• Kabo watches from the surface
    Kabo watches from the surface
  • WordNet 3.6
    • adj surface on the surface "surface materials of the moon"
    • v surface appear or become visible; make a showing "She turned up at the funeral","I hope the list key is going to surface again"
    • v surface put a coat on; cover the surface of; furnish with a surface "coat the cake with chocolate"
    • v surface come to the surface
    • n surface a device that provides reactive force when in motion relative to the surrounding air; can lift or control a plane in flight
    • n surface the outer boundary of an artifact or a material layer constituting or resembling such a boundary "there is a special cleaner for these surfaces","the cloth had a pattern of red dots on a white surface"
    • n surface information that has become public "all the reports were out in the open","the facts had been brought to the surface"
    • n surface a superficial aspect as opposed to the real nature of something "it was not what it appeared to be on the surface"
    • n surface the extended two-dimensional outer boundary of a three-dimensional object "they skimmed over the surface of the water","a brush small enough to clean every dental surface","the sun has no distinct surface"
    • n surface the outermost level of the land or sea "earthquakes originate far below the surface","three quarters of the Earth's surface is covered by water"
    • ***

Additional illustrations & photos:

Combined surfacer and matcher Combined surfacer and matcher
England and Wales, Surface Features England and Wales, Surface Features
Upper Surface of the Cerebrum Upper Surface of the Cerebrum

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: Close to fifty percent of the bacteria in the mouth lives on the surface of our tongue
    • Surface (Geom) A magnitude that has length and breadth without thickness; superficies; as, a plane surface; a spherical surface .
    • Surface Hence, outward or external appearance. "Vain and weak understandings, which penetrate no deeper than the surface ."
    • Surface (Fort) That part of the side which is terminated by the flank prolonged, and the angle of the nearest bastion.
    • Surface The exterior part of anything that has length and breadth; one of the limits that bound a solid, esp. the upper face; superficies; the outside; as, the surface of the earth; the surface of a diamond; the surface of the body. "The bright surface of this ethereous mold."
    • Surface To give a surface to; especially, to cause to have a smooth or plain surface; to make smooth or plain.
    • Surface To work over the surface or soil of, as ground, in hunting for gold.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
  • Interesting fact: The surface of the Earth is about 60% water and 10% ice.
    • n surface The bounding or limiting parts of a body; the parts of a body which are immediately adjacent to another body or to empty space (or the air); superficies; outside: distinguished as a physical surface.
    • n surface The boundary between two solid spaces not adjacent to a third: distinguished as a mathematical surface. A surface is a geometrical locus defined by a single general and continuous condition. This condition reduces the points of the surface to a two-dimensional continuum, its enveloping planes to a two-dimensional continuum, and its enveloping straight lines to a three-dimensional continuum. A ruled surface appears to be enveloped by a one-dimensional series of lines; but when imaginary points are considered, this is seen not to be so. A true one-dimensional continuum of lines requires for its determination a threefold condition, and can contain but a finite number (or discrete infinity) of points and of planes. The number of points or planes of a surface which satisfy a twofold additional condition, as that the points shall lie upon a given line, or that the planes shall contain a given line, and the number of lines of the surface which satisfy a threefold additional condition, as that they shall belong to a given plane pencil, are either finite or only discrete infinity. In the former case the surface is said to be algebraical, in the latter transcendental. If the imaginary elements are taken into account, the numbers are constant whatever the special lines or pencils to which they refer may be. The number of points of an algebraical surface which lie upon a given straight line is called the order of the surface; the number of tangent planes which contain a given line is called the class of the surface; and the number of tangent lines which belong to a given plane pencil is called the rank of the surface.
    • n surface Outward or external appearance: what appears on a slight view or without examination.
    • n surface In fortification, that part of the side which is terminated by the flank prolonged and the angle of the nearest bastion.
    • n surface A centrosurface.
    • n surface A special case of the above, with four conical points. Generally distinguished as Dupin's cyclide.
    • n surface where ϕ = 0 is a primitive surface.
    • n surface An elassoidal surface (which see, above): an ordinary use, but not quite accurate.
    • n surface A surface generated by the helicoidal motion of a right line.
    • n surface The surface often originally, and better, called the Roman surface [discovered by Jacob Steiner (1796-1863), undoubtedly the greatest of all geometricians], being a quartic surface of the third class, having three double lines. In its symmetrical form its appearance is thus described: Take a tetrahedron, and inscribe in each face a circle. There will be, of course, two circles touching at the mid-point of each edge of the tetrahedron; each circle will contain, on its circumference, at angular distances of 120°, three mid-points; and the lines joining these with the center of the tetrahedron, produced beyond the center, meet the opposite edges … joining the mid-points. … Now truncate the tetrahedron by planes parallel to the faces, so as to reduce the altitudes, each to three fourths of the original value; and from the center of each new face round off symmetrically up to the adjacent three circles; and within each circle scoop down to the center of the tetrahedron, the bounding surface of the excavation passing through [that is, containing] the three right lines, and the sections by planes parallel to the face being in the neighborhood of the face nearly circular, but, as they approach the center, assuming a trigoidal form, and being close to the center an indefinitely small equilateral triangle. We have thus the surface, consisting of four lobes united only by the lines through the mid-points of opposite edges—these lines being consequently nodal lines, the mid-points being pinch-points of the surface, and the faces singular planes, each touching the surface along the inscribed circle. (Cayley, Proceedings London Math. Soc., V. 14.)
    • n surface More generally, a surface generated by a curve the plane of which moves in any way so that every line in it remains parallel to itself.
    • n surface Synonyms Superficies, Exterior, etc. See outside.
    • surface Of or pertaining to the surface; external; hence, superficial; specious; insincere: as, mere surface politeness or loyalty.
    • surface To put a surface (of a particular kind) on, or give a (certain) surface to; specifically, to give a fine or even surface to; make plain or smooth.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: The weddell seal, can travel underwater for seven hours without surfacing.
    • n Surface sur′fās the exterior part of anything
    • ***


  • E. M. Bounds
    E. M. Bounds
    “Few persons are made of such strong fiber that they will make a costly outlay when surface work will pass as well in the market.”
  • Source Unknown
    Source Unknown
    “Character is like the foundation of a house -- it is below the surface.”
  • Gilbert K. Chesterton
    “Brave men are all vertebrates; they have their softness on the surface and their toughness in the middle.”
  • Andre Gide
    “Fish die belly upward, and rise to the surface. Its their way of falling.”
  • Vladimir Nabokov
    “A novelist is, like all mortals, more fully at home on the surface of the present than in the ooze of the past.”
  • Peace Pilgrim
    “Humanity has only scratched the surface of its real potential.”


Boil to the surface - If a problem or issue boils to the surface, it emerges at a particular time and needs to be discussed or resolved.
Scratch the surface - When you scratch the surface of something, you have a superficial knowledge or understanding of it.


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
F. See Sur-, and Face, and cf. Superficial
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Fr., from sur—L. super, and face—L. facies.


In literature:

A curious connection seems to exist between the periodicity of the spots and their distribution over the surface of the sun.
"The Story of the Heavens" by Robert Stawell Ball
This sediment does not prevent its habitual use by hundreds who live on its banks, or move in boats over its surface.
"A New Guide for Emigrants to the West" by J. M. Peck
Not from the surface!
"The Defenders" by Philip K. Dick
The whole plant, except the upper surface of the cap, is a golden yellow, and even the surface of the cap is more or less yellow.
"The Mushroom, Edible and Otherwise" by M. E. Hard
He knew when he floated on the surface, for he felt himself lifted and hurled by the waves.
"Astounding Stories of Super-Science April 1930" by Various
Eventually the surface will be worn to such an extent that an entirely new wearing surface must be added.
"American Rural Highways" by T. R. Agg
But the surface ship had the advantage of speed.
"Submarine Warfare of To-day" by Charles W. Domville-Fife
The plane teetered on the very verge of a dive beneath the surface.
"Astounding Stories of Super-Science, June, 1930" by Various
Their convex surfaces and fractured edges.
"Modern Painters Volume I (of V)" by John Ruskin
Shrouded in impenetrable clouds, its surface has never been seen, but something is happening there.
"Astounding Stories of Super-Science, November, 1930" by Various

In poetry:

But as the undercurrents sigh
Beneath the surface of a river,
The music of humanity
Dwells in his forest-psalms for ever.
"Charles Harpur" by Henry Kendall
I left the surface gods of mind
And life’s unsatisfied seas
And plunged through the body’s alleys blind
To the nether mysteries.
"A God's Labour" by Aurobindo Ghose
"Calm, as the surface of the lake,
When all the winds are still;
Mild, as the beams of morning break,
When first they light the hill;
"An American Tale" by Helen Maria Williams
A noise of tiny wavelets woke,
I quenched my drouth with delicate sips,
And, as I drank, the surface broke
In eager kisses on my lips.
"The Nepean" by John Le Gay Brereton
His sparkling surface scarce betrays
The thoughtful tide beneath it rolled,
The wisdom of the latter days,
And tender memories of the old.
"Our Autocrat" by John Greenleaf Whittier
Still, I am yours: this idle strife
Stirs but the surface of my life:
And if you would but ask once more,
"How goes the heart?" or at the door
""I Love You, But A Sense Of Pain"" by Elizabeth Drew Barstow Stoddard

In news:

One of the most intriguing issues that surfaces when working in organizations is the lack of effort to align sales and marketing.
Includes stallions with at least one runner at a North American racetrack with a synthetic surface.
Leaders are by North American progeny earnings on a synthetic surface through November 18, 2012.
Leaders are by North American progeny earnings on a synthetic surface through September 7, 2012.
Erykah Badu Banned From Performing in Malaysia After Allah Tattoo Photo Surfaces.
Erykah Badu has always been elusive -- this is just her fifth full-length since 1997 -- but when she surfaces, she stuns.
Microsoft's Surface May Annoy Hardware Firms, But They'll Live.
Photo's of Anderson Cooper's boyfriend, Ben Maisani kissing another dude, have recently surfaced and Cooper is not happy.
Pledge Multi Surface II Antibacterial Cleaner.
Hampden Park Surface ' Appalling '.
It just looks that way because it is transparent and whatever color the road's surface is shows through.
Problems, Panthers surface at Pa.
Problems, Panthers surface at Pa. Ed Lippman, 58, wears a message on his jacket on Election Day while walking home, Tuesday, Nov 6, 2012, in Hoboken, N.J.
LAS VEGAS — FilmLight ( has a new control surface for its Baselight color grading system at this year's NAB show.
There's been some grumbling in the press about the amount of usable storage users actually get with the Microsoft Surface or any other Windows 8 or Windows RT tablet.

In science:

The surface of a three-dimensional cluster should lie between the surface of a compact ob ject (σ = 2/3) and the surface of a chain (σ = 1).
Clusters in Simple Fluids
To each cubic graph Γ with an orientation O , they associate two Riemann surfaces: SO (Γ, O), a finite-area noncompact surface, and S C (Γ, O), a compact surface.
Poisson--Dirichlet distribution for random Belyi surfaces
Moreover, according to Belyi’s theorem , the surfaces S C (Γ, O) are precisely the Riemann surfaces which can be defined over some number field and so form a “dense” set in the space of all Riemann surfaces.
Poisson--Dirichlet distribution for random Belyi surfaces
The resulting surface is an open complete Riemann surface S O (Γ, O), and we define the compact surface S C (Γ, O) as its conformal compacti fication.
The length of closed geodesics on random Riemann Surfaces
While for any given graph of size n there are only 2n such surfaces, the following theorem will allow us to model “generic” surfaces using surfaces generated from graphs.
The length of closed geodesics on random Riemann Surfaces