from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. An opening in a solid structure or surface; a cleft or breach: wriggled through a gap in the fence; a large gap in the wall where the artillery shell had exploded.
  • n. A break in a line of defense.
  • n. An opening through mountains; a pass.
  • n. A space between objects or points; an aperture: a gap between his front teeth.
  • n. An interruption of continuity: a nine-minute gap in the recorded conversation; needed to fill in the gaps in her knowledge.
  • n. A conspicuous difference or imbalance; a disparity: a gap between revenue and spending; the widening gap between rich and poor.
  • n. A problematic situation resulting from such a disparity: the budget gap; the technology gap.
  • n. A spark gap.
  • n. Computer Science An absence of information on a recording medium, often used to signal the end of a segment of information.
  • n. Electronics The distance between the head of a recording device and the surface of the recording medium.
  • transitive v. To make an opening in.
  • intransitive v. To be or become open.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. An opening in anything made by breaking or parting.
  • n. An opening allowing passage or entrance.
  • n. An opening that implies a breach or defect.
  • n. A vacant space or time.
  • n. A hiatus.
  • n. A mountain or hill pass.
  • n. A sheltered area of coast between two cliffs (mostly restricted to place names).
  • n. The regions between the outfielders.
  • n. The shortfall between the amount the medical insurer will pay to the service provider and the scheduled fee for the item.
  • v. To notch, as a sword or knife.
  • v. To make an opening in; to breach.
  • v. To check the size of a gap.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. An opening in anything made by breaking or parting; ; an opening for a passage or entrance; an opening which implies a breach or defect; a vacant space or time; a hiatus; a mountain pass.
  • n. The vertical distance between two superposed surfaces, esp. in a biplane.
  • transitive v. To notch, as a sword or knife.
  • transitive v. To make an opening in; to breach.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To notch or jag; cut into teeth like those of a saw.
  • To make a break or opening in, as a fence, a wall, or any mass of matter.
  • To cause a hiatus of any kind in; cause to lose consecutiveness or continuity.
  • n. A break or opening, as in a fence, a wall, or the like; a breach; a chasm; a way of passage, as between rocks or through a mountain; a vacant space.
  • n. Specifically A deep sloping ravine, notch, or cleft cutting a mountain-ridge.
  • n. In general, any hiatus, breach, or interruption of consecutiveness or continuity: as, a gap in an argument.
  • n. See the extract, and break-lathe.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a difference (especially an unfortunate difference) between two opinions or two views or two situations
  • n. an act of delaying or interrupting the continuity
  • n. a pass between mountain peaks
  • n. a narrow opening
  • v. make an opening or gap in
  • n. an open or empty space in or between things
  • n. a conspicuous disparity or difference as between two figures


Middle English, from Old Norse, chasm.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old Norse gap ("chasm"), related to Old Norse gapa ("to gape"); compare gape. (Wiktionary)



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