noun sur·face \ˈsər-fəs\

: an outside part or layer of something

: the upper layer of an area of land or water

: the flat, top part of something (such as a table or desk) that you can work on

Full Definition of SURFACE

:  the exterior or upper boundary of an object or body <on the surface of the water> <the earth's surface>
:  a plane or curved two-dimensional locus of points (as the boundary of a three-dimensional region) <plane surface> <surface of a sphere>
a :  the external or superficial aspect of something <trouble lurks below the surface>
b :  an external part or layer <sanded the rough surfaces>
on the surface
:  to all outward appearances

Examples of SURFACE

  1. The painting's surface is covered with fine cracks.
  2. The bowl has a shiny surface.
  3. The surface of wood was rough.
  4. Be careful of icy surfaces on the roads.

Origin of SURFACE

French, from Middle French, from sur- + face face, from Old French — more at face
First Known Use: circa 1600



: involving only the parts that are easy to see or notice

: involving the removal of the surface of a large area of land to get at coal or other material that is near to the surface

Full Definition of SURFACE

a :  of, located on, or designed for use at the surface of something
b :  situated, transported, or employed on the surface of the earth <surface mail> <surface vehicles>
:  appearing to be such on the surface only :  superficial <surface friendships>

Examples of SURFACE

  1. Despite the surface differences between the two candidates, they are very similar in most ways.
  2. <a surface stain on the wood that can easily be removed with a mild detergent>

First Known Use of SURFACE


Related to SURFACE



: to rise to the surface of water

: to appear or become obvious after being hidden or not seen

: to put a surface on (something, such as a road)


Full Definition of SURFACE

transitive verb
:  to give a surface to: as
a :  to plane or make smooth
b :  to apply the surface layer to <surface a highway>
:  to bring to the surface <surface a sunken ship>
intransitive verb
:  to work on or at the surface
:  to come to the surface
:  to come into public view :  show up <letters that have recently surfaced>
sur·fac·er noun

Examples of SURFACE

  1. The whale surfaced and then dove back down.
  2. The information surfaced many years later.
  3. After several years, the actress surfaced in a comedy.
  4. The road needs to be surfaced again.

First Known Use of SURFACE



noun sur·face \ˈsər-fəs\   (Medical Dictionary)

Medical Definition of SURFACE

:  the exterior or upper boundary of an object or body <the mesial and distal surfaces of a tooth>


Next Word in the Dictionary: surface–activePrevious Word in the Dictionary: surfableAll Words Near: surface
May 22, 2015
nepotism Hear it
favoritism based on kinship
Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Test your vocab with our fun, fast game
Ailurophobia, and 9 other unusual fears