Definition of borderline in English:



  • 1A boundary separating two countries or areas.

    • ‘I remember my first journey to the Iguazu Falls, in the borderline between Brazil and Argentina.’
    • ‘However, the mighty Caesar had just crossed the borderline between Italy and Cisalpine Gaul known as the Rubincan River.’
    • ‘The state secretary for maritime affairs stationed naval ships at the 12-mile borderline to ensure that the vessel didn't enter his country's waters.’
    • ‘They guarded the borderline on Kamchatka, near Vyborg, anywhere, but not at home.’
    • ‘But if instead the defensive line would be build 25 kilometers away from the borderline, the length of the defensive line would grow to 70 kilometers.’
    • ‘These are the Alps near the borderline between Italy and Austria.’
    • ‘After two decades had passed, 80% of the people in the first group had crossed the borderline and developed high blood pressure.’
    • ‘Beginning with the confluence with the Neisse River and continuing to just above Szczecin, the Oder becomes the borderline between Poland and Germany.’
    • ‘In the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, the borderline between England and Scotland was in turmoil.’
    • ‘Just east of the borderline between England and Scotland, I found mapped down an earthquake dated to June 7th, 1934.’
    • ‘Dusted throughout the borderline of the yard flowers can transform your topographic point from a run-of-the-mill house to a showplace full of style.’
    • ‘Joseph Hollas settled south of Mr. Besetzny next to the borderline of the village of Wursten.’
    • ‘He claimed this week he had called the Border Patrol after he picked up a migrant couple hitchhiking along a state highway near the borderline’
    • ‘I grew up out of living right next to the borderline of L.A. County.’
    • ‘Grass fires breaking out from Mongolia crossed the borderline with China.’
    • ‘He entertained in fact far-reaching plans to build an advanced high-tech fence along the future borderline in order to separate effectively the two populations from each other.’
    • ‘Every morning Saeed goes to his farmland, only meters away from the borderline.’
    • ‘A common complaint is replacement of borderline fences and wood retaining walls.’
    • ‘It is worth noting that motorcycles were used to patrol the borderline and were seen as an effective force multiplier.’
    • ‘The main purpose of this deputation is to protect the borderline.’
    • ‘I'm near the borderline of Vancouver and Burnaby.’
    • ‘By drawing borderlines separating the yellow/red areas and surrounding blue areas, we obtained three major categories of genes.’
    • ‘In 1994, the borderline of the City of Warsaw was enlarged to the surrounded province.’
    • ‘The economic disparities on the reservation struck “as soon as you drove over the borderline,” she said.’
    • ‘One team is the defense and tries to protect the borderline, preventing the other team from entering.’
    • ‘But it's definitely somewhere near the New York-New Jersey borderline, where are the posh Victorian homes are.’
    • ‘San Yuan Li, which used to mark the physical and mental borderline of the city has now become a little dot in the endless urban network.’
    • ‘The Seminar room is prominently located at the river front, towards the borderline of the property.’
    • ‘The hamlet of Chichester is one of the the northernmost communities in the town of Shandaken, New York, being right next to the borderline between Ulster County and Greene County.’
    • ‘But surely you understand that it is impossible to control the entire borderline at all times.’
    • ‘Today we have crossed the borderline of 2000 videos.’
    • ‘Two thousand years ago, a Roman fortress had guarded the borderline of the empire.’
    • ‘Since then, hundreds of thousands have crossed the borderline through holes they made into the 6-meter height concrete wall.’
    1. 1.1 A division between two distinct or opposite things.
      ‘the borderline between ritual and custom’
      • ‘It was typical of his work, very much on the borderline between mathematics and physical science, and exhibiting technical skill in classical analysis that is rare nowadays.’
      • ‘Dias de las Noches sits on the borderline between dance and theatre typical of the venue.’
      • ‘The decor and costumes, by Peter McKintosh, are imaginative and cleverly sit on the borderline between reality and fantasy.’
      • ‘Emma's voice was borderline between sweet, and annoyingly too sweet.’
      • ‘Bar owners complain of unfair business when they are located on the borderline between smoking and non-smoking.’
      • ‘It was an enjoyable and memorable night on the borderline of Galway and Mayo.’
      • ‘Having said that, my gut instinct is that actually Shakespeare was somewhere very much on the borderline between Protestant and Catholic ways of thinking.’
      • ‘‘We tried to argue that we are on the borderline between Southeast Asia and the Pacific, but they were not terribly impressed with that argument,’ he said.’
      • ‘It's actually one of those bits of ‘music’ that hovers on the borderline of being both scary and hilarious and then scary all over again.’
      • ‘Nationality nouns (Americans, a New Zealander, the Japanese) lie on the borderline between proper and common nouns.’
      • ‘That's right on the borderline between a Category 2 and Category 3 and this could very well become a Category 3 hurricane.’
      • ‘Hawking was on the borderline between a first and a second.’
      • ‘Thus, from the outset, we are on the borderline between art and cliché, the self-consciously poetic writing nudging us in the direction of art.’
      • ‘Brilliantly passionate and incisive vocals over stunning arrangements on the borderline between jazz, classical and flamenco.’
      • ‘The precipitation was on that borderline between sleet and just frigid rain.’
      • ‘My work on the origin of the Universe is on the borderline between science and religion, but I try to stay on the scientific side of the border.’
      • ‘First, it may be the case that psi lurks in this borderline between reality and imagination.’
      • ‘In general, that's sort of a fuzzy borderline between psychosurgery and neurological surgery.’
      • ‘I like that: revel in your glorious failures, dance on the borderline between success and disaster, because that is where your next breakthrough will come from.’
      • ‘On the borderline between childhood and adolescence, I was still trying to figure out who I was.’
      dividing line, divide, division, demarcation line, line of demarcation, line, cut-off point
      View synonyms


  • Only just acceptable in quality or as belonging to a category.

    ‘references may be requested in borderline cases’
    • ‘And because of that, isn't there a chance that they aren't borderline incompetent, and are closer to borderline great?’
    • ‘Hitting coach Gerald Perry says opponents are pitching Buhner tougher than anyone in the lineup, and he has reacted to some borderline called strikes by chasing a few pitches he usually takes.’
    • ‘‘They probably would have been borderline 10 years ago,’ Deane said.’
    • ‘A normal level is 8 centimeters or more; 5 to 8 centimeters is borderline.’
    • ‘About 6,000 smokers with borderline to moderate airflow obstruction were recruited and were followed up for 5 years.’
    • ‘Recently I developed borderline high blood sugar, and my doctor recommended that I cut down on carbohydrates.’
    • ‘I've seen some borderline calls over the years, but I also have seen some pretty flagrant late hits along the way as well.’
    • ‘Were the youth of America, desperate for an honest set of heroes, supposed to find these borderline illiterate street skate rats admirable?’
    • ‘Reese says he hopes the pre-service teacher conferences and summer institutes will serve as a reinforcement for students who want to be teachers, particularly those who may be borderline.’
    • ‘During long stretches of borderline freezing temperatures when the frost line neither advances nor recedes, water is continually drawn up to the ice lens where it freezes.’
    • ‘Most of this stuff is borderline cruel or harassing, not entertaining.’
    • ‘‘I'm getting base hits because the pitcher isn't getting borderline strikes called,’ Johnson says.’
    • ‘Of course, pitches don't come across the plate labeled ‘ball’ and ‘strike’—most of them are borderline.’
    • ‘I have been told that I am borderline dangerously overweight.’
    • ‘At least one top NBA scout has been telling college underclassmen who might be borderline first-round picks this June that it's better to wait for the 2005 draft.’
    • ‘Because Hamilton rarely has taken a tough stance and management has sent mixed signals to him about handling some dicey situations, things have gotten borderline out of control.’
    • ‘Another explanation of the findings could be that borderline dementia subjects might have lower leisure activity as a result of early disease.’
    • ‘Seventeen of the 69 case encounters in the afternoon session were rated as borderline.’
    • ‘While his performance has its share of moments that borderline on the shrill, by the end of the movie he has managed to generate more than a little sympathy.’
    • ‘His accent is nearly impeccable, and I was listening closely for him to slip up (I'm borderline obsessed with Brits doing American accents).’
    marginal, indefinite, uncertain, unsure, unsettled, undecided, up in the air, doubtful, open to doubt, problematic, indeterminate, unclassifiable, ambivalent, equivocal
    View synonyms