Definition of vertical in English:



  • 1At right angles to a horizontal plane; in a direction, or having an alignment, such that the top is directly above the bottom.

    ‘the vertical axis’
    ‘keep your back vertical’
    • ‘The true parameter values used in the simulations are shown as shaded vertical bars.’
    • ‘First, penetration of the environment is essentially in the vertical plane rather than horizontal.’
    • ‘The inclinometers are 2-way sensors which record rotations with the vertical direction in two orthogonal vertical planes.’
    • ‘Layered gabbros at the deeper levels have been rotated so that their layering is nearly vertical.’
    • ‘The earthquake resulted from horizontal displacement of the ground across a nearly vertical fault plane.’
    • ‘Lines every 15 feet divide the field into squares, both in horizontal and vertical direction.’
    • ‘The climb ahead was nearly vertical in ascent with few to none hand holds.’
    • ‘These corners appear in the horizontal and vertical planes.’
    • ‘The cloth denotes both vertical and horizontal planes as pure modulation, without any opposition between them.’
    • ‘Next she removed a scalpel from her first aid kit and made a small vertical incision into the trachea.’
    • ‘These are vertical planes of horizontally stacked planks of wood backed by a pole or beam planted in the ground.’
    • ‘The added patterns were folded, and profiles in horizontal and vertical direction were obtained for further analysis.’
    • ‘One mirror has a thick vertical fluorescent orange stripe of paint running up its center, the other a horizontal.’
    • ‘But gravity actually functions as a source of support for structures that are properly aligned around a predominantly vertical axis.’
    • ‘We all shouted ' hold tight ' and then we were almost vertical going up this massive wave.’
    • ‘Genes are represented by branches along the left vertical axis.’
    • ‘The green line is charted against the left vertical axis.’
    • ‘The ship was capable of doing a completely vertical takeoff, when she was on her feet.’
    • ‘Their eyes fluttered across the breadth of vertical and horizontal planes, missing no detail of change.’
    • ‘The navigator switches on the radar system and the antenna extends, turning through 90° from the horizontal to the vertical plane.’
    upright, erect, perpendicular, plumb, straight, straight up and down, on end, standing, upstanding, bolt upright, upended
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  • 2Involving different levels or stages of a hierarchy or process.

    • ‘This type of marginality can be illustrated easily in antiquity in relation to hierarchy, or vertical social ranking.’
    • ‘Its initiative resulted in the early twentieth century in a process of vertical segmentation or pluralism known as pillarization.’
    • ‘Managerial employees, anxious about job security and access to vertical mobility, may pressure themselves into working longer hours.’
    • ‘The human being possesses levels of reality situated in the vertical hierarchy of body, soul and spirit.’
    • ‘With all firings, Chrysler ended up stripping out several levels of management, with a much flatter vertical hierarchy.’
    • ‘The initial approach was to have different block exemptions for different types of vertical agreement.’
    • ‘Scinduism must do away with the vertical hierarchy of castes and the complete plethora of superstitious beliefs.’
    • ‘This vertical contact between grade levels was further enhanced through assignments to committees that established curricular goals.’
    • ‘We don't usually divide it into vertical levels, and no particular distinction is made in terms of correspondences depending on depth.’
    • ‘Thus, the objective of this article is to empirically test the market power motive of vertical integration-a different objective from that of Bhuyan.’
    • ‘You aren't sure of what you've read, once you get to the end of the horizontal line in the process of creating a vertical meaning.’
    • ‘‘A lot of the design process in such a vertical house involves figuring out how to get people around,’ says Ranon.’
    • ‘Note that each graph has a different vertical scale.’
    • ‘It emphasized lateral links between members of the same class rather than vertical cross-class national solidarities.’
    1. 2.1 Involving all the stages from the production to the sale of a class of goods.
      ‘we need more vertical cooperation between manufacturers and service providers’
      • ‘That's why Resolve is designed to encourage vertical work.’
      • ‘Leach's worry is that vertical integration will stifle competition.’
      • ‘Still, the opportunities of vertical retailing are strong lures.’
      • ‘First, I analyze prior research on the impact of vertical cooperation on firm performance and present the theoretical framework.’
      • ‘There are two types of vertical market-places, which bring buyers and sellers together to facilitate transactions.’
      • ‘In the vertical production structure, work is contracted out to households, which use child labour freely.’
      • ‘‘Lawson continues to have good products and a good vertical strategy,’ says Sholler.’
      • ‘To be vertical is not easy, but it is the only way to offer customers quality and consistency.’
      • ‘The vertical dimension of a cluster consists of firms with complementary products and competencies that are linked through supplier and customer relations.’
      • ‘As a consequence, we see today, the disintegration of vertical industries and the rapid growth of global specialists.’
      • ‘The great sugar entrepreneur also saw the profit to be made in vertical integration.’
      • ‘‘We are a completely vertical toy company, like none other,’ Booker says.’
      • ‘We're vertical, supplying the tools to other Web sites.’
      • ‘One is large companies coming together in their industries to create vertical marketplaces to streamline procurement.’
      • ‘Under vertical FDI, the corporation keeps control of the various stages of a production process.’
    2. 2.2 (especially of the transmission of disease or genetic traits) passed from one generation to the next.
      ‘vertical transmission of the virus’
      • ‘Vaccination in utero may reduce the vertical transmission of infectious diseases.’
      • ‘A total of 266 knew that vertical transmission can be reduced.’
      • ‘Well informed general practitioners can and should play a part in preventing vertical transmission of HIV.’
      • ‘Short vertical lines indicate deletion endpoints defined by cloned sequences.’
      • ‘Phylogenetic analyses of these elements in the genus Drosophila indicate a strictly vertical transmission of R1 and R2.’
  • 3Anatomy
    Relating to the crown of the head.

    • ‘The paramedian forehead flap was centered over the supratrochlear artery in a vertical orientation.’
    • ‘The aberrant vessel can be traced to the middle ear with an apparent absence of the right vertical carotid canal.’
  • 4archaic Denoting a point at the zenith or the highest point of something.


  • 1usually the verticalA vertical line or plane.

    ‘the columns incline several degrees away from the vertical’
    • ‘At noon on midsummer's day he measured the length of the shadow, and calculated that the sun was 7° south of the vertical.’
    • ‘The original photo the designer found and cropped on the vertical at the far right just didn't have the resolution for the job.’
    • ‘In one motion they flip from the horizontal to the vertical.’
    • ‘The concrete curves seem to organize the circulation routes, the horizontal as well as the vertical.’
    • ‘The defendant's lintel had a rear support which was inclined 6° or 8° from the vertical.’
    • ‘The horizontal plane addressed, we now turn to the vertical.’
    • ‘Like the stern, the bow itself is upside-down, its line rising just off the vertical from the seabed with keel uppermost.’
    • ‘Its harbour elevation tilts out at approximately 8 degrees from the vertical; the elevation to the Adriatic at twice that incline.’
    • ‘The engine began to hum and the metal supports moved the shuttle ninety degrees to the vertical.’
    • ‘If the signal is slightly mistuned, the line is a bit buckled and rotated against the vertical.’
    • ‘Friction with the table top forces the egg to rise up in a series of little jerks, and this shifts the axis of symmetry somewhat towards the vertical.’
    • ‘The walls angle away from the vertical by 10 degrees and wrap around to create a rising spiral shape that can be read from both inside and outside.’
    • ‘When it comes to the comments feature, remember that I control the horizontal and the vertical.’
    • ‘Gravi-responding hypocotyls or coleoptiles can likewise show enormous variations in trajectory back to the vertical.’
    • ‘When doing this turn, the swimmer would roll to his side, keeping his shoulders just shy of the vertical.’
    • ‘From the horizontal line that crossed the vertical, the line curved around and met the bottom end of the vertical.’
    • ‘We will control the horizontal; we will control the vertical.’
    • ‘Simeon shoots with a recurve bow in which the ends curve up to the vertical whereas a long bow is D-shaped.’
    • ‘The best direction for the thrust line is thus not the same as the gravitational vertical.’
  • 2An upright structure.

    ‘we remodelled the opening with a simple lintel and unadorned verticals’
    • ‘The whiteness of the paint on the wooden verticals had the effect of dispersing the mass of the structures.’
    • ‘The emphatic verticals of sheet metal piling mark out the eastern and northern peripheries of the car park.’
    • ‘And a block down the road is the Jeppe Street Post Office, an impressive building in light grey granite with tall attractive verticals.’
    • ‘One by one they trotted and cantered over little crossbars and verticals and then filed out into the smaller grass ring that adjourned the hunt field.’
    • ‘A Paul Nash-like landscape of stark black verticals against a black ground was created.’
    • ‘Originally, this elongated oval, itself perfectly aligned with the vertical of the colonnette, would have been cut precisely in half by the diagonal of the spear.’
    • ‘Cleveland Bays are natural jumpers, and they excel at verticals.’
    • ‘It is broadly composed around two matching verticals that suggest abstract maypoles.’
    • ‘The city's numerous verticals depict a rich trading past and its journey into the 21st century.’
    • ‘The horizon is low, the masts and hulks of the ships making a series of horizontals and verticals receding far into the distance.’
    • ‘I like to build verticals (multiple vintages) of wines and we need enough to both sell and age.’
    • ‘Two intense verticals divide the format vertically, on the right hand side of which is more incised carpet, left a creamy hue.’
    • ‘They can be disturbing unless supported by verticals or opposing diagonals.’
  • 3The distance between the highest and lowest points of a ski area.

    ‘the resort claims a vertical of 2,100 metres’
    • ‘Without the verticals of Vail or Park City, they could never develop into anything more than regional, half-year ski destinations.’


Mid 16th century (in the sense ‘directly overhead’): from French, or from late Latin verticalis, from vertex (see vertex).