AskDefine | Define wall

Dictionary Definition

wall

Noun

1 an architectural partition with a height and length greater than its thickness; used to divide or enclose an area or to support another structure; "the south wall had a small window"; "the walls were covered with pictures"
2 an embankment built around a space for defensive purposes; "they stormed the ramparts of the city"; "they blew the trumpet and the walls came tumbling down" [syn: rampart, bulwark]
3 anything that suggests a wall in structure or function or effect; "a wall of water"; "a wall of smoke"; "a wall of prejudice"; "negotiations ran into a brick wall"
4 a masonry fence (as around an estate or garden); "the wall followed the road"; "he ducked behind the garden wall and waited"
5 (anatomy) a layer (a lining or membrane) that encloses a structure; "stomach walls" [syn: paries]
6 a vertical (or almost vertical) smooth rock face (as of a cave or mountain)
7 a layer of material that encloses space; "the walls of the cylinder were perforated"; "the container's walls were blue"
8 a difficult or awkward situation; "his back was to the wall"; "competition was pushing them to the wall" v : surround with a wall in order to fortify [syn: palisade, fence, fence in, surround]

User Contributed Dictionary

English

Etymology

weall, from a West Germanic borrowing of vallum. Cognate with Dutch wal, German Wall.

Pronunciation

Noun

  1. Each of the substantial structures acting either as the exterior of or divisions within a structure.
    We're adding another wall in this room during the remodeling.
    The wind blew against the walls of the tent.
  2. A rampart of earth, stones etc. built up for defensive purposes.
  3. A structure built for defense surrounding a city, castle etc.
    The town wall was surrounded by a moat.
  4. A temporary impediment to free movement.
    A wall of police officers met the protesters before they reached the capitol steps.
  5. In the context of "anatomy|zoology|botany": A divisive or containing structure in an organ or cavity.
    The cell walls are mostly composed of cellulose.
  6. A butterfly, Lasiommata megera.
defensive rampart built up of earth, stone etc.
structure built for defense surrounding or separating an area
  • Albanian: mur
  • Catalan: mur , muralla
  • Crimean Tatar: qalav
  • Czech: zeď
  • Danish: mur
  • Dutch: muur
  • Finnish: muuri
  • French: murs, remparts
  • German: Mauer, Wall
  • Greek: τείχος (teíchos)
  • Hebrew: חומה (homa)
  • Hindi: दीवार (dīvār)
  • Hungarian: fal
  • Icelandic: múr
  • Italian: muro, fortificazione
  • Japanese: (kabe)
  • Kurdish: دیوار
  • Latin: murus
  • Malay: tembok, benteng
  • Old English: weall
  • Persian: (dīvār)
  • Polish: mur
  • Portuguese: muralha, muro
  • Russian: стена
  • Slovene: zid
  • Spanish: muro, muralla
  • Swedish: mur
  • Tagalog: padér
  • Turkish: duvar, sur
  • West Frisian: muorre, wâl
permanent, substantial side or division in a building
  • Albanian: mur
  • Catalan: paret , embà
  • Czech: zeď, stěna
  • Danish: væg
  • Dutch: muur
  • Finnish: seinä
  • French: mur, paroi
  • German: Wand, Mauer
  • Greek: τοίχος (toíchos)
  • Hebrew: קיר (kir)
  • Hindi: दीवार (dīvār)
  • Hungarian: fal
  • Icelandic: veggur
  • Italian: muro
  • Japanese: (kabe)
  • Kurdish: dîwar, دیوار
  • Latvian: siena
  • Malay: dinding
  • Old English: weall
  • Persian: (dīvār)
  • Polish: ściana
  • Portuguese: parede
  • Russian: стена
  • Slovene: zid, stena
  • Spanish: pared, tabique
  • Swedish: vägg
  • Tagalog: dinding
  • Turkish: duvar
  • West Frisian: muorre
temporary impediment
  • German: Barriere, Hemnis
  • Portuguese: barreira
  • Spanish: barrera
anatomy, zoology, botany usage
  • French: paroi
  • German: Wand
  • Japanese: (heki)
  • Latvian: siena
  • Malay: dinding
  • Spanish: pared
defending soccer players who form a line
  • Albanian: mur
  • Catalan: mur
  • Danish: mur
  • Dutch: muur
  • Finnish: muuri
  • German: Mauer
  • Greek: τείχος (teíchos)
  • Icelandic: varnarveggur, veggur
  • Japanese: (kabe)
  • Persian: (dīvār)
  • Russian: стенка
  • Spanish: barrera
  • Swedish: mur
  • West Frisian: muorre
Lasiommata megera
  • Finnish: ruostepapurikko
  • German: Mauerfuchs

Verb

  1. To enclose with a wall
    He walled the study with books.
  2. To enclose by surrounding with walls.
    They had walled in the garden
  3. To separate with a wall
    The previous owners had walled off two rooms, making an apartment.
  4. To seal with a wall
    They walled up the basement space that had been used as a coal bin.

Translations

to enclose by surrounding with walls

Extensive Definition

A wall is a usually solid structure that defines and sometimes protects an area. Most commonly, a wall delineates a building and supports its superstructure, separates space in buildings into rooms, or protects or delineates a space in the open air. There are three principal types of structural walls: building walls, exterior boundary walls, and retaining walls.
Building walls have two main purposes: to support roofs and ceilings, and to divide space, providing security against intrusion and weather. Such walls most often have three or more separate components. In today's construction, a building's wall will usually have the structural elements (such as 2×4 studs in a house wall), insulation, and finish elements, or surface (such as drywall or panelling). In addition, the wall may house various types of electrical wiring or plumbing. Electrical outlets are usually mounted in walls. Building walls frequently become works of art, such as when murals are painted on them.
On a ship, the walls separating compartments are termed 'Bulkheads', whilst the thinner walls separating cabins are termed 'Partitions'.
Boundary walls include privacy walls, boundary-marking walls, and city walls. These intergrade into fences; the conventional differentiation is that a fence is of minimal thickness and often is open in nature, while a wall is usually more than a nominal thickness and is completely closed, or opaque. More to the point, if an exterior structure is made of wood or wire, it is generally referred to as a fence, while if it is made of masonry, it is considered a wall. A common term for both is barrier, convenient if it is partly a wall and partly a fence, e.g. the Berlin Wall.
Before the invention of artillery, many European cities had protective walls. In fact, the English word "wall" is derived from Latin vallum, which was a type of fortification wall. Since they are no longer relevant for defense, the cities have grown beyond their walls, and many of the walls have been torn down. Extreme examples of boundary walls include the Great Wall of China and Hadrian's Wall. A modern functional example was the Berlin Wall, which divided Germany.
In areas of rocky soils around the world, farmers have often pulled large quantities of stone out of their fields to make farming easier, and have stacked those stones to make walls that either mark the field boundary, or the property boundary, or both.
Retaining walls are a special type of wall, that may be either external to a building or part of a building, that serves to provide a barrier to the movement of earth, stone or water. The ground surface or water on one side of a retaining wall will be noticeably higher than on the other side. A dike is one type of retaining wall, as is a levee.
Special laws often govern walls shared by neighbouring properties. Typically, one neighbour cannot alter the common wall if it is likely to affect the building or property on the other side.
It is notable that English uses the same word to refer to an external wall, and the sides of a room. This is by no means universal, and many languages distinguish between the two. In German, some of this distinction can be seen between Wand and Mauer.
The wall is also an album by music band Pink Floyd.
wall in Aragonese: Paret
wall in Aymara: Pirqa
wall in Breton: Moger
wall in Bulgarian: Стена (архитектура)
wall in Catalan: Paret
wall in Czech: Zeď
wall in Welsh: Mur
wall in Danish: Væg
wall in German: Mauer
wall in Spanish: Pared
wall in Esperanto: Muro
wall in French: Mur
wall in Korean: 벽
wall in Indonesian: Dinding
wall in Hebrew: חומה
wall in Dutch: Muur (bouwsel)
wall in Dutch Low Saxon: Mure
wall in Japanese: 壁
wall in Norwegian: Vegg
wall in Narom: Muthâle
wall in Polish: Mur
wall in Portuguese: Muralha
wall in Quechua: Pirqa
wall in Russian: Стена
wall in Simple English: Wall
wall in Finnish: Seinä
wall in Swedish: Mur
wall in Tagalog: Dingding
wall in Tamil: மதில்
wall in Turkish: Duvar (inşaat)
wall in Ukrainian: Стіна
wall in Chinese: 墙

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

arch dam, arm, armor, armor-plate, backstop, balustrade, bamboo curtain, bank, bar, barbed wire, barrage, barricade, barrier, battle, bear-trap dam, beaver dam, block, blockade, bluff, boom, boundary, brattice, breakwater, breastwork, brick wall, buffer, buffer state, bulkhead, bulkhead in, bulwark, bumper, cage, castellate, cliff, cloison, close in, cofferdam, collision mat, contravallation, coop, corral, crag, crenellate, cushion, dam, defense, diaphragm, dig in, dike, dissepiment, ditch, divide, dividing line, dividing wall, division, earthwork, embankment, embattle, entrench, envelop, escarpment, face, fence, fence off, fences, fender, fortify, garrison, gate, gravity dam, groin, hedge, hedgerow, hem, hoarding, hydraulic-fill dam, immure, interseptum, iron curtain, jam, jetty, leaping weir, levee, logjam, man, man the garrison, mat, midriff, midsection, milldam, mine, moat, mole, mound, pad, pale, paling, palisade, palisades, panel, parapet, paries, partition, party wall, picket, portcullis, precipice, property line, rail, railing, rampart, retaining wall, roadblock, rock-fill dam, scar, scarp, seawall, separate, separation, septulum, septum, set apart, shock pad, shutter dam, steep, stockade, stone wall, stop, trellis, vallation, vallum, wall off, weir, wicket dam, work, zigzag fence
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