\ ˈyärd How to pronounce yard (audio) \

Definition of yard

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1a : a small usually walled and often paved area open to the sky and adjacent to a building : court
b : the grounds of a building or group of buildings
2 : the grounds immediately surrounding a house that are usually covered with grass
3a : an enclosure for livestock (such as poultry)
b(1) : an area with its buildings and facilities set aside for a particular business or activity
(2) : an assembly or storage area (as for dry-docked boats)
c : a system of tracks for storage and maintenance of cars and making up trains
4 : a locality in a forest where deer herd in winter

Definition of yard (Entry 2 of 4)

1 : of, relating to, or employed in the yard surrounding a building yard light
2 : of, relating to, or employed in a railroad yard a yard engine


yarded; yarding; yards

Definition of yard (Entry 3 of 4)

transitive verb

1 : to drive into or confine in a restricted area : herd, pen
2 : to deliver to or store in a yard

intransitive verb

: to congregate in or as if in a yard

Definition of yard (Entry 4 of 4)

1 : any of various units of measure: such as
a : a unit of length equal in the U.S. to 0.9144 meter — see Weights and Measures Table
b : a unit of volume equal to a cubic yard
2a : a great length or quantity remembered yards of facts and figures
b slang : one hundred dollars
3 : a long spar tapered toward the ends to support and spread the head of a square sail, lateen, or lugsail
4 : a slender glass about three feet tall having a flared opening and a bulbous bottom also : the amount it contains a yard of ale
the whole nine yards
: all of a related set of circumstances, conditions, or details who could learn the most about making records, about electronics and engineering, the whole nine yards— Stephen Stills sometimes used adverbially with go to indicate an all-out effort

First Known Use of yard

Noun (1)

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


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1758, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun (2)

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

History and Etymology for yard

Noun (1)

Middle English, from Old English geard enclosure, yard; akin to Old High German gart enclosure, Latin hortus garden

Noun (2)

Middle English yerd, yerde "stick, pole, rod, spar supporting a sail, unit of measure," going back to Old English gierd "stick, rod," going back to Germanic *gazdjō (whence Old Frisian ierde "stick," Old Saxon gerdia, Old High German gerta), derivative of *gazda- "stick, rod" (whence Old High German gart "stick," Old Norse gaddr "goad, spike," Gothic gazds "sting"), going back to dialectal Indo-European *ghazdh- "stick, something pointed" (whence Latin hasta "spear," Middle Irish gat "withe, osier," probably also gas "shoot, twig"), probably a loanword from an unknown source

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Time Traveler for yard

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for yard

Cite this Entry

“Yard.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/yard. Accessed 26 January 2020.

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Financial Definition of yard

What It Is

In the finance world, yard is slang for one billion. The term comes from the French word milliard, which means one billion.

How It Works

For example, if the United States were to buy 200 new fighter jets for the military, it might spend a yard on them.

Why It Matters

Like any other industry, the finance world has its own slang and colorful language.

Source: Investing Answers


\ ˈyärd How to pronounce yard (audio) \

Kids Definition of yard

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an outdoor area next to a building that is often bordered (as by shrubs or fences) Children played in the yard.
2 : the grounds of a building a prison yard
3 : a fenced area for livestock a chicken yard
4 : an area set aside for a business or activity a navy yard
5 : a system of railroad tracks especially for keeping and repairing cars



Kids Definition of yard (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a measure of length equal to three feet or 36 inches (about 0.91 meter)
2 : a long pole pointed toward the ends that holds up and spreads the top of a sail

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More from Merriam-Webster on yard

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for yard

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with yard

Spanish Central: Translation of yard

Nglish: Translation of yard for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of yard for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about yard

Comments on yard

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


to express in a more acceptable way

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