AskDefine | Define overlay

Dictionary Definition



1 lie upon; lie on top of; "the granite overlies the older rocks"
2 kill by lying on; "The sow overlay her piglets" [syn: overlay] [also: overlying, overlay, overlain]overlay n : protective covering consisting, for example, of a layer of boards applied to the studs and joists of a building to strengthen it and serve as a foundation for a weatherproof exterior [syn: sheathing, overlayer]


1 put something on top of something else; "cover the meat with a lot of gravy" [syn: cover]
2 kill by lying on; "The sow overlay her piglets" [syn: overlie] [also: overlaid]overlay See overlie [also: overlaid]

User Contributed Dictionary



  • (verb):
    • (RP): /ˌəʊvəˈleɪ/, /%@Uv@"leI/
    • (US): /ˌoʊvɚˈleɪ/, /%oUv@`"leI/
  • (noun):
    • (RP): /ˈəʊvəleɪ/, /"@Uv@leI/
    • (US): /ˈoʊvɚleɪ/, /"oUv@`leI/
    Rhymes: -eɪ


over + lay (cf. overlie)


  1. To lay, or spread, something over or across; to cover.
  2. To overwhelm; to press excessively upon.
  3. To smother with a close covering, or by lying upon.
  4. To put an overlay on.


To lay, or spread, something over or across; to cover
To overwhelm; to press excessively upon
To smother with a close covering, or by lying upon
To put an overlay on


  1. A piece of paper pasted upon the tympan sheet to improve the impression by making it stronger at a particular place.
  2. Odds which are set higher than expected or warranted. Favorable odds.
  3. A horse going off at higher odds than it appears to warrant, based on its past performances.


Extensive Definition

An overlay might be relevant in the following fields:
  • Overlay Control in semiconductor manufacturing, for monitoring layer-to-layer alignment on multi-layer device structures.
  • Video overlay, techniques to display video on computer display.
  • Hardware overlay, one type of video overlay that uses memory dedicated to the application.
  • Overlay (programming), a technique to reduce the amount of memory used by a program.
  • Overlay (operating system), replacing one process by another
  • Overlay network, a computer network which is built on top of another network
  • Overlay (gentoo), a different location for the ebuilds
  • Overlay plan, a method of introducing new area codes in telephony.
  • Overlay (systems), recurring themes in a course of study, distinguished by the propensity to cross boundaries (organizational or otherwise) in an effort to gain emergence.
  • Overlay (urban planning), a method where a city makes a zoning exception and "overlays" a neighorborhood.
overlay in German: Overlay
overlay in Korean: 오버레이

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

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