Alvey transcription {IPA: "kO:Rp@s}
variant form(s)

Pl. corpora {IPA: "kO:Rp@r@}.

etymology L.; = body.

1. The body of a man or animal. (Cf. corpse .) Formerly frequent; now only humorous or grotesque.

circa 1440 York Myst. xxxiii. 430 "We ar combered his corpus for to cary."
1490 CAXTON, Eneydos li. (1890) 143 "They came wyth the corpus, makyng gret mone."
1531 in W. H. Turner Select. Rec. Oxford 104 "He was lothe to goe and see the ded corpus."
1709 Brit. Apollo II. No. 19. 3/2 "His Corpus (Now bulky as Porpus)."
1799 Piece Fam. Biogr. II. 108 "They ate up his corpus, his hands and his feet."
1849 LYTTON, K. Arthur IX. xcvi, "A sick polypus..Stretch'd out its claws to incorporate my corpus."
before 1854 Villikins & his Dinah (in Mus. Bouquet, No. 452), "He kissed her cold corpus a thousand times o'er."

2. Phys. A structure of a special character or function in the animal body, as corpus callosum, the transverse commissure connecting the cerebral hemispheres; so also corpora quadrigemina, striata, etc. of the brain, corpus spongiosum and corpora cavernosa of the penis, etc.; corpus luteum [L. luteus, -um yellow] (pl. corpora lutea), a yellowish body developed in the ovary from the ruptured Graafian follicle after discharge of the ovum; it secretes progesterone and other hormones and after a few days degenerates unless fertilization has occurred, when it remains throughout pregnancy.

1706 PHILLIPS, (ed. Kersey), "Corpus Callosum (in Anat.) is the upper Part, or Covering of a Space made by the joyning together of the right and left Side of the inward Substance of the Brain."
1788 Encycl. Brit. I. 740/2 "In conception, one of these mature ova is supposed..to be squeezed out of its nidus into the Fallopian tube; after which the ruptured part forms a substance which in some animals is of a yellow colour, and is therefore called corpus luteum."
1851 CARPENTER, Man. Phys. (1865) 581 "The ganglionic matter of the Corpora Striata."
1874 ---, Ment. Phys. App. (1879) 715 "Experiments on the Corpora Quadrigemina (or Optic Ganglia).
" 1869 HUXLEY, Phys. xi. 298 "The floor of the lateral ventricle is formed by a mass of nervous matter, called the corpus striatum."
1910 Surg., Gyn. & Obstetr. X. 221/2 (heading) "Extract of corpus luteum in disturbances of artificial and physiologic menopause."
Ibid., "An extract made from the corpora lutea of beef ovaries [was used] rather than an extract of the entire ovary."
1926 J. S. HUXLEY, Ess. Pop. Sci. v. 60 "The number of corpora lutea, or traces of discharged ova in the ovaries."
1939 Ann. Reg. 1938 372 "Corpus luteum hormone and its derivatives."
1959 New Biol. XXX. 79 "As in mammals, glandular bodies known as corpora lutea are produced in the ovaries of viviparous (and also of some oviparous) reptiles, in places from which the eggs have been shed at ovulation.

3. A body or complete collection of writings or the like; the whole body of literature on any subject.

1727-51 CHAMBERS, Cycl. s.v., "Corpus is also used in matters of learning, for several works of the same nature, collected, and bound together..We have also a corpus of the Greek poets..The corpus of the civil law is composed of the digest, code, and institutes."
1865 MOZLEY, Mirac. i. 16 "Bound up inseparably with the whole corpus of Christian tradition."
1876 GLADSTONE, in Contemp. Rev., June 14 "Assaults on the corpus of Scripture."
1886 Athenæum 14 Aug. 211/1 "The completion of such a corpus of Oriental numismatics."

3. b. The body of written or spoken material upon which a linguistic analysis is based.

1956 W. S. ALLEN, in Trans. Philol. Soc. 128 "The analysis here presented is based on the speech of a single informant..and in particular upon a corpus of material, of which a large proportion was narrative, derived from approximately 100 hours of listening."
1963 Language XXXIX. 1 "In the analysis of the data, the structural features of the corpora will first be described."
1964 E. PALMER, tr. Martinet's Elem. General Linguistics ii. 40 "The theoretical objection one may make against the 'corpus` method is that two investigators operating on the same language but starting from different 'corpuses`, may arrive at different descriptions of the same language."
1971 J. B. CARROLL, et al. Word Frequency Bk. p. xxvii, "How many types does one have to 'know` to know 95% of the tokens in the population of texts from which a corpus has been derived?"
1983 G. LEECH, et al. in Trans. Philol. Soc. 25 "We hope that this will be judged..as an attempt to explore the possibilities and problems of corpus-based research by reference to first-hand experience, instead of by a general survey."

4. The body or material substance of anything; principal, as opposed to interest or income.

1844 WILLIAMS, Real Prop. (1877) 225 "Not only the income, but also the corpus of any property, whether real or personal."
1884 Law Rep. 25 Chanc. Div. 711 "If these costs were properly incurred they ought to be paid out of corpus and not out of income."

5. phr. corpus delicti (see quot. 1832 ); also, in lay use, the concrete evidence of a crime, esp. the body of a murdered person. corpus juris: a body of law; esp. the body of Roman or civil law (corpus juris civilis).

1832 AUSTIN, Jurispr. (1879) I. xxiv. 479 "Corpus delicti (a phrase introduced by certain modern civilians) is a collective name for the sum or aggregate of the various ingredients which make a given fact a breach of a given law.
" Ibid. II. xlv. 796 "The very best attempts yet made to distribute the corpus juris into parts."
1863 N.Y. State Court of Appeals, Rep. IV. 179 "The corpus delicti, in murder, has two components, death as the result and the criminal agency of another as the means."
1891 Fortn. Rev. Sept. 338 "The translation..of the Corpus Juris into French."
1908 HAWTHORNE, Libr. Best Myst. & Detective Stories 89 "The term 'corpus delicti` is technical, and means the body of the crime, or the substantial fact that a crime has been committed."
1922 JOYCE, Ulysses 451 "(He extends his portfolio.) We have here damning evidence, the corpus delicti, my lord, a specimen of my maturer work disfigured by the hallmark of the beast."
1964 Sunday Mail Mag. (Brisbane) 13 Sept. 3/3 "An enthusiastic trooper, one of a party investigating river, dam and hollow log in search of the corpus delicti, found some important evidence in a fallen tree."

6. (obs) obs. by corpus bones: perh. a confusion of corpus Domini and Goddes bones: cf. also cops body! s.v. COPS 2.

circa 1386 CHAUCER, Pard. Prol. 28 "By corpus [2 MSS. corps] bones, but I haue triacle.
" ---, Prioress' Prol. 1 (Harl.) "'Wel sayd, by corpus boones [6 texts corpus dominus]!` quod oure host."
---, Monk's Prol. 18 "By corpus [Harl. corpes Petw. goddes] bones, I wol haue thy knyf."

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