pyramid

noun
pyr·​a·​mid | \ ˈpir-ə-ˌmid How to pronounce pyramid (audio) \

Definition of pyramid

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : an ancient massive structure found especially in Egypt having typically a square ground plan, outside walls in the form of four triangles that meet in a point at the top, and inner sepulchral chambers
b : a structure or object of similar form
2 : a polyhedron having for its base a polygon and for faces triangles with a common vertex — see Volume Formulas Table
3 : a crystalline form each face of which intersects the vertical axis and either two lateral axes or in the tetragonal system one lateral axis
4 : an anatomical structure resembling a pyramid: such as
a : any of the conical masses that project from the renal medulla into the renal pelvis
b : either of two large bundles of motor fibers from the cerebral cortex that reach the medulla oblongata and are continuous with the pyramidal tracts of the spinal cord
5 : an immaterial structure built on a broad supporting base and narrowing gradually to an apex the socioeconomic pyramid

pyramid

verb
pyramided; pyramiding; pyramids

Definition of pyramid (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to speculate (as on a security or commodity exchange) by using paper profits as margin for additional transactions
2 : to increase rapidly and progressively step by step on a broad base

transitive verb

1 : to arrange or build up as if on the base of a pyramid
2 : to use (something, such as profits) in speculative pyramiding
3 : to increase the impact of (something, such as a tax assessed at the production level) on the ultimate consumer by treating as a cost subject to markup

Illustration of pyramid

Illustration of pyramid

Noun

pyramid 2

In the meaning defined above

Other Words from pyramid

Noun

pyramidal \ pə-​ˈra-​mə-​dᵊl How to pronounce pyramid (audio) , ˌpir-​ə-​ˈmi-​ How to pronounce pyramid (audio) \ adjective
pyramidally adverb
pyramidical \ ˌpir-​ə-​ˈmi-​di-​kəl How to pronounce pyramid (audio) \ adjective

Examples of pyramid in a Sentence

Noun the ancient pyramids of Egypt
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Poke a few holes in your pyramid to allow steam to escape. Felicia Campbell, USA TODAY, 14 Apr. 2022 And the project will add LED lights along the border of the pyramid on top of the exhibit, which could shine purple or orange to show support for the Ravens or Orioles. Christine Condon, baltimoresun.com, 22 Feb. 2022 Two decades of rising land prices have provided the cash flow needed to finance a pyramid of debt, much—and possibly most—of which is hidden off balance sheet. Jonathan Cheng, WSJ, 8 Feb. 2022 The tent shape requires multiple stakes that surround the pyramid, which need to provide equal tension from all directions to keep the single carbon fiber center pole stable. Wes Siler, Outside Online, 23 Dec. 2021 Images illustrating the grandeur of French heritage include the Louvre pyramid, which was designed, of course, by I. M. Pei, an Asian American. Adam Gopnik, The New Yorker, 3 Dec. 2021 The site is also home to the Step Pyramid of Djoser, the oldest pyramid in Egypt, which was built about 4,700 years ago by a Third-Dynasty king. Livia Gershon, Smithsonian Magazine, 2 Nov. 2021 Even the Louvre endorsed the trend by hosting a stunning optical illusion created around its famed pyramid by JR in 2019. Stephan Rabimov, Forbes, 16 Sep. 2021 Last year, there was a change in the Spanish soccer pyramid, with the third tier splitting into two national groups. Henry Flynn, Forbes, 16 Apr. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb But the more profound change is likely to occur at the bottom of the jobs pyramid. Arkansas Online, 23 May 2021 The scams have ranged from the work-from-home reselling of luxury products, to pyramid schemes soliciting cash and that play on cultural norms in immigrant communities, to fraudulent investment rackets promising quick profits. orlandosentinel.com, 15 Dec. 2020 The scams have ranged from the work-from-home reselling of luxury products, to pyramid schemes soliciting cash and that play on cultural norms in immigrant communities, to fraudulent investment rackets promising quick profits. orlandosentinel.com, 15 Dec. 2020 The scams have ranged from the work-from-home reselling of luxury products, to pyramid schemes soliciting cash and that play on cultural norms in immigrant communities, to fraudulent investment rackets promising quick profits. orlandosentinel.com, 15 Dec. 2020 The scams have ranged from the work-from-home reselling of luxury products, to pyramid schemes soliciting cash and that play on cultural norms in immigrant communities, to fraudulent investment rackets promising quick profits. orlandosentinel.com, 15 Dec. 2020 The scams have ranged from the work-from-home reselling of luxury products, to pyramid schemes soliciting cash and that play on cultural norms in immigrant communities, to fraudulent investment rackets promising quick profits. orlandosentinel.com, 15 Dec. 2020 The scams have ranged from the work-from-home reselling of luxury products, to pyramid schemes soliciting cash and that play on cultural norms in immigrant communities, to fraudulent investment rackets promising quick profits. orlandosentinel.com, 15 Dec. 2020 The scams have ranged from the work-from-home reselling of luxury products, to pyramid schemes soliciting cash and that play on cultural norms in immigrant communities, to fraudulent investment rackets promising quick profits. orlandosentinel.com, 15 Dec. 2020 See More

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

First Known Use of pyramid

Noun

1549, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

circa 1900, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for pyramid

Noun

Latin pyramid-, pyramis, from Greek

Learn More About pyramid

Time Traveler for pyramid

Time Traveler

The first known use of pyramid was in 1549

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near pyramid

Pyrameis

pyramid

pyramidal bone

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for pyramid

Last Updated

15 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Pyramid.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pyramid. Accessed 21 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for pyramid

pyramid

noun
pyr·​a·​mid | \ ˈpir-ə-ˌmid How to pronounce pyramid (audio) \

Kids Definition of pyramid

1 : a large structure built especially in ancient Egypt that usually has a square base and four triangular sides meeting at a point and that contains tombs
2 : a shape or structure with a polygon for its base and three or more triangles for its sides which meet to form the top

pyramid

noun
pyr·​a·​mid | \ ˈpir-ə-ˌmid How to pronounce pyramid (audio) \

Medical Definition of pyramid

1 : a polyhedron having for its base a polygon and for faces triangles with a common vertex
2 : an anatomical structure resembling a pyramid: as
b : either of two large bundles of motor fibers from the cerebral cortex that reach the medulla oblongata and are continuous with the corticospinal tracts of the spinal cord
c : a conical projection making up the central part of the inferior vermis of the cerebellum

pyramid

noun
pyr·​a·​mid | \ ˈpir-ə-ˌmid How to pronounce pyramid (audio) \

Legal Definition of pyramid

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a group of holding companies superimposed on one another to give those in control of the top holding company control over all of the companies with a small investment
2 : the series of operations involved in pyramiding on an exchange
3 : a pyramid scheme

pyramid

intransitive verb

Legal Definition of pyramid (Entry 2 of 3)

: to speculate (as on a security or commodity exchange) by using paper profits as a margin for additional transactions

transitive verb

1 : to use (as profits) in speculative pyramiding
2 : to increase the impact of (as a tax assessed at the production level) on the ultimate consumer by treating as a cost subject to markup

pyramid

adjective

Legal Definition of pyramid (Entry 3 of 3)

: of, relating to, or being an illegal scheme in which participants give money or other valuables in exchange for the opportunity to receive payment for recruiting others to participate in the scheme

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