\ˈpir \

Definition of pier 

1 : an intermediate support for the adjacent ends of two bridge spans

2 : a structure (such as a breakwater) extending into navigable water for use as a landing place or promenade or to protect or form a harbor

3 : a vertical structural support: such as

a : the wall between two openings

b : pillar, pilaster

c : a vertical member that supports the end of an arch or lintel

d : an auxiliary mass of masonry used to stiffen a wall

4 : a structural mount (as for a telescope) usually of stonework, concrete, or steel

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Examples of pier in a Sentence

tied the boat up at the pier

Recent Examples on the Web

The home’s foundation is built on 16 concrete piers driven 14 to 28 feet below the surface, and anchored 3 feet into bedrock. Kris Frieswick, WSJ, "Luxury Living Off the Edge of a Mountain," 21 Nov. 2018 Santa Monica police initially described the man found dead under the city's pier Thursday as homeless. Fox News, "Family: Man killed under Santa Monica Pier wasn't homeless," 21 Sep. 2018 Pewaukee Lake has a public fishing pier on the east end of the lake, Fowler Lake in Oconomowoc has a nice boardwalk, Okauchee Lake has a nice shore fishing area. Geoff Bruce, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Angling for answers to fishing questions with owner of Dick's Bait Shop in Delafield," 10 July 2018 The pier is normally open daily from 6 a.m. to 12 a.m. (midnight). Dan White, Sun-Sentinel.com, "Deerfield pier will temporarily close to fishing," 13 June 2018 The sandstone piers that once help support one of the state’s most incredible engineering feats are now ghosts themselves, eventually tumbling down during the Great Flood of 1955. Peter Marteka, courant.com, "The Ruins Of An Engineering Wonder Along The Farmington River," 13 May 2018 The wooden pier is perfect for selfies and saltwater fishing, and the water is clean and perfect for swimming. Maxwell Williams, Condé Nast Traveler, "13 Best Beaches in Los Angeles," 28 Feb. 2018 The old San Francisco waterfront used to be a dangerous place — working piers were off limits. Carl Nolte, San Francisco Chronicle, "SF has always been a great place to be a kid, and it still is," 6 Jan. 2018 Heading down the pier after a quick outfit change, Meghan showed off her $218 Pineapple dress from eco-friendly, cool-girl brand Reformation, in muted stripes with strappy shoulders and a tie at the waist. Lucy Wood, Marie Claire, "Meghan Markle's Thigh-High Slit Reformation Dress Doesn't Actually Defy Royal Protocol," 22 Oct. 2018

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

12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for pier

Middle English per, from Old English, from Medieval Latin pera

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Statistics for pier

Last Updated

4 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for pier

The first known use of pier was in the 12th century

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More Definitions for pier



English Language Learners Definition of pier

: a structure that goes out from a shore into the water


\ˈpir \

Kids Definition of pier

1 : a support for a bridge

2 : a structure built out into the water as a place for boats to dock or for people to walk or to protect or form a harbor

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More from Merriam-Webster on pier

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with pier

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for pier

Spanish Central: Translation of pier

Nglish: Translation of pier for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pier for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about pier

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