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Tongue. View of the healthy tongue of a woman. The tongue tastes food and drink, and is also necessary for chewing, swallowing and speech. It is covered with numerous tiny projections called papillae, which differ in shape, size and colour. Filiform papillae are at the front of the tongue. Fungiform papillae are larger and have a good blood supply, which makes them appear red. Larger still are the circumvallate papillae, which are surrounded by a deep cleft or trench. There are 8-10 circumvallate papillae at the back of the human tongue, the area where most of our taste buds are located.
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