There are 2 main definitions of barn in English:

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barn1

Syllabification: barn
Pronunciation: /bärn
 
/

noun

1A large farm building used for storing grain, hay, or straw or for housing livestock.
Example sentences
  • Also within the wall would have been a well, latrines, a chapel, workshops, barns, pens for livestock, hen houses and perhaps other outbuildings.
  • On the way to the working farm, they marvel at the bucolic scene - rolling hills with acres of corn and soybean fields, the green pastures interspersed with barns and farm houses.
  • Clean livestock barns have fewer fly problems.
Synonyms
outbuilding, shed, cowshed, shelter;
stable, stall, outhouse
archaic grange, garner
1.1North American A large shed used for storing vehicles.
Example sentences
  • One barn featured rapid transit cars that were awaiting some restoration.
  • ALL Santa wants for Christmas is a new barn, shed or stable for his sleigh.
  • In the car barn we saw numbers 2002 through 6 in various stages of build.
1.2A large and unattractive building: moved into that barn of a house
More example sentences
  • It was a great barn of a place with a cement floor, fibreboard partitions and windows only at the extreme river end.
  • If you're not enlightened, Savemart is this big second-hand barn of a store nestled in the industrial sprawl of northern Te Rapa.
  • He had a whole room of metal-working equipment, a room full of wood-working equipment, and this huge barn of a room for electronics.

Origin

Old English bern, berern, from bere 'barley' + ern, ærn 'house'.

More
  • A barn was originally a place for storing barley (Old English), the word coming from Old English from bere ‘barley’ and ern ‘house’. In the 1940s barn started to be used in particle physics as a unit of areas. It is apparently from the phrase as big as a barn door, a long established measure of size.

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There are 2 main definitions of barn in English:

Share this entry

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barn2

Syllabification: barn
Pronunciation: /bärn
 
/
(abbreviation: b)

noun

Physics
A unit of area, 10-28 square meters, used especially in particle physics.
Example sentences
  • While the barn is not an SI unit, it is accepted (although discouraged) for use with the SI.
  • The barn is typically used to measure the cross section for nuclear reactions.
  • Cross-sections are measured in barns, 10-28 m2.

Origin

1940s: apparently from the phrase as big as a barn door.

More
  • A barn was originally a place for storing barley (Old English), the word coming from Old English from bere ‘barley’ and ern ‘house’. In the 1940s barn started to be used in particle physics as a unit of areas. It is apparently from the phrase as big as a barn door, a long established measure of size.

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