[roo-fing, roo f-ing]


the act of covering with a roof.
material for roofs.
a roof.

Origin of roofing

First recorded in 1400–50, roofing is from the late Middle English word rovyng. See roof, -ing1


[roof, roo f]

noun, plural roofs.

the external upper covering of a house or other building.
a frame for supporting this: an open-timbered roof.
the highest part or summit: The Himalayas are the roof of the world.
something that in form or position resembles the roof of a house, as the top of a car, the upper part of the mouth, etc.
a house.
Mining. the rock immediately above a horizontal mineral deposit.

verb (used with object)

to provide or cover with a roof.

Origin of roof

before 900; Middle English (noun); Old English hrōf; cognate with Dutch roef cover, cabin, Old Norse hrōf
Related formsroof·like, adjectivere·roof, verb (used with object)self-roofed, adjectiveun·der·roof, nounun·roofed, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for roofing

Contemporary Examples of roofing

Historical Examples of roofing

  • Coupeau was then finishing the roofing of a new three-storied house.


    Emile Zola

  • The roofing which remains is executed entirely in stone, but not arched or vaulted.


    Thomas Roger Smith

  • The roofing of these two rooms and some ironwork on the gate remained to be completed.

    When the West Was Young

    Frederick R. Bechdolt

  • The leaf of the sago is preferable for the roofing of houses to the nibong.

  • The building was unfinished; the sky could be seen through the joists of the roofing.

    Madame Bovary

    Gustave Flaubert

British Dictionary definitions for roofing



material used to construct a roof
the act of constructing a roof


noun plural roofs (ruːfs, ruːvz)

  1. a structure that covers or forms the top of a building
  2. (in combination)the rooftop
  3. (as modifier)a roof garden
the top covering of a vehicle, oven, or other structurethe roof of a car
anatomy any structure that covers an organ or partthe roof of the mouth
a highest or topmost point or partMount Everest is the roof of the world
a house or other sheltera poor man's roof
mountaineering the underside of a projecting overhang
hit the roof or go through the roof informal
  1. to get extremely angry; become furious
  2. to rise or increase steeply
raise the roof
  1. to create a boisterous disturbance
  2. to react or protest heatedly


(tr) to provide or cover with a roof or rooflike part
Derived Formsroofer, nounroofless, adjectiverooflike, adjective

Word Origin for roof

Old English hrōf; related to Middle Dutch, Old Norse hrōf
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 roofing



Old English hrof "roof, ceiling, top, summit; heaven, sky," also figuratively, "highest point of something," from Proto-Germanic *khrofam (cf. Old Frisian rhoof "roof," Middle Dutch roof, rouf "cover, roof," Dutch roef "deckhouse, cabin, coffin-lid," Middle High German rof "penthouse," Old Norse hrof "boat shed").

No apparent connections outside Germanic. "English alone has retained the word in a general sense, for which the other languages use forms corresponding to OE. þæc thatch" [OED]. Roof of the mouth is from late Old English. Raise the roof "create an uproar" is attested from 1860, originally in U.S. Southern dialect.



early 15c., from roof (n.). Related: Roofed; roofing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

roofing in Medicine


[rōōf, ruf]


The upper surface of an anatomical structure, especially one having a vaulted inner structure.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Idioms and Phrases with roofing


In addition to the idiom beginning with roof

  • roof over one's head, a

also see:

  • go through the roof
  • hit the ceiling (roof)
  • like a cat on hot bricks (a hot tin roof)
  • raise the roof
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.