Meaning of body plan

bod'y plan"

Pronunciation: [key]
  1. the basic shape of members of an animal phylum; the general structure each individual organism assumes as it develops. Cf. bilateral symmetry, radial symmetry.
  2. a diagrammatic elevation of a hull, consisting of an end view of the bow on one side of the center line and an end view of the stern on the other side, marked with water lines, diagonals, bow or buttock lines, stations, and sometimes details of the hull. Cf. half-breadth plan, sheer plan.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.