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90s Slang You Should Know


[klap-bawrd, -bohrd] /ˈklæpˌbɔrd, -ˌboʊrd/
noun, Movies.
a small board with a hinged stick attached that is clapped down at the beginning of the filming of a shot for use later in synchronizing sound and image in the editing of the film.
Also called clapper board, clapstick
[klap-stik] /ˈklæpˌstɪk/ (Show IPA)
Origin of clapboard2
clap1 + board Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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British Dictionary definitions for clapperboard


a pair of boards clapped together during film shooting in order to aid sound synchronization


/ˈklæpˌbɔːd; ˈklæbəd/
  1. a long thin timber board with one edge thicker than the other, used esp in the US and Canada in wood-frame construction by lapping each board over the one below
  2. (as modifier): a clapboard house
(transitive) to cover with such boards
Word Origin
C16: partial translation of Low German klappholt, from klappen to crack + holt wood; related to Dutch claphout; see board
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for clapperboard



1520s, partial translation of Middle Dutch klapholt (borrowed into English late 14c. as clapholt), from klappen "to fit" + Low German holt "wood, board" (see holt). Cf. German Klappholz. Originally small boards of split oak, imported from northern Germany and cut by coopers to make barrel staves; the meaning "long, thin board used for roofing or to cover the exterior of wooden buildings" is from 1640s, American English.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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