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This line is a weak ridge of bone that continues back from the posterior edge of the zygomatic process on the lateral surface of the bone. Near the frontoparietal suture it splits to form the superior and inferior temporal lines of the parietal bone. It demarcates the anterior limit of the temporalis muscle.
The term temporal arises from the Latin tempus meaning time. Early anatomists used time to describe this region because it is typically on the sides of the skull where hair first becomes gray, showing the ravages of time. Line or its Latin equivalent linea denotes a linear ridge of bone.