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[ahr-ching] /ˈɑr tʃɪŋ/
arched work or formation.
1670-80; arch1 + -ing1
Related forms
unarching, adjective


[ahrch] /ɑrtʃ/
  1. a curved masonry construction for spanning an opening, consisting of a number of wedgelike stones, bricks, or the like, set with the narrower side toward the opening in such a way that forces on the arch are transmitted as vertical or oblique stresses on either side of the opening.
  2. an upwardly curved construction, as of steel or timber functioning in the manner of a masonry arch.
  3. a doorway, gateway, etc., having a curved head; an archway.
  4. the curved head of an opening, as a doorway.
any overhead curvature resembling an arch.
something bowed or curved; any bowlike part:
the arch of the foot.
a device inserted in or built into shoes for supporting the arch of the foot.
a dam construction having the form of a barrel vault running vertically with its convex face toward the impounded water.
  1. a chamber or opening in a glassmaking furnace.
  2. pot arch.
verb (used with object)
to cover with a vault, or span with an arch:
the rude bridge that arched the flood.
to throw or make into the shape of an arch or vault; curve:
The horse arched its neck.
verb (used without object)
to form an arch:
elms arching over the road.
Nautical, hog (def 14).
1250-1300; Middle English arch(e) < Old French arche < Vulgar Latin *arca, feminine variant of Latin arcus arc Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for arching
  • She recoils in panic, arms flailing, arching herself backwards almost to the boards.
  • The terminal has nine arching vaults in its roof, each the size and shape of a blimp hangar.
  • No problem, the first step to solving the over arching problem is to fix the communication issues.
  • His arching serves and rapid returns made him a few fans who cheered in amazement.
  • The composition is symmetrical, with the road running directly down the center of the arching trees.
  • arching across the side of the cranium are the temporal lines, which mark the upper limit of the temporal fossa.
  • Growing to three feet tall, its elegant, arching stems are a glaucous blue-gray.
  • She can see him puffing out his cheeks and arching his eyebrows.
  • Spreads: reproduces by seed and by forming new plants from the tips of arching canes that can root where they contact the ground.
  • The fluted style can be recognized by an arching groove, cut horizontally at the base of the point.
British Dictionary definitions for arching


a curved structure, normally in the vertical plane, that spans an opening
Also called archway. a structure in the form of an arch that serves as a gateway
something curved like an arch
  1. any of various parts or structures of the body having a curved or archlike outline, such as the transverse portion of the aorta (arch of the aorta) or the raised bony vault formed by the tarsal and metatarsal bones (arch of the foot)
  2. one of the basic patterns of the human fingerprint, formed by several curved ridges one above the other Compare loop1 (sense 10a), whorl (sense 3)
(transitive) to span (an opening) with an arch
to form or cause to form an arch or a curve resembling that of an arch: the cat arched its back
(transitive) to span or extend over: the bridge arched the flooded stream
Word Origin
C14: from Old French arche, from Vulgar Latin arca (unattested), from Latin arcus bow, arc


(prenominal) chief; principal; leading: his arch rival
(prenominal) very experienced; expert: an arch criminal
knowing or superior
playfully or affectedly roguish or mischievous
Derived Forms
archly, adverb
archness, noun
Word Origin
C16: independent use of arch-
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 arching



c.1300, from Old French arche "arch of a bridge" (12c.), from Latin arcus "a bow" (see arc). Replaced native bow (n.1). Originally architectural in English; transferred by early 15c. to anything having this form (eyebrows, etc.).


1540s, "chief, principal," from prefix arch-; used in 12c. archangel, etc., but extended to so many derogatory uses (arch-rogue, arch-knave, etc.) that by mid-17c. it acquired a meaning of "roguish, mischievous," since softened to "saucy." Also found in archwife (late 14c.), variously defined as "a wife of a superior order" or "a dominating woman, virago."


early 14c., "to form an arch" (implied in arched); c.1400, "to furnish with an arch," from arch (n.). Related: Arching.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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arching in Medicine

arch (ärch)
An organ or structure having a curved or bowlike appearance, especially either of two arched sections of the bony structure of the foot.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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arching in Culture

arch definition

In architecture, a curved or pointed opening that spans a doorway, window, or other space.

Note: The form of arch used in building often serves to distinguish styles of architecture from one another. For example, Romanesque architecture usually employs a round arch, and Gothic architecture, a pointed arch.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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arching in the Bible

an architectural term found only in Ezek. 40:16, 21, 22, 26, 29. There is no absolute proof that the Israelites employed arches in their buildings. The arch was employed in the building of the pyramids of Egypt. The oldest existing arch is at Thebes, and bears the date B.C. 1350. There are also still found the remains of an arch, known as Robinson's Arch, of the bridge connecting Zion and Moriah. (See TYROPOEON VALLEY.)

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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