pile

noun (1)
\ ˈpī(-ə)l How to pronounce pile (audio) \

Definition of pile

 (Entry 1 of 6)

1 : a long slender column usually of timber, steel, or reinforced concrete driven into the ground to carry a vertical load
2 : a wedge-shaped heraldic charge usually placed vertically with the broad end up
3a : a target-shooting arrowhead without cutting edges
b [Latin pilum] : an ancient Roman foot soldier's heavy javelin

pile

verb (1)
piled; piling

Definition of pile (Entry 2 of 6)

transitive verb

: to drive piles into

pile

verb (2)
piled; piling

Definition of pile (Entry 3 of 6)

transitive verb

1 : to lay or place in a pile : stack
2a : to heap in abundance : load piled potatoes on his plate
b : to collect little by little into a mass usually used with up

intransitive verb

1 : to form a pile or accumulation usually used with up
2 : to move or press forward in or as if in a mass : crowd piled into a car

pile

noun (2)

Definition of pile (Entry 4 of 6)

1a(1) : a quantity of things heaped together
(2) : a heap of wood for burning a corpse or a sacrifice
b : any great number or quantity : lot
2 : a large building or group of buildings
3 : a great amount of money : fortune

pile

noun (3)

Definition of pile (Entry 5 of 6)

1 : a coat or surface of usually short close fine furry hairs
2 : a velvety surface produced by an extra set of filling yarns that form raised loops which are cut and sheared

pile

noun (4)

Definition of pile (Entry 6 of 6)

1 : a single hemorrhoid
2 piles plural : hemorrhoids

Other Words from pile

Noun (3)

pileless \ ˈpī(-​ə)l-​ləs How to pronounce pile (audio) \ adjective

First Known Use of pile

Noun (1)

12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb (1)

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Verb (2)

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun (2)

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a(1)

Noun (3)

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun (4)

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for pile

Noun (1)

Middle English, dart, quill, pole driven into the ground, from Old English pīl, from Latin pilum javelin

Verb (2)

Middle English, from pile entry 4

Noun (2)

Middle English pier of a bridge, stack, heap, from Middle French pille pier of a bridge, from Latin pila pillar

Noun (3)

Middle English, in plural piles "hair, plumage," borrowed from Anglo-French peil, pil "hair, coat of animal hair, cloth with thick nap" (continental Old French peil, poil "hair"), going back to Latin pilus "hair," of obscure origin

Note: Anglo-French pil for peil, apparently yielding long i in Middle English, is exceptional. The Oxford English Dictionary, third edition, proposes that the word is "partly" borrowed directly from Latin. Middle English Dictionary suggests borrowing from Middle Dutch pijl.

Noun (4)

Middle English pilez, plural, from Medieval Latin pili, perhaps from Latin pila ball

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Time Traveler for pile

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near pile

pilcrow

pile

pileata

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Cite this Entry

“Pile.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pile. Accessed 17 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for pile

pile

noun
\ ˈpīl How to pronounce pile (audio) \

Kids Definition of pile

 (Entry 1 of 4)

: a large stake or pointed post (as of wood or steel) driven into the ground to support a foundation

pile

noun

Kids Definition of pile (Entry 2 of 4)

1 : a large number of things that are put one on top of another a pile of stones
2 : a great amount I have piles of work.
3 : reactor

pile

verb
piled; piling

Kids Definition of pile (Entry 3 of 4)

1 : to lay or place one on top of another : stack pile firewood
2 : to heap in large amounts They piled a table with food.
3 : to move or push forward in a crowd or group We piled into the car.

pile

noun

Kids Definition of pile (Entry 4 of 4)

: a soft surface of fine short raised threads or fibers The rug has a thick pile.

pile

noun
\ ˈpī(ə)l How to pronounce pile (audio) \

Medical Definition of pile

1 : a single hemorrhoid
2 piles plural : hemorrhoids also : the condition of one affected with hemorrhoids

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