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[shroud] /ʃraʊd/
a cloth or sheet in which a corpse is wrapped for burial.
something that covers or conceals like a garment:
a shroud of rain.
Nautical. any of a number of taut ropes or wires converging from both sides on the head of a lower or upper mast of the outer end of a bowsprit to steady it against lateral sway: a part of the standing rigging.
Also called shroud line. Aeronautics. any of a number of suspension cords of a parachute attaching the load to the canopy.
Also called shrouding. Machinery.
  1. (on a nonmetallic gear) an extended metal rim enclosing the ends of the teeth on either side.
  2. (on a water wheel) one of two rings of boards or plates enclosing the buckets at their ends.
Rocketry. a cone-shaped shield that protects the payload of a launch vehicle.
verb (used with object)
to wrap or clothe for burial; enshroud.
to cover; hide from view.
to veil, as in obscurity or mystery:
They shrouded their past lives in an effort to forget.
to provide (a water wheel) with a shroud.
Obsolete. to shelter.
verb (used without object)
Archaic. to take shelter.
Origin of shroud
before 1000; (noun) Middle English; Old English scrūd; cognate with Old Norse skrūth; akin to shred; (v.) Middle English shrouden, derivative of the noun; replacing Middle English shriden, Old English scrȳdan, derivative of scrūd
Related forms
shroudless, adjective
shroudlike, adjective
1. winding sheet. 8. conceal, screen. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for shrouded
  • It is also a story shrouded in secrecy, and one that has begun to turn sour.
  • The trouble is that economic forecasts are shrouded in an even thicker fog than usual.
  • Despite being so common, these dangerous and sometimes deadly storms remain shrouded in mystery.
  • In either case, the fossils provide a rare opportunity for examining a period shrouded in paleontological mystery.
  • The bar area was shrouded in white boudoir curtains, with a chocolate leather daybed nearby.
  • The arrangements for decommissioning weapons remain shrouded in deliberate ambiguity.
  • Nearly permanent cloud cover, blizzards, and fierce ocean winds keep the range shrouded in mystery.
  • It has been beset by hoaxes and remains shrouded in confusion, but quantum computing is no pipe dream.
  • Across the region, the share of land covered by forest is shrinking, while the proportion shrouded in concrete is increasing.
  • The rest of the body, except for his protruding feet, remains shrouded in a linen cover.
British Dictionary definitions for shrouded


a garment or piece of cloth used to wrap a dead body
anything that envelops like a garment: a shroud of mist
a protective covering for a piece of equipment
(astronautics) a streamlined protective covering used to protect the payload during a rocket-powered launch
(nautical) one of a pattern of ropes or cables used to stay a mast
any of a set of wire cables stretched between a smokestack or similar structure and the ground, to prevent side sway
Also called shroud line. any of a set of lines running from the canopy of a parachute to the harness
(transitive) to wrap in a shroud
(transitive) to cover, envelop, or hide
(archaic) to seek or give shelter
Derived Forms
shroudless, adjective
Word Origin
Old English scrūd garment; related to Old Norse skrūth gear
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for shrouded



Old English scrud "a garment, clothing, dress," from West Germanic *skruthan, from Proto-Germanic *skrud- "cut" (cf. Old Norse skruð "shrouds of a ship, tackle, gear; furniture of a church," Danish, Swedish skrud "dress, attire"), from PIE *skreu- "to cut" (see shred (n.)).

Specific meaning "winding-sheet, cloth or sheet for burial," to which the word now is restricted, first attested 1560s. Sense of "strong rope supporting the mast of a ship" (mid-15c.) is from the notion of "clothing" a spar or mast; one without rigging was said to be naked.


c.1300, "to clothe, to cover, protect," from Old English scrydan, scridan "to clothe, dress;" see shroud (n.). Meaning "to hide from view, conceal" (transitive) is attested from early 15c. Related: Shrouded; shrouding.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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