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  • IPA(key): /ˈbæk.ɡɹaʊnd/, /ˈbækɹaʊnd/
  • (file)

Etymology 1[edit]

back +‎ ground


background (not comparable)

  1. Less important or less noticeable in a scene or system.
    background noise
    The antivirus program runs on a background thread.


background (countable and uncountable, plural backgrounds)

  1. One's social heritage, or previous life; what one did in the past.
    The lawyer had a background in computer science.
  2. A part of the picture that depicts scenery to the rear or behind the main subject; context.
    • 2013 May-June, William E. Conner, “An Acoustic Arms Race”, in American Scientist, volume 101, number 3, page 206-7:
      Earless ghost swift moths become “invisible” to echolocating bats by forming mating clusters close [] above vegetation and effectively blending into the clutter of echoes that the bat receives from the leaves and stems around them. Many insects probably use this strategy, which is a close analogy to crypsis in the visible world — camouflage and other methods for blending into one’s visual background.
  3. Information relevant to the current situation about past events; history.
  4. A less important feature of scenery (as opposed to foreground).
    There was tons of noise in the background.
    The photographer let us pick a background for the portrait.
  5. (computing) The image or color over which a computer's desktop items are shown (e.g. icons or application windows).
  6. (computing) A type of activity on a computer that is not normally visible to the user.
    The antivirus program is running in the background.
  7. (physics) Clipping of background radiation.
Derived terms[edit]
The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.


background (third-person singular simple present backgrounds, present participle backgrounding, simple past and past participle backgrounded)

  1. To put in a position that is not prominent.
    • 2006, Paul Baker, Using Corpora in Discourse Analysis, page 163:
      One aspect of the story that appears interesting is that the alleged rapist and victim are only referred to by name together in the same sentence once. In all the other sentences, one receives more focus, while the other is backgrounded.
  2. (journalism) To gather and provide background information (on).

Etymology 2[edit]



  1. simple past tense and past participle of backgrind



Unadapted borrowing from English background.


background n (plural backgrounduri)

  1. background
    Synonyms: fundal, fond




background m (plural backgrounds)

  1. background