The tongue is a muscular hydrostat on the floors of the mouths of most vertebrates which manipulates food for mastication. It is the primary organ of taste (gustation), as much of the upper surface of the tongue is covered in papillae and taste buds. It is sensitive and kept moist by saliva, and is richly supplied with nerves and blood vessels. In humans a secondary function of the tongue is phonetic articulation. The tongue also serves as a natural means of cleaning one's teeth. The ability to perceive different tastes is not localised in different parts of the tongue, as is widely believed. This error arose because of misinterpretation of some 19th-century research (see tongue map).
Famous quotes containing the word tongue:
“Most people arent appreciated enough, and the bravest things we do in our lives are usually known only to ourselves. No one throws ticker tape on the man who chose to be faithful to his wife, on the lawyer who didnt take the drug money, or the daughter who held her tongue again and again. All this anonymous heroism.”
—Peggy Noonan (b. 1950)
“Well, well, perhaps I am a bit of a talker. A popular fellow such as I ammy friends get round mewe chaff, we sparkle, we tell witty storiesand somehow my tongue gets wagging. I have the gift of conversation. Ive been told I ought to have a salon, whatever that may be.”
—Kenneth Grahame (18591932)
“Fear hurries on my tongue through want of courage.”
—Aeschylus (525456 B.C.)