General English

General Science

  • noun a long straight solid piece of material, usually metal
  • noun a long bank of sand submerged at high tide at the entrance to a harbour, river or bay
  • verb to stop someone from doing something


  • Unit of pressure, approximately equal to the pressure of the Earth’s atmosphere at sea level


  • noun a place where you can buy and drink alcohol

Cars & Driving

  • noun a unit of pressure; one bar equals 100 kilopascals or 14.5 pound-force per square inch.


  • noun a thick line or block of colour


  • A deformed steel member used to reinforce concrete.
  • A solid piece of metal whose length is substantially greater than its width.


  • A unit of pressure equal to 100 kilopascals, 106 dynes per square centimeter, or about 750.062 torr. It is a bit below the average atmospheric pressure at sea level, which is about 1.013 bar. Its symbol is b.
  • A solid piece of a material, such as metal or crystal, which is usually much longer than it is wide.
  • A vertical or horizontal stripe, band, or line which is much longer than it is wide. For example, those produced by a bar generator.
  • symbolb


  • A unit of pressure; 1 bar roughly equals the pressure exerted by the atmosphere
  • masculine bass, the fish.
  • masculine An establishment which serves drinks and light snacks

Information & Library Science

  • verb to prevent somebody from doing something or going somewhere


  • noun the set of rails in a court behind which the lawyers and public stand or sit
  • verb to forbid something, or make something illegal

Media Studies

  • noun in music, a fundamental unit of time into which a musical work is divided, according to the number of beats


  • noun a rod of metal or wood used as an obstruction
  • noun a badge of rank for junior officers in the US army (a single bar denotes lieutenant, while a double bar denotes captain)


  • noun the profession of a barrister, or lawyer qualified to speak in a higher court
  • noun all barristers or lawyers qualified to speak in the higher courts


  • noun a horizontal stroke on a character which is connected to another stroke at either end, such as the middle bar in ‘A’


  • exclamation
    (written as bar!)
    an exclamation of dismissal or refusal, synonymous to its users with the colloquial ‘no way’. The term was recorded in use among North London schoolboys in 1993 and 1994.


  • noun a long counter in a pub from which drinks are served
  • noun a small shop, serving one special type of food

Origin & History of “bar”

The history of bar cannot be traced back very far. Forms in various romance languages, such as French barre (source of the English verb) and Italian and Spanish barra, point to a vulgar Latin *barra, but beyond that nothing is known. The original sense of a ‘rail’ or ‘barrier’ has developed various figurative applications over the centuries: in the 14th century to the ‘rail in a court before which a prisoner was arraigned’ (as in ‘prisoner at the bar’); in the 16th century to a ‘partition separating qualified from unqualified lawyers in hall’ (as in ‘call to the bar’); and also in the 16th century to a ‘counter at which drink is served’.

Related nouns include barrage (19th c.), originally an ‘artificial obstruction in a waterway’, and barrier (14th c.), from Anglo-Norman barrere.