Dictionary of Human Evolution and Biology

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Hand

1. terminal portion of the upper extremity, consisting of the carpus, metacarpus, and digits.

2. dexterous fore paw in primates. Among the lower primates and the monkeys the fore paw serves a dual purpose of hand and foot; it is only among the apes and, especially, the humans that a true hand is found. The term is generally not used for other mammals.

See metacarpal bones.

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