Definition of tower in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈtou(ə)r/


1A tall narrow building, either freestanding or forming part of a building such as a church or castle.
Example sentences
  • Between them run narrow alleys affording breathtaking views over the roofscape and church towers of central Stockholm.
  • Higher buildings like church towers only have two traversable levels and much of the land is devoid of any low brush vegetation.
  • Churches, with high towers on buildings right in the centre of their community, are seen as ideal locations for the next generation of communication masts.
steeple, spire;
skyscraper, high-rise, edifice;
transmission tower
1.1 [with modifier] A tall structure that houses machinery, operators, etc.
Example sentences
  • The armed separatist group placed bombs on two high-tension electricity towers run by grid operator Red Electrica.
  • Due to a hill between the television tower and my house, I rely on Austar for TV reception.
  • Operators of wind towers will tend to want to build them in mountainous areas with high winds and along shorelines and thereby ruin some beautiful scenic vistas.
1.2 [with modifier] A tall structure used as a receptacle or for storage: a CD tower
More example sentences
  • Police searched his house on March 4 this year and a computer tower and storage media were found containing 95 images in total.
  • Her CD collection was arranged alphabetically in a tall CD tower, and she always kept her favorite ones of the moment on the top.
  • The tall grain tower was hardly anywhere near civilization.
1.3A tall pile or mass of something: a titanic tower of garbage
More example sentences
  • I'd gone to interview her in 1994 and found a copy of it in a second-hand bookstore in Exmouth, crawling around on the floor to explore the towers of books haphazardly piled there.
  • There are mini backlit towers of wine bottles stacked behind the bar, and each place is set with a spotless wineglass and crisp, white linens.
  • Invite the children to help you make a tower with the books and talk about favorite stories as you take the books out of the box.
1.4 (the Tower) see Tower of London.
2A place of defense; a protection.
Example sentences
  • Basic tools and pure muscle were used to construct everything from security towers to protective barriers fronted by razor wire.
  • Behind it, soaring for 70 metres into the sky, was the tower protecting the sanctum.
  • The tower was used to protect the palace during war.


[no object]
1Rise to or reach a great height: he seemed to tower over everyone else
More example sentences
  • The group objected to the development's design and height, stating it would tower over the neighbourhood.
  • Tony towered over her, like he did while on the horse, like Fellini's women tower over him.
  • You wish you were wearing the boots with three-inch heels instead of the boots with one-inch heels so you could tower over him even more than you already do.
soar, rise, rear, loom;
overshadow, overhang, hang over, dominate
2(Of a bird) soar to a great height, especially (of a falcon) so as to be able to swoop down on the quarry.
Example sentences
  • The big ticket item was a US Air Force B1 Bomber, which towered over the surrounding displays like a massive bird of prey.


tower of strength



( literary)


Old English torr, reinforced in Middle English by Old French tour, from Latin turris, from Greek.

  • This comes ultimately from Greek via Latin and French tour. The phrase tower of strength is from a use in the Book of Common Prayer: ‘O Lord…be unto them a tower of strength’ and originally meant ‘a strong tower’. A turret (Middle English), in Old French tourete, is a little tower.

Words that rhyme with tower

bower, cower, devour, dower, embower, empower, endower, flour, flower, gaur, Glendower, glower, hour, lour, lower, our, plougher (US plower), power, scour, shower, sour, Stour, sweet-and-sour anoa, Balboa, blower, boa, foregoer, goer, grower, hoer, jerboa, knower, Krakatoa, Lebowa, lower, moa, mower, Mururoa, Noah, o'er, proa, protozoa, rower, Samoa, sewer, Shenandoah, shower, sower, spermatozoa, Stour, thrower

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: tow·er

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