verb (1)
lum·​ber | \ ˈləm-bər How to pronounce lumber (audio) \
lumbered; lumbering\ ˈləm-​b(ə-​)riŋ How to pronounce lumber (audio) \

Definition of lumber

 (Entry 1 of 3)

intransitive verb

1 : to move ponderously an elephant lumbering along the road The economy continues to lumber along.
2 : rumble lumbering machines



Definition of lumber (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : surplus or disused articles (such as furniture) that are stored away
2a : timber or logs especially when dressed for use
b : any of various structural materials prepared in a form similar to lumber


verb (2)
lumbered; lumbering\ ˈləm-​b(ə-​)riŋ How to pronounce lumber (audio) \

Definition of lumber (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to clutter with or as if with lumber : encumber plan to lumber the tiny town with a giant ski resort— Marilyn Stasio
2 : to heap together in disorder
3 : to log and saw the timber of

intransitive verb

1 : to cut logs for lumber
2 : to saw logs into lumber for the market

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Other Words from lumber


lumber adjective

Verb (2)

lumberer \ ˈləm-​bər-​ər How to pronounce lumber (audio) \ noun

Synonyms for lumber

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of lumber in a Sentence

Noun He works for a lumber company. had a clearout of all his old lumber and finally got rid of it
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Polar bears lumber along the ice floes looking for seals and dive gracefully through the crystalline blue waters. Liz Cantrell, Travel + Leisure, 29 June 2021 For manufacturers, though, labor shortages are compounded by tight supplies and high prices for materials from steel to lumber to resin. Nora Naughton, WSJ, 22 June 2021 Commodity prices from oil to copper to lumber have surged. The Editorial Board, WSJ, 10 June 2021 Shortages have led to soaring prices for products ranging from computer chips to lumber, wheat, and chicken wings. NBC News, 4 June 2021 And between tight zoning laws and the sky-high cost of labor and lumber out at sea, new construction is scarce., 3 June 2021 The oil price milestones come alongside similar ones hit recently by a range of other commodities—from tin and copper to lumber. Benoit Faucon, WSJ, 1 June 2021 Prices have substantially increased, ranging from food at the grocery store to lumber needed to build houses. Jack Kelly, Forbes, 12 May 2021 Price increases in road fuel may stoke even more worries about inflation as commodities from oil to lumber to corn skyrocket with the world’s major economies emerging from pandemic restrictions. al, 10 May 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun An employee at the Menards in Golden Valley was killed Thursday morning in an accident in the lumber area outside the store. Maya Miller, Star Tribune, 22 July 2021 Video footage from the scene shows rubble where the home once was with debris and lumber scattered across the yard and into the street. Elinor Aspegren, USA TODAY, 20 July 2021 Fortunately, there has been some relief on the cost front lately, with prices for framing-lumber futures falling by about 20% so far this month. Justin Lahart, WSJ, 20 July 2021 The former Ella Galvin, daughter of John T. Galvin, a lumber company executive, and his wife, Mercedes Smith Galvin, a homemaker, was born in Baltimore and raised on Cedarcroft Road in Cedarcroft. Frederick N. Rasmussen,, 18 July 2021 Many homes, businesses and structures appeared to be complete losses, their lumber strewn nearby or sent downstream. NBC News, 16 July 2021 Ironically, Turlington Avenue is named for Turlington Harvey, a wealthy owner of lumberyards and lumber mills who had bought up significant chunks of land in what was at the time an unincorporated area. Mike Nolan,, 15 July 2021 Harding's business thrived, providing lumber for the city's homes and businesses from 1850 to 1860. Arkansas Online, 12 July 2021 But such a goal is rarely achieved; some lumber is even harvested expressly for lump charcoal. Ian Bogost, The Atlantic, 9 July 2021

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

Verb (1)

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1552, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb (2)

1642, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for lumber

Verb (1)

Middle English lomeren


perhaps from Lombard; from the use of pawnshops as storehouses of disused property

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Learn More About lumber

Time Traveler for lumber

Time Traveler

The first known use of lumber was in the 14th century

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Statistics for lumber

Last Updated

11 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Lumber.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for lumber



English Language Learners Definition of lumber

US : wooden boards or logs that have been sawed and cut for use
British : large objects that are no longer used or wanted


lum·​ber | \ ˈləm-bər How to pronounce lumber (audio) \
lumbered; lumbering

Kids Definition of lumber

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to move in a slow or awkward way An elephant lumbered along the road.



Kids Definition of lumber (Entry 2 of 2)

: timber especially when sawed into boards

More from Merriam-Webster on lumber

Nglish: Translation of lumber for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of lumber for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about lumber


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