Definitions

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

  • n. An ornamental flower garden having the beds and paths arranged to form a pattern.
  • n. See parquet circle.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A flowerbed, particularly an elevated one (Wikipedia).
  • n. A garden with paths between such flowerbeds.
  • n. A theater balcony, especially in an opera house; above the box seats, but definitely below family circle (Wikipedia).
  • n. An apartment balcony.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. An ornamental and diversified arrangement of beds or plots, in which flowers are cultivated, with intervening spaces of gravel or turf for walking on.
  • n. The pit of a theater; the parquet.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In horticulture, a system of beds of different shapes and sizes in which flowers are cultivated, arranged in some design or plan, with intervening spaces of gravel or turf.
  • n. The part of the floor of a theater beneath the galleries: in some modern English theaters called the pit—a sense to be distinguished from the original meaning of pit.

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

  • n. an ornamental flower garden; beds and paths are arranged to form a pattern
  • n. seating at the rear of the main floor (beneath the balconies)

Etymologies

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

French, from Old French, ornamental garden, from par terre, on the ground : par, over, on; see paramount + terre, ground (from Old French, from Latin terra, earth).

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

French

Examples

Comments

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  • "Plant in this boughs of green, bushes, and all the flowers that can be filled in. Nothing is prettier, in the centre of a table, than this little parterre. . . . Variety may be made by adding rocks, vases, and columns to the parterre; vases of flowers, at the corners of the table, may also be added."

    —Susan Williams, Savory Suppers and Fashionable Feasts: Dining in Victorian America (New York: Pantheon Books, 1985), 153

    May 3, 2010

  • from Thoreau's A Week on the Concord and Merrimack Rivers

    July 19, 2009