Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “shelf”

shelf

noun [C] uk   /ʃelf/ (plural shelves) us  
A2 a long, flat board fixed horizontally, usually against a wall or inside a cupboard so that objects can be stored on it: a glass shelf on the top/bottom shelf One wall had shelves from floor to ceiling, crammed with books.
See also
Furniture for storage
specialized geology a flat area of rock underwater or on a cliffHills and mountains off the shelf If a product can be bought off the shelf, it does not need to be specially made or asked for: It's often cheaper if you buy wallpaper off the shelf, rather than having to order it. off-the-shelf goods/clothesAvailable and accessiblePresentBuying and selling in general remove sth from your shelves When a shop removes something from its shelves, that product stops being available for sale there.Buying and selling in generalTaking things away from someone or somewhereRemoving and getting rid of things
(Definition of shelf from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of shelf?
Browse related topics

You are looking at an entry to do with Neglecting and ignoring, but you might be interested in these topics from the Attention and care topic area:

Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “shelf” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

hoppy

like hops (= dried fruit used to make beer)

Word of the Day

Blog

Read our blog about how the English language behaves.

Learn More

New Words

Find words and meanings that have just started to be used in English, and let us know what you think of them.

Learn More