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a long pile or heap; mass:
a bank of earth; a bank of clouds.
a slope or acclivity.
Physical Geography. the slope immediately bordering a stream course along which the water normally runs.
a broad elevation of the sea floor around which the water is relatively shallow but not a hazard to surface navigation.
Coal Mining. the surface around the mouth of a shaft.
Also called cant, superelevation. the inclination of the bed of a banked road or railroad.
Aeronautics. the lateral inclination of an aircraft, especially during a turn.
Billiards, Pool. the cushion of the table.
to border with or like a bank; embank:
banking the river with sandbags at flood stage.
to form into a bank or heap (usually followed by up):
to bank up the snow.
to build (a road or railroad track) with an upward slope from the inner edge to the outer edge at a curve.
Aeronautics. to tip or incline (an airplane) laterally.
Billiards, Pool.

to drive (a ball) to the cushion.
to pocket (the object ball) by driving it against the bank.

to cover (a fire) with ashes or fuel to make it burn long and slowly.
to build up in or form banks, as clouds or snow.
Aeronautics. to tip or incline an airplane laterally.
Horology. (of a lever or balance) to be halted at either end of its oscillation by striking a pin or the like.
(of a road or railroad track) to slope upward from the inner edge to the outer edge at a curve.
an institution for receiving, lending, exchanging, and safeguarding money and, in some cases, issuing notes and transacting other financial business.
the office or quarters of such an institution.

the stock or fund of pieces from which the players draw.
the fund of the manager or the dealer.

a special storage place:
a blood bank; a sperm bank.
a store or reserve.

a sum of money, especially as a fund for use in business.
a moneychanger’s table, counter, or shop.

to keep money in or have an account with a bank:
Do you bank at the Village Savings Bank?
to exercise the functions of a bank or banker.
Games. to hold the bank.
to deposit in a bank:
to bank one’s paycheck.
bank on/upon, to count on; depend on:
You can bank on him to hand you a reasonable bill for his services.
an arrangement of objects in a line or in tiers:
a bank of seats; a bank of lights.
Music. a row of keys on an organ.
a row of elevator cars, as in a hotel or high-rise office building.
a bench for rowers in a galley.
a row or tier of oars.
the group of rowers occupying one bench or rowing one oar.

(formerly) a bench on which sheets are placed as printed.
Also called, especially British, random. the sloping work surface at the top of a compositor’s workbench.
a table or rack on which type material is stored before being made up in forms.

Also called deck. Journalism. a part of a headline containing one or more lines of type, especially a part that appears below the main part.
Electricity. a number of similar devices connected to act together:
a bank of transformers; a bank of resistors.
to arrange in a bank:
to bank the seats; to bank the lights.
Contemporary Examples

There is a comfort level for women to be banked by other women.
Investing in Women Credit Suisse December 8, 2013

It banked a Disney-record $67.4 million over the three-day weekend, and $93.9 million for the five-day holiday.
Why ‘Frozen’ Is the Highest-Grossing Animated Movie Ever Marina Watts March 30, 2014

Historical Examples

banked clouds were driving the wintry sunshine toward the horizon.
The Highgrader William MacLeod Raine

Eyer, at the controls, banked the plane at right angles and flew on.
Lords of the Stratosphere Arthur J. Burks

“Ladies first, even off the earth,” came back from Jimsy gallantly, as he skillfully “banked” his machine in an upward spiral.
The Girl Aviators’ Motor Butterfly Margaret Burnham

Fully alerted and armed, it spun and banked in the bright morning sunlight.
Watchbird Robert Sheckley

The plateau thus enclosed is partly artificial, and banked up 50 or 60 ft. above the water.
Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 11, Slice 4 Various

It was one evening we had banked our fires and were ready to be hoisted up.
The Trail of ’98 Robert W. Service

The coffee-pot left by Billy was still warm in the banked ashes, but Neale put it aside.
Rough-Hewn Dorothy Canfield

We ran up a little cabin and banked it nearly to the low eaves with snow.
The Trail of ’98 Robert W. Service

an institution offering certain financial services, such as the safekeeping of money, conversion of domestic into and from foreign currencies, lending of money at interest, and acceptance of bills of exchange
the building used by such an institution
a small container used at home for keeping money
the funds held by a gaming house or a banker or dealer in some gambling games
(in various games)

the stock, as of money, pieces, tokens, etc, on which players may draw
the player holding this stock

any supply, store, or reserve, for future use: a data bank, a blood bank
(transitive) to deposit (cash, cheques, etc) in a bank
(intransitive) to transact business with a bank
(intransitive) to engage in the business of banking
(intransitive) to hold the bank in some gambling games
a long raised mass, esp of earth; mound; ridge
a slope, as of a hill
the sloping side of any hollow in the ground, esp when bordering a river: the left bank of a river is on a spectator’s left looking downstream

an elevated section, rising to near the surface, of the bed of a sea, lake, or river
(in combination): sandbank, mudbank

the area around the mouth of the shaft of a mine
the face of a body of ore

the lateral inclination of an aircraft about its longitudinal axis during a turn
Also called banking, camber, cant, superelevation. a bend on a road or on a railway, athletics, cycling, or other track having the outside built higher than the inside in order to reduce the effects of centrifugal force on vehicles, runners, etc, rounding it at speed and in some cases to facilitate drainage
the cushion of a billiard table
when tr, often foll by up. to form into a bank or mound
(transitive) to border or enclose (a road, etc) with a bank
(transitive) sometimes foll by up. to cover (a fire) with ashes, fresh fuel, etc, so that it will burn slowly
to cause (an aircraft) to tip laterally about its longitudinal axis or (of an aircraft) to tip in this way, esp while turning
to travel round a bank, esp at high speed
(transitive) (billiards) to drive (a ball) into the cushion
an arrangement of objects, esp similar objects, in a row or in tiers: a bank of dials

a tier of oars in a galley
a bench for the rowers in a galley

a grade of lightweight writing and printing paper used for airmail letters, etc
(telephony) (in automatic switching) an assembly of fixed electrical contacts forming a rigid unit in a selector or similar device
(transitive) to arrange in a bank

“financial institution,” late 15c., from either Old Italian banca or Middle French banque (itself from the Italian word), both meaning “table” (the notion is of the moneylender’s exchange table), from a Germanic source (cf. Old High German bank “bench”); see bank (n.2).

Bank holiday is from 1871, though the tradition is as old as the Bank of England. To cry all the way to the bank was coined 1956 by flamboyant pianist Liberace, after a Madison Square Garden concert that was packed with patrons but panned by critics.

“earthen incline, edge of a river,” c.1200, probably in Old English but not attested in surviving documents, from a Scandinavian source such as Old Norse banki, Old Danish banke “sandbank,” from Proto-Germanic *bangkon “slope,” cognate with *bankiz “shelf” (see bench (n.)).

“to act as a banker,” 1727, from bank (n.1). As “to deposit in a bank” from 1833. Figurative sense of “to rely on” (i.e. “to put money on”) is from 1884, U.S. colloquial. Meaning “to ascend,” as of an incline, is from 1892. In aeronautics, from 1911. Related: Banked; banking.


Money (late 1980s+ Teenagers)
In addition to the idiom beginning with


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  • Banked up on

    an institution for receiving, lending, exchanging, and safeguarding money and, in some cases, issuing notes and transacting other financial business. the office or quarters of such an institution. Games. the stock or fund of pieces from which the players draw. the fund of the manager or the dealer. a special storage place: a blood bank; […]

  • Bankers-acceptance

    bank acceptance. a draft or bill of exchange that a bank has accepted. Abbreviation: BA. Also called banker’s acceptance. Compare acceptance (def 6). noun a bill of exchange or draft drawn on and endorsed by a bank Also called banker’s acceptance

  • Banker

    a person employed by a bank, especially as an executive or other official. Games. the keeper or holder of the bank. a vessel employed in cod fishery on the banks off Newfoundland. a fisherman on such a vessel. Australian. a river near flood level, the water being almost bank high. a bench or table used […]

  • Banker’s bill

    bank draft. a draft drawn by one bank on another. noun a cheque drawn by a bank on itself, which is bought by a person to pay a supplier unwilling to accept a normal cheque Also called banker’s cheque

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