Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

surface - definition and synonyms

 
 
 
Close

What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.

Close

Thesaurus

The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary. Click on the thesaurus category heading under the button in an entry to see the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

more
noun surface pronunciation in American English /ˈsɜrfəs/
Word Forms
Close
singularsurface
pluralsurfaces
  1. 1
    [countable] the top layer or outside part of something
    a smooth/rough/hard surface
    Road surfaces are slick from the icy rain.
    Wipe the surface with a damp cloth.
    Synonyms and related words
    1. a.
      the top layer of water or land
      We saw fish swimming just under the surface of the water.
      A farmer was spreading fertilizer over the surface of the soil.
      the surface of Mars
  2. 2
    [countable] a flat area of a desk, table, etc. that you use for working on
    Papers and books covered the surface of the desk.
    All counter surfaces in the kitchen should be carefully cleaned.
    1. a.
      a flat area used for playing sports, or the material used for making this area
      Many tennis players dislike the grass surface at Wimbledon.
      a new playing surface that is expected to replace Astroturf
  3. 3
    [singular] the way that someone or something looks or seems while their true feeling or character remains hidden
    Underneath his cool surface was a growing sense of insecurity.
    beneath the surface: Hostility lies beneath the surface of calm in the region.
    on the surface: On the surface, they looked like a happily married couple.
    1. a.
      the aspect of someones inner feeling that they show in their behavior or appearance
      He could feel his frustration and rage rising to the surface.
  4. 4
    [countable] maths one of the sides of an object
    A cube has six surfaces.

JOMO

… a feeling of pleasure you get from spending time doing what you want and not worrying about what other people are doing or saying

BuzzWord Article

Word of the Day

Mardi Gras

shrove tuesday

Open Dictionary

brain fade

a temporary inability to think clearly or remember information

add a word

Blog

A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog