American English

Definition of backbone noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    jump to other results
  1. 1[countable] the row of small bones that are connected together down the middle of the back synonym spine
  2. 2[singular] the most important part of a system, an organization, etc. that gives it support and strength Agriculture forms the backbone of the rural economy.
  3. 3[uncountable] the strength of character that you need to do something difficult He doesn't have the backbone to face the truth.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: backbone