Definition of cage in English:

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Pronunciation: /keɪdʒ/


1A structure of bars or wires in which birds or other animals are confined: she kept a canary in a cage figurative his cage of loneliness
More example sentences
  • What about keeping animals and birds in cages - that has to be cruel.
  • The primary source of water used for cleaning the animal cages and enclosures, the lake is also the place where the zoo eventually plans to release a large number of water birds.
  • Carry-bags and bottles, which are discarded on the premises after use, find their way to the vicinity of animal cages and enclosures.
enclosure, pen, pound;
coop, hutch, crate;
birdcage, aviary, mew;
North American  corral
1.1A prison cell or camp: inside the cage, three handcuffed prisoners were fighting each cage had a commanding officer who acted on behalf of the prisoners
More example sentences
  • Inside the cages, the prisoners remain manacled.
  • Such demands would only mean substituting many small cages for one central prison.
  • Ministry staff were terrified of the minister - terrified that they would end up in a cage in the basement prison if they displeased him in some way.
1.2An open framework forming the compartment in a lift: we passed the lift shafts, each with its rattling metal cage
More example sentences
  • When I arrived at the southern rim, the rescuers were all standing silent watching one of these cages being lifted out of the ruins.
  • The wind flowed from the respective blower is bypassed the illuminators, thereby entering into the inside of the elevator cage.
  • At around 17:20, the victim undertook the last work for the day by loading a carrying cart into the cage of the elevator, pushing the button for the second floor and the elevator ascended to the second floor.
1.3A structure of crossing bars or wires designed to hold or support something: the bottle slots into a light cage on the bike’s frame
More example sentences
  • A wire cage around each container supports the plants as they grow.
  • Jeff's original design used commercial tomato cages, with one pepper plant per cage.
  • These cages were originally designed for the purpose, as they make it easier to stand the cylinders up and at the same time protect the valves from knocks.
1.4 Baseball A portable backstop situated behind the batter during batting practice.
Example sentences
  • The two spent early mornings in the indoor batting cages during spring workouts and are constantly gabbing by the cage in batting practice.
  • To the right is the batting-practice cage, where we lean the costumes upside-down.
  • Dad had placed us directly behind the home plate cage to avoid having any random balls flying at us.
1.5A soccer or hockey goal made from a network frame.
Example sentences
  • It all began with a variety of events in the workshops, the half pipe, the basketball court, the soccer cage, the children's area and last but not least the karaoke tent.
  • A prominent measure of both victorious projects was the removal of the ‘soccer cage’ as an enclosure traditionally dominated by boys and male teenagers.
  • I broke a goalie's cage with my wrist shot.


[with object]
1Confine in a cage: the parrot screamed, furious at being caged (as adjective caged) a caged bird
More example sentences
  • Our first thoughts were that it was an escaped caged bird.
  • The dogs, cats and birds were mostly caged, often in pairs and sometimes in threes.
  • One of them had been partitioned with a sheet of corrugated plastic separating two caged birds into even smaller cages.
confine, shut in/up, pen, lock up, coop up, immure, incarcerate, imprison, impound;
North American  corral
1.1 informal Put in prison: five more teenage thugs were caged yesterday
More example sentences
  • Two teenage thugs chiefly responsible were caged for seven years each after admitting causing grievous bodily harm.
  • The man, 30, was caged for life yesterday for killing a pensioner and maiming a student, both total strangers to him.
  • The 14 prisoners, guilty and innocent alike, were then caged in a specially built eleven foot wooden cell on the top deck.


Middle English: via Old French from Latin cavea.

  • jail from Middle English:

    The words jail and cage (Middle English) both go back to Latin cavea ‘hollow, cave, cell’, from cavus ‘hollow’ the source of cave. In Late Latin the -ea at the end of cavea softened to a ‘ya’ or ‘ja’ sound, which explains the sound changes between the source and the forms we use. Jail arrived in medieval English in two forms, from Old French jaiole and Anglo-Norman gaole, which survives in the old-fashioned British spelling gaol.

Words that rhyme with cage

age, assuage, backstage, downstage, engage, enrage, gage, gauge, mage, multistage, offstage, onstage, Osage, page, Paige, rage, rampage, sage, stage, swage, under-age, upstage, wage

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