—n. 1. a folder, cabinet, or other container in which papers, letters, etc., are arranged in convenient order for storage or reference.
2. a collection of papers, records, etc., arranged in convenient order: to make a file for a new account. 3. Computers.a collection of related data or program records stored on some input/output or auxiliary storage medium: This program's main purpose is to update the customer master file. 4. a line of persons or things arranged one behind another (distinguished from rank).
5. Mil. a. a person in front of or behind another in a military formation.
b. one step on a promotion list.
6. one of the vertical lines of squares on a chessboard.
7. a list or roll.
8. a string or wire on which papers are strung for preservation and reference.
9. on file, arranged in order for convenient reference; in a file: The names are on file in the office.
—v.t. 1. to place in a file.
2. to arrange (papers, records, etc.) in convenient order for storage or reference.
3. Journalism. a. to arrange (copy) in the proper order for transmittal by wire.
b. to transmit (copy), as by wire or telephone: He filed copy from Madrid all through the war.
—v.i. 1. to march in a file or line, one after another, as soldiers: The parade filed past endlessly. 2. to make application: to file for a civil-service job.
—n. 1. a long, narrow tool of steel or other metal having a series of ridges or points on its surfaces for reducing or smoothing surfaces of metal, wood, etc.
2. a small, similar tool for trimming and cleaning fingernails; nail file.
3. Brit. Slang.a cunning, shrewd, or artful person.
—v.t. to reduce, smooth, or remove with or as if with a file.
Pronunciation: (fīl),[key] —v.t.,filed, fil•ing.Archaic. to defile; corrupt.
Pronunciation: (fi-lā', fē'lā),[key] —n.New Orleans Cookery. a powder made from the ground leaves of the sassafras tree, used as a thickener and to impart a pungent taste to soups, gumbos, and other dishes. Also called filé' pow"der.