tow·​er | \ ˈtau̇(-ə)r How to pronounce tower (audio) \

Definition of tower

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a building or structure typically higher than its diameter and high relative to its surroundings that may stand apart (such as a campanile) or be attached (such as a church belfry) to a larger structure and that may be fully walled in or of skeleton framework (such as an observation or transmission tower)
2 : a towering citadel : fortress
3 : one that provides support or protection : bulwark a tower of strength
4 : a personal computer case that stands in an upright position


towered; towering; towers

Definition of tower (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to reach or rise to a great height
2 : to exhibit superior qualities : surpass her intellect towered over the others'

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Other Words from tower


towered \ ˈtau̇(-​ə)rd How to pronounce tower (audio) \ adjective
towerlike \ ˈtau̇(-​ə)r-​ˌlīk How to pronounce tower (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for tower

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of tower in a Sentence

Noun a hill from which one can gaze upon the towers of that great and historic city
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun An office tower and high-rise hotel originally proposed for the development were being deleted because of market changes resulting from the pandemic. Steve Brown, Dallas News, "Uptown Dallas’ Central Market project will add hundreds of residential units," 5 Apr. 2021 It will specifically be located at the O-Town West near Palm Parkway and Daryl Carter Boulevard and will feature both indoor and outdoor seating, two drive-thru lanes, an eye-catching tower, and 4,567 square feet of space. Fox 35 News Staff, FOX 35 Orlando, "White Castle raises permanent sign at upcoming Orlando location," 23 Mar. 2021 David Adjaye has shared with ELLE Decor an exclusive look inside 130 William, a striking 66-floor residential tower in Manhattan’s Financial District and the renowned architect’s first high-rise in the United States. Bebe Howorth, ELLE Decor, "Exclusive: A First Look Inside David Adjaye’s New Manhattan Skyscraper," 9 Mar. 2021 Cousins Properties operates the 38-story Promenade tower and 15 other office buildings in metro Atlanta. Andy Peters, ajc, "Office landlords in quandary as COVID rages and employees work from home," 12 Feb. 2021 The series includes tutorials on using the radio to communicate with an air traffic control tower and tips on making a smoother landing. Author: Hugo Martín, Anchorage Daily News, "Airline pilots making in-flight errors say they’re ‘rusty’ because of pandemic," 31 Jan. 2021 New Orleans is being rebranded as Caesars New Orleans as part of a $325 million renovation project that will add a new 340-room hotel tower and entrance way by 2024. Anthony Mcauley | Staff Writer,, "Harrah's to rebrand as Caesars New Orleans as casino-hotel starts $325M upgrade; see new renderings," 8 Dec. 2020 The Los Angeles City Council cleared the way Wednesday for a sprawling development planned for the west San Fernando Valley, signing off on a new sports arena, two hotels, a 28-story office tower and more than 1,400 new apartments. David Zahniser, Los Angeles Times, "L.A. signs off on $1-billion ‘mini-city’ in the west San Fernando Valley," 2 Dec. 2020 Hence the sudden police presence at the north Melbourne tower and eight others, housing 3,000 people in all. Christina Simons, New York Times, "A Police Swarm. Frantic Calls. Then 3,000 People Locked Inside.," 12 Nov. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb But experts on land use, climate change, and sustainable agriculture told me that two habits tower above all others in terms of environmental impact. Annie Lowrey, The Atlantic, "The 2 Rules for Eating to Fight Climate Change," 6 Apr. 2021 Critics say the new 365-foot condo — seven times the height allowed on private property — would tower over beachfront land that’s now home to a small park and community center less than a mile south of Hollywood Boulevard. Susannah Bryan,, "Another beachside tower could tie up public land for ages. And it may be a bum deal anyway.," 2 Apr. 2021 At the island’s northern tip, where orange cliffs tower over a blue-white labyrinth of ice formations, fleets of tour vans deposit hundreds of people to slide and clamber around, and then to slurp fish soup heated by fires set directly on the ice. New York Times, "For Russians in a Pandemic, Lake Baikal Is the Place to See and Be Seen," 15 Mar. 2021 This is a place of both reverie and exertion: A father gently guiding his toddler past fragrant sage and dry brown grasses that tower over her head. Jeanette Marantos, Los Angeles Times, "Starved of recreation? Try SoCal’s newest set of trails: Ventura’s nature reserve," 13 Mar. 2021 Behind us tower the ramparts of IDE’s offices, which are housed in a medieval castle. Christopher Mims, WSJ, "Are Videogames the Future of Remote Work?," 16 Jan. 2021 Its three locations along Highway 101 clearly indicate that the chain is poised to become a road-trip fixture, perhaps as ubiquitous as the golden arches that tower over countless gas stations around the country. Soleil Ho,, "Two growing Bay Area restaurants, Malibu’s and Amy’s, serve craveable fast-food burgers — just without the meat," 14 Jan. 2021 Strangest of all, PG&E power lines tower over the vineyard, and Amtrak tracks border it. Esther Mobley,, "This vibrant, pomegranate-packed red wine comes from an unusual vineyard in the East Bay suburbs," 2 Dec. 2020 Aren't these objective correlates of disposable consumer culture, with labor and environmental consequences that tower over even the relative size of the boxes themselves, better left discarded in the past? Dia Lacina, Wired, "The Evolution of Game Console Design—and American Gamers," 5 Nov. 2020

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for tower


Middle English tour, tor, from Old English torr & Anglo-French tur, tour, both from Latin turris, from Greek tyrris, tyrsis

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Time Traveler for tower

Time Traveler

The first known use of tower was before the 12th century

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Statistics for tower

Last Updated

14 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Tower.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for tower



English Language Learners Definition of tower

: a tall, narrow building or structure that may stand apart from or be attached to another building or structure
: a tall piece of furniture used to store something
computers : a personal computer that stands in an upright position


tow·​er | \ ˈtau̇-ər How to pronounce tower (audio) \

Kids Definition of tower

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a building or structure that is higher than its length or width, is higher than most of what surrounds it, and may stand by itself or be attached to a larger structure


towered; towering

Kids Definition of tower (Entry 2 of 2)

: to reach or rise to a great height

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Comments on tower

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