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  1. a hard, impure, protein gelatin, obtained by boiling skins, hoofs, and other animal substances in water, that when melted or diluted is a strong adhesive.
  2. any of various solutions or preparations of this substance, used as an adhesive.
  3. any of various other solutions or preparations that can be used as adhesives.
verb (used with object), glued, glu·ing.
  1. to join or fasten with glue.
  2. to cover or smear (something) with glue (sometimes followed by up).
  3. to fix or attach firmly with or as if with glue; make adhere closely: to glue a model ship together.

Origin of glue

1300–50; (noun) Middle English glu, gleu < Old French glu < Latin glūt- (stem of glūs); cognate with Greek gloiós gum, anything sticky; (v.) Middle English glywen, glewen, derivative of the noun
Related formsglue·like, adjectiveglu·er, nounre·glue, verb (used with object), re·glued, re·glu·ing.

Synonyms for glue

See more synonyms for on Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for gluing

Contemporary Examples of gluing

Historical Examples of gluing

  • So all that day the shepherd was splicing, and hammering, and gluing, and bandaging.

  • Where much surface is required for gluing, a double one may be better.

    Handwork in Wood

    William Noyes

  • When gluing up the whole table, be sure the sides are square to each other.

    Mission Furniture

    H. H. Windsor

  • The assembling consisted of first gluing together the sides and ends.

    Carpentry and Woodwork

    Edwin W. Foster

  • By gluing these pieces together alternately, border a will result.

    Carpentry and Woodwork

    Edwin W. Foster

British Dictionary definitions for gluing


  1. any natural or synthetic adhesive, esp a sticky gelatinous substance prepared by boiling animal products such as bones, skin, and horns
  2. any other sticky or adhesive substance
verb glues, gluing, glueing or glued
  1. (tr) to join or stick together with or as if with glue
Derived Formsgluelike, adjectivegluer, noungluey, adjective

Word Origin for glue

C14: from Old French glu, from Late Latin glūs; compare Greek gloios
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 gluing



late 14c., from Old French gluer, from glu (see glue (n.)). Related: Glued; gluing.



early 13c., from Old French glu "birdlime" (12c.), from Late Latin glutem (nominative glus) "glue," from Latin gluten "glue, beeswax," from PIE *gleit- "to glue, paste" (cf. Lithuanian glitus "sticky," glitas "mucus;" Old English cliða "plaster"), from root *glei- "to stick together" (see clay). In reference to glue from boiled animal hoofs and hides, c.1400. Glue-sniffing attested from 1963.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper