of, relating to, or like a skeleton.

Nearby words

  1. skeezy,
  2. skeg,
  3. skeif,
  4. skeigh,
  5. skein,
  6. skeletal extension,
  7. skeletal muscle,
  8. skeletal system,
  9. skeletal traction,
  10. skeletally

Origin of skeletal

First recorded in 1850–55; skelet(on) + -al1

Related formsskel·e·tal·ly, adverbnon·skel·e·tal, adjectivenon·skel·e·tal·ly, adverbpseu·do·skel·e·tal, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for skeletal

Word Origin and History for skeletal



1849, from skeleton + -al (1). Related: Skeletally.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Science definitions for skeletal



The internal structure of vertebrate animals, composed of bone or cartilage, that supports the body, serves as a framework for the attachment of muscles, and protects the vital organs and associated structures.
A hard protective covering or supporting structure of invertebrate animals. See also endoskeleton exoskeleton.
Related formsskeletal adjective

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