A piece is a section or a chunk of some larger thing, like a piece of cake or a piece of a broken lamp.

You can describe a serving of something, like pie, as a piece, and you can also call an individual item within a larger group a piece, like a piece of furniture or a piece of silverware. In this case, you're not breaking off a piece, but you're describing one thing out of a collection.

Definitions of piece
  1. noun
    a separate part of a whole
    “an important piece of the evidence”
    see moresee less
    show 49 types...
    hide 49 types...
    long thick piece of wood or metal or concrete, etc., used in construction
    piece of cloth, piece of material
    a separate part consisting of fabric
    piece of leather
    a separate part consisting of leather
    a small piece of something that is left over after the rest has been used
    fragment, shard, sherd
    a broken piece of a brittle artifact
    snip, snippet, snipping
    a small piece of anything (especially a piece that has been snipped off)
    a piece of wood that has been turned on a lathe; used as a baluster, chair leg, etc.
    top part of an apron; covering the chest
    box beam, box girder
    a beam built up from boards; has a hollow rectangular cross section
    projecting horizontal beam fixed at one end only
    chamois cloth
    a piece of chamois used for washing windows or cars
    counter, heel counter
    a piece of leather forming the back of a shoe or boot
    dishcloth, dishrag
    a cloth for washing dishes
    drop cloth
    a large piece of cloth laid over the floor or furniture while a room is being painted
    dustcloth, duster, dustrag
    a piece of cloth used for dusting
    dust cover, dust sheet
    a large piece of cloth used to cover furniture that is not in use for a long period
    end, oddment, remainder, remnant
    a piece of cloth that is left over after the rest has been used or sold
    a beam made usually of steel; a main support in a structure
    gore, panel
    a piece of cloth that is generally triangular or tapering; used in making garments or umbrellas or sails
    ground cloth, groundsheet
    a waterproofed piece of cloth spread on the ground (as under a tent) to protect from moisture
    a piece of starched cloth covering the shoulders of a nun's habit
    gusset, inset
    a piece of material used to strengthen or enlarge a garment
    handkerchief, hankey, hankie, hanky
    a square piece of cloth used for wiping the eyes or nose or as a costume accessory
    a framing member crossing and supporting the ends of joists, studs, or rafters so as to transfer their weight to parallel joists, studs, or rafters
    header, lintel
    horizontal beam used as a finishing piece over a door or window
    beam used to support a floor or ceiling
    one of the main longitudinal beams (or plates) of the hull of a vessel; can extend vertically into the water to provide lateral stability
    a longitudinal beam connected to the keel of ship to strengthen it
    liner, lining
    a piece of cloth that is used as the inside surface of a garment
    longyi, lungi, lungyi
    a long piece of brightly colored cloth (cotton or silk) used as clothing (a skirt or loincloth or sash etc.) in India and Pakistan and Burma
    a piece of cloth used as decoration or to mend or cover a hole
    a piece of cloth sewn under an opening
    a shard of pottery
    piece of leather that comprises the part of a shoe or boot covering the heel and joining the vamp
    balk, baulk, rafter
    one of several parallel sloping beams that support a roof
    rag, shred, tag, tag end, tatter
    a small piece of cloth or paper
    rider plate
    a horizontal beam (or plate) connected to the top of a ship's vertical keel or to the keelson
    ridge, ridgepole, rooftree
    a beam laid along the edge where two sloping sides of a roof meet at the top; provides an attachment for the upper ends of rafters
    a piece of leather across the instep of a shoe
    canvas, canvass, sail, sheet
    a large piece of fabric (usually canvas fabric) by means of which wind is used to propel a sailing vessel
    shore, shoring
    a beam or timber that is propped against a structure to provide support
    a sample piece of cloth
    tie, tie beam
    a horizontal beam used to prevent two other structural members from spreading apart or separating
    a beam made of wood
    a rectangular piece of absorbent cloth (or paper) for drying or wiping
    piece of cloth forming the long back section of a gown that is drawn along the floor
    crossbeam, crosspiece, trave, traverse
    a horizontal beam that extends across something
    piece of leather or synthetic material that forms the part of a shoe or boot above the sole that encases the foot
    piece of leather forming the front part of the upper of a shoe
    type of:
    part, portion
    something less than the whole of a human artifact
  2. noun
    a serving that has been cut from a larger portion
    “a piece of pie”
    synonyms: slice
    see moresee less
    cutlet, escallop, scallop, scollop
    thin slice of meat (especially veal) usually fried or broiled
    filet, fillet, fish filet, fish fillet
    a longitudinal slice or boned side of a fish
    type of:
    helping, portion, serving
    an individual quantity of food or drink taken as part of a meal
  3. noun
    a portion of a natural object
    “he needed a piece of granite”
    synonyms: part
    see moresee less
    show 4 examples...
    hide 4 examples...
    North Atlantic
    that part of the Atlantic Ocean to the north of the equator
    North Pacific
    that part of the Pacific Ocean to the north of the equator
    South Atlantic
    that part of the Atlantic Ocean to the south of the equator
    South Pacific
    that part of the Pacific Ocean to the south of the equator
    show 86 types...
    hide 86 types...
    body part
    any part of an organism such as an organ or extremity
    the main part of an organ or other bodily structure
    a needlelike part or structure of a plant or animal or crystal; as a spine or bristle or crystal
    the bottom or lowest part
    a projecting part where two sides or edges meet
    the part of a continent that is stable and forms the central mass of the continent; typically Precambrian
    a piece cut off from the main part of something
    a piece broken off or cut off of something else
    hunk, lump
    a large piece of something without definite shape
    nub, stub
    a small piece
    one of the parts into which something naturally divides
    a thin flat piece cut off of some object
    a relatively long narrow piece of something
    a part of the earth that can be considered separately
    posterior part of the back of a domestic fowl
    a part lying on the lower side or underneath an animal's body
    the back of a horse
    the solid bony part of the tail of an animal as distinguished from the hair
    one of the five areas on the undersurface of an echinoderm on which the tube feet are located
    the highest part of the back at the base of the neck of various animals especially draft animals
    cannon, shank
    lower part of the leg extending from the hock to the fetlock in hoofed mammals
    loin, lumbus
    either side of the backbone between the hipbone and the ribs in humans as well as quadrupeds
    croup, croupe, hindquarters, rump
    the part of an animal that corresponds to the human buttocks
    lower part of a horse's thigh between the hock and the stifle
    the side between ribs and hipbone
    part of an insect's body that bears the wings and legs
    metamere, somite
    one of a series of similar body segments into which some animals are divided longitudinally
    (anatomy) a group of body parts that work together to perform a given function
    adnexa, annexa
    accessory or adjoining anatomical parts or appendages to an organ (especially of the embryo)
    area, region
    a part of an animal that has a special function or is supplied by a given artery or nerve
    a muscle or nerve that dilates or widens a body part
    groove, vallecula
    (anatomy) any furrow or channel on a bodily structure or part
    (anatomy) a structure that separates areas in an organism
    external body part
    any body part visible externally
    anatomical structure, bodily structure, body structure, complex body part, structure
    a particular complex anatomical part of a living thing
    generally any arch shaped structure (but often it refers to the arched roof of an anatomical space)
    a group of physiologically or anatomically related organs or parts
    the dilated portion of a canal or duct especially of the semicircular canals of the ear
    part of an organism consisting of an aggregate of cells having a similar structure and function
    a projection below the mouth of certain mollusks that resembles a chin
    a fully differentiated structural and functional unit in an animal that is specialized for some particular function
    a bulging body part (as the belly of a muscle)
    energid, protoplast
    a biological unit consisting of a nucleus and the body of cytoplasm with which it interacts
    one of the segments into which a myofibril is divided
    appendage, outgrowth, process
    a natural prolongation or projection from a part of an organism either animal or plant
    (anatomy) a somewhat rounded subdivision of a bodily organ or part
    the terminal section of the alimentary canal; from the sigmoid flexure to the anus
    the part of the body between the neck and the upper arm
    body, torso, trunk
    the body excluding the head and neck and limbs
    chest, pectus, thorax
    the part of the human torso between the neck and the diaphragm or the corresponding part in other vertebrates
    the middle region of the body of an arthropod between the head and the abdomen
    either side of the body below the waist and above the thigh
    the hip and buttock and upper thigh in human beings
    abdomen, belly, stomach, venter
    the region of the body of a vertebrate between the thorax and the pelvis
    the back of the body of a vertebrate or any analogous surface (as the upper or outer surface of an organ or appendage or part)
    back, dorsum
    the posterior part of a human (or animal) body from the neck to the end of the spine
    the slender part of the back
    ass, backside, behind, bottom, bum, buns, butt, buttocks, can, derriere, fanny, fundament, hind end, hindquarters, keister, nates, posterior, prat, rear, rear end, rump, seat, stern, tail, tail end, tooshie, tush
    the fleshy part of the human body that you sit on
    buttock, cheek
    either of the two large fleshy masses of muscular tissue that form the human rump
    the part of a limb or tooth that remains after the rest is removed
    the part of the human leg between the knee and the ankle
    the front part of the human leg between the knee and the ankle
    forepart of a hoof
    articulatio, articulation, joint
    (anatomy) the point of connection between two bones or elements of a skeleton (especially if it allows motion)
    the region of the hips and groin and lower abdomen
    feature, lineament
    the characteristic parts of a person's face: eyes and nose and mouth and chin
    the remains of a body part that was functional at an earlier stage of life
    a segment of a citrus fruit
    bit, chip, flake, fleck, scrap
    a small fragment of something broken off from the whole
    a fragment of brick used as a weapon
    cinder, clinker
    a fragment of incombustible matter left after a wood or coal or charcoal fire
    (geology) a constituent fragment of a clastic rock
    coal, ember
    a hot fragment of wood or coal that is left from a fire and is glowing or smoldering
    a fragment rubbed off by the use of a file
    (mineralogy) a small rounded lump of mineral substance (usually harder than the surrounding rock or sediment)
    a small nub (especially an undeveloped fruit or ear of corn)
    a solid lump of a precious metal (especially gold) as found in the earth
    paring, shaving, sliver
    a thin fragment or slice (especially of wood) that has been shaved from something
    something that has been pruned off of a plant
    restriction fragment
    the fragment of DNA that is produced by cleaving DNA with a restriction enzyme
    a long continuous strip (usually running horizontally)
    (usually plural) a fragment scraped off of something and collected
    a very thin slice (of tissue or mineral or other substance) for examination under a microscope
    spall, spawl
    a fragment broken off from the edge or face of stone or ore and having at least one thin edge
    a small fragment of a burning substance thrown out by burning material or by friction
    a segment of a stem between two nodes
    type of:
    a separate and self-contained entity
  4. noun
    a share of something
    synonyms: slice
    see moresee less
    type of:
    part, percentage, portion, share
    assets belonging to or due to or contributed by an individual person or group
  5. verb
    to join or unite the pieces of
    synonyms: patch
    see moresee less
    vamp, vamp up
    piece (something old) with a new part
    type of:
    conjoin, join
    make contact or come together
  6. verb
    create by putting components or members together
    “She pieced a quilt”
    synonyms: assemble, put together, set up, tack, tack together
    see moresee less
    break apart, break up, disassemble, dismantle, take apart
    take apart into its constituent pieces
    show 7 types...
    hide 7 types...
    comfit, confect, confection
    make into a confection
    confuse, jumble, mix up
    assemble without order or sense
    assemble once again, after taking something apart
    set up for a particular purpose
    create by mixing or combining
    rig up
    erect or construct, especially as a temporary measure
    addle, muddle, puddle
    mix up or confuse
    type of:
    bring together, join
    cause to become joined or linked
    create, make
    make or cause to be or to become
  7. verb
    repair by adding pieces
    “She pieced the china cup”
    synonyms: patch
    see moresee less
    type of:
    bushel, doctor, fix, furbish up, mend, repair, restore, touch on
    restore by replacing a part or putting together what is torn or broken
  8. verb
    join during spinning
    piece the broken pieces of thread, slivers, and rovings”
    see moresee less
    type of:
    join by interweaving strands
  9. verb
    eat intermittently; take small bites of
    “He pieced at the sandwich all morning”
    synonyms: nibble, pick
    see moresee less
    type of:
    take in solid food
  10. noun
    an instance of some kind
    “it was a nice piece of work”
    synonyms: bit
    see moresee less
    type of:
    case, example, instance
    an occurrence of something
  11. noun
    an item that is an instance of some type
    “he designed a new piece of equipment”
    “she bought a lovely piece of china”
    see moresee less
    type of:
    a whole individual unit; especially when included in a list or collection
  12. noun
    game equipment consisting of an object used in playing certain board games
    “he sacrificed a piece to get a strategic advantage”
    synonyms: man
    see moresee less
    show 12 types...
    hide 12 types...
    (board games) the darker pieces
    checker, chequer
    one of the flat round pieces used in playing the game of checkers
    chess piece, chessman
    any of 16 white and 16 black pieces used in playing the game of chess
    game equipment consisting of a flat thin piece marked with characters and used in board games like Mah-Jong, Scrabble, etc.
    (board games) the lighter pieces
    (chess) a piece that can be moved diagonally over unoccupied squares of the same color
    castle, rook
    (chess) the piece that can move any number of unoccupied squares in a direction parallel to the sides of the chessboard
    (chess) the weakest but the most important piece
    a checker that has been moved to the opponent's first row where it is promoted to a piece that is free to move either forward or backward
    horse, knight
    a chessman shaped to resemble the head of a horse; can move two squares horizontally and one vertically (or vice versa)
    (chess) the least powerful piece; moves only forward and captures only to the side; it can be promoted to a more powerful piece if it reaches the 8th rank
    (chess) the most powerful piece
    type of:
    game equipment
    equipment or apparatus used in playing a game
  13. noun
    a work of art of some artistic value
    “it is not known who created this piece
    synonyms: art object, objet d'art
    see moresee less
    objet d'art collectively (especially fine antiques)
    type of:
    work of art
    art that is a product of one of the fine arts (especially a painting or sculpture of artistic merit)
  14. noun
    an artistic or literary composition
    “he wrote an interesting piece on Iran”
    “the children acted out a comic piece to amuse the guests”
    see moresee less
    show 14 types...
    hide 14 types...
    nonfictional prose forming an independent part of a publication
    a short literary or musical composition
    a brief dramatic piece (usually comic) presented after a play
    an incomplete piece
    a missing piece (as a gap in a manuscript)
    column, editorial, newspaper column
    an article giving opinions or perspectives
    feature, feature article
    a special or prominent article in a newspaper or magazine
    magazine article
    an article published in a magazine
    news article, news story, newspaper article
    an article reporting news
    offprint, reprint, separate
    a separately printed article that originally appeared in a larger publication
    a scholarly article describing the results of observations or stating hypotheses
    think piece
    an article in a newspaper or magazine or journal that represents opinions and ideas and discussion rather than bare facts
    bit, snatch
    a small fragment
    a farcical afterpiece in the ancient Roman theater
    type of:
    an artifact that has been brought into existence by someone
  15. noun
    a musical work that has been created
    synonyms: composition, musical composition, opus, piece of music
    see moresee less
    show 83 types...
    hide 83 types...
    a short literary or musical composition
    sheet music
    a musical composition in printed or written form
    arrangement, musical arrangement
    a piece of music that has been adapted for performance by a particular set of voices or instruments
    realisation, realization
    a musical composition that has been completed or enriched by someone other than the composer
    a short piece of instrumental music composed for performance between acts of a drama or opera
    a musical composition or musical passage to be performed quickly in a brisk lively manner
    a musical composition or musical passage to be performed at a somewhat quicker tempo than andante but not as fast as allegro
    a musical composition or musical passage to be performed moderately slow
    a composition of vocal music that is appropriate for opening church services
    a musical composition for one voice or instrument (with or without accompaniment)
    duet, duette, duo
    a musical composition for two performers
    a musical composition for three performers
    quartet, quartette
    a musical composition for four performers
    quintet, quintette
    a musical composition for five performers
    sestet, sextet, sextette
    a musical composition written for six performers
    septet, septette
    a musical composition written for seven performers
    octet, octette
    a musical composition written for eight performers
    a light piece of music for piano
    divertimento, serenade
    a musical composition in several movements; has no fixed form
    a contrapuntal piece of music in which a melody in one part is imitated exactly in other parts
    a short composition for a solo instrument; intended as an exercise or to demonstrate technical virtuosity
    idyl, idyll, pastoral, pastorale
    a musical composition that evokes rural life
    a baroque musical composition (usually for a keyboard instrument) with full chords and rapid elaborate runs in a rhythmically free style
    a musical composition of a free form usually incorporating several familiar themes
    musical passage, passage
    a short section of a musical composition
    a major self-contained part of a symphony or sonata
    (music) a composition or passage that is to be performed in a slow and dignified manner
    (music) a composition or passage played in a slow tempo slightly faster than largo but slower than adagio
    a musical composition of several movements only loosely connected
    symphonic poem, tone poem
    an orchestral composition based on literature or folk tales
    medley, pastiche, potpourri
    a musical composition consisting of a series of songs or other musical pieces from various sources
    nocturne, notturno
    a pensive lyrical piece of music (especially for the piano)
    (music) a composition played in adagio tempo (slowly and gracefully)
    song, vocal
    a short musical composition with words
    a composition intended to develop one aspect of the performer's technique
    an instrumental composition that doesn't adhere to rules for any specific musical form and is played with improvisation
    an unaccompanied choral composition with sacred lyrics; intended to be sung as part of a church service; originated in the 13th century
    program music, programme music
    musical compositions intended to evoke images or remind the listener of events
    incidental music
    music composed to accompany the action of a drama or to fill intervals between scenes
    an improvisational and emotional musical composition with an irregular form
    lead sheet
    a sheet containing the words and melody for a song (and some indication of harmony) written in simple form
    piano music
    sheet music to be played on a piano
    musical score, score
    a written form of a musical composition; parts for different instruments appear on separate staves on large pages
    religious song
    religious music for singing
    an arrangement of a piece of music for performance by an orchestra or band
    the instruments called for in a musical score or arrangement for a band or orchestra
    a musical composition or musical passage to be performed quickly in a brisk lively manner
    a musical composition or musical passage to be performed at a somewhat quicker tempo than andante but not as fast as allegro
    a musical composition or musical passage to be performed moderately slow
    a short movement coming between the major sections of a symphony
    composition (often improvised) for a solo instrument (especially solo organ) and not a regular part of a religious service or musical performance
    enigma canon, enigmatic canon, enigmatical canon, riddle canon
    a canon in which the entrances of successive parts were indicated by cryptic symbols and devices (popular in the 15th and 16th centuries)
    a brief introductory passage to a piece of popular music
    musical phrase, phrase
    a short musical passage
    the close of a musical section
    a brilliant solo passage occurring near the end of a piece of music
    (music) a composition or passage that is to be performed in a slow and dignified manner
    a fast movement (usually in triple time)
    (music) an instrumental suite common in the 18th century
    (music) a composition played in adagio tempo (slowly and gracefully)
    a song of devotion or loyalty (as to a nation or school)
    an elaborate song for solo voice
    ballad, lay
    a narrative song with a recurrent refrain
    barcarole, barcarolle
    a boating song sung by Venetian gondoliers
    a short simple song (or the words of a poem intended to be sung)
    coronach, dirge, lament, requiem, threnody
    a song or hymn of mourning composed or performed as a memorial to a dead person
    drinking song
    a song celebrating the joys of drinking; sung at drinking parties
    folk ballad, folk song, folksong
    a song that is traditionally sung by the common people of a region and forms part of their culture
    a German art song of the 19th century for voice and piano
    love song, love-song
    a song about love or expressing love for another person
    berceuse, cradlesong, lullaby
    a quiet song intended to lull a child to sleep
    golden oldie, oldie
    a song that was formerly popular
    a song with two or more voice parts
    prothalamion, prothalamium
    a song in celebration of a marriage
    a song in which a line or phrase is repeated as the refrain
    banquet song, scolion
    a song (sometimes improvised) sung by guests at a banquet
    a song characteristically played outside the house of a love interest
    torch song
    a popular song concerned with disappointment in love
    work song
    a usually rhythmical song to accompany repetitious work
    a vocal passage of narrative text that a singer delivers with natural rhythms of speech
    modulation, transition
    a musical passage moving from one key to another
    a short musical passage that seems to have been made spontaneously without advance preparation
    a repetition of a short musical passage
    type of:
    an artistic form of auditory communication incorporating instrumental or vocal tones in a structured and continuous manner
  16. noun
    a portable gun
    synonyms: firearm, small-arm
    see moresee less
    show 34 types...
    hide 34 types...
    autoloader, self-loader
    a firearm that reloads itself
    muzzle loader
    an obsolete firearm that was loaded through the muzzle
    handgun, pistol, shooting iron, side arm
    a firearm that is held and fired with one hand
    repeater, repeating firearm
    a firearm that can fire several rounds without reloading
    a shoulder firearm with a long barrel and a rifled bore
    riot gun
    a firearm designed to disperse rioters rather than to inflict serious injury or death
    scattergun, shotgun
    firearm that is a double-barreled smoothbore shoulder weapon for firing shot at short ranges
    a firearm that has no rifling
    .22, twenty-two
    a .22 caliber firearm (pistol or rifle)
    arquebus, hackbut, hagbut, harquebus
    an obsolete firearm with a long barrel
    automatic firearm, automatic gun, automatic weapon
    a firearm that reloads itself and keeps firing until the trigger is released
    automatic, automatic pistol
    a pistol that will keep firing until the ammunition is gone or the trigger is released
    light automatic rifle
    a pocket pistol of large caliber with a short barrel
    firelock, flintlock
    a muzzle loader that had a flintlock type of gunlock
    a .45-caliber pistol
    fowling piece
    a light shotgun used for fowling
    Garand, Garand rifle, M-1, M-1 rifle
    a semiautomatic rifle
    gat, rod
    a gangster's pistol
    horse pistol, horse-pistol
    a large pistol (usually in a holster) formerly carried by horsemen
    trademark for a repeating rifle or pistol
    a muzzle-loading shoulder gun with a long barrel; formerly used by infantrymen
    the pistol of a law officer in the old West
    revolver, six-gun, six-shooter
    a pistol with a revolving cylinder (usually having six chambers for bullets)
    Saturday night special
    a cheap handgun that is easily obtained
    sawed-off shotgun
    a shotgun with short barrels
    semiautomatic firearm
    an autoloader that fires only one shot at each pull of the trigger
    semiautomatic, semiautomatic pistol
    a pistol that is a semiautomatic firearm capable of loading and firing continuously
    precision rifle, sniper rifle
    an extremely powerful rifle developed for the military; capable of destroying light armored vehicles and aircraft more than a mile away
    twenty-two pistol
    a .22-caliber pistol
    twenty-two rifle
    a .22-caliber rifle
    Verey pistol, Very pistol
    a pistol for firing Very-light flares
    a shoulder rifle
    zip gun
    a crude homemade pistol
    type of:
    a weapon that discharges a missile at high velocity (especially from a metal tube or barrel)
  17. noun
    a distance
    “it is down the road a piece
    see moresee less
    type of:
    the property created by the space between two objects or points
  18. noun
    a period of indeterminate length (usually short) marked by some action or condition
    “I need to rest for a piece
    synonyms: bout, patch, spell, while
    see moresee less
    cold snap, cold spell
    a spell of cold weather
    hot spell
    a spell of hot weather
    a spell of cold weather
    type of:
    an indefinite period (usually marked by specific attributes or activities)
Word Family

Test prep from the experts

Boost your test score with programs developed by Vocabulary.com’s experts.

  • Proven methods: Learn faster, remember longer with our scientific approach.
  • Personalized plan: We customize your experience to maximize your learning.
  • Strategic studying: Focus on the words that are most crucial for success.


  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 8 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week


  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 10 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week


  • Number of words: 700+
  • Duration: 10 weeks
  • Time: 1 hour / week