9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[disk] /dɪsk/
any thin, flat, circular plate or object.
any surface that is flat and round, or seemingly so:
the disk of the sun.
disc (def 1).
Computers. any of several types of media consisting of thin, round plates of plastic or metal, used for external storage:
magnetic disk; floppy disk; optical disk.
Botany, Zoology. any of various roundish, flat structures or parts.
Botany. (in the daisy and other composite plants) the central portion of the flower head, composed of tubular florets.
any of the circular steel blades that form the working part of a disk harrow.
Mathematics. the domain bounded by a circle.
Archaic. discus.
verb (used with object)
Informal. disc (def 3).
to cultivate (soil) with a disk harrow.
Also, disc (for defs 1, 2, 4–9, 12).
Origin of disk
1655-65; < Latin discus discus; cf. dish
Related forms
disklike, adjective
Can be confused
disc, disk. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for disk
  • Split into quadrants, each section is engraved with the seal of the state, laying claim to its parcel of disk.
  • Each of its long shafts holds disks, and each disk has wheels with ten teeth that correspond to marks in the disks.
  • Move around the edge so that the ball of dough becomes a thin disk with a slightly thicker edge all around.
  • Both programs require a lot of processing speed and disk space.
  • Long gone are the days of light shining through celluloid images on a disk.
  • Turn the dough out onto a piece of plastic wrap and gather the ends together, forming the dough into a disk.
  • Gather up the dough, wrap tightly in plastic wrap, and press down to flatten into a disk about one inch thick.
  • Get disk-imaging software that makes a bit-for-bit copy of everything on your drive.
  • Peel the carrots and grate them on a the coarse side of a box grater or with the grating disk of a food processor.
  • He once had a herniated disk that kept him off the courts for six months, and he still gets occasional backaches.
British Dictionary definitions for disk


a flat circular plate
something resembling or appearing to resemble this: the sun's disc
another word for (gramophone) record
(anatomy) any approximately circular flat structure in the body, esp an intervertebral disc
  1. the flat receptacle of composite flowers, such as the daisy
  2. (as modifier): a disc floret
the middle part of the lip of an orchid
  1. Also called parking disc. a marker or device for display in a parked vehicle showing the time of arrival or the latest permitted time of departure or both
  2. (as modifier): a disc zone, disc parking
(computing) a variant spelling of disk (sense 2)
to work (land) with a disc harrow
Word Origin
C18: from Latin discus, from Greek diskos quoit


a variant spelling (esp US and Canadian) of disc
(computing) Also called magnetic disk, hard disk. a direct-access storage device consisting of a stack of plates coated with a magnetic layer, the whole assembly rotating rapidly as a single unit. Each surface has a read-write head that can move radially to read or write data on concentric tracks Compare drum1 (sense 9) See also floppy disk
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 disk

American English preferred spelling, 1660s, "round flat surface," from Latin discus "quoit, discus, disk," from Greek diskos, from dikein "throw," from PIE *dik-skos-, from root *deik- "to show, pronounce solemnly; also in derivatives referring to the directing of words or objects" [Watkins].

Sense of "phonograph disk" is 1888; computing sense is from 1947. Disk jockey first recorded 1941; dee-jay is from 1955; DJ is 1961; video version veejay is 1982. Disk-drive is from 1952.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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disk in Medicine

disk or disc (dĭsk)

  1. A thin, flat, circular object or plate.

  2. See lamella.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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disk in Science
disk or disc
    1. See magnetic disk.

    2. See optical disk.

  1. See intervertebral disk.

  2. The round, flat center, consisting of many disk flowers, found in the inflorescences of many composite plants such as the daisy.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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disk in Technology

1. magnetic disk.
2. compact disc.
3. optical disk.
Note: the american spelling, "disk", is normal for most computer disks whereas "compact disc", having come to computers via the audio world, is correctly spelled with a "c", indeed, this spelling is part of the CD standard.

The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010
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