fourth wall


Definition of fourth wall 

: an imaginary wall (as at the opening of a modern stage proscenium) that keeps performers from recognizing or directly addressing their audience

Examples of fourth wall in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Whatever disparities may exist between Barbara and Balibar are cleverly acknowledged by the movie's willingness to break the fourth wall, a device that feels less gimmicky here than exploratory. Justin Chang,, "Five movies to see at the 2018 COLCOA French Film Festival," 22 Apr. 2018 Audience members sit behind the invisible fourth wall, eavesdropping on dramas about what humans are capable, or incapable, of. Hilton Als, The New Yorker, "With “Fairview,” Jackie Sibblies Drury Breaks the Fourth Wall," 24 June 2018 What happens in a theater performance is defined by its separation from the actual world, by that proverbial fourth wall, which makes the fiction of the stage real. Jordan Cutler-tietjen, sacbee, "Behind the scenes at Music Circus: "The better you are at your job, the less people notice"," 6 July 2018 With no fourth wall to keep disbelief suspended, the show is no longer greater than the sum of its parts. Jordan Cutler-tietjen, sacbee, "Behind the scenes at Music Circus: "The better you are at your job, the less people notice"," 6 July 2018 And both Wood and Hissom break the fourth wall to engage the audience, a tactic that usually falls flat but works perfectly here. Hugh Hunter,, "Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival's 'Twelfth Night': A hilarious tragedy on human frailty," 24 June 2018 There is a moment in the video loop when a foot breaks the fourth wall, smashing a sheet of glass. Charles Desmarais, San Francisco Chronicle, "Marilyn Minter considers glamour, power at Ratio 3," 7 June 2018 After Derek's body is found, the actors break the fourth wall and address potential concerns. Steve Heisler, Chicago Reader, "Teacher of the Year earns low marks for both math and comedy," 29 May 2018 The fourth wall–breaking, mile-a-minute-talking Deadpool was the most irreverent of Liefeld’s creations, while Cable played the role of a weary straight man. David Sims, The Atlantic, "The Dour Resurgence of Cable, Deadpool 2’s Anti-Hero," 23 May 2018

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

1807, in the meaning defined above

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5 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for fourth wall

The first known use of fourth wall was in 1807

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something that serves to warn or remind

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