from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun An institution for the instruction of children or people under college age.
  • noun An institution for instruction in a skill or business.
  • noun A college or university.
  • noun An institution within or associated with a college or university that gives instruction in a specialized field and recommends candidates for degrees.
  • noun A division of an educational institution constituting several grades or classes.
  • noun The student body of an educational institution.
  • noun The building or group of buildings housing an educational institution.
  • noun The process of being educated formally, especially education constituting a planned series of courses over a number of years.
  • noun A session of instruction.
  • noun A group of people, especially philosophers, artists, or writers, whose thought, work, or style demonstrates a common origin or influence or unifying belief.
  • noun A group of people distinguished by similar manners, customs, or opinions.
  • noun Close-order drill instructions or exercises for military units or personnel.
  • noun Australian A group of people gathered together for gambling.
  • transitive verb To educate in or as if in a school.
  • transitive verb To train or discipline: synonym: teach.
  • adjective Of or relating to school or education in schools.
  • noun A large group of aquatic animals, especially fish, swimming together; a shoal.
  • intransitive verb To swim in or form into a school.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To educate, instruct, or train in or as in school; teach.
  • To teach, train, or discipline with the thoroughness and strictness of a school; discipline thoroughly; bring under control.
  • To discipline or take to task; reprove; chide and admonish.
  • noun A large number of fish, or porpoises, whales, or the like, feeding or migrating together; a company.
  • To form or go in a school, as fish; run together; shoal.
  • To go or move in a body; troop.
  • noun A medical sect, followers of Stahl, so called because of the doctrine that all vital phenomena proceed from the action of an internal force. See animism, 2.
  • noun A school maintained in a community by taxes levied for the purpose.
  • noun A place where instruction is given in arts, science, languages, or any species of learning; an institution for learning; an educational establishment; a school-house; a school-room.
  • noun The body of pupils collectively in any place of instruction, and under the direction of one or more teachers: as, to have a large school.
  • noun A session of an institution of instruction; exercises of instruction; school-work.
  • noun In the middle ages, a lecture-room, especially in a university or college; hence, the body of masters and students in a university; a university or college; in the plural, the schools, the scholastics generally.
  • noun A large room or hall in English universities where the examinations for degrees and honors take place.
  • noun The disciples or followers of a teacher; those who hold a common doctrine or accept the same teachings or principles; those who exhibit in practice the same general methods, principles, tastes, or intellectual bent; a sect or denomination in philosophy, theology, science, art, etc.; a system of doctrine as delivered by particular teachers: as, the Socratic school; the painters of the Italian school; the musicians of the German school; economists of the laisser-faire school.
  • noun A system or state of matters prevalent at a certain time; a specific method or cast of thought; a particular system of training with special reference to conduct and manners: as, a gentleman of the old school; specifically, the manifestation or the results of the coöperation of a school (in sense 6): as, paintings of the Italian Renaissance school.
  • noun Any place or means of discipline, improvement, instruction, or training.
  • noun In music, a book or treatise designed to teach some particular branch of the art: as, A.'s violin school.
  • Pertaining or relating to a school or to education: as, a school custom.
  • Pertaining to the schoolmen; scholastic: as, school philosophy (scholasticism).

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun A shoal; a multitude.
  • transitive verb To train in an institution of learning; to educate at a school; to teach.
  • transitive verb To tutor; to chide and admonish; to reprove; to subject to systematic discipline; to train.
  • noun A place for learned intercourse and instruction; an institution for learning; an educational establishment; a place for acquiring knowledge and mental training.
  • noun A place of primary instruction; an establishment for the instruction of children.
  • noun A session of an institution of instruction.
  • noun One of the seminaries for teaching logic, metaphysics, and theology, which were formed in the Middle Ages, and which were characterized by academical disputations and subtilties of reasoning.
  • noun The room or hall in English universities where the examinations for degrees and honors are held.
  • noun An assemblage of scholars; those who attend upon instruction in a school of any kind; a body of pupils.
  • noun The disciples or followers of a teacher; those who hold a common doctrine, or accept the same teachings; a sect or denomination in philosophy, theology, science, medicine, politics, etc.
  • noun The canons, precepts, or body of opinion or practice, sanctioned by the authority of a particular class or age.


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

[Middle English scole, from Old English scōl, from Latin schola, scola, from Greek skholē; see segh- in Indo-European roots.]

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

[Middle English scole, from Middle Dutch; see skel- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English schole ("group of persons, multitude, host, school of fish"), from Middle Dutch scole (Dutch school, "multitude, troop of people, swarm of animals"), from Old Saxon scola, skola ("troop, multitude"), from Proto-Germanic *skulō (“crowd”), from Proto-Indo-European *(s)kʷel- (“crowd, people”). Cognate with Middle Low German schōle ("multitude, troop"), Old English scolu ("troop or band of people, host, multitude, school of fish"). More at shoal.


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  • “The one flaw in Lafayette that his American friends began to notice as he entered his thirties was his love of the applause he had received. He would never consciously do a dishonorable thing to win more, but he had not learned the republican art of schooling his ambition.”

    -- Richard Brookhiser, “Gentleman Revolutionary”, p103 of the Free Press paperback

    September 11, 2011