horn

Definitions

General English

Agriculture

  • noun a hard growth which is formed on the tops of the heads of animals such as cattle, deer, goats and sheep

Aviation

  • noun a device for projecting sound

Construction

  • The extension beyond a right-angled joint that is part of a stile, jamb, or sill.
  • The stub of a broken branch left on a log.

Electronics

  • A radiating device, such as an antenna or speaker, whose cross section increases as it approaches the exit opening, which serves to direct and intensify any waves emanating from it.
  • A tube with a cross section that increases as it approaches the exit opening, which serves to direct and intensify any sound waves emanating from it. Also called acoustic horn.

Medical

  • noun tissue which grows out of an organ
  • noun one of the H-shaped limbs of grey matter seen in a cross-section of the spinal cord
  • noun an extension of the pulp chamber of a tooth towards the cusp

Military

  • noun an instrument fitted to a vehicle, which makes a noise as a warning signal

Origin & History of “horn”

Horn belongs to a very large Indo-European word-family that has made an enormous number of contributions to English. Its ultimate source is Indo-European *ker-, whose offspring predominantly denote ‘animal’s horn’, but also include words for ‘top’ and ‘head’. Its Germanic descendant, *khornaz, has not been that prolific (it has produced English, German, Swedish, and Danish horn and Dutch hoorn, and hornet is probably a derivative), but other branches of the family have been more fruitful sources. from Latin cornū ‘horn’, e.g., come English corn ‘hard skin’, cornea, corner, cornet, cornucopia, unicorn, and possibly scherzo and scorn; Greek kéras ‘horn’ has given English keratin, rhinoceros, and triceratops; while Sanskrit śrn̄gam ‘horn’ lies behind English ginger. And besides these, English hart ‘male deer’ (OE) goes back to a derivative of *ker-.
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