com·​part·​ment | \ kəm-ˈpärt-mənt How to pronounce compartment (audio) \

Definition of compartment

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a separate division or section
2 : one of the parts into which an enclosed space is divided


com·​part·​ment | \ kəm-ˈpärt-ˌment How to pronounce compartment (audio) , -mənt \
compartmented; compartmenting; compartments

Definition of compartment (Entry 2 of 2)

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Other Words from compartment


compartmental \ kəm-​ˌpärt-​ˈmen-​tᵊl How to pronounce compartment (audio) , ˌkäm-​ \ adjective

Examples of compartment in a Sentence

Noun The suitcase has a zippered compartment for personal items. The refrigerator has a separate compartment for meats. Verb compartment the responses according to country of origin
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun About halfway through our conversation, Ladouceur opened a compartment in the upper part of his locker and showed me a special memento. Kristi Scales, Dallas News, "5 things you probably didn’t know about Cowboys long snapper L.P. Ladouceur," 19 Dec. 2020 The special freezers have doors that allow health care workers to open one compartment at a time, whereas Betcher said using dry ice would mean health care workers can only open vaccine containers twice a day. Amanda Morris, The Arizona Republic, "Staying chill: How Arizona is preparing to store vaccines at freezing temps," 15 Dec. 2020 Put your doubts and worries in a compartment and enjoy. Tribune Content Agency, oregonlive, "Horoscope for Dec. 11, 2020: Virgo, don’t overthink it; Aquarius, people don’t need to know your business," 11 Dec. 2020 To keep air flowing into the engine bay, the intake vents directly behind the roof were adjusted transversely behind the Spider's rear screen to account for the retractable hardtop's stowage compartment. Connor Hoffman, Car and Driver, "986-HP 2021 Ferrari SF90 Spider Is a 211-MPH Hybrid Droptop," 12 Nov. 2020 Each bag has three pockets, an interior zippered compartment and a zippered closure. Melissa Lee, USA TODAY, "35 amazing gifts you can get from Black-owned businesses," 5 Nov. 2020 The man said there was a magazine in the driver’s door compartment. cleveland, "Jealousy may be source behind smashed car windows: Middleburg Heights Police Blotter," 23 Oct. 2020 It’s made of nylon and includes mesh paneling for breathability, various compression straps for support, a zippered sleeping bag compartment and an internal hydration sleeve. Shari Uyehara, NBC News, "REI sale: Columbia, Patagonia, The North Face, prAna and more," 17 Oct. 2020 When the man climbed in and strapped himself inside the driver’s compartment, part of the balcony gave way and the tractor fell to the ground, landing on its side. Wayne K. Roustan,, "‘Quite miraculous’: Man survives four-story fall inside tractor in Hallandale Beach," 10 Oct. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb First came the bone spurs in his ankle and then compartment syndrome (painful pressure buildup from internal bleeding or swelling of tissues) in his calves, both requiring surgery. Glenn Graham,, "After beating cancer, former Maryland star Chris Odoi-Atsem reaching goals for D.C. United," 27 Oct. 2020 Kushner has not yet been approved to review ‘‘sensitive compartmented information,’’ better known as SCI., "Limits put on security clearance for Jared Kushner," 13 July 2018 Kushner has not been approved to review ‘‘sensitive compartmented information,’’ known as SCI. Washington Post,, "Trump falsely claims for a third time that Reagan lost Wisconsin, but he was able to win it," 13 July 2018 Sharing highly compartmented, classified information with Russians is a theatrical distraction from the greater good of polluting streams, enabling predatory financial practices, cutting taxes, and taking people’s health care away. Brian Beutler, New Republic, "“No Drama” McConnell is turning the cynical subtext of the GOP’s devil’s bargain with Trump into text.," 16 May 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'compartment.' 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 compartment


circa 1578, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1918, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for compartment


Middle French compartiment, from Italian compartimento, from compartire to mark out in parts, from Late Latin compartiri to share out, from Latin com- + partiri to share, from part-, pars part, share

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Time Traveler for compartment

Time Traveler

The first known use of compartment was circa 1578

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Statistics for compartment

Last Updated

20 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Compartment.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for compartment


How to pronounce compartment (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of compartment

: an enclosed space or area that is usually part of something larger and is often used to hold a specific thing
: one of the separate areas of an automobile, train, or airplane


com·​part·​ment | \ kəm-ˈpärt-mənt How to pronounce compartment (audio) \

Kids Definition of compartment

1 : a small chamber, receptacle, or container The suitcase has compartments for personal items.
2 : one of the separate areas of a train, airplane, or automobile

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