Simple Definition of background
: the part of a scene or picture that is farthest from the viewer : the part of a scene that is behind a main figure or object in a painting, photograph, etc.
: a surface or color that is behind or around something (such as a printed design)
: a position that attracts little attention
Full Definition of background
1 a : the scenery or ground behind something b : the part of a painting representing what lies behind objects in the foreground
2 : an inconspicuous position
3 a : the conditions that form the setting within which something is experienced b (1) : the circumstances or events antecedent to a phenomenon or development (2) : information essential to understanding of a problem or situation c : the total of a person's experience, knowledge, and education
4 a : intrusive sound or radiation that interferes with received or recorded electronic signals b : a more or less steady level of noise above which the effect (as radioactivity) being measured by an apparatus (as a Geiger counter) is detected; especially : a somewhat steady level of radiation in the natural environment (as from cosmic rays)
5 : a level of computer processing at which the processor uses time not required for a primary task to work on an additional task — compare foreground
: with the understanding that information offered for publication will not be attributed to a specific source <an official speaking on background>
Examples of background in a sentence
Objects in the foreground are drawn larger than those in the background.
a photograph of a house with mountains in the background
red letters printed on a white background
An ethnic conflict that was simmering away in the background finally erupted into civil war.
Let me provide you with some background on this problem.
First Known Use of background
Synonym Discussion of background
Rhymes with background
abound, aground, around, astound, bloodhound, boozehound, brassbound, break ground, campground, chowhound, clothbound, come round, compound, confound, coonhound, deerhound, deskbound, dumbfound, earthbound, eastbound, elkhound, expound, fairground, fogbound, foot-pound, foreground, foxhound, gain ground, go-round, greyhound, half-bound, hardbound, hellhound, hidebound, high ground, homebound, horehound, housebound, icebound, impound, inbound, ironbound, lose ground, newfound, newshound, northbound, outbound, playground, pot-bound, profound, propound, rebound, redound, renowned, resound, rockbound, rock hound, scent hound, sight hound, sleuthhound, smooth hound, snowbound, softbound, southbound, spellbound, staghound, stone-ground, stormbound, strikebound, surround, to ground, top round, unbound, unround, unsound, well-found, westbound, wolfhound, year-round
Definition of background
: to provide with background
First Known Use of background
BACKGROUND Defined for Kids
Definition of background for Students
1 : the scenery or ground that is behind a main figure or object <The sign had red letters printed on a white background.>
2 : a position that attracts little attention <He tried to keep in the background.>
3 : the total of a person's experience, knowledge, and education <Before hiring me, the company wanted to check my background.>
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up background? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).