• synonyms


[pawr-tl, pohr-]
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  1. a door, gate, or entrance, especially one of imposing appearance, as to a palace.
  2. an iron or steel bent for bracing a framed structure, having curved braces between the vertical members and a horizontal member at the top.
  3. an entrance to a tunnel or mine.
  4. Computers. a website that functions as an entry point to the Internet, as by providing useful content and linking to various sites and features on the World Wide Web.
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Origin of portal1

1300–50; Middle English portale < Medieval Latin, noun use of neuter of portālis of a gate. See portal2
Related formspor·taled, por·talled, adjective


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[pawr-tl, pohr-]Anatomy
  1. noting or pertaining to the transverse fissure of the liver.
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  1. portal vein.
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Origin of portal2

First recorded in 1605–15, portal is from the Medieval Latin word portālis of a gate. See port4, -al1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

entrance, opening, entryway, ingress, gate, entry, gateway, doorway

Examples from the Web for portal

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Historical Examples

British Dictionary definitions for portal


  1. an entrance, gateway, or doorway, esp one that is large and impressive
  2. any entrance or access to a place
  3. computing an internet site providing links to other sites
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  1. anatomy
    1. of or relating to a portal veinhepatic portal system
    2. of or relating to a porta
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Word Origin

C14: via Old French from Medieval Latin portāle, from Latin porta gate, entrance
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 portal


late 14c., "gate, gateway," from Old French portal "gate" (Modern French portail) and directly from Medieval Latin portale "city gate, porch," from neuter of portalis (adj.) "of a gate," from Latin porta "gate" (see port (n.1)).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

portal in Medicine


  1. Of or relating to a porta or hilum.
  2. Of or relating to the portal vein or the portal system.
  3. Of or relating to a point of entrance to an organ, especially the transverse fissure of the liver, through which the blood vessels enter.
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  1. The portal vein.
  2. The point of entry into the body of a pathogenic microorganism.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

portal in Culture


A Web site that provides a gateway to other Web sites.

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The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.