Meaning of SKELETON in English

SKELETON

n. 1 a a hard internal or external framework of bones, cartilage, shell, woody fibre, etc., supporting or containing the body of an animal or plant. b the dried bones of a human being or other animal fastened together in the same relative positions as in life. 2 the supporting framework or structure or essential part of a thing. 3 a very thin or emaciated person or animal. 4 the remaining part of anything after its life or usefulness is gone. 5 an outline sketch, an epitome or abstract. 6 (attrib.) having only the essential or minimum number of persons, parts, etc. (skeleton plan; skeleton staff). skeleton at the feast something that spoils one's pleasure; an intrusive worry. skeleton in the cupboard (US closet) a discreditable or embarrassing fact kept secret. skeleton key a key designed to fit many locks by having the interior of the bit hollowed. skeletal adj. skeletally adv. skeletonize v.tr. (also -ise).

[ mod.L f. Gk, neut. of skeletos dried-up f. skello dry up ]

Concise Oxford English dictionary.      Краткий оксфордский словарь английского языка.