wall

1 of 3

noun

plural walls
1
a
: a high thick masonry structure forming a long rampart or an enclosure chiefly for defense
often used in plural
b
: a masonry fence around a garden, park, or estate
c
: a structure that serves to hold back pressure (as of water or sliding earth)
2
: one of the sides of a room or building connecting floor and ceiling or foundation and roof
3
: the side of a footpath next to buildings
4
: an extreme or desperate position or a state of defeat, failure, or ruin
The surrounded troops had their backs against the wall.
5
: a material layer enclosing space
the wall of a container
heart walls
6
: something resembling a wall (as in appearance, function, or effect)
especially : something that acts as a barrier or defense
a wall of reserve
tariff wall
wall-like adjective

wall

2 of 3

verb (1)

walled; walling; walls

transitive verb

1
a
: to provide, cover with, or surround with or as if with a wall
wall in the garden
b
: to separate by or as if by a wall
walled off half the house
2
a
: immure
walled the monster up within the tombE. A. Poe
b
: to close (an opening) with or as if with a wall

wall

3 of 3

verb (2)

walled; walling; walls

intransitive verb

of the eyes : to roll in a dramatic manner

transitive verb

: to roll (one's eyes) in a dramatic manner
Phrases
off the wall
slang : highly unusual : bizarre
The plan was off the wall.
up the wall
slang : into a state of intense agitation, annoyance, or frustration
The noise drove me up the wall.

Examples of wall in a Sentence

Noun A stone wall marks off their property. the Great Wall of China the walls of the ancient city She hung posters on the walls of her room. This apartment building has thin walls, and you can hear everything your neighbors say. Muscles in the abdominal wall help protect organs. Verb (1) a lake almost entirely walled in by mountains
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
After the families' visits, politicians went to the 1200 building to see the bullet-ridden walls for themselves, including Vice President Kamala Harris and some members of Congress. Emily Shapiro, ABC News, 13 June 2024 Both Chapman and Combs took to the stage clad in black, standing in place in front of a backlit wall of spotlights that almost, appropriately, resembled traffic lights. Audrey Gibbs, The Courier-Journal, 12 June 2024
Verb
The physical map of many cities changed to reflect sectarian differences, with predominantly Shiite districts walled away from Sunni ones, for instance, and old roads closed and new routes opened to sectarianize neighborhoods. Renad Mansour, Foreign Affairs, 20 Mar. 2023 The Timberwolves star guard walled Hardy up multiple times before finally stripping the ball way. Jace Frederick, Twin Cities, 23 May 2024 See all Example Sentences for wall 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'wall.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Noun

Middle English, from Old English weall; akin to Middle High German wall; both from Latin vallum rampart, from vallus stake, palisade; perhaps akin to Old Norse vǫlr staff — more at wale

Verb (2)

Middle English (Scots) wawlen, probably from Middle English wawil- (in wawil-eghed walleyed)

First Known Use

Noun

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

Verb (1)

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb (2)

15th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

Time Traveler
The first known use of wall was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near wall

Cite this Entry

“Wall.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/wall. Accessed 20 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition

wall

1 of 2 noun
1
: a structure (as of brick or stone) meant to enclose or shut off a space
especially : a side of a room or building
2
: something resembling a wall
especially : something that acts as a barrier or defense
a tariff wall
3
: a layer of material that encloses space
the heart wall
the walls of a container
walled
ˈwȯld
adjective

wall

2 of 2 verb
1
: to provide, separate, or surround with or as if with a wall
wall in the garden
2
: to close off an opening with or as if with a wall
wall up a door

Medical Definition

wall

noun
: a structural layer surrounding a cavity, hollow organ, or mass of material
molecules small enough to be absorbed through the intestinal wallJosie Glausiusz
muscles of the abdominal wall
walled adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on wall

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