< /ˈbæt ə riz; French batəˈri/. Ballet.

  1. a beating together of the calves or feet during a leap.
  2. (in tap dancing) a rapid succession of taps, often compared to drumming or to machine-gun fire.
  3. battery(def 11).

noun, plural bat·ter·ies.

  1. Electricity.
    1. Also called galvanic battery, voltaic battery.a combination of two or more cell electrically connected to work together to produce electric energy.
    2. cell1(def 7a).
  2. any large group or series of related things: a battery of questions.
  3. Military.
    1. two or more pieces of artillery used for combined action.
    2. a tactical unit of artillery, usually consisting of six guns together with the artillerymen, equipment, etc., required to operate them.
    3. a parapet or fortification equipped with artillery.
  4. a group or series of similar articles, machines, parts, etc.
  5. Baseball. the pitcher and catcher considered as a unit.
  6. Navy.
    1. (on a warship) a group of guns having the same caliber or used for the same purpose.
    2. the whole armament of a warship.
  7. Psychology. a series of tests yielding a single total score, used for measuring aptitude, intelligence, personality, etc.
  8. the act of beating or battering.
  9. Law. an unlawful attack upon another person by beating or wounding, or by touching in an offensive manner.
  10. an instrument used in battering.
  11. Also batterie. Music. the instruments comprising the percussion section of an orchestra.
  12. any imposing group of persons or things acting or directed in unison: a battery of experts.

noun plural -teries

    1. two or more primary cells connected together, usually in series, to provide a source of electric current
    2. short for dry battery
  1. another name for accumulator (def. 1)
  2. a number of similar things occurring togethera battery of questions
  3. criminal law unlawful beating or wounding of a person or mere touching in a hostile or offensive mannerSee also assault and battery
  4. a fortified structure on which artillery is mounted
  5. a group of guns, missile launchers, searchlights, or torpedo tubes of similar type or size operated as a single entity
  6. a small tactical unit of artillery usually consisting of two or more troops, each of two, three or four guns
  7. mainly British
    1. a large group of cages for intensive rearing of poultry
    2. (as modifier)battery hens
  8. psychol a series of tests
  9. chess two pieces of the same colour placed so that one can unmask an attack by the other by moving
  10. the percussion section in an orchestra
  11. baseball the pitcher and the catcher considered together

1530s, “action of battering,” from Middle French batterie, from Old French baterie (12c.) “beating, thrashing, assault,” from batre “beat,” from Latin battuere “beat” (see batter (v.)).

Meaning shifted in Middle French from “bombardment” (“heavy blows” upon city walls or fortresses) to “unit of artillery” (a sense recorded in English from 1550s). Extension to “electrical cell” (1748, first used by Ben Franklin) is perhaps from the artillery sense via notion of “discharges” of electricity. In Middle English, bateri meant only “forged metal ware.” In obsolete baseball jargon battery was the word for “pitcher and catcher” considered as a unit (1867, originally only the pitcher).


  1. The act of beating or pounding.
  2. An array of similar things intended for use together, such as achievement tests.

  1. A device containing an electric cell or a series of electric cells storing energy that can be converted into electrical power (usually in the form of direct current). Common household batteries, such as those used in a flashlight, are usually made of dry cells (the chemicals producing the current are made into a paste). In other batteries, such as car batteries, these chemicals are in liquid form.

A device that produces an electric current (see also current) by harnessing the chemical reactions that take place within its cells.

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