Dictionary > Yard


1. A rod; a stick; a staff. If men smote it with a yerde. (Chaucer)
2. A branch; a twig. The bitter frosts with the sleet and rain Destroyed hath the green in every yerd. (Chaucer)
3. A long piece of timber, as a rafter, etc.
4. A measure of length, equaling three feet, or thirty-six inches, being the standard of english and American measure.
5. The penis.
6. A long piece of timber, nearly cylindrical, tapering toward the ends, and designed to support and extend a square sail. A yard is usually hung by the center to the mast.
(Science: astronomy) golden Yard, or Yard and Ell, a popular name of the three stars in the belt of orion. Under yard E, under the rod, under contract.
Origin: OE. Yerd, AS. Gierd, gyrd, a rod, stick, a measure, a yard; akin to OFries. Ierde, OS. Gerda, D. Garde, G. Gerte, OHG. Gartia, gerta, gart, Icel. Gaddr a goad, sting, Goth. Gazds, and probably to L. Hasta a spear. Cf. Gad, Gird, Gride, Hastate.
1. An inclosure; usually, a small inclosed place in front of, or around, a house or barn; as, a courtyard; a cowyard; a barnyard. A yard . . . Inclosed all about with sticks In which she had a cock, hight chanticleer. (Chaucer)
2. An inclosure within which any work or business is carried on; as, a dockyard; a shipyard. Liberty of the yard, a liberty, granted to persons imprisoned for debt, of walking in the yard, or within any other limits prescribed by law, on their giving bond not to go beyond those limits. Pris
on yard, an inclosure about a prison, or attached to it.
(Science: botany) Yard grass, a low-growing grass (Eleusine Indica) having digitate spikes. It is common in dooryards, and like places, especially in the southern united states.
Synonym: crab grass. Yard of land. See Yardland.
Origin: OE. Yard, yerd, AS. Geard; akin to OFries. Garda garden, OS. Gardo garden, gard yard, D. Gaard garden, G. Garten, OHG. Garto garden, gari inclosure, Icel. Garthr yard, house, Sw. Gard, Dan. Gaard, Goth. Gards a house, garda sheepfold, L. Hortus garden, Gr. Chortos an inclosure. Cf. Court, Garden, Garth, Horticulture, Orchard.