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The Complete Vocabulary Builder Workbook



How to pronounce horizontal (audio)

Dictionary definition of horizontal

Parallel to the horizon or the horizontal plane.
"The architects designed a modern building with clean lines and sleek horizontal windows."

Detailed meaning of horizontal

It describes something that extends from left to right or from side to side, typically at a level or flat surface. When an object or line is horizontal, it is perpendicular to the vertical direction, forming a right angle with the force of gravity. For example, a horizontal line on a graph runs parallel to the x-axis, while a horizontal surface lies parallel to the ground. The term "horizontal" is often used to denote stability, balance, or the absence of verticality in various contexts, such as architecture, design, engineering, or geometric concepts.

Example sentences containing horizontal

1. The painting depicted a serene landscape with a perfectly horizontal horizon.
2. The carpenter carefully aligned the planks to create a smooth horizontal surface.
3. The gymnast executed a flawless horizontal bar routine, showcasing her strength and agility.
4. The farmer planted rows of crops in a horizontal pattern to maximize sun exposure.
5. The artist used bold, horizontal brushstrokes to create a sense of movement in the artwork.
6. The ocean stretched out before them, its vast expanse merging seamlessly with the horizontal sky.

History and etymology of horizontal

The adjective 'horizontal' finds its etymological roots in the Latin word 'horizontalis,' which is derived from 'horizon,' itself borrowed from the Greek word 'horizon kyklos.' In Greek, 'horos' means 'boundary' or 'limit,' and 'kyklos' means 'circle' or 'ring.' The term originally referred to the line where the Earth's sky and land or sea appeared to meet, forming the apparent boundary between them. Over time, it came to represent the concept of something being parallel to this line, or in other words, lying flat and level with the Earth's surface. Thus, 'horizontal' has retained its connection to the idea of things being parallel to the horizon or the horizontal plane, reflecting its etymological heritage.

Quiz: Find the meaning of horizontal

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Further usage examples of horizontal

1. The engineer adjusted the horizontal alignment of the beams to ensure structural stability.
2. The hiker admired the horizontal layers of sedimentary rocks, each representing a different era of Earth's history.
3. The photographer captured a stunning sunset with vibrant colors painted across the horizontal canvas of the sky.
4. The skier sped down the mountain, carving precise horizontal tracks in the fresh powder.
5. The architect incorporated horizontal elements into the building's design to create a sense of harmony and balance.
6. The horizontal line divides the page neatly in half.
7. The sun dipped below the horizon on the horizontal plane.
8. The artist carefully placed the horizontal brushstrokes.
9. The fence posts stood at a perfectly horizontal alignment.
10. The shelf was affixed securely with horizontal brackets.
11. A horizontal layout maximized the use of space in the room.
12. He adjusted the camera to capture the horizontal landscape.
13. The horizontal stripes on her dress made her appear taller.
14. The beams formed a strong horizontal support structure.
15. The river flowed gently on a horizontal trajectory.
16. The screen displayed the data in a horizontal format.
17. The horizontal position of the ship remained stable in the storm.
18. The architect designed the building with sleek horizontal lines.
19. The runner crossed the finish line in a horizontal sprint.
20. The map displayed the horizontal and vertical coordinates.
21. The picture frame hung perfectly horizontal on the wall.
22. The bridge spanned the river with its horizontal arch.
23. He tilted the book to align it with the horizontal plane.
24. The horizontal stripes on the flag symbolized unity.
25. The level indicated that the surface was perfectly horizontal.



flat, vertical, upright, perpendicular


ACT 3 (American College Testing), Middle School 9, Space and Positioning

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