1. a boxlike enclosure having wires, bars, or the like, for confining and displaying birds or animals.
  2. anything that confines or imprisons; prison.
  3. something resembling a cage in structure, as for a cashier or bank teller.
  4. the car or enclosed platform of an elevator.
  5. Mining. an enclosed platform for raising and lowering people and cars in a mine shaft.
  6. any skeleton framework.
  7. Baseball. a movable backstop for use mainly in batting practice.
  8. a frame with a net attached to it, forming the goal in ice hockey and field hockey.
  9. Basketball Older Use. the basket.
  10. a loose, sheer or lacy overdress worn with a slip or a close-fitting dress.
  11. Ordnance. a steel framework for supporting guns.
  12. Machinery. retainer1(def 3).
verb (used with object), caged, cag·ing.
  1. to put or confine in or as if in a cage.
  2. Sports. to shoot (as a puck) into a cage so as to score a goal.

Origin of cage

1175–1225; Middle English < Old French < Latin cavea birdcage, equivalent to cav(us) hollow + -ea, feminine of -eus adj. suffix
Related formscage·less, adjectivecage·like, adjectivere·cage, verb (used with object), re·caged, re·cag·ing.

Synonyms for cage Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for recage


    1. an enclosure, usually made with bars or wire, for keeping birds, monkeys, mice, etc
    2. (as modifier)cagebird
  1. a thing or place that confines or imprisons
  2. something resembling a cage in function or structurethe rib cage
  3. the enclosed platform of a lift, esp as used in a mine
  4. engineering a skeleton ring device that ensures that the correct amount of space is maintained between the individual rollers or balls in a rolling bearing
  5. informal the basket used in basketball
  6. informal the goal in ice hockey
  7. US a steel framework on which guns are supported
  8. rattle someone's cage informal to upset or anger someone
  1. (tr) to confine in or as in a cage

Word Origin for cage

C13: from Old French, from Latin cavea enclosure, from cavus hollow


  1. John. 1912–92, US composer of experimental music for a variety of conventional, modified, or invented instruments. He evolved a type of music apparently undetermined by the composer, such as in Imaginary Landscape (1951) for 12 radio sets. Other works include Reunion (1968), Apartment Building 1776 (1976), and Europeras 3 and 4 (1990)
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 recage



1570s, from cage (n.). Related: Caged; caging.



early 13c., from Old French cage "cage, prison; retreat, hideout" (12c.), from Latin cavea "hollow place, enclosure for animals, coop, hive, stall, dungeon, spectators' seats in the theater" (cf. Italian gabbia "basket for fowls, coop;" see cave (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper