of, relating to, or forming a base; fundamental:
a basic principle; the basic ingredient.

pertaining to, of the nature of, or containing a base.
not having all of the hydroxyls of the base replaced by the acid group, or having the metal or its equivalent united partly to the acid group and partly to oxygen.

Metallurgy. noting, pertaining to, or made by a steelmaking process (basic process) in which the furnace or converter is lined with a basic or nonsiliceous material, mainly burned magnesite and a small amount of ground basic slag, to remove impurities from the steel.
Compare acid (def 9).
Geology. (of a rock) having relatively little silica.

basic training.
of lowest rank:
airman basic.


(especially of a female) characterized by predictable or unoriginal style, interests, or behavior:
those basic girls who follow trends.
(of things) boringly predictable or unoriginal:
His lyrics are just so basic.


basic training.
a soldier or airman receiving basic training.

Often, basics. something that is fundamental or basic; an essential ingredient, principle, procedure, etc.:
to learn the basics of music; to get back to basics.
Slang. a person, especially a female, who is boringly predictable or unoriginal.
a widely adopted programming language that uses English words, punctuation marks, and algebraic notation to facilitate communication between the operator or lay user and the computer.
Contemporary Examples

Start by linking your device to your smartphone or computer and entering the basics—height, weight, etc.
Fitness Tracker 101: Everything You Need to Know About Your New Gadget Megan Humphreys December 26, 2013

“We want to get back to the basics where this all started,” Stanhope said.
NAACP-Bashing Tea Partier Returns Zachary Roth August 4, 2010

In contrast, the basics in these rapidly growing economies involve large-scale investment and the presence of the right resources.
The G-20’s New Balance of Power Joel Kotkin June 24, 2010

Mayor Bloomberg is pushing the race even as storm-stricken residents struggle with basics like electricity and water.
New York Marathon Faces Backlash Amid Hurricane Sandy Aftermath Eliza Shapiro November 1, 2012

He attended the New England Culinary Institute, where he spent three years learning the basics of technique.
Fresh Picks Ramon Perez May 10, 2010

Historical Examples

We must keep that edge, and to do so we need to begin renewing the basics–starting with our educational system.
Complete State of the Union Addresses from 1790 to 2006 Various

But they either can’t, or won’t, take the time to learn the basics of the field they want to excel in.
By Proxy Gordon Randall Garrett

This nation will not go back to the days of simply shuffling children along from grade to grade without them learning the basics.
Complete State of the Union Addresses from 1790 to 2006 Various

Production of the basics had become so profuse that poverty in the old sense of the word had become nonsensical.
Mercenary Dallas McCord Reynolds

It is hovering on the borders of a region containing this planet we are to land on—a region operating on other basics.
Unthinkable Roger Phillips Graham

of, relating to, or forming a base or basis; fundamental; underlying
elementary or simple: a few basic facts
excluding additions or extras: basic pay

of, denoting, or containing a base; alkaline
(of a salt) containing hydroxyl or oxide groups not all of which have been replaced by an acid radical: basic lead carbonate, 2PbCO3.Pb(OH)2

(metallurgy) of, concerned with, or made by a process in which the furnace or converter is made of a basic material, such as magnesium oxide
(of such igneous rocks as basalt) containing between 52 and 45 per cent silica
(military) primary or initial: basic training
(usually pl) a fundamental principle, fact, etc
a computer programming language that uses common English terms

“rudiments or fundamentals of anything,” by 1934, from basic. Also see -ics. Phrase back-to-basics was in use by 1975.

1832, originally in chemistry, from base (n.) + -ic.

computer language, 1964, initialism for Beginners’ All-purpose Symbolic Instruction Code; invented by Hungarian-born U.S. computer scientist John G. Kemeny (1926-1992) and U.S. computer scientist Thomas E. Kurtz (b.1928).

basic ba·sic (bā’sĭk)

Of, being, or serving as a starting point or basis.

Producing, resulting from, or relating to a base.

Containing a base, especially in excess of acid.

Containing oxide or hydroxide anions.

A simple programming language developed in the 1960s that is widely taught to students as a first programming language.
Beginner’s All-Purpose Symbolic Instruction Code


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  • Basidia

    plural of basidium. a special form of sporophore, characteristic of basidiomycetous fungi, on which the sexual spores are borne, usually at the tips of slender projections. Historical Examples They resemble each other very much, except that the basidia bear four sterigmata and a spore on each. Studies of American Fungi. Mushrooms, Edible, Poisonous, etc. George […]

  • Basidium

    a special form of sporophore, characteristic of basidiomycetous fungi, on which the sexual spores are borne, usually at the tips of slender projections. Historical Examples C, A basidium before the four nuclei derived from the secondary nucleus of the basidium have passed into the four basidiospores. Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 11, Slice 3 Various […]

  • Basidiocarp

    the fruiting body of basidiomycetes that produces the basidia. noun the fruiting body of basidiomycetous fungi; the mushroom of agarics basidiocarp (bə-sĭd’ē-ə-kärp’) A basidioma. This term is no longer in scientific use.

  • Basidioma

    basidioma basidioma (bə-sĭd’ē-ō’mə) Plural basidiomata (bə-sĭd’ē-ō’mə-tə) A club-shaped, fleshy, spore-producing structure characteristic of many species of basidiomycete fungi. The basidioma grows out of the mass of hyphae known as a mycelium and bears the spore-dispersing structures called basidia. Mushrooms, toadstools, stinkhorns, and puffballs are basidiomata.

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