• Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • n Tarsometatarsus (Anat) The large bone next the foot in the leg of a bird. It is formed by the union of the distal part of the tarsus with the metatarsus.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n tarsometatarsus The single compound bone of some animals, especially birds, resulting from the combination of tarsal and metatarsal bones in one. This formation occurs in all birds and probably some reptiles. In the former the three principal metatarsal bones fuse into one, the fourth metatarsal remaining distinct or only incompletely joined to the rest; and to the proximal extremity of the compound metatarsal thus formed are also ankylosed the elements of the distal tarsal series. The result is similar to that seen in the compound cannon-bone of hoofed quadrupeds, though this has no tarsal elements. The tarsometatarsus is a comparatively large stout bone, extending from the heel or suffrago to the bases of the toes, It corresponds to that part of the foot commonly called the tarsus in descriptive ornithology, and is usually naked and scaly, though sometimes feathered. Its proximal extremity usually presents a large bony protuberance (the so-called calcaneum or hypotarsus), perforated for the tendons of certain muscles, and the distal extremity is divided into three prongs (two in the ostrich), each bearing an articular surface for one of three toes (the first toe, or hallux, when present, being differently attached to the foot by an accessory metatarsal). The bone is nearly always compressed, or of less width than depth; but in the penguins it is broad from side to side and shows two fontanelles, or vacant spaces, indicating its triple composition. It is often called simply metatarsus, its tarsal elements being ignored. See also cut under metatarsus.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Tarsometatarsus the single compound bone of birds
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Gr. tarsos, the flat part of the foot.


In literature:

The tendon continues distally along the tarsometatarsus and the posterior surface of digit IV.
"Myology and Serology of the Avian Family Fringillidae" by William B. Stallcup