Meaning of SHELL in English

SHELL

/ ʃel; NAmE / noun , verb

■ noun

1.

[ C , U ] the hard outer part of eggs, nuts, some seeds and some animals :

We collected shells on the beach.

snail shells

walnut shells

earrings made out of coconut shell

—picture at nut , crab

—see also eggshell , nutshell , seashell , tortoiseshell

2.

[ C ] any object that looks like the shell of a snail or sea creature :

pasta shells

3.

[ C ] a metal case filled with explosive , to be fired from a large gun

4.

( NAmE ) = cartridge

5.

[ C ] the walls or outer structure of sth, for example, an empty building or ship after a fire or a bomb attack :

The house was now a shell gutted by flames.

( figurative )

My life has been an empty shell since he died.

6.

[ C ] any structure that forms a hard outer frame :

the body shell of a car

7.

[ sing. ] the outer layer of sb's personality; how they seem to be or feel :

She had developed a shell of indifference.

IDIOMS

- come out of your shell

- to go / retreat etc. into your shell

■ verb

1.

to fire shells at sth :

[ vn ]

They shelled the city all night.

[ v ]

Just as they were leaving the rebels started shelling.

2.

[ vn ] to remove the shell or covering from nuts, peas , etc.

PHRASAL VERBS

- shell out (for sth) | shell sth out (for sth)

••

WORD ORIGIN

Old English scell (noun), of Germanic origin; related to Dutch schel scale, shell, also to scale thin plates that cover the skin of many fish and reptiles . The verb dates from the mid 16th cent. in sense 2.

Oxford Advanced Learner's English Dictionary.      Оксфордский английский словарь для изучающик язык на продвинутом уровне.