bare bones, bones, draft, frame, framework, outline, sketch, structure
English Collins Dictionary - English synonyms & Thesaurus
skeleton ( skeletons plural )
1 n-count Your skeleton is the framework of bones in your body.
...a human skeleton.
2 adj A skeleton staff is the smallest number of staff necessary in order to run an organization or service.
Only a skeleton staff remains to show anyone interested around the site.
3 n-count The skeleton of something such as a building or a plan is its basic framework.
usu N of n
Only skeletons of buildings remained.
4 If you say that someone has a skeleton in the closet, or in British English a skeleton in the cupboard, you mean that they are keeping secret a bad or embarrassing fact about themselves.
a skeleton in the cupboard/a skeleton in the closet phrase Ns inflect Mr Worthing is this election's Mr Nice Guy, without any skeletons in his cupboard.
skeleton key ( skeleton keys plural ) A skeleton key is a key which has been specially made so that it will open many different locks. n-count
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