What does decomposition mean?

Definitions for decomposition-kɒm pəˈzɪʃ ən

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word decomposition.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. decomposition, vector decomposition(noun)

    the analysis of a vector field

  2. decomposition, disintegration(noun)

    in a decomposed state

  3. decomposition, decomposition reaction, chemical decomposition reaction(noun)

    (chemistry) separation of a substance into two or more substances that may differ from each other and from the original substance

  4. decomposition, rot, rotting, putrefaction(noun)

    (biology) the process of decay caused by bacterial or fungal action

  5. decay, decomposition(noun)

    the organic phenomenon of rotting


  1. decomposition(Noun)

    A biological process through which organic material is reduced to e.g. compost

  2. decomposition(Noun)

    The act of taking something apart, e.g. for analysis

  3. decomposition(Noun)

    The splitting (of e.g. a matrix, an atom or a compound) into constituent parts

Webster Dictionary

  1. Decomposition(noun)

    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; as, the decomposition of wood, rocks, etc

  2. Decomposition(noun)

    the state of being reduced into original elements

  3. Decomposition(noun)

    repeated composition; a combination of compounds

  4. Origin: [Pref. de- (in sense 3 intensive) + composition: cf. F. dcomposition. Cf. Decomposition.]


  1. Decomposition

    Decomposition is the process by which organic substances are broken down into simpler forms of matter. The process is essential for recycling the finite matter that occupies physical space in the biome. Bodies of living organisms begin to decompose shortly after death. Although no two organisms decompose in the same way, they all undergo the same sequential stages of decomposition. The science which studies decomposition is generally referred to as taphonomy from the Greek word τάφος taphos, meaning tomb. One can differentiate abiotic from biotic decomposition. The former means "degradation of a substance by chemical or physical processes, e.g. hydrolysis. The latter one means "the metabolic breakdown of materials into simpler components by living organisms", typically by microorganisms.

The Standard Electrical Dictionary

  1. Decomposition

    The reduction of a compound substance into its constituents, as in chemical analysis. The constituents may themselves be compounds or proximate constituents, or may be elemental or ultimate constituents.


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of decomposition in Chaldean Numerology is: 5

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of decomposition in Pythagorean Numerology is: 4

Sample Sentences & Example Usage

  1. Joe McCann:

    … There was so much decomposition and there was nothing, but bones left, she was skeletonized basically … But I think based on the crime scene, what it looked like and what items were recovered — it was pretty consisted with her having been murdered at that site.

  2. Leuven PhD student Elien Rosier:

    We sampled the remains during six months of decomposition and we could identify 452 different compounds, from all those compounds we searched for human specific compounds using principal component analysis and we could identify a combination of eight compounds that were specific for human and pig remains.

Images & Illustrations of decomposition

  1. decompositiondecompositiondecomposition

Translations for decomposition

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