Definition of screen in English:

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Pronunciation: /skriːn/


1A fixed or movable upright partition used to divide a room, give shelter from draughts, heat, or light, or to provide concealment or privacy: the Special Branch man remained hidden behind the screen for prosecution witnesses a room with a red carpet and screens with oriental decorations
More example sentences
  • One way to improve the function of the room is to use room dividers; Japanese screens will allow the light to filter through and will provide a bright, clean look.
  • A furry black and white head emerged from behind one of the room's many Oriental screens.
  • There was no curtain or a screen to divide the men and women at the prayer.
partition, (room) divider, dividing wall, separator, curtain, arras, blind, awning, shade, shutter, canopy, windbreak
1.1A thing providing concealment or protection: his jeep was discreetly parked behind a screen of trees the article is using science as a screen for unexamined prejudice
More example sentences
  • The bus company will also make sure drivers are protected behind security screens.
  • First, hiding a suburban-like caravan park behind a tree screen would do little to alter the character of the land use itself.
  • So many visitors have tried to touch them that they are now protected behind a perspex screen.
buffer, protection, shield, shelter, guard, safeguard
1.2 [often with modifier] Architecture A partition of carved wood or stone separating the nave of a church from the chancel, choir, or sanctuary: the chancel screen retains two sections of the original oak arcading See also rood screen.
More example sentences
  • Most exceptional is the stone-vaulted chancel with its stone chancel screen with three tall and narrow openings.
  • A wrought-iron screen dividing the chancel and the nave impresses beyond words.
  • Rupert's account of his vision was written about 1125, before the widespread use of solid choir screens to partition space.
1.3A windscreen of a motor vehicle: a branch whipped across the screen and tore off one of the wipers
More example sentences
  • It's winter so you expect that your car's windscreen will be iced up in the morning You have to find something to clear the screen so you reach into your wallet or purse and pull out a credit card!
  • She watched the repetitive movement of the windscreen wipers swish backwards and forwards, clearing the screen from the streaks of water that blurred it.
  • Boot access is through a wide hatch or even by opening the rear screen.
1.4A frame with fine wire netting used in a window or doorway to keep out mosquitoes and other flying insects: gauze screens fitted to the doors and windows were tightly closed
More example sentences
  • If you travel to an area of the world that has a high risk for malaria, you can also install window screens, use insect repellents, and place mosquito netting over beds.
  • Make sure that insect screens on doors and windows are in good order, and fit rubber strips on the bottom of doors to seal gaps.
  • They are strongly attracted to artificial light and will come in through window screens if not a fine mesh.
mesh, net, netting
2A flat panel or area on an electronic device such as a television, computer, or smartphone, on which images and data are displayed: a television screen a computer screen a giant video screen
More example sentences
  • All you need is a device called a colorimeter, which attaches to your screen and adjusts your monitor automatically to display the correct hues.
  • The insulator structure may also enhance the focus of electrons emitted by the field emitter device on the display screen.
  • Since portable devices have small screens, much less data is required to achieve full-screen quality for video.
display, monitor, visual display unit, VDU, cathode-ray tube, CRT
2.1A blank surface on which a film or photographic image is projected: two historical swashbucklers are due to fill cinema screens this year a huge movie screen
More example sentences
  • These days, cinema screens are mostly filled with sappy King stories about human drama.
  • According to TV star, plans are in place for a sequel to the movie, which hit cinema screens at the peak of the show's success.
  • He also commented that the films were made for giant IMAX cinemas, whose screens have surfaces of hundreds of square metres.
2.2Films or television as a medium, genre, or industry: she’s a star of the track as well as the screen he is interviewed on screen
More example sentences
  • This film was the screen debut for both Hauer and costar Monique Van de Ven.
  • In The Stunt Man, one of the greatest actors the screen has ever known gives one of his greatest performances.
  • If there is any silver lining to these films it's the screen presence of the late N!
2.3The data or images displayed on a computer screen: pressing the F1 key at any time will display a help screen
More example sentences
  • Instead you're usually left calling for a screen instead of the computer recognizing the situation.
  • This program allows users to move smoothly and quickly between databases instead of struggling through a mass of windows and screens on the OR computer.
  • The fact that they're protected behind a login screen will either turn the causal browser away or leave them wondering what's being hidden.
2.4 Photography A flat piece of ground glass on which the image formed by a camera lens is focused.
3 Printing A transparent finely ruled plate or film used in half-tone reproduction.
Example sentences
  • The halftone screen used to create the greys for the text was terrible, and you could see dots with the naked eye.
  • Screenprints are almost invariably coloured, a different screen generally being used successively for each colour.
4 [in singular] A system of checking a person or thing for the presence or absence of something, typically a disease: services offered by the centre include a health screen for people who have just joined the company
More example sentences
  • Many patients can be reassured if testicular examination and a screen for STIs give normal results.
  • A positive screen indicates that the pregnancy is at a greater risk and further diagnostic testing needs to be offered.
  • The sign also prominently displayed the nature of the health screen being offered.
5A part of an electrical or other instrument which protects it from or prevents it causing electromagnetic interference.
5.1 Electronics (also screen grid) A grid placed between the control grid and the anode of a valve to reduce the capacitance between these electrodes.
6 Military A detachment of troops or ships detailed to cover the movements of the main body: HMS Prince Leopold and HMS Prince Charles sailed for Shetland with a screen of four destroyers
More example sentences
  • The most effective tactics are to engage the enemy with fighting patrols and screens of infantry and armour that can they withdraw into the city after causing casualties to the enemy.
  • There was to be a coastal ‘crust’ that was to consist of a thin screen of infantry deployed along the beaches.
  • In the 17th century, the musketeer and his relatively sophisticated weapon was protected from being ridden down by cavalry by protective screens of pikemen.
7A large sieve or riddle, especially one for sorting substances such as grain or coal into different sizes: the material retained on each sieve screen is weighed in turn
More example sentences
  • Processed Black tea leaves are sorted into different sizes by passing them over screens with different size holes.
  • Sample residues were washed, dried, and sieved through 0.125 mm screens.
  • While I have used commercial bonsai soils, the best tool purchase I ever made was a set of soil sieving screens.
sieve, riddle, sifter, strainer, colander, filter, winnow
archaic griddle


[with object]
1Conceal, protect, or shelter (someone or something) with a screen or something forming a screen: her hair swung across to screen her face a high hedge screened all of the front from passers-by
More example sentences
  • He now hopes to plant another 450 metres of hedge at Hob Moor to replace deteriorating hedges and to screen other ugly boundaries.
  • Another option is move the path to the school's eastern boundary and build a high fence, wall or hedge to screen the school.
  • A Yew hedge screens the paved area at the back door which leads to a herb garden.
conceal, hide, mask, shield, shelter, shade, protect, guard, safeguard, veil, cloak, camouflage, disguise
1.1 (screen something off) Separate something from something else with or as if with a screen: an area had been screened off as a waiting room
More example sentences
  • An oval meeting area at the entry can be screened off by a sheer curtain and by pivoting millwork elements for displaying candy.
  • In older parts of town, the canals are screened off from yards and businesses by the equally impenetrable walls of giant oleanders.
  • St George's Market appeared deserted: half of it was screened off, and of the remaining space only a quarter was filled by booths from the washroom industry.
partition off, divide off, separate off, curtain off
1.2Protect (someone) from something dangerous or unpleasant: in my country a man of my rank would be screened completely from any risk of attack
More example sentences
  • They had to be whisked in by a back entrance, completely screened from the workers protesting outside.
  • National Guard soldiers manned the checkpoint at the corner, screening traders on their way to work.
1.3Prevent from causing or protect from electromagnetic interference: ensure that your microphone leads are properly screened from hum pickup
More example sentences
  • To examine reception quality, a researcher made a call and then walked into a room screened to prevent cellphone signals penetrating its walls or bouncing around inside.
2Show (a film or video) or broadcast (a television programme): the show is to be screened by the BBC later this year
More example sentences
  • The amateur video has been widely screened on television news bulletins around the world.
  • Dad asked Mom if any films had been screened yet on television.
  • A TV viewer recently wrote a letter to a newspaper complaining about the films screened by a private television station during the school holidays.
show, present, air, broadcast, transmit, televise, put out, put on the air, telecast, relay
3Test (a person or substance) for the presence or absence of a disease: outpatients were screened for cervical cancer
More example sentences
  • Subjects were recruited prenatally by screening parents using skin testing and questionnaires regarding allergic diseases.
  • These patients were all screened for the presence of underlying thrombophilia using the same tests as those performed in the study patients.
  • There are very few silent diseases that can be effectively screened for with blood tests - such as diabetes.
3.1Check on or investigate (someone), typically to ascertain whether they are suitable for or can be trusted in a particular situation or job: all prospective presidential candidates would have to be screened by a preselection committee
More example sentences
  • There have been pilot programs to screen passengers and check luggage at two Amtrak stations.
  • The selection committee is responsible for screening the candidates and for ensuring that mentors and mentees are matched according to profile and career.
  • To achieve this, the congregation's president appointed a committee of eight to screen candidates.
vet, check, check up on, check out, evaluate, assess, scrutinize, test
check, test, examine, investigate, scan
3.2Evaluate or analyse (something) for its suitability for a particular purpose or application: only one per cent of rainforest plants have been screened for medical use
More example sentences
  • Prior to analysis, the variables were screened for assumptions of statistical analysis.
  • These mutants were then screened for their ability to suppress other yme1 phenotypes, as well as for inherent collateral phenotypes.
  • The suo mutations were screened for their ability to restore growth of pex2 mutants on OA medium.
3.3 (screen someone/thing out) Exclude someone or something after evaluation or investigation: anti-spam software can screen out large amounts of unwanted email
More example sentences
  • It was his belief that the Council's senior officials were appalled that the four other potential routes were screened out because of a plant.
  • That lead narrows as you screen out those who are most likely to vote.
  • Effective background investigations, however, will screen out the most serious threats.
4Pass (a substance such as grain or coal) through a large sieve or screen, especially so as to sort it into different sizes: granulated asphalt—manufactured to 40 mm down or screened to 28 mm & 14 mm down
More example sentences
  • Mesh barriers or sieves can screen out anything larger than a certain size from incoming water.
  • Other material would be sorted, screened, shredded and baled.
  • Local materials may be used when dried and screened to meet required size and hardness and when determined to be free of grease or other impurities.
sieve, riddle, sift, strain, filter, sort, winnow
archaic bolt, griddle
5 Printing Project (a photograph or other image) through a transparent ruled plate so as to be able to reproduce it as a half-tone.



Example sentences
  • The authors recommend that health care workers intensify outreach to women who have rarely or never been screened for cervical, breast, or colon cancer and other screenable diseases.
  • Nineteen studies were assessed for internal validity (including several forms of bias) and external validity (including losses from the screenable population).
  • The museum itself is fundamentally a long single-storey exhibition gallery, lit partly by large screenable glass windows.


Example sentences
  • Does new technology giving airport screeners X-ray vision go too far?
  • Does they have reliable data on just what contribution to the current piracy problem Academy screeners represent?
  • So as a result, you have two or three screeners in one place trying to do the work that would usually be done by 10 or 15.


Example sentences
  • For example, ‘paging’ - the need, in the old days of character-based displays, to show only one screenful of information at a time - was broken into a separate small program.
  • The submitted essays range in length from a few terse words to a screenful of close type.
  • Google can provide screenfuls of information about a prospective match.


Middle English: shortening of Old Northern French escren, of Germanic origin.

Words that rhyme with screen

Aberdeen, Amin, aquamarine, baleen, bean, been, beguine, Benin, between, canteen, careen, Claudine, clean, contravene, convene, cuisine, dean, Dene, e'en, eighteen, fascine, fedayeen, fifteen, figurine, foreseen, fourteen, Francine, gean, gene, glean, gombeen, green, Greene, Halloween, intervene, Janine, Jean, Jeannine, Jolene, Kean, keen, Keene, Ladin, langoustine, latrine, lean, limousine, machine, Maclean, magazine, Malines, margarine, marine, Mascarene, Massine, Maxine, mean, Medellín, mesne, mien, Moline, moreen, mujahedin, Nadine, nankeen, Nazarene, Nene, nineteen, nougatine, obscene, palanquin, peen, poteen, preen, quean, Rabin, Racine, ramin, ravine, routine, Sabine, saltine, sardine, sarin, sateen, scene, seen, serene, seventeen, shagreen, shebeen, sheen, sixteen, spleen, spring-clean, squireen, Steen, submarine, supervene, tambourine, tangerine, teen, terrine, thirteen, transmarine, treen, tureen, Tyrrhene, ultramarine, umpteen, velveteen, wean, ween, Wheen, yean

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: screen

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