a. A building material made by grinding calcined limestone and clay to a fine powder, which can be mixed with water and poured to set as a solid mass or used as an ingredient in making mortar or concrete.
b. Portland cement.
2. A substance that hardens to act as an adhesive; glue.
3. Something that serves to bind or unite: "Custom was in early days the cement of society" (Walter Bagehot).
4. Geology A chemically precipitated substance that binds particles of clastic rocks.
5. Dentistry A substance used for filling cavities or anchoring crowns, inlays, or other restorations.
6. Variant of cementum.
v. ce·ment·ed, ce·ment·ing, ce·ments
1. To bind with or as if with cement.
2. To cover or coat with cement.
To become cemented.
Firmly settled or determined; unalterable: The administration's position on taxes was set in cement despite the unfavorable public response.
[Middle English, from Old French ciment, from Latin caementum, rough-cut stone, rubble used in making concrete, from caedere, to cut; see kaə-id- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
The American Heritage Dictionary Blog
Check out our blog, updated regularly, for new words and revised definitions, interesting images from the 5th edition, discussions of usage, and more.
American Heritage Dictionary Products
The American Heritage Dictionary, 5th Edition
The American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms
The American Heritage Roget's Thesaurus
Curious George's Dictionary
The American Heritage Children's Dictionary
The American Heritage Dictionary of Indo-European Roots
The American Heritage Student Grammar Dictionary
The American Heritage Desk Dictionary + Thesaurus
The American Heritage Science Dictionary
The American Heritage Dictionary of Business Terms
The American Heritage Student Dictionary
The American Heritage Essential Student Thesaurus