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From Middle English arrayen, from Anglo-Norman arraier (compare Old French arraier, areer (to put in order)), from Medieval Latin arrēdō (to put in order, arrange, array), from *rēdum (preparation, order), from Frankish *reida (preparation, order) or Gothic 𐌲𐌰𐍂𐌰𐌹𐌸𐍃 (garaiþs, ready, prepared), from Proto-Germanic *raidaz, *raidiz (ready). Doublet of ready.


  • IPA(key): /əˈɹeɪ/
  • (US) IPA(key): /əˈɹeɪ/, /ˈæ.ɹɛ͡ɪ/ (UK)
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -eɪ


array (countable and uncountable, plural arrays)

  1. Clothing and ornamentation.
    • 2002, David L. Thompson, “River of Memories -An Appalachian Boyhood”, in (Please provide the book title or journal name), page 69:
      Upon leaving the center, I photographed the colorful array of petunias decorating the square in purple, pink, yellow, white, and magenta.
    • 2017, Anon., “Sovay”, in Roud # 7, Laws N21[2]:
      Sovay, Sovay all on a day, She dressed herself in man's array, With a sword and a pistol all by her side, To meet her true love to meet her true love away did ride.
    • 1700, [John] Dryden, “Palamon and Arcite: Or, The Knight’s Tale. In Three Books.”, in Fables Ancient and Modern; [], London: Printed for Jacob Tonson, [], OCLC 228732415, book I, page 8:
      In this Remembrance Emily e’re day / Aroſe, and dreſs’d her ſelf in rich Array []
  2. A collection laid out to be viewed in full.
    • 1788 June, Richard Brinsley Sheridan, “Mr. Sheridan’s Speech, on Summing Up the Evidence on the Second, or Begum Charge against Warren Hastings, Esq., Delivered before the High Court of Parliament, June 1788”, in Select Speeches, Forensick and Parliamentary, with Prefatory Remarks by N[athaniel] Chapman, M.D., volume I, [Philadelphia, Pa.]: Published by Hopkins and Earle, no. 170, Market Street, published 1808, OCLC 230944105, page 474:
      The Begums' ministers, on the contrary, to extort from them the disclosure of the place which concealed the treasures, were, [] after being fettered and imprisoned, led out on to a scaffold, and this array of terrours proving unavailing, the meek tempered Middleton, as a dernier resort, menaced them with a confinement in the fortress of Chunargar. Thus, my lords, was a British garrison made the climax of cruelties!
  3. An orderly series, arrangement or sequence.
    • (Can we date this quote by Prescott and provide title, author’s full name, and other details?)
      a gallant array of nobles and cavaliers
  4. Order; a regular and imposing arrangement; disposition in regular lines; hence, order of battle.
    drawn up in battle array
    • (Can we date this quote by Gibbon and provide title, author’s full name, and other details?)
      wedged together in the closest array
  5. A large collection.
    • (Can we date this quote by Byron and provide title, author’s full name, and other details?)
      their long array of sapphire and of gold
    We offer a dazzling array of choices.
    • 2011 October 23, Phil McNulty, “Man Utd 1 - 6 Man City”, in BBC Sport[3]:
      Mario Balotelli, in the headlines for accidentally setting his house ablaze with fireworks, put City on their way with goals either side of the interval as United struggled to contain the array of attacking talent in front of them.
  6. (mathematics) Common name for matrix.
  7. (programming) Any of various data structures designed to hold multiple elements of the same type; especially, a data structure that holds these elements in adjacent memory locations so that they may be retrieved using numeric indices.
  8. (law) A ranking or setting forth in order, by the proper officer, of a jury as impanelled in a cause; the panel itself; or the whole body of jurors summoned to attend the court.
  9. (military) A militia.
  10. A group of hedgehogs.[1]
  11. A microarray.

Usage notesEdit

  • (any of various data structures): The exact usage of the term array, and of related terms, generally depends on the programming language. For example, many languages distinguish a fairly low-level "array" construct from a higher-level "list" or "vector" construct. Some languages distinguish between an "array" and a variety of "associative array"; others have only the latter concept, calling it an "array".



mathematics: Hyponyms of array
programming: Hyponyms of array
technology: Hyponyms of array

Related termsEdit


The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.


  1. ^ AskOxford: H[1], Oxford, United Kingdom: Oxford University Press, (Please provide a date or year), archived from the original on June 16, 2006

See alsoEdit


array (third-person singular simple present arrays, present participle arraying, simple past and past participle arrayed)

  1. To clothe and ornament; to adorn or attire.
    He was arrayed in his finest robes and jewels.
  2. To lay out in an orderly arrangement; to deploy or marshal.
  3. (law) To set in order, as a jury, for the trial of a cause; that is, to call them one at a time.





From English array.


array m (plural arrays)

  1. (programming) array (any of various data structures)