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[roo-duh-muh nt] /ˈru də mənt/
Usually, rudiments.
  1. the elements or first principles of a subject:
    the rudiments of grammar.
  2. a mere beginning, first slight appearance, or undeveloped or imperfect form of something:
    the rudiments of a plan.
Biology. an organ or part incompletely developed in size or structure, as one in an embryonic stage, one arrested in growth, or one with no functional activity, as a vestige.
1540-50; < Latin rudīmentum early training, first experience, initial stage, equivalent to rudi(s) unformed, rough (see rude) + -mentum -ment (-ī- for -i- after verbal derivatives) Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for rudiments
  • They go to such places seeking in the simpler societies the rudiments of human.
  • Over the course of a few months, all seven patients developed the rudiments of walking.
  • Pedestrian dialogue doesn't give the cast much to work with beyond rudiments of motivation and story points.
  • But it's also possible that the rudiments of ethical behavior are simply.
  • Businessmen he lectures to do not even know the rudiments of doctrine.
  • Recruits are sent to learn the rudiments of military life, not to learn about gender equality.
  • Relying on ordinary people to spread the word, the churches are particularly good at conveying the rudiments of management.
  • Recreation homes reintroduce the necessary connection between people and the rudiments of place.
  • The manner in which he acquired the rudiments of his education has become a familiar story.
  • Along with his colleagues, he has learned the rudiments of mime and juggling.
British Dictionary definitions for rudiments


(often pl) the first principles or elementary stages of a subject
(often pl) a partially developed version of something
(biology) an organ or part in its earliest recognizable form, esp one in an embryonic or vestigial state
Word Origin
C16: from Latin rudīmentum a beginning, from rudis unformed; see rude
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for rudiments



1540s, from Middle French rudiment (16c.) or directly from Latin rudimentum "early training, first experience, beginning, first principle," from rudis "unlearned, untrained" (see rude). Related: Rudiments.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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rudiments in Medicine

rudiment ru·di·ment (rōō'də-mənt)

  1. An imperfectly or incompletely developed organ or part.

  2. Something in an incipient or undeveloped form. Often used in the plural.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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