noun Date: circa 1714 1. a flat usually paper container (as for a letter) 2. something that envelops ; wrapper <
the envelope of air around the earth
3. a. the outer covering of an aerostat b. the bag containing the gas in a balloon or airship 4. a. a natural enclosing covering (as a membrane, shell, or integument) b. a lipoprotein unit membrane that forms the outer layer of some virions 5. a. a curve tangent to each of a family of curves b. a surface tangent to each of a family of surfaces 6. a set of performance limits (as of an aircraft) that may not be safely exceeded; also the set of operating parameters that exists within these limits 7. a conventionally accepted limit <
new computers that push the envelope
Usage: The \ˈen-\ and \ˈän-\ pronunciations are used with about equal frequency, and both are fully acceptable, though the \ˈän-\ version is sometimes decried as “pseudo-French.” Actually \ˈän-\ is exactly what one would expect to hear when a French word like entrepreneur is becoming anglicized. Envelope, however, has been in English for nearly 300 years, plenty of time for it to become completely anglicized and for both of its pronunciations to win respectability.

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.

, , , / (to cover a weak part) /

Look at other dictionaries:

  • envelope — en‧ve‧lope [ˈenvələʊp ǁ loʊp] noun [countable] a thin paper cover in which you put a letter ˌpadded ˈenvelope an envelope filled with soft material that is used for sending things which can easily be damaged ˌself adˌdressed ˈenvelope written… …   Financial and business terms

  • Envelope — En vel*ope (?; 277), Envelop En*vel op (?; 277), n. [F. enveloppe.] 1. That which envelops, wraps up, encases, or surrounds; a wrapper; an inclosing cover; esp., the cover or wrapper of a document, as of a letter. [1913 Webster] 2. (Astron.) The… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • envelope — ► NOUN 1) a flat paper container with a sealable flap, used to enclose a letter or document. 2) a covering or containing structure or layer. 3) the outer housing of a vacuum tube, electric light, etc. 4) the structure within a balloon or non… …   English terms dictionary

  • envelope — [än′və lōp΄, en′′və lōp΄] n. [Fr & OFr enveloppe < OFr envoluper: see ENVELOP] 1. a thing that envelops; wrapper; covering 2. a folded paper container as for a letter, usually with a gummed flap for sealing 3. a) the outer covering of a rigid… …   English World dictionary

  • Envelope —   [engl.], Hüllkurve …   Universal-Lexikon

  • envelope — 1705, from Fr. enveloppe (13c.), a back formation from envelopper to envelop (see ENVELOP (Cf. envelop)) …   Etymology dictionary

  • envelope — s. m. Envoltório para cartas ou outros documentos ou papéis. = SOBRECARTA, SOBRESCRITO   ‣ Etimologia: francês enveloppe …   Dicionário da Língua Portuguesa

  • envelope — [n] wrapper bag, box, case, casing, cloak, coat, coating, container, cover, covering, enclosure, hide, jacket, pocket, pouch, receptacle, sheath, shell, skin, vesicle, wrapping; concept 494 …   New thesaurus

  • Envelope — This article is about envelopes in packaging. For other uses, see Envelope (disambiguation). Front of an envelope mailed in the U.S. in 1906, with a postage stamp and address …   Wikipedia

  • envelope — noun ADJECTIVE ▪ bulky, fat, thick ▪ large, small ▪ sealed ▪ return (AmE), self addressed …   Collocations dictionary

  • envelope — n. 1) to address; seal an envelope 2) a pay envelope (AE; BE has pay packet) 3) a self addressed; stamped; window envelope USAGE NOTE: AE has stamped self addressed envelope; BE has stamped addressed envelope. * * * [ envələʊp] seal an envelope… …   Combinatory dictionary

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