• First Page of the Speculum Humanæ Salvationis
    First Page of the Speculum Humanæ Salvationis
  • WordNet 3.6
    • n speculum a medical instrument for dilating a bodily passage or cavity in order to examine the interior
    • n speculum a mirror (especially one made of polished metal) for use in an optical instrument
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Speculum (Zoöl) A bright and lustrous patch of color found on the wings of ducks and some other birds. It is usually situated on the distal portions of the secondary quills, and is much more brilliant in the adult male than in the female.
    • Speculum A mirror, or looking-glass; especially, a metal mirror, as in Greek and Roman archæology.
    • Speculum A reflector of polished metal, especially one used in reflecting telescopes. See Speculum metal, below.
    • Speculum (Surg) An instrument for dilating certain passages of the body, and throwing light within them, thus facilitating examination or surgical operations.
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n speculum Something to look into or from; specifically, a mirror or looking-glass.
    • n speculum An attachment to or part of an optical instrument, as a reflecting telescope, having a brightly polished surface for the reflection of objects. Specula are generally made of an alloy called speculum-metal, consisting of ten parts of copper to one of tin, sometimes with a little arsenic to increase its whiteness. Another speculum alloy is made of equal weights of steel and platinum. Specula are also made of glass covered with a film of silver on the side turned toward the objects.
    • n speculum In ornithology:
    • n speculum An ocellus or eye-spot, as of a peacock's tail. See ocellus, 4.
    • n speculum The mirror of a wing, a specially colored area on some of the flight-feathers. It is usually iridescent-green, purple, violet, etc., and formed by a space of such color on the outer webs of several secondaries, toward their end, and commonly set in a frame of different colors formed by the tips of the same secondaries or of the greater wing-coverts, or of both. Sometimes it is dead-white, as in the gadwall. A speculum occurs in various birds, and as a rule in ducks, especially the Anatinæ, being in these so constant and characteristic a marking that some breeds of game-fowls are named duckwing in consequence of a certain resemblance in the wing-markings. See silver-duckwing. Also called mirror. See cuts under Chaulelasmus and mallard.
    • n speculum In anatomy, the septum lucidum of the brain. See cut under corpus.
    • n speculum In medicine and surgery, an instrument used for rendering a part accessible to observation, especially by opening or enlarging an orifice.
    • n speculum A lookout; a place to spy from.
    • n speculum In astrology, a table exhibiting at one view the latitudes, destinations, semi-arcs, etc., of the planets in a nativity.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • n Speculum spek′ū-lum (opt.) a reflector usually made of polished metal:
    • n Speculum spek′ū-lum (surg.) an instrument for bringing into view parts otherwise hidden: an ocellus or eye-spot, the mirror of a wing: a lookout place
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
L., fr. specere, to look, behold. See Spy
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
L.,—specĕre, to look.


In literature:

In 1585 Fabricius de Hilden invented the speculum auris.
"Scientific American Supplement, No. 488, May 9, 1885" by Various
The shape of a speculum needs to be maintained with an elaborate care equal to that used in imparting it.
"A Popular History of Astronomy During the Nineteenth Century" by Agnes M. (Agnes Mary) Clerke
The surgeon should smell the speculum in suspicious cases.
"Manual of Surgery Volume Second: Extremities--Head--Neck. Sixth Edition." by Alexander Miles
Furnaces for the speculum metal were built, stands erected, and the 40-foot telescope fairly begun.
"Pioneers of Science" by Oliver Lodge
The king inquired after him, and after my great speculum.
"Sir William Herschel: His Life and Works" by Edward Singleton Holden
Speculum Christianorum, &c., 558.
"Notes and Queries, Index of Volume 5, January-June, 1852" by Various
Out of those Tom, you and I have to make a speculum of tremendous power.
"The Vast Abyss" by George Manville Fenn
His mind is the 'speculum of creation,' and he is ever at peace.
"A Critic in Pall Mall" by Oscar Wilde
And now I found Rings of that Colour only which fell upon the Speculum.
"Opticks" by Isaac Newton
In most cases Wolff's electric speculum was used.
"Clever Hans" by Oskar Pfungst

In news:

A speculum - looks like a torture device, but it is NOT supposed to hurt.
The primary care physician performed a pelvic speculum examination and noted no active bleeding.
Putting the Spectacular Back in Speculum .
The cold speculum , the stirrups, the swabbing—we can all think of better things to spread our legs for than a pelvic exam.
"It happens because the upper part of the speculum presses against your bladder," explains Seattle ob-gyn Katherine Johnson.
"If you've ever been on the receiving end of a speculum — it sucks," Breeze Harper said to a predominantly twenty-something audience at the UO on April 7.
That's his eye being pried open by a speculum.
OBP Medical offers the ER- SPEC disposable vaginal speculum with a built-in fully disposable LED light source.
The Expand-A-View™ vaginal speculum has a unique design that provides the physician with an expanded view and less obstructed instrument access.