Dictionary.com

decomposition

[ dee-kom-puh-zish-uhn ]
/ ˌdi kɒm pəˈzɪʃ ən /
Save This Word!

noun
the act or process of decomposing.
the state of being decomposed; decay.
QUIZ
CUDDLE UP! A COZY QUIZ ON FALL WORDS HAS ARRIVED
If autumn is your ideal season, spice up your repertoire of "fall" vocabulary with this quiz on some warm and vivid descriptive words for the season.
Question 1 of 10
Which of the following words means “to make a crackling sound; crackle”?
Meet Grammar CoachWrite or paste your essay, email, or story into Grammar Coach and get grammar helpImprove Your Writing
Meet Grammar CoachImprove Your Writing
Write or paste your essay, email, or story into Grammar Coach and get grammar help

Origin of decomposition

1650–60; probably <French décomposition, derivative of décomposer to decompose; see composition
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

How to use decomposition in a sentence

Medical definitions for decomposition

decomposition
[ dē-kŏm′pə-zĭshən ]

n.
The act or result of decomposing; disintegration.
Separation into constituents by chemical reaction.
The breakdown or decay of organic materials; lysis.

Other words from decomposition

de•com′po•sition•al adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Scientific definitions for decomposition

decomposition
[ dē-kŏm′pə-zĭshən ]

The separation of a substance into simpler substances or basic elements. Decomposition can be brought about by exposure to heat, light, or chemical or biological activity.
The process of breaking down organic material, such as dead plant or animal tissue, into smaller molecules that are available for use by the organisms of an ecosystem. Decomposition is carried on by bacteria, fungi, protists, worms, and certain other organisms. See more at detritivore.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
FEEDBACK