[ ek-soh-skel-i-tn ]
/ ˌɛk soʊˈskɛl ɪ tn /
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noun Zoology.

an external covering or integument, especially when hard, as the shells of crustaceans (opposed to endoskeleton).



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Origin of exoskeleton

First recorded in 1840–50; exo- + skeleton
ex·o·skel·e·tal, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

British Dictionary definitions for exoskeleton

/ (ˌɛksəʊˈskɛlɪtən) /


the protective or supporting structure covering the outside of the body of many animals, such as the thick cuticle of arthropodsCompare endoskeleton
exoskeletal, adjective
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

Medical definitions for exoskeleton

[ ĕk′sō-skĕlĭ-tn ]


All hard parts, such as hair, teeth, and nails, that develop from the ectoderm or mesoderm in vertebrates.
A hard outer structure, such as the shell of an insect, that provides protection or support for an organism.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Scientific definitions for exoskeleton

[ ĕk′sō-skĕlĭ-tn ]

A hard, protective outer body covering of an animal, such as an insect, crustacean, or mollusk. The exoskeletons of insects and crustaceans are largely made of chitin. Compare endoskeleton.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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