The pinna, also called the auricle, is external part of the ear. This is the "shell-shaped" part of the outer ear that captures sound waves and concentrates them into the ear canal where they are processed by the structures of the middle and inner ear.

The fleshy, lower part of the ear is called the ear lobe and is attached in some people while free of attachment in others. Modern forensic science recognizes the shape of the ear to be almost as individually distinguishable as fingerprints for personal identification.

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