from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The act or result of decomposing; disintegration.
  • n. Chemistry Separation into constituents by chemical reaction.
  • n. Biology Breakdown or decay of organic materials.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A biological process through which organic material is reduced to e.g. compost
  • n. The act of taking something apart, e.g. for analysis
  • n. The splitting (of e.g. a matrix, an atom, or a compound) into constituent parts

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The act or process of resolving the constituent parts of a compound body or substance into its elementary parts; separation into constituent part; analysis; the decay or dissolution consequent on the removal or alteration of some of the ingredients of a compound; disintegration
  • n. The state of being reduced into original elements.
  • n. Repeated composition; a combination of compounds.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. The act or process of separating the constituent elements of a compound body or substance; analysis; resolution; specifically, the process of reducing an organic body to a state of decay or putrefaction.
  • n. The state of being decomposed or resolved; release from previous combinations; disintegration; specifically, decay of an organic body.
  • n. [With ref. to decomposite, q. v.] The act of compounding together things which are themselves compound; a combination of compounds.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. (biology) the process of decay caused by bacterial or fungal action
  • n. in a decomposed state
  • n. the organic phenomenon of rotting
  • n. (chemistry) separation of a substance into two or more substances that may differ from each other and from the original substance
  • n. the analysis of a vector field


Sorry, no etymologies found.



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