Quiz: Remember the definition of mal de mer?


[myoo r-uh l] /ˈmyʊər əl/
a large picture painted or affixed directly on a wall or ceiling.
a greatly enlarged photograph attached directly to a wall.
a wallpaper pattern representing a landscape or the like, often with very widely spaced repeats so as to produce the effect of a mural painting on a wall of average size; a trompe l'oeil.
of, relating to, or resembling a wall.
executed on or affixed to a wall:
mural inscriptions.
pertaining to any of several astronomical instruments that were affixed to a wall aligned on the plane of a meridian, and were formerly used to measure the altitude of celestial bodies:
a mural quadrant; a mural circle.
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English < Latin mūrālis, equivalent to mūr(us) wall + -ālis -al1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for murals
  • They include murals, home and office decoration, fashion and even free-standing sculpture.
  • In vivid colors, the murals were sometimes bold and threatening, sometimes exquisite and sacred.
  • Even the walls of the courthouse are enlivened by murals of cattle drives.
  • The picture palaces, with their murals and chandeliers, then became bingo halls or nightclubs.
  • It is said that anyone who tries to deface the murals in anyway, or even to reproduce them, will be overtaken by misfortune.
  • All about was magnificence and modernity- murals and modernist chairs and floor lamps and deep carpets full of elec- tricity.
  • Customers enjoy hand-painted murals, intricate mirrors and ceilings and ornate bathroom fixtures.
  • These outlets for the cultural consumer freely overflow into surrounding areas that are adorned with murals and sculptures.
  • Well-done murals attract far less graffiti and tend to last longer than murals that look hurriedly done.
British Dictionary definitions for murals


a large painting or picture on a wall
of or relating to a wall
Derived Forms
muralist, noun
Word Origin
C15: from Latin mūrālis, from mūrus wall
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 murals



painting on a wall, 1921, short for mural painting (1850), from mural (adj.) "pertaining to walls" (mid-15c.), from Latin muralis "of a wall," from murus "wall" (Old Latin moiros, moerus), from PIE *mei- "to fix; to build fences or fortifications" (cf. Old English mære "boundary, border, landmark;" Old Norse -mæri "boundary, border-land;" Latin munire "to fortify, protect").

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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murals in Medicine

mural mu·ral (myur'əl)
Of or relating to the wall of any cavity.

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

mural definition

A painting, usually large, made directly on a wall.

Note: The Mexican artist Diego Rivera was noted for his production of murals.
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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