Go to 'thermo-' entry Go to 'dino-' entry Go to 'chondro-' entry Go to 'aero-' entry Go to '-logy' entry Go to 'thaumato-' entry Go to 'nano-' entry Go to '-sophy' entry Go to 'bucco-' entry Go to '-ism' entry Go to '-lysis' entry Go to 'galacto-' entry Go to '-anthropy' entry Go to 'pneumo-' entry Go to '-ploitation' entry Go to '-lithic' entry Go to '-sepalous' entry Go to 'onco-' entry Go to '-parous' entry Go to 'dermato-' entry Go to 'multi-' entry Go to 'dodeca-' entry Go to '-zoon' entry Go to 'vermi-' entry Go to 'crystallo-' entry Go to 'biblio-' entry Go to 'eco-' entry Go to 'juxta-' entry Go to 'facio-' entry
Affixes: the building blocks of English
Affixes: the building blocks of English

staphyl(o)-

The uvula; a bunch or cluster.

[Greek staphulē, bunch of grapes.]

When swollen, the uvula—an extension of the soft palate at the back of the mouth—can fancifully resemble a bunch of grapes. In medicine, staphylectomy (Greek ektomē, excision) is surgical removal of the uvula. Bacteria of the staphylococcus group (Greek kokkos, berry), many types of which cause disease, are spherical and tend to form irregular clusters; the adjective relating to such bacteria is staphylococcal (sometimes abbreviated to staph); staphylokinase is an enzyme produced by certain strains of such bacteria that tends to stop blood clotting. A staphyloma is a abnormal bulging of the cornea or sclera of the eye, usually as a result of inflammation.

Visit Michael Quinion’s World Wide Words site for 2000+ articles on English!

Copyright © Michael Quinion 2008–. All rights reserved. Page last updated 23 September 2008.
Your comments and suggestions on the site are very welcome.