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anatomy definition

Overview

This page has 8 definitions of anatomy in English. Anatomy is a noun. Examples of how to use anatomy in a sentence are shown. Also define these 16 related words and terms: body, structure, economy, dissection, science, organic, anthropotomy, phytotomy, zootomy, treatise, book, corporeal, intellectual, analysis, private parts, and skeleton.

English

Etymology

From French anatomie, from Latin anatomia, from Ancient Greek *ἀνατομία (*anatomía), from ἀνατομή (anatomḗ, dissection), from ἀνά (aná, up) + τέμνω (témnō, I cut, incise) (surface analysis ana- +‎ -tomy), literally “cut up”. Doublet of ottomy.

Pronunciation

Noun

anatomy (countable and uncountable, plural anatomies)

  1. The art of studying the different parts of any organized body, to discover their situation, structure, and economy.
    Synonym: dissection
  2. The science that deals with the form and structure of organic bodies; anatomical structure or organization.
    Hyponyms: anthropotomy, phytotomy, zootomy
    • 1695, John Dryden (translator), Observations on the Art of Painting by Charles Alphonse du Fresnoy
      Let the muscles be well inserted and bound together, according to the knowledge of them which is given us by anatomy.
    Animal anatomy is also called zootomy; vegetable anatomy, phytotomy; and human anatomy, anthropotomy.
    • Science definition
      A particular discipline or branch of learning, especially one dealing with measurable or systematic principles rather than intuition or natural ability. (1 of 8 science definitions)
    • Organic definition
      Pertaining to or derived from living organisms. (1 of 10 organic definitions)
    • Phytotomy definition
      The study of the internal structures of plants.
  3. (countable) A treatise or book on anatomy.
    • Book definition
      A collection of sheets of paper bound together to hinge at one edge, containing printed or written material, pictures, etc. (1 of 15 book definitions)
  4. (by extension) The act of dividing anything, corporeal or intellectual, for the purpose of examining its parts.
    Synonym: analysis
    the anatomy of a discourse
    the anatomy of love
    Burton's famous treatise, "The Anatomy of Melancholy"
  5. (colloquial) The form of an individual.
    I went to the Venice beach body-building competition and noticed the competitor from Athens, and let me tell you, that's what I call classic Greek anatomy.
  6. (euphemistic) The human body, especially in reference to the private parts.
    • 2015 September 20, Michael Ashcroft and Isabel Oakeshott, “Drugs, debauchery and the making of an extraordinary Prime Minister: For years rumours have dogged him. Now, the truth about the shockingly decadent Oxford days of the gifted Bullingdon boy”, in Daily Mail[1]:
      His extraordinary suggestion is that the future PM inserted a private part of his anatomy into the animal's mouth.
    • 2016 December 28, Jessica Taylor, “11 Times Donald Trump Looked Like He Was Done For”, in NPR[2]:
      On the debate stage days later, Trump wanted all of America to know there was "no problem" with the size of his hands — or any other part of his anatomy.
  7. (archaic) A skeleton, or dead body.
  8. The physical or functional organization of an organism, or part of it.
    • 2013 August 3, “The machine of a new soul”, in The Economist, volume 408, number 8847:
      The yawning gap in neuroscientists’ understanding of their topic is in the intermediate scale of the brain’s anatomy. Science has a passable knowledge of how individual nerve cells, known as neurons, work. It also knows which visible lobes and ganglia of the brain do what. But how the neurons are organised in these lobes and ganglia remains obscure.

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