Often wrappings. the covering in which something is wrapped.

Origin of wrapping

Middle English word dating back to 1350–1400; see origin at wrap, -ing1



verb (used with object), wrapped or wrapt, wrap·ping.

to enclose in something wound or folded about (often followed by up): She wrapped her head in a scarf.
to enclose and make fast (an article, bundle, etc.) within a covering of paper or the like (often followed by up): He wrapped the package up in brown paper.
to wind, fold, or bind (something) about as a covering.
to protect with coverings, outer garments, etc. (usually followed by up).
to cover (fingernails) with a sheer silk or linen fabric, as to repair or strengthen them.
to surround, envelop, shroud, or hide.
to fold or roll up.
Movies, Television. to finish the filming of (a motion picture).

verb (used without object), wrapped or wrapt, wrap·ping.

to wrap oneself (usually followed by up).
to become wrapped, as about something; fold.
Movies, Television. to complete the filming of a motion picture: We hope to wrap in time for Christmas.


something to be wrapped about the person, especially in addition to the usual indoor clothing, as a shawl, scarf, or sweater: an evening wrap.
a beauty treatment in which a part or all of the body is covered with cream, lotion, herbs, or the like and then wrapped snugly with cloth.
a sheer silk or linen fabric glued to the fingernails to repair or strengthen them.
a piece of thin, flat bread wrapped around a filling and eaten as a sandwich.
Movies, Television.
  1. the completion of photography on a film or an individual scene.
  2. the termination of a working day during the shooting of a film.


wraparound in style: a wrap skirt.

Verb Phrases

wrap up, to conclude; finish work on: to wrap up a project.

Origin of wrap

1275–1325; Middle English (v.), of obscure origin; compare dialectal Danish vravle to wind
Related formsin·ter·wrap, verb (used without object), in·ter·wrapped, in·ter·wrap·ping.pre·wrap, verb (used with object), pre·wrapped, pre·wrap·ping.pre·wrap, nounre·wrap, verb, re·wrapped, re·wrap·ping.un·der·wrap, nounun·der·wrap, verb (used with object), un·der·wrapped, un·der·wrap·ping.
Can be confusedrap wraprapped rapt wrapped wrapt
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for wrapping

Contemporary Examples of wrapping

Historical Examples of wrapping

  • Linda picked it up, untied the string, and slipped off the wrapping.

    Her Father's Daughter

    Gene Stratton-Porter

  • To the devil with this dismal darkness, wrapping itself about one with a chill!

    Little Dorrit

    Charles Dickens

  • That burst of cold—had it truly been liquid fires, wrapping him around?

    Two Thousand Miles Below

    Charles Willard Diffin

  • He was wrapping the beautiful smell again in the tissue wrappings.

    The Very Small Person

    Annie Hamilton Donnell

  • He undid the wrapping of the lawyer's letter and, as he read, the blood went from his face.

    Murder Point

    Coningsby Dawson

British Dictionary definitions for wrapping



the material used to wrap something


verb wraps, wrapping or wrapped (mainly tr)

to fold or wind (paper, cloth, etc) around (a person or thing) so as to cover
(often foll by up) to fold paper, etc, around to fasten securely
to surround or conceal by surrounding
to enclose, immerse, or absorbwrapped in sorrow
to fold, wind, or roll up
(intr; often foll by about, around, etc) to be or become wound or extended
to complete the filming of (a motion picture or television programme)
Also called: rap (often foll by up) Australian informal to praise (someone)


a garment worn wrapped around the body, esp the shoulders, such as a shawl or cloak
a type of sandwich consisting of a tortilla wrapped round a filling
mainly US wrapping or a wrapper
British slang a small package of an illegal drug in powder forma wrap of heroin
Also called: rap Australian informal a commendation
  1. the end of a working day during the filming of a motion picture or television programme
  2. the completion of filming of a motion picture or television programme
keep under wraps to keep secret
take the wraps off to reveal

Word Origin for wrap

C14: origin unknown
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 wrapping



early 14c., wrappen, of uncertain etymology, perhaps via Scandinavian (cf. Danish dialectal vravle "to wind"), ultimately from PIE *werp- "to turn, wind" (cf. Greek rhaptein "to sew"), from root *wer- (3) "to turn, bend" (see versus). Related: Wrapped; wrapping.



late 15c., "fine cloth used as a cover or wrapping for bread," from wrap (v.). As a type of women's garment, recorded from 1827. Meaning "end of a filming session" is attested from 1974. Figurative phrase under wraps "in concealment" is recorded from 1939.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with wrapping


In addition to the idiom beginning with wrap

  • wrap up

also see:

  • twist (wrap) around one's finger
  • under wraps
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.