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o·ver·lay 1 (ōvər-lā)
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tr.v. o·ver·laid (-lād), o·ver·lay·ing, o·ver·lays
1. To lay or spread over or on.
2.
a. To cover the surface of with a decorative layer or design: overlay wood with silver.
b. To embellish superficially: a simple tune that was overlaid with ornate harmonies.
3. Printing To put an overlay on.
4. To create (a new area code) having the same boundaries as another: In Maryland, area code 240 was overlaid on top of area code 301.
n. (ōvər-lā)
1. Something that is laid over or covers something else.
2. A layer of decoration, such as gold leaf or wood veneer, applied to a surface.
3. Printing A piece of paper used on a press tympan to vary the pressure that produces light and dark tones.
4. A transparent sheet containing graphic matter, such as labels or colored areas, placed on illustrative matter to be incorporated into it.
5. An area code whose boundaries are the same as another area code.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 
o·ver·lay 2 (ōvər-lā)
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v.
Past tense of overlie.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 
o·ver·lie (ōvər-lī)
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tr.v. o·ver·lay (-lā), o·ver·lain (-lān), o·ver·ly·ing, o·ver·lies
1. To lie over or on.
2. To suffocate (a baby, for example) by accidentally lying on top of it.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 

Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices

    Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:

    Indo-European Roots

    Semitic Roots

    The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.

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