Meaning of CURTAIN in English


I. cur ‧ tain 1 S3 W3 /ˈkɜːtn $ ˈkɜːrtn/ BrE AmE noun [countable]

[ Date: 1200-1300 ; Language: Old French ; Origin: curtine , from Late Latin cortina , from Latin cohors 'enclosure, court' ; ⇨ ↑ cohort ]

1 . a piece of hanging cloth that can be pulled across to cover a window, divide a room etc:

red velvet curtains

draw/close/pull the curtains

Ella drew the curtains and switched the light on.

draw back/open the curtains

Shall I open the curtains?

curtain rail/pole/rod (=for hanging a curtain on)

2 . a sheet of heavy material that comes down at the front of the stage in a theatre

the curtain goes up/rises

Before the curtain went up, the dancers took their places on stage.

the curtain comes down/falls

3 . written a thick layer of something that stops anything behind it from being seen

curtain of

a curtain of smoke

4 . bring down the curtain on something informal to cause or mark the end of a situation or period of time:

The decision brought down the curtain on a 30-year career.

5 . (it’ll) be curtains for somebody/something informal used to say that someone will die or that something will end

• • •


■ verbs

▪ draw/close/pull the curtains (=close them)

The room was dark because the curtains were drawn.

▪ open/draw (back)/pull back the curtains (=open them)

Would you mind opening the curtains?

▪ curtains hang

Bright red curtains hung cheerfully at all the windows.

▪ put up/hang curtains (=fix new curtains at a window )

She was standing on a ladder hanging some new curtains.


▪ heavy/thick curtains (=made of thick material)

Heavy curtains help to keep the house warm.

▪ velvet/net/lace etc curtains (=made of velvet, net etc)

▪ a shower curtain (=for keeping the water in the shower)

■ curtain + NOUN

▪ a curtain rail/pole/rod (=a long stick for hanging a curtain)

Velvet can be heavy so choose a strong curtain pole.

▪ curtain fabric/material (=for making curtains)

I need to go to town to buy some curtain fabric.

▪ curtain hooks (=for attaching curtains to a rail)

The curtain has loops, so you don't need curtain hooks.

II. curtain 2 BrE AmE verb

curtain something ↔ off phrasal verb

to separate one area, room etc from another by hanging a curtain between them:

The room was curtained off by red drapes.

Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English.      Longman - Словарь современного английского языка.