surface structure


: a formal representation of the phonetic form of a sentence
also : the structure which such a representation describes

Word History

First Known Use

1964, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of surface structure was in 1964

Dictionary Entries Near surface structure

Cite this Entry

“Surface structure.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Apr. 2024.

More from Merriam-Webster on surface structure

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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