General English

Cars & Driving

  • noun the part of a tyre which is shaped to fit the rim, made of steel wires wrapped and reinforced by the plies of the tyre
  • noun any small ball-like part, such as the glass beads used in bead blasting or the pellets used in certain catalytic converters


  • noun a small section of a program that is used for a single task


  • Any molding, stop, or caulking used around a glass panel to hold it in position.
  • A stop or strip of wood against which a door or window sash closes.
  • A strip of sheet metal that has been fabricated so as to have a projecting nosing and two perforated or expanded flanges. A bead is used as a stop at the perimeter of a plastered surface or as reinforcement at the corners.
  • A narrow, half-round molding, either attached to or milled on a larger piece.
  • A square or rectangular trim less than 1" in width and thickness.
  • A choker ferrule; the knob on the end of a choker.


  • In coaxial cables, an insulator, in the form of beads, which surrounds and supports the conductors within it. These beads are usually composed of plastic, ceramic, or glass.
  • In computer programming, a small subroutine.

Real Estate

  • noun an edge or rim that sticks out on a building or a piece of furniture, traditionally with a pattern of rounded knobs


  • a bubble that floats on top of a fermenting wine or on top of a sparkling wine in a glass.

Origin & History of “bead”

The word bead originally meant ‘prayer’. It comes ultimately from Germanic *beth-, source also of English bid. this passed into Old English as gebed, which by the 13th century had lost its prefix to become bede. (German has the parallel gebet ‘prayer’.) The modern sense ‘small pierced decorative ball’ developed in the 14th century, from the use of a string of rosary beads for counting while saying one’s prayers.