noun, plural peripheries.
the external boundary of any surface or area.
the external surface of a body.
the edge or outskirts, as of a city or urban area.
the relatively minor, irrelevant, or superficial aspects of the subject in question: The preliminary research did not, of course, take me beyond the periphery of my problem.
Anatomy. the area in which nerves end.

1350–1400; < Late Latin peripherīa < Greek periphéreia circumference, literally, a bearing round, equivalent to peri- peri- + phér(ein) to bear1 + -eia -y3; replacing Middle English periferie < Medieval Latin periferīa, variant spelling of Late Latin peripherīa

1. circumference, perimeter.

1, 2. center. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
periphery (pəˈrɪfərɪ)
n , pl -eries
1.  the outermost boundary of an area
2.  the outside surface of something
3.  anatomy the surface or outermost part of the body or one of its organs or parts
[C16: from Late Latin peripherīa, from Greek, from peri- + pherein to bear]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

late 14c., from O.Fr. periferie, from L.L. peripheria, from Gk. peripheria "circumference, outer surface," lit. "a carrying around," from peripheres "rounded, moving round, revolving," peripherein "carry or move round," from peri- "round about" + pherein "to carry" (see infer).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

periphery pe·riph·er·y (pə-rĭf'ə-rē)

  1. The outermost part or region within a precise boundary; the part away from center.

  2. The outer surface of a solid.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Example sentences
They are supposed to be on the periphery, stacked up on the outskirts.
And keep your eyes on the whole area; there are some mighty fine works of
  signage on the periphery.
Both have existed for centuries on the periphery of human consciousness.
It's on the ramp's periphery that the miners blasted open veins of gold.
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