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What are the three bones in the ear called?

Learn what the three bones in the ear are called.

The three smallest bones in the body reside in the ear. [©Shutterstock, 2010]
©Shutterstock, 2010
The three smallest bones in the body reside in the ear.

The three bones in the ear are called the malleus, which means hammer; incus, which means anvil; and stapes, which means stirrup.

The bones look somewhat like the objects for which they are named. The stapes is the smallest bone in the body, measuring 1.02 to 1.34 inches (2.6 to 3.4 centimeters) and weighing 0.00071 to 0.00015 ounces (0.002 to 0.004 grams).

These three tiny bones in the middle ear conduct sound vibrations from the outer to inner ear.

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