See more synonyms for enclosure on Thesaurus.com
  1. something that encloses, as a fence or wall.
  2. something that is enclosed, as a paper sent in a letter.
  3. the separation and appropriation of land by means of a fence.
  4. a tract of land surrounded by a fence.
  5. an act or instance of enclosing.
  6. the state of being enclosed.
  7. Roman Catholic Church. the part of a monastery or convent canonically separated or restricted as the living quarters of the religious, from which a person may leave only with special permission or gain entrance to by special dispensation.
Also inclosure.

Origin of enclosure

1530–40; enclose + -ure; compare Anglo-French enclosure
Related formsnon·en·clo·sure, nounpre·en·clo·sure, nounsem·i·en·clo·sure, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for enclosure

Contemporary Examples of enclosure

Historical Examples of enclosure

  • Within all that enclosure there seemed no one possessed of any calm.


    W. A. Fraser

  • Moving from enclosure to enclosure of box, she came, before she knew it, to the house itself.

  • The enclosure now existing has no reference to the outlines of the intrenchment.

  • The enclosure was very hot and stuffy; there was a smell of dust and straw.

    Meadow Grass

    Alice Brown

  • He offered the letter and its enclosure to Cornelius and Sir Ulick.

British Dictionary definitions for enclosure



  1. the act of enclosing or state of being enclosed
  2. a region or area enclosed by or as if by a fence
    1. the act of appropriating land, esp common land, by putting a hedge or other barrier around it
    2. historysuch acts as were carried out at various periods in England, esp between the 12th and 14th centuries and finally in the 18th and 19th centuries
  3. a fence, wall, etc, that serves to enclose
  4. something, esp a supporting document, enclosed within an envelope or wrapper, esp together with a letter
  5. British a section of a sports ground, racecourse, etc, allotted to certain spectators
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 enclosure

mid-15c., "action of enclosing," from enclose + -ure. Meaning "that which is enclosed" is from 1550s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper