Definition of aerial in English:



  • 1[attributive] Existing, happening, or operating in the air.

    ‘an aerial battle’
    ‘an intrepid aerial adventurer’
    • ‘The three of them continued to circle around each other in the endless waltz of the aerial battle.’
    • ‘An American pilot sacrificed his life in an aerial battle with Japanese planes in defence of Shanghai.’
    • ‘What sets our game apart from the others is the enormous aerial battles that were prevalent at the time.’
    • ‘We should see lots of aerial lifts and stunning drops.’
    • ‘One such area is operating and maintaining unmanned aerial vehicles.’
    • ‘He stared, wide eyed, as the flames floated down to the planet below the aerial battle.’
    • ‘He has been spotted in the aerial battles and has caused a few of our kin to drop from the skies.’
    • ‘And you will be launching the largest aerial battle in the history of mankind.’
    • ‘Just what will happen when an aerial appliance is needed?’
    • ‘The guard outside turned his head to look at the aerial battle as he finished up.’
    • ‘They are refillable during aerial refuel operations.’
    • ‘The winners were especially to the fore in the aerial battles where they dominated a physically weaker Kerry outfit.’
    • ‘Dublin commanded proceedings by keeping the ball in the air and winning the aerial battle.’
    • ‘Most of the Barbarians had stopped their fighting, and now watched the aerial battle.’
    • ‘Europeans have a vast network of aerial tramways, ski lifts, and public transportation.’
    • ‘He began to fear the training for the aerial battles.’
    • ‘No aerial operations were mounted on September 9.’
    • ‘One especially valuable contribution of the book is its analysis of numerous small aerial battles.’
    • ‘Periodically, we are treated to ethereal aerial battles.’
    • ‘He appeared with regularity at both ends of the field, won quite a few aerial battles and most importantly, a lot of breaks.’
    raised, upraised, uplifted, lifted up, high up, aloft, aerial, overhead, hoisted
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1Coming or carried out from the air, especially using aircraft.
      ‘aerial bombardment of civilian targets’
      ‘aerial photography’
      • ‘Italy was at war with Libya, and began using aircraft and airships for aerial reconnaissance.’
      • ‘He evolved into a remarkably well-rounded explorer - a pioneer of geography and aerial photography.’
      • ‘Prominent among these were U - 2 reconnaissance aircraft, which began taking aerial photography of Cuban territory.’
      • ‘I do not find the absence of aircraft from the 1986 aerial photograph to be evidence of abandonment.’
      • ‘The research could also be used in traffic monitoring, aerial photography and detecting hazardous substances.’
      • ‘Both aircraft were utilised for aerial reconnaissance, and flew more than 100 hours.’
      • ‘It's been 10 days since that massive aerial bombardment.’
      • ‘But instead of calling up a drawn map, the site uses pictures taken from satellites and aircraft to give an aerial view of a territory.’
      • ‘Some European countries still do not allow aerial photography by civilians.’
      • ‘Instead, its primary mission was to protect Red Army operations from aerial attacks by the enemy.’
      • ‘They are also used in GIS offices to scan in existing maps and aerial photographs.’
      • ‘The aircraft is also capable of carrying a range of aerial bombs with a total weight up to 40 tons.’
      • ‘It also explains the reliance on aerial bombardment of civilians.’
      • ‘The aircraft was used for aerial mapping.’
      • ‘A helicopter was dispatched to carry out an aerial assessment of the rural situation.’
      • ‘Then, we have much more public things that happen, like the aerial shooting of wolves in Alaska.’
      • ‘The aerial photography specialist took the picture using a top-of-the-range camera.’
      • ‘There's satellite inventory; there's aerial photography; there's video links; there's a whole raft of things we can tap into now.’
      • ‘Some people specialize in aerial photography.’
      • ‘He was at the scene yesterday and was one of the team which carried out an aerial assessment.’
    2. 1.2(of part of a plant) growing above ground.
      ‘knobby sections of aerial roots’
      • ‘Most of these studies have focused mainly on targeting genes in the aerial parts of the plant.’
      • ‘The harvested root and aerial parts of the plant are used.’
      • ‘Simple trichomes are present on aerial surfaces of most angiosperms and on some gymnosperms and bryophytes.’
      • ‘All primary aerial surfaces of plants are covered by a cuticle.’
      • ‘Nicotine and tropane alkaloids are formed in the roots and transported to the aerial parts of the plant.’
    3. 1.3(of a bird) spending much of its time in flight.
      • ‘Analyses of the energetic costs of flight have identified optimal strategies for aerial bats, birds, and insects.’
      • ‘Though bats and birds are both aerial creatures, records of their interaction have been extremely rare.’
      • ‘Swifts are the most rapid fliers known among living creatures and the most aerial of birds…’
      • ‘It also has a tiny beak with a large gape which help the bird catch its aerial prey.’
      • ‘But hawk owls, perhaps descended from bird hunters, are skilled aerial predators in their own right.’
    4. 1.4Of or in the atmosphere; atmospheric.
      • ‘There's some information there suggesting that there's no regulation of aerial spraying and that there's no policing.’
      • ‘One man reported major fish kills in the wild after aerial sprayings of DDT.’
      • ‘Air conditioner filters help preserve the walls and fixtures by removing dust and other aerial particles.’
      • ‘Despite evidence of the carcinogenic properties of pesticides, aerial spraying remains widespread.’
      • ‘Tests are under way to determine the safety and effectiveness of aerial applications.’


  • 1

    ‘jiggle the aerial on the radio’
    another term for antenna
    • ‘Vandals also ripped a television aerial off the roof.’
    • ‘He's up on a television aerial just across the road.’
    • ‘The boot opens by remote control, and the radio aerial is cleverly hidden in the rear spoiler.’
    • ‘Immediately below the vision aerial is the aerial for the accompanying sound transmissions.’
    • ‘The driver had found a handkerchief and tied it round the radio aerial as a makeshift white flag.’
    flagpole, flagstaff, pole, post, rod, support, upright
    View synonyms
  • 2A type of maneuver in gymnastics, skiing, or surfing involving freestyle jumps or somersaults.

    • ‘You boys aren't gonna be able to do those aerials in there, are you?’
    • ‘Now, I want everyone to get into formation behind me and we're going to practice synchronized aerials!’
    • ‘In one smooth motion he then aerials to a lower landing, then hurdles onto another.’
    • ‘I want aerials, spread eagles, toe touches, and anything else you can think of.’
    • ‘Also impressive in these Olympics was a double win for Canadians in the aerials.’


Late 16th century (in the sense thin as air, imaginary): via Latin aerius from Greek aerios (from aēr air) + -al.