General English



  • noun a flat, square or rectangular piece of wood or other material
  • verb to get on to an aircraft


  • noun a screen on which share prices are posted (on the wall of the trading floor in a Stock Exchange)
  • verb to go on to a ship, plane or train


  • noun an official group of people
  • noun a large flat piece of wood or card


  • noun a flat insulation material on which electronic components are mounted and connected


  • lumber ranging from 4" to 12"(10 x 30 cm) wide and less than 2" (5 cm) thick.
  • A box office seating chart or ticket board.


  • noun the scoreboard
    Citation ‘Essex had made the poorest of starts to the day, Gooch and Gladwin both gone with only one on the board’ (Norman Harris, Sunday Times 3 June 1984)


  • A flat, rigid, and insulated panel upon which electrical components are mounted and connected via conductive paths. Used extensively in computers, where the main board is called the motherboard, and secondary boards are called expansion boards. Also called circuit board.
  • A panel upon which the terminals of components or systems are readily accessible for temporary connection. Used, for instance, in communications, computers, and for testing purposes. Also known as patch panel.

Information & Library Science

  • noun thick sturdy material used to form the foundation of book covers, made from pressed fibres and usually covered with cloth or other material.
  • noun one piece of this material, cut to size
  • noun the controlling group of people in a company or organisation also known as the board of directors


  • verb to attack and climb onto a ship

Real Estate

  • noun a piece of wood cut into a flat rectangular shape, especially a long narrow piece used for building
  • noun a rigid sheet material such as plywood made by compressing layers of other materials


  • noun a general term for the flat piece of equipment used in sports such as snowboarding, surfing or wakeboarding


Origin & History of “board”

Old English bord had a wide range of meanings, whose two main strands (‘plank’ and ‘border, side of a ship’) reveal that it came from two distinct sources: Germanic *bortham and *borthaz respectively (despite their similarity, they have not been shown to be the same word). Related forms in other Germanic languages that point up the dichotomy are Dutch bord ‘shelf’ and boord ‘border, side of a ship’. The second, ‘edge’ element of board (which is probably related to border) now survives in English only in seaboard (literally the ‘edge of the sea’) and in variations on the phrase on board ship (whose original reference to the ship’s sides is nowadays perceived as relating to the deck).

Board ‘food’ (as in ‘board and lodging’), and hence boarder, are metaphorical applications of board ‘table’.