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Ker"nel (?), n. [OE. kernel, kirnel, curnel, AS. cyrnel, fr. corn grain. See Corn, and cf. Kern to harden.] 1. The essential part of a seed; all that is within the seed walls; the edible substance contained in the shell of a nut; hence, anything included in a shell, husk, or integument; as, the kernel of a nut. See Illust. of Endocarp.
'A were as good crack a fusty nut with no kernel Shak.
2. A single seed or grain; as, a kernel of corn.
3. A small mass around which other matter is concreted; a nucleus; a concretion or hard lump in the flesh.
4. The central, substantial or essential part of anything; the gist; the core; as, the kernel of an argument.
Ker"nel, v. i. [imp. & p. p. Kerneled (?) or Kernelled; p. pr. & vb. n. Kerneling or Kernelling.] To harden or ripen into kernels; to produce kernels.