fossil

Fossils are the really, really old remains of a plant or animal — so old they've turned to stone. Fossil is also an insult for an old or old-fashioned person.

Fossils are very important to scientists who study animals: they're one of the ways we learn about the beasts and critters of the past. A fossil is an imprint of the bones of that animal in rock or stone. If you see a reconstruction of a dinosaur in a museum, scientists used fossils to figure out how it should look. Also, calling someone a fossil is like calling them a geezer or old fogey. It's not a compliment.

Definitions of fossil
  1. noun
    the remains (or an impression) of a plant or animal that existed in a past geological age and that has been excavated from the soil
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    types:
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    fucoid
    a fossilized cast or impression of algae of the order Fucales
    belemnite
    a conical calcareous fossil tapering to a point at one end and with a conical cavity at the other end containing (when unbroken) a small chambered phragmocone from the shell of any of numerous extinct cephalopods of the family Belemnitidae
    ammonite, ammonoid
    one of the coiled chambered fossil shells of extinct mollusks
    guide fossil, index fossil
    a fossil known to have lived in a particular geologic age that can be used to date the rock layer in which it is found
    microfossil
    a fossil that must be studied microscopically
    wormcast
    fossil trail of a worm
    type of:
    remains
    any object that is left unused or still extant
  2. adjective
    characteristic of a fossil
  3. noun
    someone whose style is out of fashion
    synonyms: dodo, fogey, fogy
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