\ ˈber-ˈbōnz How to pronounce bare-bones (audio) \

Definition of bare-bones

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: including only what is most basic or necessary a bare-bones e-mail program Skyscrapers of steel hung with curtain walls of glass, these sleek buildings were impressive monuments to bare-bones architectural integrity.— C. A. Mills

bare bones

plural noun

Definition of bare bones (Entry 2 of 2)

: the barest essentials, facts, or elements the bare bones of her life

Examples of bare-bones in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Plural noun Given just one week’s notice by the state, many metro Detroit restaurants that have been closed or whittled down to bare bones takeout for the last three months, are simply not in a position to swiftly get back to the full-service model. Mark Kurlyandchik, Detroit Free Press, "Metro Detroit bars, restaurants can reopen dining rooms Monday. It doesn't mean they will.," 7 June 2020 Students who want more than the bare bones are looking at their options. Dan Mclaughlin, National Review, "The Coming Gap-Year Gap," 29 Apr. 2020 Just over $100 Samsung Galaxy A01 is a bare bones phone with full internet connectivity, a single camera, 5.7 inch screen and a super low price of $109. Jefferson Graham, USA TODAY, "Cheap smartphone guide: From iPhone to Google Pixel or Samsung Galaxy, here's what $399 and less will get you," 16 Apr. 2020 With only the bare bones guidelines for lenders available late on the eve of the program's launch, banks and lenders clearly scrambled to be open for business on April 3. Anne Sraders, Fortune, "When will your SBA loan be approved? Here’s why the process is moving so slowly," 8 Apr. 2020 Despite a young roster, Texas Tech has the bare bones of an explosive offense next season and Alan Bowman will be the driving force. Brice Paterik, Dallas News, "Making the Heisman case for (and against) Texas Tech QB Alan Bowman," 2 Apr. 2020 This is the bare bones: >> Indiana has nine Quad 1 and 2 wins, a solid overall number. >> Indiana's record vs. Quads 1 and 2 still isn't great overall, and it's not mitigated by a series of impressive road or neutral-site wins. Zach Osterman, Indianapolis Star, "Big Bird or Big Dance? Where IU basketball actually stands as tournament week begins," 9 Mar. 2020 The aluminum free-floating handguard is knurled and vented, and beyond the A2-style flash hider, and grip, this rifle is mostly bare bones. Richard Mann, Field & Stream, "The 30 Best AR-Style Rifles for Hunting and Personal Defense," 17 Sep. 2019 For others, the training becomes bare bones, limited to classes that provide updates on new laws. John Caniglia, cleveland, "Ohio law enforcement annual training ‘critical’; reimbursements inconsistent, tracking questionable," 16 Feb. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bare-bones.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of bare-bones


1868, in the meaning defined above

Plural noun

1647, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for bare-bones

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The first known use of bare-bones was in 1647

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Cite this Entry

“Bare-bones.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Jul. 2020.

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How to pronounce bare bones (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of bare-bones

: including only what is most basic or needed

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