bor·der | \ˈbȯr-dər \

Definition of border 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an outer part or edge at the borders of the forest

2 textiles : an ornamental design at the edge of a fabric or rug

3 : a narrow bed of planted ground along the edge of a lawn or walkway a border of tulips

4 : boundary on the border between New York and Canada crossed the border into Italy

5 : a plain or decorative margin around printed matter wedding invitations with a delicate gold leaf border


bordered; bordering\ˈbȯr-d(ə-)riŋ \

Definition of border (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to put a border on a rug bordered with a pattern of leaves bordered the garden with pansies

2 : to touch at the edge or boundary : bound borders the city on the south Slovakia borders Poland.

intransitive verb

1 : to lie on the border the U.S. borders on Canada

2 : to approach the nature of a specified thing : verge borders on the ridiculous

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Other Words from border


bordered \ˈbȯr-dərd \ adjective


borderer \ˈbȯr-dər-ər \ noun

Examples of border in a Sentence


He grew up in Malaysia, near the Indonesian border. They live just beyond the western border of the park. the border of the Sahara The quilt is quite plain except for its colorful border. a broad red border on each plate He planted pansies in the border.


Their property borders the park. Tall trees border the avenue. Two rivers border the city.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The Americans and Jamaicans parted as dear friends – and with an enthusiastic new interest in cultures, languages and people beyond their own borders. Ronnie Polaneczky,, "Four Cameroonian teens are 'almost inconsolable' after being denied access to Philly basketball camp | Ronnie Polaneczky," 11 July 2018 The safety of Americans and the security of our nation require that people who illegally cross our border are not simply released into the United States. Thomas Novelly, The Courier-Journal, "Mitch McConnell says protesters 'waited until Elaine wasn't around'," 10 July 2018 For other ways to help the families and children who are suffering at the border, Teen Vogue has put together a comprehensive list of how to donate your time, money, and voice. Zoe Weiner, Allure, "Lipslut Raised $100,000 in Two Weeks to Help Separated Migrant Families [UPDATE]," 10 July 2018 States have authority over most of the wildlife within their borders, but when a species becomes endangered, the act empowers the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service to take action. Peter S. Alagona, Outside Online, "The Endangered Species Act Needs a Reboot," 9 July 2018 As Aurora added land to its borders, developers swooped in and offered single-family homes. Sarah Freishtat, Aurora Beacon-News, "Aurora in 2018: With population no longer booming, city looks to downtown for future growth," 6 July 2018 More than 2,000 children who were separated from their parents at the border have been dispatched to the far corners of the nation to care facilities and foster homes. Christina Jewett And Shefali Luthra, star-telegram, "Immigrant toddlers ordered to appear in court alone," 6 July 2018 Ever since Edward Snowden leaked classified information from the National Security Agency, governments around the world have been emboldened to establish control over the data flowing through their borders. Jacob Silverman, Longreads, "Private Telegram, Public Strife," 3 July 2018 Barnes is in the midst of leasing a new space for his store in Carroll County near its border with Howard County and hopes to reopen in August. Kate Magill, Howard County Times, "A month after flooding, Ellicott City shops reach a watershed moment in deciding whether to return," 29 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The protesters were pushed back by federal officials who barred them from the lawn earlier this week and set up steel barriers bordering their property on Friday morning. Darcy Costello, The Courier-Journal, "City moves to squeeze Occupy ICE Louisville protest's camp," 7 July 2018 The project previously ran into opposition from the Coliseum Oaks Homeowners Association, which borders the property. Richard Webner, San Antonio Express-News, "San Antonio approves land sale for $65 million East Side development," 8 Feb. 2018 Because some have argued that France's embattled triumph over their bordering rivals was the 49-year-old's pièce de résistance., "Why Didier Deschamps Is Still a Problem Regardless of Leading France to the World Cup Final," 12 July 2018 Frequent perusers of This Space know of my affection-bordering-on-weirdness for the toonamint. Paul Daugherty,, "Can we do it all over again this week? Masters, March Madness, spring training are done.," 10 Apr. 2018 Eve is observant and obsessive, with a fascination with the macabre that borders on the erotic. Caroline Framke, Vox, "Killing Eve’s funny, frightening third episode shows why it’s the best TV surprise of the year," 29 Apr. 2018 Our test car also exhaled through an optional sport exhaust that bordered on the boorish, being notably loud and with a fusillade of pops and bangs accompanying every lift off the throttle. Mike Duff, Car and Driver, "Dallara Stradale: A Racing Legend Hits the Road," 23 Mar. 2018 Blowing a four-point lead with less than one second remaining in regulation is a feat of basketball engineering that borders on the inconceivable. Tim Sullivan, The Courier-Journal, "Louisville basketball's loss to Virginia borders on the inconceivable | Tim Sullivan," 2 Mar. 2018 This is a rum that's bordering on the world of single malt Scotch. Sam Dangremond, Town & Country, "The Best Cuban Rum Brands to Buy Today," 15 Apr. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'border.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of border


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for border


Middle English bordure, from Anglo-French, from border to border, from Old French bort border, of Germanic origin; probably akin to Old English bord board

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Phrases Related to border

border on

herbaceous border

the border

Statistics for border

Last Updated

11 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for border

The first known use of border was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for border


bor·der | \ˈbȯr-dər \

Kids Definition of border

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a boundary especially of a country or state

2 : the outer edge of something the border of the woods

3 : a decorative strip on or near the edge of something


bordered; bordering

Kids Definition of border (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to put a border on Border the garden with flowers.

2 : to be close or next to The United States borders on Canada.


bor·der | \ˈbȯrd-ər \

Medical Definition of border 

: an outer part or edge — see brush border

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