See also: Storey


Alternative formsEdit


From Middle English story, via Medieval Latin historia (narrative, illustraton, frieze) from Ancient Greek ἱστορίᾱ (historíā, learning through research), from ἱστορέω (historéō, to research, inquire (and record)), from ἵστωρ (hístōr, the knowing, wise one), from Proto-Indo-European *weyd- (to see, know). The current sense arose from narrative friezes on upper levels of medieval buildings, esp. churches.

An alternative etymology derives Middle English story from Old French *estoree (a thing built, building), from estoree (built), feminine past participle of estorer (to build), from Latin instaurare (to construct, build, erect), but this seems unlikely since historia already had the meaning "storey of a building" in Anglo-Latin.[1]



storey (plural storeys) (British spelling)

  1. A floor or level of a building or ship.
    Synonyms: floor, level, (US) story
    Coordinate term: deck
    For superstitious reasons, many buildings number their 13th storey as 14, bypassing 13 entirely.
    a multi-storey car park
  2. (typography) A vertical level in certain letters, such as a and g.
    The IPA symbol for a voiced velar stop is the single-storey  , not the double-storey  .
  3. (obsolete) A building; an edifice.

Usage notesEdit

The terms floor, level, or deck are used in a similar way, except that it is usual to talk of a “14-storey building”, but “the 14th floor”. The floor at ground or street level is called the ground floor in many places. In some of those places, the floor immediately above (e.g., the upper floor of a two-storey building) is called “the first floor”. In other places, the floor just above ground floor is called “the second floor”, and “first floor” is a synonym for “ground floor”.

The words storey and floor exclude levels of the building that are not covered by a roof, such as the terrace on the top roof of many buildings.

Derived termsEdit


See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Douglas Harper (2001–2022), “storey”, in Online Etymology Dictionary.