verb (used with object)

to furnish with a cylinder or cylinders.
to subject to the action of a cylinder or cylinders.

Origin of cylinder

1560–70; < Latin cylindrus < Greek kýlindros roller, cylinder, akin to kylíndein to roll
Related formscyl·in·der·like, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for cylinder


Examples from the Web for cylinder

Contemporary Examples of cylinder

Historical Examples of cylinder

British Dictionary definitions for cylinder



a solid consisting of two parallel planes bounded by identical closed curves, usually circles, that are interconnected at every point by a set of parallel lines, usually perpendicular to the planes. Volume base area × length
a surface formed by a line moving round a closed plane curve at a fixed angle to it
any object shaped like a cylinder
the chamber in a reciprocating internal-combustion engine, pump, or compressor within which the piston movesSee also cylinder block
the rotating mechanism of a revolver, situated behind the barrel and containing cartridge chambers
printing any of the rotating drums on a printing press
Also called: cylinder seal a cylindrical seal of stone, clay, or precious stone decorated with linear designs, found in the Middle East and Balkans: dating from about 6000 bc
Also called: hot-water cylinder British a vertical cylindrical tank for storing hot water, esp an insulated one made of copper used in a domestic hot-water system
firing on all cylinders working or performing at full capability


(tr) to provide (a system) with cylinders
Derived Formscylinder-like, adjective

Word Origin for cylinder

C16: from Latin cylindrus, from Greek kulindros a roller, from kulindein to roll
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 cylinder

1560s, from Middle French cylindre (14c.), from Latin cylindrus "roller, cylinder," from Greek kylindros "a cylinder, roller, roll," from kylindein "to roll," of unknown origin.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

cylinder in Medicine




The surface generated by a straight line intersecting and moving along a closed plane curve, the directrix, while remaining parallel to a fixed straight line that is not on or parallel to the plane of the directrix.
A solid bounded by two parallel planes and such a surface, especially such a surface having a circle as its directrix.
A cylindrical or rodlike renal cast.
A cylindrical lens.
A cylindrical metal container for gases stored under high pressure.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

cylinder in Science



A three-dimensional surface or solid object bounded by a curved surface and two parallel circles of equal size at the ends. The curved surface is formed by all the line segments joining corresponding points of the two parallel circles.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with cylinder


see firing on all cylinders.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.