The first cervical (neck) vertebra is called the atlas. It supports the head.
The atlas bone is named for the Greek god Atlas who was condemned to support the earth and its heavens on his shoulders. (Because the god Atlas often adorned maps, a compilation of maps came to be known as an atlas).
- Vertebra, prominent
The 7th cervical (neck) vertebra (C7) is sometimes called the prominent vertebra because of the length of its spinous process (the projection off the back of the vertebral body). The spinous process of the top thoracic vertebra (T1) just below C7 is sometimes even more prominent than that of the “prominent vertebra”.
- Vertebra, second cervical
The second cervical vertebra is called the axis. It is so-named because the uppermost cervical vertebra (called the atlas) rotates about the odontoid process of the second cervical vertebra. The joint between the axis and atlas is a pivot type of joint. It allows the head turn. The Latin word “axis” means axle or pole. […]
Cervical vertebrae; Coccygeal vertebrae; Lumbar vertebrae; Sacral vertebrae; and Thoracic vertebrae.
- Vertebrae, cervical
The cervical (neck) vertebrae are the upper 7 vertebrae in the spinal column (the vertebral column). They are designated C1 through C7 from the top down. C1 is called the atlas. It supports the head and is named for the Greek god Atlas who was condemned to support the earth and its heavens on his […]
- Vertebrae, coccygeal
The coccyx, the small tail-like bone at the bottom of the spine near the anus, is made up of 3-5 (average of 4) rudimentary vertebrae.