[ aw-top-see, aw-tuhp- ]
See synonyms for autopsy on
noun,plural au·top·sies.
  1. inspection and dissection of a body after death, as for determination of the cause of death; postmortem examination.

  2. an analysis of something after it has been done or made.

verb (used with object),au·top·sied, au·top·sy·ing.
  1. to perform an autopsy on.

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Origin of autopsy

1645–55; (<Middle French autopsie) <Greek autopsía a seeing with one's own eyes, equivalent to aut-aut- + óps(is) -opsis + -ia-y3

Other words from autopsy

  • au·top·sist, noun

Words Nearby autopsy Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use autopsy in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for autopsy


/ (ˈɔːtəpsɪ, ɔːˈtɒp-) /

nounplural -sies
  1. Also called: necropsy, postmortem examination dissection and examination of a dead body to determine the cause of death

  2. an eyewitness observation

  1. any critical analysis

Origin of autopsy

C17: from New Latin autopsia, from Greek: seeing with one's own eyes, from auto- + opsis sight

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Scientific definitions for autopsy


[ ôtŏp′sē ]

  1. A medical examination of a dead body to determine the cause of death or to study pathologic changes.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.