The condyles are for articulation with the superior facets of the atlas. The condyles are oval or reniform in shape, and their anterior extremities, directed forward and medialward, are closer together than their posterior, and encroach on the basilar portion of the bone; the posterior extremities extend back to the level of the middle of the foramen magnum. The articular surfaces of the condyles are convex from before backward and from side to side, and look downward and lateralward. To their margins are attached the capsules of the atlantooccipital articulations, and on the medial side of each is a rough impression or tubercle for the alar ligament. At the base of either condyle the bone is tunnelled by a short canal, the hypoglossal canal.