Dictionary

1skeleton

noun skel·e·ton \ˈske-lə-tən\

: the structure of bones that supports the body of a person or animal

: a set or model of all the bones in the body of a person

: a very thin person or animal

Full Definition of SKELETON

1
:  a usually rigid supportive or protective structure or framework of an organism; especially :  the bony or more or less cartilaginous framework supporting the soft tissues and protecting the internal organs of a vertebrate
2
:  something reduced to its minimum form or essential parts
3
:  an emaciated person or animal
4
a :  something forming a structural framework
b :  the straight or branched chain or ring of atoms that forms the basic structure of an organic molecule
5
:  something shameful and kept secret (as in a family) —often used in the phrase skeleton in the closet
6
:  a small sled that is ridden in a prone position and used especially in competition; also :  the competition itself
ske·le·ton·ic \ˌske-lə-ˈtä-nik\ adjective
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Examples of SKELETON

  1. They found the fossil skeleton of a mastodon.
  2. He hung a plastic skeleton on the door for Halloween.
  3. She was a skeleton after her illness.
  4. Only the charred skeleton of the house remained after the fire.
  5. We saw a skeleton of the report before it was published.

Illustration of SKELETON

Origin of SKELETON

New Latin, from Greek, neuter of skeletos dried up; akin to Greek skellein to dry up, sklēros hard and perhaps to Old English sceald shallow
First Known Use: 1578

2skeleton

adjective

: having the smallest possible number of people who can get a job done

Full Definition of SKELETON

:  of, consisting of, or resembling a skeleton

First Known Use of SKELETON

1778
SKELETON Defined for Kids

skeleton

noun skel·e·ton \ˈske-lə-tən\

Definition of SKELETON for Kids

1
:  a firm structure or framework of a living thing that in vertebrates (as fish, birds, or humans) is typically made of bone and supports the soft tissues of the body and protects the internal organs
2
:  framework <the steel skeleton of a building>
Medical Dictionary

skeleton

noun skel·e·ton \ˈskel-ət-ən\

Medical Definition of SKELETON

1
:  a usually rigid supportive or protective structure or framework of an organism; especially :  the bony or more or less cartilaginous framework supporting the soft tissues and protecting the internal organs of a vertebrate
2
:  the straight or branched chain or ring of atoms that forms the basic structure of an organic molecule

Illustration of SKELETON

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