1. a plural of rectum.

noun, plural rec·tums, rec·ta [rek-tuh] /ˈrɛk tə/. Anatomy.

  1. the comparatively straight, terminal section of the intestine, ending in the anus.


  1. a plural of rectum

noun plural -tums or -ta (-tə)

  1. the lower part of the alimentary canal, between the sigmoid flexure of the colon and the anus

early 15c., from Latin intestinum rectum “straight intestine,” in contrast to the convolution of the rest of the bowels, from neuter past participle of regere “to straighten” (see regal). A loan-translation of Greek apeuthysmeon enteron, “the name given to the lowest part of the large intestine by Galen, who so called it because he dissected only animals whose rectum (in contradistinction to that of man) is really straight” [Klein].

n. pl. rec•tums

  1. The terminal portion of the large intestine, extending from the sigmoid flexure to the anal canal.

Plural rectums recta

  1. The last section of the digestive tract, extending from the colon to the anus, in which feces is stored for elimination from the body.

The outermost portion of the large intestine. Feces are stored in the rectum until they are passed out of the body through the anus.

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