Meaning of “diagonal” in the English Dictionary

"diagonal" in British English

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diagonaladjective

uk /daɪˈæɡ.ən.əl/ us /daɪˈæɡ.ən.əl/

A diagonal line is straight and sloping, not horizontal or vertical, for example joining two opposite corners of a square or other flat shape with four sides:

The book has a diagonal black stripe on the cover.

moving in a diagonal line:

The artist achieves this effect using short diagonal strokes.
Peters received a diagonal pass and headed the ball into the net.

More examples

  • He was wearing a sweater with a diagonal white stripe on the front.
  • Draw a diagonal line going from one corner to the other.
diagonally
adverb uk /daɪˈæɡ.ən.əl.i/ us /daɪˈæɡ.ən.əl.i/

It's quickest if you cut diagonally across the park.

diagonalnoun [ C ]

uk /daɪˈæɡ.ən.əl/ us /daɪˈæɡ.ən.əl/ specialized

(Definition of “diagonal” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"diagonal" in American English

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diagonaladjective

us /dɑɪˈæɡ·ə·nəl/

geometry (of a line) straight and sloping, so that it is neither horizontal nor vertical:

A diagonal line in a circle is often used as a symbol to show that certain behavior is forbidden.

(Definition of “diagonal” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)