noun car·riage \ ˈker-ij , ˈka-rij \
|Updated on: 16 Aug 2018

Definition of carriage

plural carriages
1 a : a wheeled vehicle; especially : a horse-drawn vehicle designed for private use and comfort
b British : a railway passenger coach
2 : a wheeled support carrying a burden
3 a : manner of bearing the body : posture
  • that slender unrigid erectness and the fine carriage of head
  • —Willa Cather
b archaic : deportment
4 : the act of carrying
5 : a movable part of a machine for supporting some other movable object or part
  • a typewriter carriage
6 chiefly British : the price or expense of carrying
7 medical : the condition of harboring a pathogen within the body
  • Clinical manifestations of enterovirus infections are protean, ranging from asymptomatic carriage to life-threatening illness.
  • Journal of the American Medical Association
  • Hospitals commonly screen patients in the ICU for nasal carriage of MRSA and use contact precautions with carriers.
  • —Susan S. Huang et al.
8 archaic : management
9 obsolete : burden, load
10 obsolete : import, sense
11 obsolete : a hanger for a sword

Examples of carriage in a Sentence

  1. They rode to the city in carriages.

  2. I took the baby to the park in the carriage.

Recent Examples of carriage from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of carriage

Middle English cariage, from Anglo-French, from carier to transport — more at carry

Synonym Discussion of carriage

bearing, deportment, demeanor, mien, manner, carriage mean the outward manifestation of personality or attitude. bearing is the most general of these words but now usually implies characteristic posture.
    • a woman of regal bearing
deportment suggests actions or behavior as formed by breeding or training.
    • your deportment was atrocious
demeanor suggests one's attitude toward others as expressed in outward behavior.
    • the haughty demeanor of the headwaiter
mien is a literary term referring both to bearing and demeanor.
    • a mien of supreme self-satisfaction
manner implies characteristic or customary way of moving and gesturing and addressing others.
    • the imperious manner of a man used to giving orders
carriage applies chiefly to habitual posture in standing or walking.
    • the kind of carriage learned at boarding school

CARRIAGE Defined for English Language Learners


Definition of carriage for English Language Learners

  • : a large vehicle with four wheels that is pulled by a horse and that carries people

  • : a wheeled structure that is used to carry and move something heavy (such as a large gun)

  • : a separate section of a train

CARRIAGE Defined for Kids


noun car·riage \ ˈker-ij \

Definition of carriage for Students

1 : a vehicle with wheels used for carrying people
2 : a support with wheels used for carrying a load
  • a gun carriage
3 : a movable part of a machine that carries or supports some other moving part
4 : the manner of holding the body : posture
  • … something in both his color and carriage had always made Johnny think of Rab.
  • —Esther Forbes, Johnny Tremain

Medical Dictionary


noun car·riage \ ˈkar-ij \

medical Definition of carriage

: the condition of harboring a pathogen within the body
  • immunization against hepatitis B reduced the rate of HBV carriage
  • asymptomatic carriage of the pneumococcus in the nasopharynx

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