cache

1 of 2

noun

1
a
: a hiding place especially for concealing and preserving provisions or implements
b
: a secure place of storage
discovered a cache of weapons
2
: something hidden or stored in a cache
The cache consisted of documents and private letters.
3
: a computer memory with very short access time used for storage of frequently or recently used instructions or data

called also cache memory

cache

2 of 2

verb

cached; caching

transitive verb

: to place (something) in a cache: such as
a
: to place or store (something) in a hidden or secure place for safety or concealment
cache camp supplies by a lake
coins cached in a teapot
b
computers : to place (instructions or data) in cache memory for temporary storage
caching websites to speed up future retrieval

Did you know?

Cash and Cache

Cache and cash are homophones (words that are pronounced alike but have different meanings, origins, or spelling) whose likeness in sound may lead to perplexity.

Cache primarily refers to a thing that is hidden or stored somewhere, or to the place where it is hidden. It has recently taken on another common meaning, “short-term computer memory where information is stored for easy retrieval.” Cash, on the other hand, is most often used in the sense “ready money.”

If you find yourself confused by these words, remember that you can store cash in a cache, but you can't do the reverse. Be mindful, too, that if you run out of cash you won't be able to buy something, but if you're short on cache, your computer won’t work.

Examples of cache in a Sentence

Noun a weapons cache used by terrorists Police found a cache of stolen cars in the woods. Her new laptop has one megabyte of cache. Verb an eccentric who cached money in odd places, such as under the boards of the floor cached the fugitives in their cellar until they could make their way to Canada
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
The cameras provide all of the cache of analog without any of the labor, like a supercharged version of the Instagram filters that were popular in the early twenty-tens. Kyle Chayka, The New Yorker, 10 July 2024 To be sure, removing a cache of beloved late-night broadcasts or cutting back on musical interludes in NBC’s wee hours schedule won’t spur an immediate riot. Brian Steinberg, Variety, 2 July 2024
Verb
By continuously processing and encoding video frames and speech input, Astra creates a timeline of events and caches the information for quick recall. Benj Edwards, Ars Technica, 14 May 2024 This supposition led to a whole bunch of experimentation with Cloudflare page rules and cache rules, increasing the scope of caching. Lee Hutchinson, Ars Technica, 26 Jan. 2024 See all Example Sentences for cache 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'cache.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Noun

borrowed from North American French, from French, "hiding place," noun derivative of cacher "to hide, conceal," going back to Old French cachier, quaichier "to put away, lock up, cover, remove from view, conceal" (also Middle French cacher "to press, crush"), going back to Vulgar Latin *coācticāre "to press, constrict," from Latin coāctāre "to compel" (frequentative of cōgere "to drive together, collect, compress, compel") + -icāre, verb formative — more at cogent

Note: The etymological sense "to compress, constrict" is not attested for the Old French verb, though it likely existed and is apparent in the prefixed form escachier "to crush and flatten, break by pressing or falling on." From the sense "compress" presumably developed the senses "lock up, cover, put away," and hence "remove from view, conceal," common from the sixteenth century. The sense "to press, crush" is marginally evident in Middle French in areas in contact with Occitan, though it penetrated widely enough to form the basis for the derivative cachet "seal" (see cachet).

Verb

verbal derivative of cache entry 1

First Known Use

Noun

1797, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1805, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of cache was in 1797

Dictionary Entries Near cache

Cite this Entry

“Cache.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cache. Accessed 22 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

cache

1 of 2 noun
1
: a place for hiding, storing, or preserving treasure or supplies
2
: something hidden or stored in a cache
3
: a computer memory with very short access time

cache

2 of 2 verb
cached; caching
: to hide or store in a cache

More from Merriam-Webster on cache

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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