Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Sports A room or building equipped for indoor sports.
  • n. Sports An academic high school in some central European countries, especially Germany, that prepares students for the university.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A large room or building for indoor sports.
  • n. A type of secondary school in some European countries which typically prepares students for university.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. A place or building where athletic exercises are performed; a school for gymnastics.
  • n. A school for the higher branches of literature and science; a preparatory school for the university; -- used esp. of German schools of this kind.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In Greek antiquity, a public place for instruction in and the practice of athletic exercises: a feature of all Greek communities.
  • n. Hence In modern use, a place where or a building in which athletic exercises are taught and performed.
  • n. A school or seminary for the higher branches of literature and science; a school preparatory to the universities, especially in Germany; a classical as opposed to a technical school.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. athletic facility equipped for sports or physical training
  • n. a school for students intermediate between elementary school and college; usually grades 9 to 12

Etymologies

Latin, school, from Greek gumnasion, from gumnazein, to exercise naked, from gumnos, naked.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin gymnasium, from Ancient Greek γυμνάσιον (gumnasion, "exercise, school"), from γυμνός ("naked"), because Greek athletes trained naked. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • The word gymnasium comes from the Greek word gymnos, which means naked.

    The Sydney Morning Herald News Headlines

  • In fact, the word gymnasium comes from the Greek word gymnos, which translates as “naked.”

    God is Not a Christian, Nor a Jew, Muslim, Hindu …

  • In many quarters there was a clamour for "practical" studies, and the old classical course was decried as useless, or merely ornamental; its very foundation, the theory of mental or formal discipline, well expressed in the term gymnasium for classical schools in Germany, has been vigorously assailed, but not disproved.

    The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 4: Clandestinity-Diocesan Chancery

  • Having been made so aware of your edges, you’re more inclined to guard them; it’s still significant that the word gymnasium comes from the Greek for naked.

    BREAKFAST WITH SOCRATES

  • The Prom in the Forks High gymnasium is going to be AWESOME!!!

    Twilight Lexicon » Convention News

  • I have seen many men strip, in gymnasium and training quarters, men of good blood and upbringing, but I have never seen one who stripped to better advantage than this young sot of two-and-twenty, this young god doomed to rack and ruin in four or five short years, and to pass hence without posterity to receive the splendid heritage it was his to bequeath.

    A MAN AND THE ABYSS

  • I have seen many men strip, in gymnasium and training quarters, men of good blood and upbringing, but I have never seen one who stripped to better advantage than this young sot of two and twenty, this young god doomed to rack and ruin in four or five short years, and to pass hence without posterity to receive the splendid heritage it was his to bequeath.

    Man and the Abyss

  • Athletic participants did not wear clothes, either in training or in the actual games-hence the modern word gymnasium, which originally was not only a place to train but also a place of nudity.

    CreationWiki - Recent changes [en]

  • Mr. Obama toured a classroom that was then unheated and un-air-conditioned it has since been updated and shot hoops in the gymnasium, which is not big enough for a regulation basketball court.

    South Carolina Town Tests Candidates

  • And then there is the gymnasium, which is un-air-conditioned, and thus the problems can't be blamed on "trapped moisture" in a building that doesn't "breathe."

    Your Right Hand Thief

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Comments

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  • Weirdnet has it right, if you're a German speaker.

    January 9, 2008