From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishshellshell1 /ʃel/ ●●● S3 W3 noun [countable] 1 a) the hard outer part that covers and protects an egg, nut, or seed Never buy eggs with cracked shells. peanuts roasted in their shells b) the hard protective covering of an animal such as a snail, mussel, or crab a snail shell The children were collecting shells on the beach. → seashell2 PMWa metal container, like a large bullet, which is full of an explosive substance and is fired from a large gun We ran for cover as shells dropped all around us. an exploding mortar shell3 especially American EnglishPMW a metal tube containing a bullet and an explosive substance syn cartridge4 TTBBUILDthe outside structure of something, especially the part of a building that remains when the rest of it has been destroyedshell of the burnt-out shell of a nightclub5 → out of your shell
Examples from the Corpusshell• A shell had exploded in the body of one of them, tearing it to pieces; others were torn and wounded.• It is decorated with electric patterns of beads and shells and rests on wooden runners.• clam shells• Throw away any eggs with cracked shells.• Despite their hardy shells they are delicate fishes and easily injured.• The turtle poked its head out of its shell.• Rebels fired mortar shells directly into the town square.• a parka with a waterproof nylon shell• Most buildings in the area are just burned-out shells.• Pour the mixture into a prepared pie shell and bake at 375° for 45 minutes.• Pour into two pie shells and bake for 15 minutes.• Before knives and scissors were imported, they used a sharp shell.• shotgun shells• Gunmen pumped dozens of rounds into Gutierrez, and more than 120 spent shells were found on the pavement, Anaya said.• taco shells• Rain falls through the shell of the echoing house.mortar shell• Unlike the solid cannon ball a mortar shell is hollow and filled with gunpowder.• Hundreds of bullets were let loose - followed by tear-gas and even mortar shells - as protesters were cut down without mercy.• The exploding mortar shell has a strength of 7.• Rifle grenades, land mines, dynamite, antitank guns, mortar shells.• Another bizarre idea thought up by a general was drop-ping mortar shells from a helicopter.• A well placed mortar shell can therefore kill a great many victims at once.• The crew light the fuse before dropping the mortar shell into the mortar.• The mortar shell explodes before it is fired.