sur|face1 [ `sɜrfəs ] noun ***
1. ) count 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.
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. ) count 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.
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. ) singular the way 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.
a ) the aspect of someone's inner feeling that they show in their behavior or appearance:
He could feel his frustration and rage rising to the surface.
4. ) count TECHNICAL one of the sides of an object:
A cube has six surfaces.
sur|face 2 [ `sɜrfəs ] verb
1. ) intransitive to become known or obvious after being hidden:
In the aftermath of the trial, charges of corruption have begun to surface.
New information about the murder is slowly surfacing.
a ) to appear after being lost or hidden:
After being missing for two months, the girl surfaced on the west coast.
2. ) intransitive to rise up to or appear at the surface of water:
The divers were forced to surface after their equipment was damaged.
3. ) transitive to put a surface on a road, especially to make it smoother
sur|face 3 [ `sɜrfəs ] adjective only before noun
1. ) affecting, existing on, or used on a surface:
The boating accident caused only surface damage.
a rough surface texture
the surface temperature of the lake
2. ) a surface quality seems to exist in someone or something, but in fact it hides deeper or truer feelings or conditions:
A surface calm settled over the troubled city.
3. ) traveling on the surface of land or water, rather than through the air:
surface transportation

Usage of the words and phrases in modern English. 2013.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • surface — [ syrfas ] n. f. • 1611; superface 1521; lat. superficies → superficie; de sur et face 1 ♦ Partie extérieure (d un corps), qui le limite en tous sens. ⇒ face. La surface de la Terre, la surface terrestre. À la surface du sol. « une surface pure… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Surface — Sur face , n. [F. See {Sur }, and {Face}, and cf. {Superficial}.] 1. The exterior part of anything that has length and breadth; one of the limits that bound a solid, esp. the upper face; superficies; the outside; as, the surface of the earth; the …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • surface — [sʉr′fis] n. [Fr < sur (see SUR 1) + face,FACE, based on L superficies] 1. a) the outer face, or exterior, of an object b) any of the faces of a solid c) the area or extent of such a face …   English World dictionary

  • surface — 1610s, from Fr. surface outermost boundary of anything, outside part (16c.), from O.Fr. sur above + face (see FACE (Cf. face)). Patterned on L. superficies surface (see SUPERFICIAL (Cf. superficial)). The verb meaning come to the surface is first …   Etymology dictionary

  • surface — ► NOUN 1) the outside part or uppermost layer of something. 2) the upper limit of a body of liquid. 3) outward appearance as distinct from less obvious aspects. ► ADJECTIVE 1) relating to or occurring on the surface. 2) (of transportation) by sea …   English terms dictionary

  • Surface — Sur face, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Surfaced}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Surfacing}.] 1. To give a surface to; especially, to cause to have a smooth or plain surface; to make smooth or plain. [1913 Webster] 2. To work over the surface or soil of, as ground, in …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • surface — [adj] external apparent, covering, depthless, exterior, facial, outer, outside, outward, shallow, shoal, superficial, top; concepts 485,583 Ant. central, core, inside, interior, middle surface [n] external part of something area, cover, covering …   New thesaurus

  • surface — Surface. subst. f. L exterieur, le dehors d un corps. Surface platte, unie, raboteuse. la surface de la terre …   Dictionnaire de l'Académie française

  • Surface — Sur face, v. i. 1. To rise from the depths of a liquid to the surface; as, the submarine surfaced to recharge its batteries. [PJC] 2. To become known or public; said of information. [PJC] 3. To show up, as a person who was in hiding; as, he… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Surface — (fr., spr. Sürfahs), die Oberfläche …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • surface — index bare, cursory, dimension, emerge, issue (send forth), ostensible, side, superficial …   Law dictionary

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