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Outer vs Shell - What's the difference?

outer | shell |

As an adjective outer

is outside; external.

As a noun outer

is an outer part or outer can be someone who admits to something publicly.

As a proper noun shell is

a diminutive of the female given name michelle .



Etymology 1

Comparative of out by analogy with inner.


  • Outside; external.
  • Farther from the centre of the inside.
  • * {{quote-book, year=1963, author=(Margery Allingham), title=(The China Governess)
  • , chapter=14 citation , passage=Nanny Broome was looking up at the outer wall. Just under the ceiling there were three lunette windows, heavily barred and blacked out in the normal way by centuries of grime. Their bases were on a level with the pavement outside, a narrow way which was several feet lower than the road behind the house.}}
    * inner


    (en noun)
  • An outer part.
  • *
  • The part of a target which is beyond the circles surrounding the bullseye.
  • A shot which strikes the outer of a target.
  • (wholesale trade) the smallest single unit normally sold to retailers, usually equal to one retail display box.
  • We ordered two cartons with twelve outers in each.

    Derived terms

    * outer space * outerness

    Etymology 2


    (en noun)
  • Someone who admits to something publicly.
  • Someone who outs another.
  • One who puts out, ousts, or expels.
  • An ouster; dispossession.
  • Anagrams

    * ----



    (wikipedia shell)


    (en noun)
  • A hard external covering of an animal.
  • # The calcareous or chitinous external covering of mollusks, crustaceans, and some other invertebrates.
  • In some mollusks, as the cuttlefish, the shell is concealed by the animal's outer mantle and is considered internal.
  • Genuine mother of pearl buttons are made from sea shells .
  • # (by extension) Any mollusk having such a covering.
  • # (entomology) The exoskeleton or wing covers of certain insects.
  • # The conjoined scutes that comprise the "shell" (carapace) of a tortoise or turtle.
  • # The overlapping hard plates comprising the armor covering the armadillo's body.
  • The hard calcareous covering of a bird egg.
  • The hard external covering of various plant seed forms.
  • # The covering, or outside part, of a nut.
  • The black walnut and the hickory nut, both of the same ''Genus as the pecan, have much thicker and harder shells than the pecan.
  • # A pod containing the seeds of certain plants, such as the legume Phaseolus vulgaris .
  • # (in the plural) Husks of cacao seeds, a decoction of which is sometimes used as a substitute or adulterant for cocoa and its products such as chocolate.
  • The accreted mineral formed around a hollow geode.
  • The casing of a self-contained single-unit artillery projectile.
  • A hollow usually spherical or cylindrical projectile fired from a siege mortar or a smoothbore cannon. It contains an explosive substance designed to be ignited by a fuse or by percussion at the target site so that it will burst and scattered at high velocity its contents and fragments. Formerly called a bomb.
  • The cartridge of a breechloading firearm; a load; a bullet; a round.
  • Any slight hollow structure; a framework, or exterior structure, regarded as not complete or filled in, as the shell of a house.
  • A garment, usually worn by women, such as a shirt, blouse, or top, with short sleeves or no sleeves, that often fastens in the rear.
  • A coarse or flimsy coffin; a thin interior coffin enclosed within a more substantial one.
  • (Knight)
  • (music) A string instrument, as a lyre, whose acoustical chamber is formed like a shell.
  • The first lyre may have been made by drawing strings over the underside of a tortoise shell.
  • * Dryden
  • when Jubal struck the chorded shell
  • (music) The body of a drum; the often wooden, often cylindrical acoustic chamber, with or without rims added for tuning and for attaching the drum head.
  • An engraved copper roller used in print works.
  • (nautical) The watertight outer covering of the hull of a vessel, often made with planking or metal plating.
  • (nautical, rigging) The outer frame or case of a block within which the sheaves revolve.
  • (nautical) A light boat the frame of which is covered with thin wood, impermeable fabric, or water-proofed paper; a racing shell or dragon boat.
  • (computing) An operating system software user interface, whose primary purpose is to launch other programs and control their interactions; the user's command interpreter.
  • The name shell originates from it being viewed as an outer layer of interface between the user and the internals of the operating system.
    The name "Bash" is an acronym which stands for "Bourne-again shell", itself a pun on the name of the "Bourne shell", an earlier Unix shell designed by Stephen Bourne, and the Christian concept of being "born again".
  • (chemistry) A set of atomic orbitals that have the same principal quantum number.
  • An emaciated person.
  • He's lost so much weight from illness; he's a shell of his former self.
  • A psychological barrier to social interaction.
  • Even after months of therapy he's still in his shell .
  • (business) A legal entity that has no operations.
  • A shell corporation was formed to acquire the old factory.

    Derived terms

    * clamshell * clean shell * come out of one’s shell * eggshell * seashell * shellfish * shell script * shell suit * tortoiseshell


    (en verb)
  • To remove the outer covering or shell of something. See sheller.
  • To bombard, to fire projectiles at, especially with artillery.
  • (informal) To disburse or give up money, to pay. (Often used with out ).
  • To fall off, as a shell, crust, etc.
  • To cast the shell, or exterior covering; to fall out of the pod or husk.
  • Nuts shell in falling.
    Wheat or rye shells in reaping.
  • (computing) To switch to a shell or command line.
  • * 1993 , Robin Nixon, The PC Companion (page 115)
  • Automenu is a good program to try, and offers a fair amount of protection - but, unfortunately, it's one of those systems that allow users to shell to DOS.

    Derived terms

    * shell out


    * hells