wall·​pa·​per | \ ˈwȯl-ˌpā-pər How to pronounce wallpaper (audio) \

Definition of wallpaper

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : decorative paper for the walls of a room
2 : the background image or set of images displayed on a computer screen After becoming a member, the user gets to design a homepage with his or her choice of pictures, music, wallpaper, writing, and information making each page unique.— Fahiym Ratcliffe


wallpapered; wallpapering; wallpapers

Definition of wallpaper (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to provide the walls of (a room) with wallpaper

intransitive verb

: to put wallpaper on a wall

Examples of wallpaper in a Sentence


The wallpaper began to peel.

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Follow the Bauhaus Trail to explore a massive collection of textiles, furniture, and wallpaper on display at the new Bauhaus Museum Dessau, opening as part of a yearlong centennial celebration of the pivotal artists’ movement. National Geographic, "5 can’t-miss experiences in September," 30 Aug. 2019 Nods to the son’s love of film in his bedroom include wallpaper crafted of cinema posters. Lucia Tonelli, ELLE Decor, "Inside a Luxe Lincoln Park Home that Sacrifices Nothing," 16 Aug. 2019 For his backup phone, Mr. Chen has gone so far as to choose a wallpaper meant to dispel the authorities’ suspicions: a map of China with yellow stars on a red background, just like the Chinese flag. Raymond Zhong, New York Times, "Going From Hong Kong to Mainland China? Your Phone Is Subject to Search," 15 Aug. 2019 Ms Reihana, who is Maori and British, brilliantly reinterprets an early 19th-century French wallpaper depicting Captain James Cook’s journeys to the Pacific islands. A.c. | San Francisco, The Economist, "The social and political mural goes digital," 5 Aug. 2019 This removable wallpaper that's made to look like real wood planking gives you the same finish at a fraction of the price. Stacia Affelt, Country Living, "6 Quick and Gorgeous Ways to Make Over Your Bedroom This Weekend," 17 July 2019 John Shaffner, the show’s assistant art director tells the story of how Blanche’s banana leaf bedspread and matching wallpaper came to be in Jim Colucci’s book Golden Girls Forever. Meghan Overdeep, Southern Living, "The Golden Girls Production Designer Slept with Blanche’s Iconic Bedspread to Keep It from Being Stolen," 9 July 2019 Finding the right wallpaper for her tour-bus bathrooms, for example. Eric Ray Davidson, Glamour, "Kacey Musgraves Isn’t Trying to Please Anybody but Herself," 28 Mar. 2019 Inside the house with 2,784 square feet of living space are updates of classic wallpaper, wainscot and crown molding. oregonlive.com, "2019 Street of Dreams invites you to dream big in Wilsonville," 27 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Johnson has again created a lacy Victorian-style oasis, with seating for 49 in three beautifully appointed and wallpapered rooms. Linda Zavoral, The Mercury News, "First Look: Lisa’s Tea Treasures returns in all of its Victorian-era glory," 5 Aug. 2019 The castle is wallpapered with misty medieval themes, many from the operas of Ludwig's friend, Richard Wagner. Rick Steves, USA TODAY, "European royalty's most over-the-top summer retreats, from Versailles to Neuschwanstein," 8 July 2019 The guest rooms, cheerily wallpapered and wainscoted, are small but nicely maintained. Rosemary Mcclure, latimes.com, "Hotels near Yosemite that won't blow your budget," 30 June 2019 The room has been re-carpeted and re-wallpapered before. Ashley Strickland, CNN, "Apollo Mission Control Center restored to its former glory," 28 June 2019 The gala dinner was set in a not-in-use gallery that was wallpapered with party pics of yore (many of the smiles belonged to faces in the room that very night). Lilah Ramzi, Vogue, "Michael R. Bloomberg Was Honored at the Whitney Museum’s Gala and Studio Party," 14 Apr. 2019 Walls are painted or wallpapered, plumbing and electrical fixtures like faucets and light switch covers are installed, and register covers are put in place. Brett Martin, House Beautiful, "How Long It Takes To Renovate Every Single Room In Your House," 26 Dec. 2018 The result of the vote was announced to loud cheers from lawmakers gathered in a stuffy, ornately wallpapered room in the House of Commons. Jill Lawless, The Seattle Times, "UK’s May wins no-confidence vote by MPs unhappy over Brexit," 12 Dec. 2018 Yes, that Freddie—Freddie Prinze Jr., the turn-of-the-century heartthrob whose Tiger Beat posters wallpapered your middle-school locker. Colleen Leahey Mckeegan, Marie Claire, "Sarah Michelle Gellar's Second Act? Disrupting the Food Industry," 18 Apr. 2017

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


1827, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1918, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

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Statistics for wallpaper

Last Updated

12 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for wallpaper

The first known use of wallpaper was in 1827

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Financial Definition of wallpaper

What It Is

Wallpaper is slang for a security with minimal to no market value.

How It Works

Once a security becomes worthless, its hard documentation (for example, its stock certificate) no longer has any practical function. The term "wallpaper" suggests that it be used as such.

Why It Matters

Following the Internet startup bust in the early 2000s, the stock of many web-based companies turned into wallpaper in a short span of time. The term doesn't only apply to stocks. For example, the impact of hyperinflation in Germany following World War I resulted in its currency becoming wallpaper.

Source: Investing Answers



English Language Learners Definition of wallpaper

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: thick decorative paper used to cover the walls of a room



English Language Learners Definition of wallpaper (Entry 2 of 2)

: to put wallpaper on the walls of (a room)


wall·​pa·​per | \ ˈwȯl-ˌpā-pər How to pronounce wallpaper (audio) \

Kids Definition of wallpaper

: decorative paper for covering the walls of a room

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More from Merriam-Webster on wallpaper

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with wallpaper

Spanish Central: Translation of wallpaper

Nglish: Translation of wallpaper for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of wallpaper for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about wallpaper

Comments on wallpaper

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


concealment of treason or felony

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