The bony and cartilaginous framework which supports the soft parts of a vertebrate animal.
- The internal structure composed of bone and cartilage that protects and supports the soft organs, tissues, and other parts of a vertebrate organism; endoskeleton.
- The hard external supporting and protecting structure in many invertebrates, such as mollusks and crustaceans, and certain vertebrates, such as turtles; exoskeleton.
- A supporting structure or framework, as of a building.
- An outline or sketch.
- Something reduced to its basic or minimal parts.
- One that is very thin or emaciated.
- Of, relating to, or resembling a skeleton.
- Reduced to the basic or minimal parts or members: a skeleton crew.
- skeleton in (one's) closet A source of shame or disgrace, as in a family, that is kept secret.