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The Collaborative International Dictionary

Osseous \Os"se*ous\, a. [L. osseus, from os, ossis bone; akin to Gr. 'oste`on, Skr. asthi. Cf. Oyster.] Composed of bone; resembling bone; capable of forming bone; bony; ossific.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

"bony," early 15c., from Medieval Latin ossous, from Latin osseus "bony, of bone," from os (genitive ossis) "bone," from PIE *ost- "bone" (cognates: Sanskrit asthi, Hittite hashtai-, Greek osteon "bone," Greek ostrakon "oyster shell," Avestan ascu- "shinbone," Welsh asgwrn, Armenian oskr, Albanian asht "bone"). The word was later reformed in English (1680s), perhaps by influence of French osseux.


a. Of, relating to, or made of bone; bony.


adj. composed of or containing bone; "osseous tissue" [syn: osteal, bony]

Usage examples of "osseous".

Washed down from unknown jungles of Mesozoic tree ferns and fungi, and forests of Tertiary cycads, fan palms, and primitive angiosperms, this osseous medley contained representatives of more Cretaceous, Eocene, and other animal species than the greatest paleontologist could have counted or classified in a year.

These twins were united at the sacra by a cartilaginous or possibly osseous union.

The deformity was caused by a deficiency of osseous material of the bones of the head.

In addition to the causes enumerated, inflammation of osseous tissue, or osteoid carcinoma, has been found at the seat of a spontaneous fracture.

His whole face, including his two eyes, were literally blown away, some scanty remnants of the osseous and muscular systems, and the skull covered with hair being left.

Trueheart reports a case of partial excision of the clavicle, successfully followed by the grafting of periosteal and osseous material taken from a dog.

The accompanying illustration shows a case in which there was osseous depression of the cranium and a localized alopecia.

The figure that had spoken had paused in its stroll down the osseous promenade.

Nor must there be omitted another strange attestation of the antiquity of the whale, in his own osseous postdiluvian reality, as set down by the venerable John Leo, the old Barbary traveller.

As she shifted, he thought he could hear the osseous components of the compound fracture in her left leg grinding against one another.

The osseous structure of his face was as sharply defined as the features on a newly minted coin.

As Annixter descended finally to the platform, the editor, alert as a blackand-tan terrier, his thin, osseous hands quivering with eagerness, his brown, dry face working with excitement, caught his elbow.

He wore a uniform of white linen and held a staff almost as tall as himself, an osseous twist of narwhale horn capped with a golden sea horse.

It was also quickly ascertained that the head puncture went right through the osseous part of the cranium, but did no damage of any kind.

Researchers conducted these experiments to find out what the osseous remains of large mammals looked like after being flaked, fractured, or butchered by humans using stone or bone tools.