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skeleton

play
noun skel·e·ton \ˈske-lə-tən\

Definition of skeleton

  1. 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. 2 :  something reduced to its minimum form or essential parts

  3. 3 :  an emaciated person or animal

  4. 4a :  something forming a structural frameworkb :  the straight or branched chain or ring of atoms that forms the basic structure of an organic molecule

  5. 5 :  something shameful and kept secret (as in a family) —often used in the phrase skeleton in the closet

  6. 6 :  a small sled that is ridden in a prone position and used especially in competition; also :  the competition itself

skeletonic

play \ˌske-lə-ˈtä-nik\ adjective

Examples of skeleton in a Sentence

  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 and Etymology 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


2

skeleton

adjective skel·e·ton

Definition of skeleton

  1. :  of, consisting of, or resembling a skeleton

First Known Use of skeleton

1778



SKELETON Defined for English Language Learners

skeleton

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noun

Definition of skeleton for English Language Learners

  • : 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

skeleton

adjective

Definition of skeleton for English Language Learners

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


SKELETON Defined for Kids

skeleton

play
noun skel·e·ton \ˈske-lə-tən\

Definition of skeleton for Students

  1. 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. 2 :  framework the steel skeleton of a building


Medical Dictionary

skeleton

play
noun skel·e·ton \ˈskel-ət-ən\

Medical Definition of skeleton

  1. 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. 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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