vessels running from the basis towards the apex. Near the epiglottis the surface of the tongue is glandular; and near the middle is a chap, called the foramen cecum, first described by Morgagni, and since supposed by Vaterus, without foundation, to be the orifice of salivary ducts. Under the papillae, on the surface of the tongue, are fleshy fibres running in every direction; to these its great varielyof motions is owing: underthe tongue is a membranous substance, called fraenum, or filetum; thepart next the root is called cephaline; the tip, proglossis.
Lingua avis. The seeds of the ash so called from their resemblance. See Fraxinus.
Lingua canina. See Cynoglossum. Lingua cervina, calcifraga, phillitis scolofiendri-um, asplenium scolopendrium Lin. Sp. Pl. 1537. Hind's or hart's tongue, is a plant with long, uncut, narrow leaves, of a bright green colour, standing on long hairy pedicles, without any stalk or manifest flowers: the seeds are a fine dust, lying in large, rough, brown, transverse streaks on the backs of the leaves. The plant is perennial, found green every season, delighting in moist, shady, stony places. The leaves are commended as aperient and corroborant, particularly in diseases of the viscera; but not at present employed. Lingua serpentis. See Ophioglossum. Linguales, (from lingua, 'the tongue). The ninth pair of nerves. See Hypoglossi externi.
Linguales glandulae; those at the basis of the tongue. See Lingua.
Lingualis musculus. The muscle of the tongue, rises from the basis of the os hyoides, and runs to the tip of the tongue. It consists in general of fleshy fibres, which run in many directions; but those fibres chiefly distinguished by this appellation turn the tongue laterally and downwards.
Mr. Home has shown, that the tongue is by no means an irritable muscle, and that any part of it may be cut off with little danger.