• Screen


    • enPR: skrēn, IPA: /skɹiːn/
    • Rhymes: -iːn


    From Middle English scren, screne ("windscreen, firescreen"), from Anglo-Norman escren ("firescreen, the tester of a bed"), Old French escren, escrein, escran (modern French écran ("screen")), from Old Dutch *scerm, skirm ("screen"), from Proto-Germanic *skirmiz ("fur, shelter, screen"), from Proto-Indo-European *(s)ker- ("to cut, divide"). Cognate with Dutch scherm ("screen"), German Schirm ("screen").

    Alternate etymology derives Old French escren from Old Dutch *skrank ("barrier") (compare German Schrank ("cupboard"), Schranke ("fence").

    Webster's Encyclopedic Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language, s.v. "screen" (NY: Gramercy Books, 1996), 1721.

    Full definition of screen



    (plural screens)
    1. A physical divider intended to block an area from view, or provide shelter from something dangerous.
    2. a fire screen
    3. A material woven from fine wires intended to block animals or large particles from passing while allowing gasses, liquids and finer particles to pass.
    4. The informational viewing area of electronic output devices; the result of the output.
      • 1977, Sex Pistols, Spunk, “Problems”:You won't find me living for the screen.
    5. The viewing surface or area of a movie, or moving picture or slide presentation.
      • 1898, Winston Churchill, The Celebrity Chapter 1, The stories did not seem to me to touch life. They left me with the impression of a well-delivered stereopticon lecture, with characters about as life-like as the shadows on the screen, and whisking on and off, at the mercy of the operator.
    6. One of the individual regions of a video game, etc. divided into separate screens.
      • 1988, Marcus Berkmann, Sophistry (video game review) in Your Sinclair issue 30, June 1988The idea is to reach the 21st level of an enormous network of interlocking screens, each of which is covered with blocks that you bounce along on.
    7. (basketball) An offensive tactic in which a player stands so as to block a defender from reaching a teammate.
    8. (baseball) The protective netting which protects the audience from flying objects
      Jones caught the foul up against the screen.
    9. In mining and quarries, a frame supporting a mesh of bars or wires used to classify fragments of stone by size, allowing the passage of fragments whose a diameter is smaller than the distance between the bars or wires.
    10. (printing) A stencil upon a framed mesh through which paint is forced onto printed-on material; the frame with the mesh itself.
    11. (nautical) A collection of less-valuable vessels that travel with a more valuable one for the latter's protection.
    12. (architecture) A dwarf wall or partition carried up to a certain height for separation and protection, as in a church, to separate the aisle from the choir, etc.



    1. To filter by passing through a screen.Mary screened the beans to remove the clumps of gravel.
    2. To remove information, or censor intellectual material from viewingThe news report was screened because it accused the politician of wrongdoing.
    3. (film, television) To present publicly (on the screen).The news report will be screened at 11:00 tonight.
    4. To fit with a screen.We need to screen this porch. These bugs are driving me crazy.

    Derived terms

    terms derived from screen (verb)


    © Wiktionary