Definition of palisade in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /ˌpalɪˈseɪd/


1A fence of wooden stakes or iron railings fixed in the ground, forming an enclosure or defence: at this time fortifications consisted mainly of earth banks and wooden palisades
More example sentences
  • Houses may be round, square, or beehive-shaped; in some areas, clusters of huts are enclosed in wooden palisades.
  • Some were working outside a thick palisade of wooden palings which ran circling outside the buildings.
  • Alison Roberts, 20, from Exeter University, works on the palisade of the Iron Age settlement at Sutton Common, near Doncaster.
fence, paling, enclosure, defence, barricade, stockade, fortification, bulwark
1.1 historical A strong pointed wooden stake fixed in the ground with others in a close row, used as a defence.
Example sentences
  • This distinctive industry may have been tied to new timbering practices, such as posts and palisades at the town and mound centers.
  • The side was covered with a wooden palisade fence, with barbed wire on the top.
  • Steel palisade fences have now been put up to stem the tide of vandalism.
2 (palisades) US A line of high cliffs.
Example sentences
  • Most books mark the route's end where Santa Monica Boulevard intersects Ocean Avenue, on the palisades above Santa Monica State Beach.
  • It is a rousing thing to find yourself crossing the George Washington Bridge, the skyline of Manhattan falling away as the green palisades of New Jersey surge forward.
  • On top of this Palisade cliff where Palm trees sway with the ocean breeze, you will find a charming park, a mile long, overlooking the Pacific Ocean.


[with object] (usually as adjective palisaded)
Enclose or provide (a building or place) with a palisade: a palisaded earthwork once lay across the neck of the promontory
More example sentences
  • Significantly, Fred Edwards and Hartley Fort have produced evidence for Late Woodland-Mississippian interaction and, like Aztalan in eastern Wisconsin, these sites were palisaded.
  • Water infatuation is implicit in the location of many henges, while the massive palisaded enclosures at West Kennet, partly visible from Silbury, straddled the Kennet.
  • The ditch and palisaded dyke would have made it difficult for Welsh raiders to enter England, but almost impossible for them to return laden with any booty such as cattle.


Early 17th century: from French palissade, from Provençal palissada, from palissa 'paling', based on Latin palus 'stake'.

  • pale from Middle English:

    The word for a ‘stake’ is from Old French pal, from Latin palus ‘stake’, which ultimately goes back to the same root found in page and pageant as well as paling (Late Middle English). The Pale was a name given to the part of Ireland under English jurisdiction before the 16th century. The earliest reference to the Pale in Ireland, from the modestly titled Introduction to Knowledge of 1547, stated that Ireland was divided into two parts, one being the English Pale and the other being ‘the wild Irish’. Many people believe that this enclosed English part of Ireland was the source of the expression beyond the pale but this is extremely unlikely, as the phrase is not recorded until the 18th century, and its origin remains something of a mystery. The Latin also gives us palisade (early 17th century), and impale (mid 16th century) first found in the sense ‘surround with a pale, fortify’, with ‘thrust a stake though’ recorded from the late 17th century. The adjective meaning ‘light’ comes via Old French pale from Latin pallidus, with the same meaning, and also the source of pallor (Late Middle English) and pallid (late 16th century), and has been in the language since the Middle Ages.

Words that rhyme with palisade

abrade, afraid, aid, aide, ambuscade, arcade, balustrade, barricade, Belgrade, blade, blockade, braid, brigade, brocade, cannonade, carronade, cascade, cavalcade, cockade, colonnade, crusade, dissuade, downgrade, enfilade, esplanade, evade, fade, fusillade, glade, grade, grenade, grillade, handmade, harlequinade, homemade, invade, jade, lade, laid, lemonade, limeade, made, maid, man-made, marinade, masquerade, newlaid, orangeade, paid, parade, pasquinade, persuade, pervade, raid, serenade, shade, Sinéad, staid, stockade, stock-in-trade, suede, tailor-made, they'd, tirade, trade, Ubaid, underpaid, undismayed, unplayed, unsprayed, unswayed, upbraid, upgrade, wade

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: pal¦is|ade

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.