• synonyms


  1. Anatomy. a soft, fatty, vascular tissue in the interior cavities of bones that is a major site of blood cell production.
  2. the inmost or essential part: to pierce to the marrow of a problem.
  3. strength or vitality: Fear took the marrow out of him.
  4. rich and nutritious food.
  5. Chiefly British. vegetable marrow.
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Origin of marrow1

before 900; Middle English mar(o)we, Old English mearg; cognate with Dutch merg, German Mark, Old Norse mergr
Related formsmar·row·ish, adjectivemar·row·less, adjectivemar·row·y, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for marrowless

Historical Examples

  • Nae equal to you but our dog Sorkie, and he's dead, so ye're marrowless.

    The Proverbs of Scotland

    Alexander Hislop

  • Their Christianity is as sapless and fruitless as a dead tree, and as dry and marrowless as an old bone.

    Practical Religion

    John Charles Ryle

  • Shivers ran down his back—his marrowless back, his bloodless body—like a stream of ice-cold water?

  • We cannot think of poor Falstaff going to bed without his cup of sack, or Macbeth fed on bones as marrowless as those of Banquo.

  • Again and again the idea recurs that all true art must be allegorical, that is to say, marrowless and bloodless.

British Dictionary definitions for marrowless


  1. the fatty network of connective tissue that fills the cavities of bones
  2. the vital part; essence
  3. vitality
  4. rich food
  5. British short for vegetable marrow
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Derived Formsmarrowy, adjective

Word Origin

Old English mærg; related to Old Frisian merg, Old Norse mergr


  1. Northeast English dialect, mainly Durham a companion, esp a workmate
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Word Origin

C15 marwe fellow worker, perhaps of Scandinavian origin; compare Icelandic margr friendly
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

Word Origin and History for marrowless



late 14c., from Old English mearg "marrow," earlier mærh, from Proto-Germanic *mazga- (cf. Old Norse mergr, Old Saxon marg, Old Frisian merg, Middle Dutch march, Dutch merg, Old High German marg, German Mark "marrow"), from PIE *mozgo- "marrow" (cf. Sanskrit majjan-, Avestan mazga- "marrow," Old Church Slavonic mozgu, Lithuanian smagenes "brain"). Figurative sense of "inmost or central part" is attested from c.1400.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

marrowless in Medicine


  1. Bone marrow.
  2. The spinal cord.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

marrowless in Science


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

marrowless in Culture


The soft, specialized connective tissue that fills the cavities of bones. One kind of bone marrow is responsible for manufacturing red blood cells in the body.

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The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.