Book One -- The things that sustain and support the entire body, and what braces and attaches them all. [the bones and the ligaments that interconnect them] | Chapter 30 On the Femur

Two processes, or rotators, of the femur

Near the neck of the femur [collum femoris] to which is attached the femur’s upper head [caput femoris], two processes are seen, one of which [trochanter major] (Q, Y in figs. 1, 2) occupies the outer [lateral] side of the femur, and is easily the largest of all the processes of the body not attached to another bone; it possesses a conspicuous epiphysis (femurs in the figure for ch. 3, and Q here 24 ). The other [trochanter minor] (a in figs.1, 2) is the lesser, not at all comparable to the former in magnitude, and visible much lower on the inside [medial] of the femur a little toward the posterior. It too is augmented by an epiphysis (b in fig. 2). The Greeks name both troxanth/r, 25 “rotator,” so to speak, calling one the inner and the other the outer. When they say simply


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“the trochanter,” they always mean the outer one, which because of its breadth and a certain resemblance to a buttock they also called glouto/j. 26 The use of these processes is the same as that of nearly all bony processes, which is like a hill to admit the satisfactory insertion of muscles and elegantly provide a place of origin for other muscles. The inner process of the femur, which is slightly elongated and not very uneven, projects so that the tendons of the sixth and seventh (Q and L in the 8th table of muscles, c, d in the 14th) of the muscles [m. iliopsoas] 27 that move the femur may be inserted. At the root of this process a rough line [linea pectinea] (c, c in fig. 1) on the posterior surface of the femur, running obliquely downward somewhere to the rear, and suited for the insertion of the eighth muscle [m. pectineus] (a in the 7th table of muscles) moving the femur. The outer process [trochanter major] of the femur is convex on its outer surface, while on its inner side it has a concavity where it faces the head of the femur. Here it displays a rough and uneven depression [fossa trochanterica] (R in fig. 1), into which are inserted the ninth and tenth (see x, x, y, z, a in the 13th table of muscles) muscles 28 moving the femur. The outer surface, which is convex, shows four impressions in bony and aged people, areas provided to receive the insertions of four muscles (the first [m. gluteus maximus] is P in the 9th table of muscles, the second [m. gluteus medius] S in the 10th, the third [gluteus minimus] S in the 11th, the fourth [m. piriformis] F in the 11th). The first [tuberculum quadratum] (S in fig. 1) is large and looks convex in the posterior area of the process, where the first of the muscles [m. quadratus femoris] that move the femur is implanted with a wide insertion. From the root of this compression a rough line [tuberositas glutealis] (T, T in fig. 1) is brought downward somewhat obliquely along the back of the femur; into this the first muscle [m. gluteus maximus] moving the femur is also very strongly inserted. The second compression (V in fig. 2) is situated in the anterior side of the outer process, more rough and irregular than the first and quite depressed, serving for the insertion of the second muscle [m. gluteus medius] that causes motions of the femur. The third area (X in fig. 2) is seen at the upper surface of the process, situated between the higher parts of the first and second. This one is elevated, and receives the insertion of the third muscle [m. gluteus minimus] moving the femur. The fourth [m. piriformis] (Y in figs. 1, 2) presents itself at the apex of the process; much smaller than the other three, it admits the tendon of the fourth muscle moving the femur. These are the muscles whose insertion the outer process receives, while from its root on its anterior and outer side it provides the origin for the muscle [m. vastus lateralis] (L in the 5th table of muscles, m in the 10th) which will be counted the seventh of those that move the tibia.



Book One -- The things that sustain and support the entire body, and what braces and attaches them all. [the bones and the ligaments that interconnect them] | Chapter 30 On the Femur