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port

1
[pawrt, pohrt]
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noun
  1. a city, town, or other place where ships load or unload.
  2. a place along a coast in which ships may take refuge from storms; harbor.
  3. Also called port of entry. Law. any place where persons and merchandise are allowed to pass, by water or land, into and out of a country and where customs officers are stationed to inspect or appraise imported goods.
  4. a geographical area that forms a harbor: the largest port on the eastern seaboard.
  5. Informal. an airport.
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Origin of port

1
before 900; Middle English, Old English < Latin portus harbor, haven; akin to ford
Related formsport·less, adjective

Synonyms for port

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2. anchorage. See harbor.

port

2
[pawrt, pohrt]
noun
  1. the left-hand side of a vessel or aircraft, facing forward.
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adjective
  1. pertaining to or designating port.
  2. located on the left side of a vessel or aircraft.
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verb (used with or without object)
  1. to turn or shift to the port, or left, side.
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Origin of port

2
First recorded in 1570–80; special use of port4

port

3
[pawrt, pohrt]
noun
  1. any of a class of very sweet wines, mostly dark-red, originally from Portugal.
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Origin of port

3
1695–95; earlier Oporto, (Port) O Port < Portuguese Oporto Oporto, the main port of shipment for the wines of Portugal

port

4
[pawrt, pohrt]
noun
  1. an opening in the side or other exterior part of a ship for admitting air and light or for taking on cargo.Compare porthole(def 1).
  2. Machinery. an aperture in the surface of a cylinder, for the passage of steam, air, water, etc.
  3. a small aperture in an armored vehicle, aircraft, or fortification through which a gun can be fired or a camera directed.
  4. Computers.
    1. a physical connection in a computer to which a peripheral device or a transmission line from a remote terminal can be attached.
    2. Also called port number. a numerical code that identifies an origin or destination within an IP address:Routers can be configured to change ports within the local network.
  5. the raised center portion on a bit for horses.
  6. Chiefly Scot. a gate or portal, as to a town or fortress.
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Origin of port

4
before 950; Middle English, Old English < Latin porta gate; akin to portus port1

port

5
[pawrt, pohrt]
verb (used with object)
  1. Military. to carry (a rifle or other weapon) with both hands, in a slanting direction across the front of the body, with the barrel or like part near the left shoulder.
  2. Digital Technology. to create a new version of (an application program) to run on a different hardware platform (sometimes followed by over): The publisher is porting several classic games to next-generation consoles.
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noun
  1. Military. the position of a rifle or other weapon when ported.
  2. Digital Technology. a version of an existing video game published for a different console or device.
  3. Archaic. manner of bearing oneself; carriage or deportment.
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Origin of port

5
1560–70; < French porter < Latin portāre to carry; see fare

Port.

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for port

harbor, wharf, seaport, sanctuary, shelter, anchorage, landing, refuge, gate, retreat, haven, roadstead, dockyard, harborage, boatyard, dockage

Examples from the Web for port

Contemporary Examples of port

Historical Examples of port

  • He may perhaps be on the eve of starting away by some of the vessels in the port.

    Life in London

    Edwin Hodder

  • The decadence of Narbonne as a port is due to natural causes.

    In the Heart of Vosges

    Matilda Betham-Edwards

  • I was ashore every day while the squadron remained in the port.

    Ned Myers

    James Fenimore Cooper

  • This vessel belonged to Charleston, and it was intended she should return to her own port.

    Ned Myers

    James Fenimore Cooper

  • The two brigs had gone, but there was still a considerable French force in port.

    Ned Myers

    James Fenimore Cooper


British Dictionary definitions for port

port

1
noun
  1. a town or place alongside navigable water with facilities for the loading and unloading of ships
  2. See port of entry
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Word Origin for port

Old English, from Latin portus harbour, port

port

2
noun
  1. Also called (formerly): larboard
    1. the left side of an aircraft or vessel when facing the nose or bow
    2. (as modifier)the port bow Compare starboard (def. 1)
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verb
  1. to turn or be turned towards the port
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Word Origin for port

C17: origin uncertain

port

3
noun
  1. a sweet fortified dessert wine
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Word Origin for port

C17: after Oporto, Portugal, from where it came originally

port

4
noun
  1. nautical
    1. an opening in the side of a ship, fitted with a watertight door, for access to the holds
    2. See porthole (def. 1)
  2. a small opening in a wall, armoured vehicle, etc, for firing through
  3. an aperture, esp one controlled by a valve, by which fluid enters or leaves the cylinder head of an engine, compressor, etc
  4. electronics a logic circuit for the input and ouput of data
  5. mainly Scot a gate or portal in a town or fortress
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Word Origin for port

Old English, from Latin porta gate

port

5
verb
  1. (tr) to carry (a rifle, etc) in a position diagonally across the body with the muzzle near the left shoulder
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noun
  1. this position
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Word Origin for port

C14: from Old French, from porter to carry, from Latin portāre

port

6
verb
  1. (tr) computing to change (programs) from one system to another
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Word Origin for port

C20: probably from port 4

port

7
noun
  1. Australian (esp in Queensland) a suitcase or school case
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Word Origin for port

C20: shortened from portmanteau

Port.

abbreviation for
  1. Portugal
  2. Portuguese
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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 port

n.1

"harbor," Old English port "harbor, haven," reinforced by Old French port "harbor, port; mountain pass;" Old English and Old French words both from Latin portus "port, harbor," originally "entrance, passage," figuratively "place of refuge, assylum," from PIE *prtu- "a going, a passage," from root *per- (2) "to lead, pass over" (cf. Sanskrit parayati "carries over;" Greek poros "journey, passage, way," peirein "to pierce, run through;" Latin porta "gate, door," portare "passage," peritus "experienced;" Avestan peretush "passage, ford, bridge;" Armenian hordan "go forward;" Welsh rhyd "ford;" Old Church Slavonic pariti "to fly;" Old English faran "to go, journey," Old Norse fjörðr "inlet, estuary").

Meaning "left side of a ship" (looking forward from the stern) is attested from 1540s, from notion of "the side facing the harbor" (when a ship is docked). It replaced larboard in common usage to avoid confusion with starboard; officially so by Admiralty order of 1844 and U.S. Navy Department notice of 1846. Figurative sense "place of refuge" is attested from early 15c.; phrase any port in a storm first recorded 1749. A port of call (1810) is one paid a scheduled visit by a ship.

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n.2

"gateway," Old English port "portal, door, gate, entrance," from Old French porte "gate, entrance," from Latin porta "city gate, gate; door, entrance," from PIE root *per- (see port (n.1)). Specific meaning "porthole, opening in the side of a ship" is attested from c.1300.

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n.3

"bearing, mien," c.1300, from Old French port, from porter "to carry," from Latin portare (see port (n.1)).

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n.4

type of sweet dark-red wine, 1690s, shortened from Oporto, city in northwest Portugal from which the wine originally was shipped to England; from O Porto "the port;" (see port (n.1)).

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v.

"to carry," from Middle French porter, from Latin portare "to carry" (see port (n.1)). Related: Ported; porting.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

port in Science

port

[pôrt]
  1. An opening, as in a cylinder or valve face, for the passage of steam or fluid.
  2. A place where data can pass into or out of a central processing unit, computer, or peripheral. With central processing units, a port is a fixed set of connections for incoming and outgoing data or instructions. With computers and peripherals, a port is generally a socket into which a connector can be plugged.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with port

port

see any port in a storm.

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