- one of the structures composing the skeleton of a vertebrate.
- the hard connective tissue forming the substance of the skeleton of most vertebrates, composed of a collagen-rich organic matrix impregnated with calcium, phosphate, and other minerals.
verb (used with object), boned, bon·ing.
- to deal with in a direct manner; act or speak openly: He makes no bones about his dislike of modern music.
- to have no fear of or objection to.
- to the essentials; to the minimum: The government cut social service programs to the bone.
- to an extreme degree; thoroughly: chilled to the bone.
Origin of bone
British Dictionary definitions for bone up (1 of 3)
British Dictionary definitions for bone up (2 of 3)
British Dictionary definitions for bone up (3 of 3)
- risqué or indecenthis jokes are rather close to the bone
- in poverty; destitute
- to be direct and candid about
- to have no scruples about
- to wish bad luck (on)
- to threaten to bring about the downfall (of)
verb (mainly tr)
Derived Formsboneless, adjective
Word Origin for bone
Medicine definitions for bone up
Science definitions for bone up
Idioms and Phrases with bone up (1 of 2)
Study intensely, as in I'll have to bone up on my Spanish if I'm to pass the language requirement. The verb bone alone was used in this sense from the mid-1800s on, up being added later. [Slang; late 1800s]
Idioms and Phrases with bone up (2 of 2)
In addition to the idioms beginning with bone
- bone of contention
- bone to pick, have a
- bone up
- bare bones
- chilled to the bone
- cut to the bone
- feel in one's bones
- funny bone
- make no bones about
- pull a boner
- roll the bones
- skin and bones
- work one's fingers to the bone