from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. The internal structure composed of bone and cartilage that protects and supports the soft organs, tissues, and other parts of a vertebrate organism; endoskeleton.
- n. The hard external supporting and protecting structure in many invertebrates, such as mollusks and crustaceans, and certain vertebrates, such as turtles; exoskeleton.
- n. A supporting structure or framework, as of a building.
- n. An outline or sketch.
- n. Something reduced to its basic or minimal parts.
- n. One that is very thin or emaciated.
- adj. Of, relating to, or resembling a skeleton.
- adj. Reduced to the basic or minimal parts or members: a skeleton crew.
- idiom skeleton in (one's) closet A source of shame or disgrace, as in a family, that is kept secret.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. The system that provides support to an organism, internal and made up of bones and cartilage in vertebrates, external in some other animals.
- n. A frame that provides support to a building or other construction.
- n. A very thin person.
- n. A type of tobogganing in which competitors lie face down, and descend head first (compare luge). See Wikipedia:Skeleton (sport)
- n. A client-helper procedure that communicates with a stub.
- n. The vertices and edges of a polyhedron, taken collectively.
- n. An anthropomorphic representation of a skeleton. See Wikipedia:Skeleton (undead)
- n. The central core of something that gives shape to the entire structure.
- v. to reduce to a skeleton; to skin; to skeletonize
- v. to minimize
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. The bony and cartilaginous framework which supports the soft parts of a vertebrate animal.
- n. The more or less firm or hardened framework of an invertebrate animal.
- n. A very thin or lean person.
- n. The framework of anything; the principal parts that support the rest, but without the appendages.
- n. The heads and outline of a literary production, especially of a sermon.
- adj. Consisting of, or resembling, a skeleton; consisting merely of the framework or outlines; having only certain leading features of anything
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. In anatomy, the dry bones of the body taken together; hence, in anatomy and zoology, some or any hard part, or the set of hard parts together, which form a support, scaffold, or framework of the body, sustaining, inclosing, or protecting soft parts or vital organs; connective tissue, especially when hard, as when fibrous, cuticular, corneous, cartilaginous, osseous, chitinous, calcareous, or silicious; an endoskeleton, exoskeleton, dermoskeleton, scleroskeleton, splanchnoskeleton, etc. (See these words.)
- n. The supporting framework of anything; the principal parts that support the rest, but without the appendages.
- n. An outline or rough draft of any kind; specifically, the outline of a literary performance: as, the skeleton of a sermon.
- n. Milit., a regiment whose numbers have become reduced by casualties, etc.
- n. A very lean or much emaciated person; a mere shadow of a man.
- n. In printing, an exceedingly thin or condensed form of light-faced type.
- Of or pertaining to a skeleton; in the form of a skeleton; skeletal; lean.
- Consisting of a mere framework, outline, or combination of supporting parts: as, a skeleton leaf; a skeleton crystal.
- To skeletonize.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. the internal supporting structure that gives an artifact its shape
- n. a scandal that is kept secret
- n. something reduced to its minimal form
- n. the hard structure (bones and cartilages) that provides a frame for the body of an animal
Greek skeleton (sōma), dried-up (body), neuter of skeletos, from skellesthai, to dry up.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Ancient Greek σκελετός (skeletos, "dried up, withered, dried body, parched, mummy"), from σκελλώ (skellō, "dry, dry up, make dry, parch"), from Proto-Indo-European *skele- "to parch, whither;" compare Greek Σκληρός "hard". (Wiktionary)