Nearby words

  1. close-order drill,
  2. close-reefed,
  3. close-stool,
  4. close-up,
  5. closeable,
  6. closed anesthesia,
  7. closed book,
  8. closed book, a,
  9. closed chain,
  10. closed chain compound

Origin of closed

Middle English word dating back to 1175–1225; see origin at close, -ed2

Related formshalf-closed, adjectivesem·i·closed, adjectivewell-closed, adjective


[verb klohz; adjective, adverb klohs or for 51, klohz; noun klohz for 59, 60, 63–65, 67, 68, klohs for 61, 62, 66]

verb (used with object), closed, clos·ing.

to put (something) in a position to obstruct an entrance, opening, etc.; shut.
to stop or obstruct (a gap, entrance, aperture, etc.): to close a hole in a wall with plaster.
to block or hinder passage across or access to: to close a border to tourists; to close the woods to picnickers.
to stop or obstruct the entrances, apertures, or gaps in: He closed the crate and tied it up.
(of the mind) to make imperceptive or inaccessible: to close one's mind to the opposite opinion.
to bring together the parts of; join; unite (often followed by up): Close up those ranks! The surgeon closed the incision.
Electricity. to complete (an electrical circuit) by joining the circuit elements: The circuit was closed so the current could be measured.
to bring to an end: to close a debate.
to arrange the final details of; to conclude negotiations about: to close a deal to everyone's satisfaction.
to complete or settle (a contract or transaction); consummate: We close the sale of the house next week.
to stop rendering the customary services of: to close a store for the night.
to terminate or suspend the operation of; to halt the activities of: The epidemic forced authorities to close the schools. The police closed the bar for selling liquor to minors.
Nautical. to come close to: We closed the cruiser to put our injured captain on board.
Metalworking. to reduce the internal diameter of (a tube or the like).
Archaic. to shut in or surround on all sides; enclose; cover in: to close a bird in a cage.

verb (used without object), closed, clos·ing.

to become closed; shut: The door closed with a bang. This window is stuck and will not close tight.
to come together; unite: Her lips closed firmly.
to come close: His pursuers closed rapidly.
to grapple; engage in close encounter (often followed by with): We closed with the invaders shortly before sundown.
to come to an end; terminate: The service closed with a hymn.
to cease to offer the customary activities or services: The school closed for the summer.
to enter into or reach an agreement, usually as a contract: The builder closed with the contractor after negotiations.
(of a theatrical production) to cease to be performed: The play closed in New York yesterday and will open in Dallas next week.
(of a stock, group of stocks, etc.) to be priced or show a change in price as specified at the end of a trading period: The market closed low for the fourth straight day.

adjective, clos·er, clos·est.

having the parts or elements near to one another: a close formation of battleships.
compact; dense: a close texture; a close weave.
being in or having proximity in space or time: The barn is so close to the house that you can hear the animals. His birthday is in May, close to mine.
marked by similarity in degree, action, feeling, etc.: This dark pink is close to red. He left her close to tears.
near, or near together, in kind or relationship: a flower close to a rose; a close relative.
intimate or confidential; dear.
based on a strong uniting feeling of respect, honor, or love: a close circle of friends.
fitting tightly: a close, clinging negligee.
(of a haircut or shave, the mowing of a lawn, etc.) so executed that the hair, grass, or the like is left flush with the surface or very short.
not deviating from the subject under consideration.
strict; searching; minute: The matter requires close investigation.
not deviating from a model or original: a close, literal translation.
nearly even or equal: a close contest.
strictly logical: close reasoning.
shut; shut tight; not open: a close hatch.
shut in; enclosed.
completely enclosing or surrounding: a close siege preventing all escape.
without opening; with all openings covered or closed.
confined; narrow: close quarters.
lacking fresh or freely circulating air: a hot, close room.
heavy; oppressive: a spell of close, sultry weather.
narrowly confined, as a prisoner.
practicing or keeping secrecy; secretive; reticent: She is so close that you can tell her all your secrets.
parsimonious; stingy: He is very close with his money.
scarce, as money.
not open to public or general admission, competition, etc.: The entire parish participated in the close communication.
(of a delimiting punctuation mark) occurring at the end of a group of words or characters that is set off, as from surrounding text: close parentheses; close quotes; close brackets.Compare open(def 32).
Hunting, Angling. closed(def 8).
Phonetics. (of a vowel) articulated with a relatively small opening between the tongue and the roof of the mouth.Compare high(def 23), open(def 35a).
Heraldry. (of a bird) represented as having folded wings: an eagle close.
Archaic. viscous; not volatile.


in a close manner; closely.
near; close by.
Heraldry. immediately behind the ears, so as to show no neck: a bear's head couped close.


the act of closing.
the end or conclusion: at the close of day; the close of the speech.
an enclosed place or enclosure, especially one about or beside a cathedral or other building.
any piece of land held as private property.
Stock Exchange.
  1. the closing price on a stock.
  2. the closing prices on an exchange market.
  1. a narrow entry or alley terminating in a dead end.
  2. a courtyard enclosed except for one narrow entrance.
Archaic. a junction; union.
Obsolete. a close encounter; a grapple: The fighters met in a fierce close.

Verb Phrases

close down,
  1. to terminate the operation of; discontinue: to close down an air base because of budget cuts.
  2. to attempt to control or eliminate: The city must close down drug traffic.
close in on/upon,
  1. to approach so as to capture, attack, arrest, etc.: The hoodlums closed in on their victim.
  2. to surround or envelop so as to entrap: a feeling that the room was closing in upon her.
close out,
  1. to reduce the price of (merchandise) for quick sale: That store is closing out its stock of men's clothing.
  2. to liquidate or dispose of finally and completely: They closed out their interests after many years in this city.
close up,
  1. to come together in close array; converge: The enemy was closing up on us from both flanks.
  2. to bring to an end; cease: The company is closing up its overseas operations.
  3. to become silent or uncommunicative.
  4. to reduce or eliminate spacing material between (units of set type).

Origin of close

before 1050; (noun, adj.) Middle English clos < Anglo-French, Old French < Latin clausus, past participle of claudere to close (cf. clause); (v.) Middle English closen, verbal derivative of the adj. (compare Old English clȳsan, beclȳsan to shut in, enclose, verbal derivative of clūse bar, enclosure < Medieval Latin clūsa, for Latin clausa, feminine of clausus); noun and adj. senses with voiced pronunciation of s are presumably modern deverbal derivatives

Related forms
Can be confusedclose clothes cloze

Synonym study

2. Close, shut mean to cause something not to be open. Close suggests blocking an opening or vacant place: to close a breach in a wall. The word shut refers especially to blocking or barring openings intended for entering and leaving: to shut a door, gate, etc., and close can be used in this sense, too: to close a door, gate, etc. 48. See stingy1. 59. See end1. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for closed

British Dictionary definitions for closed



blocked against entry; shut
restricted; exclusive
not open to question or debate
(of a hunting season, etc) close
  1. (of a curve or surface) completely enclosing an area or volume
  2. (of a set) having members that can be produced by a specific operation on other members of the same setthe integers are a closed set under multiplication
Also: checked phonetics
  1. denoting a syllable that ends in a consonant
  2. another word for close 1 (def. 21)
not open to public entry or membershipthe closed society of publishing




near in space or time; in proximity
having the parts near together; densea close formation
down or near to the surface; shorta close haircut
near in relationshipa close relative
intimate or confidentiala close friend
almost equal or evena close contest
not deviating or varying greatly from a model or standarda close resemblance; a close translation
careful, strict, or searchinga close study
(of a style of play in football, hockey, etc) characterized by short passes
confined or enclosed
shut or shut tight
oppressive, heavy, or airlessa close atmosphere
strictly guardeda close prisoner
neat or tight in fita close cap
secretive or reticent
miserly; not generous, esp with money
(of money or credit) hard to obtain; scarce
restricted as to public admission or membership
hidden or secluded
Also: closed restricted or prohibited as to the type of game or fish able to be taken
Also: closed, narrow phonetics denoting a vowel pronounced with the lips relatively close together


closely; tightly
near or in proximity
close to the wind nautical sailing as nearly as possible towards the direction from which the wind is blowingSee also wind 1 (def. 26)
Derived Formsclosely, adverbcloseness, noun

Word Origin for close

C13: from Old French clos close, enclosed, from Latin clausus shut up, from claudere to close




to put or be put in such a position as to cover an opening; shutthe door closed behind him
(tr) to bar, obstruct, or fill up (an entrance, a hole, etc)to close a road
to bring the parts or edges of (a wound, etc) together or (of a wound, etc) to be brought together
(intr; foll by on, over, etc) to take holdhis hand closed over the money
to bring or be brought to an end; terminate
to complete (an agreement, a deal, etc) successfully or (of an agreement, deal, etc) to be completed successfully
to cease or cause to cease to render servicethe shop closed at six
(intr) stock exchange to have a value at the end of a day's trading, as specifiedsteels closed two points down
to complete an electrical circuit
(tr) nautical to pass near
(tr) archaic to enclose or shut in
close one's eyes
  1. euphemisticto die
  2. (often foll by to)to ignore


the act of closing
the end or conclusionthe close of the day
a place of joining or meeting
(kləʊs) law private property, usually enclosed by a fence, hedge, or wall
(kləʊs) British a courtyard or quadrangle enclosed by buildings or an entry leading to such a courtyard
(kləʊs) British (capital when part of a street name) a small quiet residential roadHillside Close
British a field
(kləʊs) the precincts of a cathedral or similar building
(kləʊs) Scot the entry from the street to a tenement building
music another word for cadence
archaic, or rare an encounter in battle; grapple

Derived Formscloser, noun

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 closed
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with closed


In addition to the idioms beginning with close

  • close at hand
  • close but no cigar
  • close call
  • closed book, a
  • closed door
  • close down
  • close in
  • close one's eyes to
  • close out
  • close ranks
  • close shave
  • close the books
  • close the door on
  • close the sale
  • close to home
  • close up

also see:

  • at close quarters
  • at close range
  • behind closed doors
  • keep (a close) watch
  • near (close) to one's heart
  • play one's cards close to one's chest
  • sail close to the wind
  • too close for comfort
  • too close to call
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.