lay·​er | \ ˈlā-ər How to pronounce layer (audio) , ˈler \

Definition of layer

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : one that lays something (such as a worker who lays brick or a hen that lays eggs)
2a : one thickness, course, or fold laid or lying over or under another
b : stratum
3a : a branch or shoot of a plant that roots while still attached to the parent plant
b : a plant developed by layering


layered; layering; layers

Definition of layer (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to propagate (a plant) by means of layers
2a : to place as a layer
b : to place a layer on top of pancakes layered with butter and syrup
c : to form or arrange in layers

intransitive verb

1a : to separate into layers
b : to form out of superimposed layers
2 of a plant : to form roots where a stem comes in contact with the ground

Other Words from layer


layered \ ˈlā-​ərd How to pronounce layer (audio) , ˈlerd \ adjective

Examples of layer in a Sentence

Noun Everything was covered by a thin layer of sand. The top layer of the rug is badly worn but the bottom layer is still OK. The cake has three layers. She glued together several layers of paper. He was wearing several layers of clothing. rocks that formed in layers from flows of lava Verb We layered the fruit with whipped cream and served it with cookies. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun This includes testing code from every possible attack vector and at every layer of the stack to ensure your team hasn’t inadvertently introduced a hole that could be exploited by cybercriminals. Expert Panel®, Forbes, 1 July 2022 Adding Bluetooth to devices typically requires another layer of Federal Communications Commission certification in the US, and other territories have their own rules, which could explain the omission. Andrew Cunningham, Ars Technica, 30 June 2022 From jockstraps to branded boxer briefs, every layer counts. José Criales-unzueta, Vogue, 30 June 2022 Crews generally apply a 12-inch to 18-inch layer of VRAM, that is 1/8 of an inch thick before large paving machines roll through to lay down the pavement, Williams said. Michael Laris, Washington Post, 30 June 2022 An antimicrobial layer also helps eliminate up to 99.9% of surface bacteria. Mike Richard, Men's Health, 29 June 2022 Perfect for high temp nights, the mattress pad is wonderfully cooling thanks to a breathable microfiber layer that's soft to the touch. Isabel Garcia,, 28 June 2022 Depending on the application, the battery can use eight to 24 of these modules, stacked in a single or, as in the GMC Hummer EV, a double layer. Csaba Csere, Car and Driver, 28 June 2022 Its red LEDs go a bit further—at 630 nanometers—to penetrate to the dermis, or middle and thickest layer of the skin. Tiffany Dodson, Harper's BAZAAR, 28 June 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Arrange the pieces together to lock in warmth or layer them unattached for easy heat dumping. Ryan Stuart, Outside Online, 27 May 2022 Or, make multiple batches and layer two flavors in one glass for an Insta-worthy effect. Amanda Garrity, Good Housekeeping, 11 May 2022 The timeless wardrobe staples are easy to mix, layer and assemble freely, hence the name. Sharon Edelson, Forbes, 1 Oct. 2021 Slip a sheer mini dress or midi dress over a strapless bodycon slip for a night out on the town, or layer it over a basic white tank and jeans for a multi-dimensional outfit unlike anything else. Jennifer Chan,, 19 Apr. 2022 The latter two make a paste from gram flour, turmeric, and rose water and gently layer it over her arms and face. Radhika Seth, Vogue, 10 Apr. 2022 Feel free to layer this white one over a long sleeve top when there's a bit of a nip in the air. Raena Loper, Good Housekeeping, 22 Apr. 2022 The typical way to wear a blazer is to layer it over something — say a tank top or a blouse. Eva Thomas,, 18 Apr. 2022 Or layer one under a blazer and wear this sharp combination with dress pants to create an instantly polished yet totally comfortable work outfit. Brittany Vanderbill,, 25 Apr. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of layer


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1832, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

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Time Traveler for layer

Time Traveler

The first known use of layer was in the 13th century

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Dictionary Entries Near layer

lay elder


layer's cramp

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Statistics for layer

Last Updated

4 Jul 2022

Cite this Entry

“Layer.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Jul. 2022.

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More Definitions for layer


lay·​er | \ ˈlā-ər How to pronounce layer (audio) \

Kids Definition of layer

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : one thickness of something laid over another a layer of rock
2 : a person who lays something
3 : a bird that lays eggs


layered; layering

Kids Definition of layer (Entry 2 of 2)

: to form or arrange one thickness of something over another We layered the fruit with whipped cream.


lay·​er | \ ˈlā-ər, ˈle(-ə)r How to pronounce layer (audio) \

Medical Definition of layer

1 : one thickness, course, or fold laid or lying over or under another
2 : stratum sense 1 the outer layers of the skin

Other Words from layer

layer verb

More from Merriam-Webster on layer

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for layer

Nglish: Translation of layer for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of layer for Arabic Speakers


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