1

pyramid

noun pyr·a·mid \ ˈpir-ə-ˌmid \

Definition of pyramid

1 a :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

pyramidal

play \pə-ˈra-mə-dᵊl, ˌpir-ə-ˈmi-\ adjective

pyramidally

adverb

pyramidical

play \ˌpir-ə-ˈmi-di-kəl\ adjective

Examples of pyramid in a Sentence

  1. the ancient pyramids of Egypt

Recent Examples of pyramid from the Web

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.

Illustration of pyramid

Origin and Etymology of pyramid

Latin pyramid-, pyramis, from Greek


2

pyramid

verb

Definition of pyramid

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

First Known Use of pyramid

circa 1900


PYRAMID Defined for English Language Learners

pyramid

noun

Definition of pyramid for English Language Learners

  • : a very large structure built especially in ancient Egypt that has a square base and four triangular sides which form a point at the top

  • : a shape, object, or pile that is wide near the bottom and narrows gradually as it reaches the top

  • : something that resembles a pyramid in the way its parts are arranged or organized


PYRAMID Defined for Kids

pyramid

noun pyr·a·mid \ ˈpir-ə-ˌmid \

Definition of pyramid for Students

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

Medical Dictionary

pyramid

noun pyr·a·mid \ ˈpir-ə-ˌmid \

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

Law Dictionary

1

pyramid

noun pyr·a·mid \ ˈpir-ə-ˌmid \

legal Definition of pyramid

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

2

pyramid

intransitive verb

legal Definition of pyramid

: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

3

pyramid

adjective

legal Definition of pyramid

: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


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up pyramid? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

WORD OF THE DAY

serious difficulty or misfortune

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Exceptions Quiz III

  • one-green-toy-robot-amidst-many-red-toy-robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!