verb (used with object), o·ver·laid, o·ver·lay·ing.
- to lay or place (one thing) over or upon another.
- to cover, overspread, or surmount with something.
- to finish with a layer or applied decoration of something: wood richly overlaid with gold.
- Printing. to put an overlay upon.
- something laid over something else; covering.
- a layer or decoration of something applied: an overlay of gold.
- a shaped piece of paper, or a sheet of paper reinforced at the proper places by shaped pieces, put on the tympan of a press to increase or equalize the impression.
- a method of preparing copy for multicolor printing, in which matter for each color is prepared on a transparent sheet that is placed over a key plate, usually the one to be printed in black.
- the sheet or sheets so prepared.
- a sheet of transparent paper placed over a photograph, a dummy, or other artwork for noting corrections, instructions, mechanical separations, etc.
- Computers. software or data in external storage and brought into main storage for execution by replacing or augmenting software or data already there.
- a transparent sheet giving special military information not ordinarily shown on maps, used by being placed over the map on which it is based.
- a decorative piece of leather or other material stitched on a shoe.
- Scot. a cravat.
- simple past tense of overlie.
verb (ˌəʊvəˈleɪ) -lays, -laying or -laid (tr)
- to lay or place something over or upon (something else)
- (often foll by with) to cover, overspread, or conceal (with)
- (foll by with) to cover (a surface) with an applied decorationebony overlaid with silver
- to achieve the correct printing pressure all over (a forme or plate) by adding to the appropriate areas of the packing
- something that is laid over something else; covering
- an applied decoration or layer, as of gold leaf
- a transparent sheet giving extra details to a map or diagram over which it is designed to be placed
- printing material, such as paper, used to overlay a forme or plate
v.“to cover the surface of (something),” c.1300, in part from Old English oferlecgan “to place over,” also “to overburden,” and in part from over- + lay (v.). There also was an overlie in Middle English, but it merged into this word. Similar compounds are found in other Germanic languages, e.g. Gothic ufarlagjan. Related: Overlaid; overlaying. n.in the printing sense, 1824, from overlay (v.). Meaning “transparent sheet over a map, chart, etc.” is from 1938. In earliest noun use it meant “a necktie” (1725).