• synonyms


[uh-pahrt-muh nt]
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  1. a room or a group of related rooms, among similar sets in one building, designed for use as a dwelling.
  2. a building containing or made up of such rooms.
  3. any separated room or group of rooms in a house or other dwelling: We heard cries from an apartment at the back of the house.
  4. apartments, British. a set of rooms used as a dwelling by one person or one family.
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Origin of apartment

1635–45; < French appartement < Italian appartamento, equivalent to apparta(re) to separate, divide (verbal derivative of a parte apart, to one side) + -mento -ment
Related formsa·part·men·tal [uh-pahrt-men-tl] /ə pɑrtˈmɛn tl/, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for apartment

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • As I approached her apartment, the voice of Alcibiades met my ear.


    Lydia Maria Child

  • Philothea has glided from the apartment, as if afraid to remain in my presence.


    Lydia Maria Child

  • What is the use of a beautiful face, if one must be shut up in her own apartment for ever?


    Lydia Maria Child

  • At parting, she urged Eudora to share her apartment for the night.


    Lydia Maria Child

  • How restful this quiet and reserve after the colour and line tumult of the Higbee apartment.

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson

British Dictionary definitions for apartment


  1. (often plural) any room in a building, usually one of several forming a suite, esp one that is spacious and well furnished and used as living accommodation, offices, etc
    1. another name (esp US and Canadian) for flat 2 (def. 1)
    2. (as modifier)apartment building; apartment house
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Word Origin

C17: from French appartement, from Italian appartamento, from appartare to set on one side, separate
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for apartment


1640s, "private rooms for the use of one person within a house," from French appartement (16c.), from Italian appartimento, literally "a separated place," from appartere "to separate," from a "to" (see ad-) + parte "side, place," from Latin partem (see part (n.)). Sense of "set of private rooms in a building entirely of these" (the U.S. equivalent of British flat) is first attested 1874.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper