American Dictionary of the English Language

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1. The body of an animal; usually the body when dead. It is not applied to the living body of the human species, except in low or ludicrous language.

2. The decaying remains of a bulky thing, as of a boat or ship.

3. The frame or main parts of a thing, unfinished or without ornament. This seems to be the primary sense of the word. [See the next word.]

CARCASS, noun An iron case or hollow vessel, about the size of a bomb, of an oval figure, filled with combustible and other substances, as meal-powder, salt-peter, sulphur, broken glass, turpentine, etc., to be thrown from a mortar into a town, to set fire to buildings. It has two or three apertures, from which the fire blazes, and the light sometimes serves as a direction in throwing shells. It is equipped with pistol-barrels, loaded with powder to the muzzle, which explode as the composition burns down to them. This instrument is probably named from the ribs of iron that form it, which resemble the ribs of a human carcass