1. (Science: zoology) A hollow organ or tube attached to the head, or connected with the mouth, of various animals, and generally used in taking food or drink; a snout; a trunk.
The proboscis of an elephant is a flexible muscular elongation of the nose. The proboscis of insects is usually a chitinous tube formed by the modified maxillae, or by the labium.
2. (Science: zoology) By extension, applied to various tubelike mouth organs of the lower animals that can be everted or protruded.
The proboscis of annelids and of mollusks is usually a portion of the pharynx that can be everted or protruded. That of nemerteans is a special long internal organ, not connected with the mouth, and not used in feeding, but capable of being protruded from a pore in the head.
3. The nose. Proboscis monkey.
Origin: L. Fr. Gr.; before – to feed, graze.