There is certain terminology that is necessary to use
when describing shark teeth. This can become rather intimidating to the
beginner. I've included this page as a guide for the novice. I'll be
using illustrations in the hopes of giving the beginner, at the very
least, a starting point.
Labial - relating to the lips. When referring to teeth, this is
the front of the tooth or the side facing the lips.
Lingual - relating to the tongue. When referring
to teeth this is the back of the tooth or the side facing the tongue.
Comments: Unfortunately, because of
aesthetic reasons, shark teeth are normally displayed backwards, that is,
the back or lingual side of the tooth is normally shown. This can cause
some confusion when trying to read descriptions of specimens. As
general rule of thumb, the flat side of the tooth is the front or labial
side when positioned in the jaw.
Anterior - Front teeth
Lateral - Side teeth
Posterior - Back teeth
Common Terms used in this website
A. Crown- The enameled portion of
B. Cusplet - A small
projection lateral to the crown
C. Root - The part of the tooth
that attaches to the jaw
D. Basil margin - Where the root
and crow meet
|| A. Root lobe - Ends or tips of the root
B. Nutrient Grove
- Grove on the lingual surface of the root
C. Lingual Protuberance - A projection on the lingual
surface of the root
D. Striations - Lines or wrinkles on the surface of the
crown. Only present on a few species.
|| A. Mesial side - Facing
towards the front of mouth (Convex curve)
B. Distal side
- Facing towards the back of the mouth (Concave curve)
C. Serrations - A toothed edge, similar to a steak knife
view of a tooth showing a lingual protuberance and the
nutrient grove (dark line).
These two terms are used extensively on this website.