- (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /lɛə/, (spelling pronunciation) /leɪ.ə/
- (General American) IPA(key): /ˈleɪ.ɚ/
Audio (US) (file)
- Rhymes: -ɛə(ɹ), -eɪə(ɹ)
- Homophone: lair (one pronunciation)
Appears at first glance to be from Middle English leyer, leyare (“a layer of stones or bricks”), equivalent to lay + -er. In which case, ultimately identical to the other word below that is also spelt layer.
However, this word layer (referring to a thickness of a material covering a surface) has long been argued to be from a respelling of an obsolete sense of the word lair that was once used by farmers, which had to do with soil. The connecting sense between the usual meaning of lair and the specialised farming meaning was: an area where cows typically rest, the ground being fertilised by their waste. Related to lie, ledger.
layer (plural layers)
- A single thickness of some material covering a surface.
- Wrap the loaf in two layers of aluminum foil before putting it in the oven.
- After the first coat of paint dried, he applied another layer.
- A (usually) horizontal deposit; a stratum.
- I find seven-layer cake a bit too rich.
- One of the items in a hierarchy.
- mired in layers of deceit
- 2001, C/C++ Users Journal (volume 19, page 38)
- Right above the database access layer sits a number cruncher that performs any calculations that a particular request may require, such as computing a standard deviation. In many cases, this layer just forwards raw numbers.
- (computer graphics, by analogy to a stack of transparencies) one in a stack of (initially transparent) drawing surfaces that comprise an image; used to keep elements of an image separate so that they can be modified independently from one another.
- (transitive, intransitive) To cut or divide into layers.
- (transitive, intransitive) To arrange in layers.
- Layer the ribbons on top of one another to make an attractive pattern.
layer (plural layers)
- A person who lays things, such as tiles.
- A mature female bird, insect, etc. that is able to lay eggs.
- When dealing with an infestation of headlice, the first step is to eliminate the layers.
- A hen kept to lay eggs.
- A shoot of a plant, laid underground for growth.
- layer in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.
- layer in The Century Dictionary, New York, N.Y.: The Century Co., 1911.