General English

  • noun a box made of wire or with metal bars for keeping birds or animals in


  • noun a housing for animals consisting of a wood or metal frame with sides made of bars or mesh, used, e.g., for keeping battery hens


  • noun the part of a broking firm where the paperwork involved in buying and selling shares is processed
  • noun a section of a bank where a teller works, surrounded by glass windows


  • The box or enclosed platform of an elevator or lift.
  • An enclosure for electrical lights or signals.
  • Any rigid open box or enclosure.


  • noun a wire-mesh structure used to enclose the area from which the discus and hammer are thrown
  • noun a screen behind home plate that stops thrown or fouled balls
  • noun the goal

Origin & History of “cage”

English acquired cage via Old French cage from Latin cavea, which meant ‘enclosure for animals, such as a coop, hive, or stall’, and also ‘dungeon’. This is usually referred to Latin cavus ‘hollow’, from which English gets cave and cavern, although not all etymologists agree with this derivation. A vulgar Latin derivative of cavea, *caveola, was the ancestor of English gaol, and cavea has also been postulated as the ultimate source of cabinet.