Definition of basement in English:



  • 1The floor of a building which is partly or entirely below ground level.

    ‘they went down the stairs into the basement’
    as modifier ‘a basement flat’
    • ‘He owned the lot - the basement and the first floor, the one above and the two above that.’
    • ‘He and Mr. Facey spread kitty litter on the basement floor to absorb the leaked oil.’
    • ‘His militia, the Army of the Mahdi, is running courts and jailing people in the basements of tenement buildings.’
    • ‘Right now there may only be 3-4 feet of standing water but, if you think about it, most files are kept in the basements or lower floors of courthouses.’
    • ‘There will be some space to hang out and a pool hall is in the basement of the Rumley Building.’
    • ‘It was built in the late 1950s, on six floors, with one flat on each floor and a basement.’
    • ‘Stationary fuel cells can be installed in the basements of buildings to heat, cool and generate electricity for lights and appliances.’
    • ‘They felt like the walls found in the basements of old buildings.’
    • ‘The house is divided horizontally so that she has the basement and ground floor and he has the first and second.’
    • ‘Normally she wouldn't be so concerned about blowing something up with such a small charge, but this time if the basements went the whole building would collapse in on itself.’
    • ‘He chose to live in the dark and dank bowels and basements of buildings, rejected by family and society.’
    • ‘Those who can't negotiate the grand staircases will be able to enter the building via the basement.’
    • ‘Radon levels are generally highest in basements and ground floor rooms that are in contact with the soil.’
    • ‘Does he walk the townships with bodyguards on all sides, stopping to step inside ruined basements and first floors?’
    • ‘Those forced to evacuate their homes near Great Falls were able to return within a few days and begin shoveling mud from their basements and replacing damaged floors and furniture.’
    • ‘In Pernik, the Struma river broke through a dyke and flooded basements of nearby buildings, roads, and the town's central bus station.’
    • ‘The house itself had a total of four floors, if you counted my basement as a floor.’
    • ‘They all have two storeys - either basement and ground, or first floor and attic space.’
    • ‘There is also an additional accommodation on the first floor and basement with a rear access.’
    • ‘The fire broke out beside a boiler in the basement of the building in the early hours of Friday morning.’
    cellar, vault, crypt, undercroft, underground room, catacomb
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1Geology The oldest formation of rocks underlying a particular area.
      as modifier ‘basement rocks’
      • ‘The best preserved eclogites are found in mafic rocks hosted within the basement sequence.’
      • ‘It was Sederholm's task to try to elucidate the complex rocks of the Finnish Precambrian basement.’
      • ‘However, basement rocks can also be inferred from exposures in the uplands that surround the basin.’
      • ‘These folds were interpreted by Seranne as forced folds formed by faulting in the underlying basement.’
      • ‘The nature of the magnetic basement underlying the east side of the profile is enigmatic.’


Mid 18th century: probably from archaic Dutch basement ‘foundation’, perhaps from Italian basamento ‘column base’.