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All Words Glossary

Glossary of Construction Terms
beginning with letter P
Browse the Construction Glossary
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pale Tweet Definition of pale Like Definition of pale on Facebook
noun
  1. A wooden stake.
  2. (archaic) A fence, especially one made from wooden stakes.
  3. (archaic) A territory or defensive area that one nation holds in another country, e.g., Britain"s medieval control of Calais in France or Dublin in Ireland.
  4. (archaic) The jurisdiction (territorial or otherwise) of an authority.
  5. The bounds of morality, good behaviour or judgment in civilized company, in the phrase beyond the pale.
  6. In heraldry, a vertical band down the middle of a shield.
verb (pal, ing)
  1. To become pale. To become insignificant.
2006 http://www.nytimes.com/2006/09/14/technology/14google.html?hp&ex=1158292800&en=0715e3c0dff465e2&ei=5094&partner=homepage New York Times Its financing pales next to the tens of billions that the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation will have at its disposal, ...
adjective (pal, e)
  1. light in color.
paling Tweet Definition of paling Like Definition of paling on Facebook
noun
  1. a pointed stick used to make a fence
  2. a fence made of palings
verb
  1. Present participle of to pale .
pane Tweet Definition of pane Like Definition of pane on Facebook
noun
  1. An individual sheet of glass in a window.
  2. (computing) A layer in the build-up of a GUI.
panel Tweet Definition of panel Like Definition of panel on Facebook
noun
  1. A (usually) rectangular section of a surface, or of a covering or of a wall, fence etc.
Behind the picture was a panel on the wall
  1. A group of people gathered to judge, interview, discuss etc. as on a television or radio broadcast for example.
Today's panel includes John Smith...
verbto panel (panelled, panelling; US paneled, paneling)
  1. to fit with panels
parget Tweet Definition of parget Like Definition of parget on Facebook
noun
  1. Gypsum or plaster stone.
  2. Plaster, as for lining the interior of flues, or for stuccowork.
Quotations
  • 1952: The surface of the parget might be finished either smooth, with a coat of whitewash, or as rough-cast with sand or small stones. — L.F. Salzman, Building in England, p. 191.
    1. Paint, especially for the face. Obs.
verb (pargeted or pargetted, pargeting or pargetting)
  1. To coat with parget; to plaster, as walls, or the interior of flues; as, to parget the outside of their houses.
Quotations
  • 1952: Closely allied to daubing was pargetting or rough-casting, the chief difference, so far as any real distinction was made in the technical use of the terms, being that in pargetting mortar or a coarse form of plaster was used instead of clay or loam. — L.F. Salzman, Building in England, p. 191.
    1. To paint; to cover over. Obs.
particle board Tweet Definition of particle board Like Definition of particle board on Facebook
noun
  1. a structural material manufactured from wood particles (such as chips and shavings) by pressing, and binding through resin
partition Tweet Definition of partition Like Definition of partition on Facebook
noun
  1. something that divides a thing into parts, or separates one thing from another, especially a vertical structure that divides a room
  2. a part of something that had been divided
  3. the division of a country into two or more autonomous countries
  4. (computing) a section of a hard disk separately formatted
  5. (set theory) a collection of non-empty, disjoint subsets of a set whose union is the set itself (i.e. all elements of the set are contained in exactly one of the subsets)
verbto partition
  1. To divide something into parts, sections or shares
  2. To divide a region or country into two or more territories with separate political status
  3. To separate or divide a room by a partition (ex. a wall), often use with off
passageway Tweet Definition of passageway Like Definition of passageway on Facebook
noun
  1. A covered walkway, between rooms or buildings.
  2. Any way for passing in, out or through something.
paver Tweet Definition of paver Like Definition of paver on Facebook
noun
  1. A flat stone used to pave a pathway, such as a walkway to one's home.
  2. One who paves; one who lays pavement.
pebble dash Tweet Definition of pebble dash Like Definition of pebble dash on Facebook
noun
  1. A coating of small pebbles sprayed on to soft plaster, used as decoration on exterior walls.
verb (inf=pebble dash, pebble dash, es)
  1. To apply pebble dash to a wall.
pedestal Tweet Definition of pedestal Like Definition of pedestal on Facebook
noun
  1. (architecture) The base or foot of a column, statue, vase, lamp, or the like; the part on which an upright work stands. It consists of three parts, the base, the die or dado, and the cornice or surbase molding. See Illust. of {Column}.
    1. (Railroad Cars) A casting secured to the frame of a truck and forming a jaw for holding a journal box.
  2. (Mach.) A pillow block; a low housing.
  3. (Bridge Building) An iron socket, or support, for the foot of a brace at the end of a truss where it rests on a pier.
  4. Pedestal coil (steam Heating), a group of connected straight pipes arranged side by side and one above another, -- used in a radiator.
peen Tweet Definition of peen Like Definition of peen on Facebook
noun
  1. The end of the head of a hammer opposite the main hammering end.
verb
  1. To flatten the end of something, especially a rivet, by striking it with a hammer.
Peg Tweet Definition of Peg Like Definition of Peg on Facebook
proper noun
  1. a female given name, diminutive of Peggy
Penny Tweet Definition of Penny Like Definition of Penny on Facebook
proper noun
  1. (given name, female), diminutive of Penelope.
pestle Tweet Definition of pestle Like Definition of pestle on Facebook
noun
  1. A club-shaped, round-headed stick used in a mortar to pound, crush, rub or grind things.
verb (pestl, es)
  1. To pound, crush, rub or grind (things), as in a mortar with a pestle.
petcock Tweet Definition of petcock Like Definition of petcock on Facebook
noun (plural:petcocks)
  1. A small valve, spout, or faucet operated by hand, usually used to release pressure or drain fluid.
Phillips head Tweet Definition of Phillips head Like Definition of Phillips head on Facebook
noun
  1. A screwdriver with a '+' shaped head for turning screws so socketed.
  2. A screw turned by such a screwdriver.
pick Tweet Definition of pick Like Definition of pick on Facebook
noun
  1. A tool used for digging.
  2. A comb with long teeth, for use with tightly curled hair.
  3. A choice.
  4. (basketball) A screen
  5. (lacrosse) An offensive tactic in which a player stands so as to block a defender from reaching a teammate.
  6. An interception.
  7. (baseball) A good defensive play by an infielder
  8. (baseball) Short for pick-off
  9. (music) a tool used for strumming the strings of a guitar
verb
  1. To grasp and pull with the fingers or fingernails.
Don't at that scab.
  1. To remove a fruit or plant for consumption.
It's time to the tomatoes.
  1. Decide between options.
I'll the one with the nicest name.
  1. (cricket) to recognise the type of ball being bowled by a bowler by studying the position of the hand and arm as the ball is released
He didn't the googly, and was bowled.
pier Tweet Definition of pier Like Definition of pier on Facebook
noun
  1. a raised platform built from the shore out over water, supported on piles; used to secure, or provide access to shipping; a jetty
  2. a similar structure, especially at a seaside resort, used to provide entertainment
  3. (American)(nautical) A structure that projects tangentially from the shoreline to accommodate ships; often double-sided.
  4. a structure supporting the junction between two spans of a bridge
  5. (architecture) a rectangular pillar, or similar structure, that supports an arch, wall or roof
piling Tweet Definition of piling Like Definition of piling on Facebook
noun
  1. A structural support comprised of a length of wood, steel, or other construction material.
verb
  1. (present participle of, pile)
pincers Tweet Definition of pincers Like Definition of pincers on Facebook
noun (plural of pincer)
  1. A gripping tool, pivoted like a pair of scissors, but with blunt jaws.
  2. The front claws of crustaceans such as lobsters.
pinch Tweet Definition of pinch Like Definition of pinch on Facebook
noun (pinches)
  1. The action of squeezing a small amount of a person's skin and flesh, making it hurt.
  2. A small amount of powder or granules, such that the amount could be held between fingertip and thumb tip.
  3. An awkward situation of some kind (especially money or social) which is difficult to escape.
  4. An organic herbal smoke additive.
verb (pinch, es)
  1. To squeeze a small amount of a person's skin and flesh, making it hurt.
  2. To steal, usually of something almost trivial or inconsequential.
  3. To arrest or capture.
pit Tweet Definition of pit Like Definition of pit on Facebook
noun
  1. A hole in the ground.
  2. A seed inside a fruit; a stone or pip (Eng.) inside a fruit.
  3. A shell in a drupe containing a seed.
  4. Area at the auto racetrack used for refueling and repairing the cars during a race
  5. (music) A section of the marching band containing mallet percussion instruments and other large percussion instruments too large to march, such as the tam tam. Also, the area on the sidelines where these instruments are placed.
  6. A mine
verb (pit, t, ed)
  1. (transitive) To bring into opposition, as in "to pit one's wits against someone".
  2. (transitive) To make pits in.
Exposure to acid rain pitted the metal.
  1. (transitive) To remove the stone from a stone fruit or the shell from a drupe.
One must a peach to make it ready for a pie.
  1. (context, intransitive, motor racing) To return to the pits during a race for refuelling, tyre changes, repairs etc.
plan Tweet Definition of plan Like Definition of plan on Facebook
noun
  1. A drawing showing technical details of a building, machine, etc., with unwanted details omitted, and often using symbols rather than detailed drawing to represent doors, valves, etc.
  2. A set of intended actions, through which one expects to achieve a goal.
  3. A 2-dimensional drawing of a building as seen from above with obscuring or irrelevant details such as roof removed, or of a floor of a building, revealing the internal layout; as distinct from the elevation.
(rfex) verb (plan, n, ed)
  1. (transitive) To design a building, machine, etc.
  2. (transitive) To create a plan for.
  3. (transitive) To intend.
(rfex)      
plane Tweet Definition of plane Like Definition of plane on Facebook
noun
  1. (geometry) A flat surface extending infinitely in all directions.
  2. A level of existence. (eg, astral plane)
  3. A roughly flat, thin, often moveable structure used to create lateral force by the flow of air or water over its surface, found on aircraft, submarines, etc.
verb (plan, ing)
  1. (transitive) To smooth (wood) with a plane.
adjective
  1. Of a surface: Perfectly flat or level.
planer Tweet Definition of planer Like Definition of planer on Facebook
noun
  1. A woodworking tool which smooths a surface.
  2. A large machine tool in which the workpiece is traversed linearly (by means of a reciprocating bed) beneath a single-point cutting tool. (Analogous to a shaper but larger and with the workpiece moving instead of the tool.) Planers can generate various shapes, but were most especially used to generate large, accurate flat surfaces. The planer is nowadays obsolescent, having been mostly superseded by large milling machine, milling machines.
plank Tweet Definition of plank Like Definition of plank on Facebook
noun
  1. A long, broad and thick piece of sawn timber, heavier and larger than a board.
  2. A political issue that is of concern to a faction or a party of the people and the political position that is taken on that issue.
  3. (British),(slang) A stupid person.
planking Tweet Definition of planking Like Definition of planking on Facebook
noun
  1. a series of planks; a group of planks
verb
  1. (present participle of, plank)
plant Tweet Definition of plant Like Definition of plant on Facebook
noun
  1. An organism that is not an animal, especially an organism capable of photosynthesis. Typically a small or herbaceous organism of this kind, rather than a tree.
  2. (botany) An organism of the kingdom Plantae. Traditionally (up to early 20th Century), any of the plants, fungi, lichens, algae, etc.
  3. (botany) An organism of the kingdom Plantae. Now specifically, a living organism of the Embryophyta (land plants) or of the Chlorophyta (green algae), a eukaryote that includes double-membraned chloroplasts in its cells containing chlorophyll a and b, or any organism closely related to such an organism.
  4. (botany) An organism of the kingdom Plantae. (context, Ecology) Now specifically, a multicellular eukaryote that includes chloroplasts in its cells, which have a cell wall.
  5. An industrial installation, specifically the apparatus or machinery.
  6. A factory or other industrial or institutional building or facility.
  7. An object placed surreptitiously in order to cause suspicion to fall upon a person.
That gun's not mine! It's a ! I've never seen it before!
  1. A person, placed amongst an audience, whole role is to cause confusion, laughter etc.
  2. (context, snooker) A situation in which the cue ball hits one of a pair of touching (usually red) balls, in order to pot the other; a set.
verb
  1. (transitive) To place (a seed or plant) in soil or other substrate in order that it may live and grow.
  2. (transitive) To place (an object, or sometimes a person), often with the implication of intending deceit.
That gun's not mine! It was planted there by the real murderer!
  1. (transitive) To place or set something firmly or with conviction.
Plant your feet firmly and give the rope a good tug.
plaster Tweet Definition of plaster Like Definition of plaster on Facebook
noun (plasters, -)
  1. (uncountable) A mixture of lime or gypsum, sand, and water, sometimes with the addition of fibres, that hardens to a smooth solid and is used for coating walls and ceilings.
  2. (countable) A cast made of plaster of Paris and gauze; plaster cast.
  3. (uncountable) A paste applied to the skin for healing or cosmetic purposes.
  4. (countable) A small adhesive bandage to cover a minor wound; a sticking plaster.
verb
  1. (transitive) To cover or coat something with plaster, or apply a plaster.
Her face was plastered in mud.
  1. (transitive) To hide or cover up, as if with plaster.
The radio station plastered the buses and trains with its advertisement.
plate Tweet Definition of plate Like Definition of plate on Facebook
noun
  1. A serving dish or food course.
We filled our plate from the bountiful table.
  1. A flat metallic object of uniform thickness.
A clutch usually has two plates.
  1. (weightlifting) A weighted disk, usually of metal, with a hole in the center for use with a barbell, dumbbell, or exercise machine.
  2. (printing) An engraved surface used to transfer an image to paper.
We finished making the plates this morning.
  1. (context, printing, photography) An image or copy.
  2. (dentistry) A shaped and fitted surface, usually ceramic or metal that fits into the mouth and in which teeth are implanted; a dental plate.
  3. (construction) A horizontal framing member at the top or bottom of a group of vertical studs.
  4. A decorative or food service item coated with silver.
The tea was served in the .
  1. (Cockney rhyming slang) feet, from "plates of meat".
"Sit down and give your plates a rest"
  1. (baseball) home plate; where the batter stands next to
There was a close play at the .
  1. (geology) tectonic plate
verb (plat, ing)
  1. To cover the surface material of an object with a thin coat of another material, usually a metal.
This ring is plated with a thin layer of gold.
  1. To place the various elements of a meal on the diner's plate prior to serving.
After preparation, the chef will the dish.
  1. To perform cunnilingus.
He fingered her as he plated her with his tongue.
platen Tweet Definition of platen Like Definition of platen on Facebook
noun
  1. The part of a printing press which presses the paper against the type and by which the impression is made.
platform Tweet Definition of platform Like Definition of platform on Facebook
noun
  1. A raised stage from which speeches are made and songs are sung.
  2. A political stance on a broad set of issues, which are called planks.
  3. A raised structure from which passengers can enter or leave a train.
  4. (automobiles) A set of components shared by several vehicle models.
  5. (computing) A particular type of operating system or environment such as a database or other specific software, and/or a particular type of computer or microprocessor, used to describe a particular environment for running other software, or for defining a specific software or hardware environment for discussion purposes.
That program runs on an X-Window-System .
Typical PCs use the x86 .''
plenum Tweet Definition of plenum Like Definition of plenum on Facebook
noun (pl2=plena)
  1. A space that is completely filled with matter
  • 1974: He lay on the long stone slant down to the slapping waves, his denim shorts, sneakers, and socks under his head for a pillow, feeling the splendour of distance in all directions, the liquid silence, the of aloneness. " Guy Davenport Tatlin!
    1. A legislative meeting (especially of the Communist Party) in which all members are present
    2. An enclosed space having greater than atmospheric pressure
    3. The space above a false ceiling used for cables, ducts etc
    4. (computing) A type of network cabling which satisfies plenum-ratings issued by the National Electrical Code. These cables are safer in case of a fire, producing less smoke and fumes.
plinth Tweet Definition of plinth Like Definition of plinth on Facebook
noun
  1. A block or slab upon which a column, pedestal, or statue is based.
  2. The bottom course of stones or bricks supporting a wall.
  3. A base or pedestal beneath a cabinet.
plug Tweet Definition of plug Like Definition of plug on Facebook
noun
  1. (context, electricity) A pronged connector, connecting device which fits into a mating socket.
I pushed the back into the electrical socket and the lamp began to glow again.
  1. Any piece of wood, metal, or other substance used to stop or fill a hole; a stopple.
Pull the out of the tub so it can drain.
  1. A flat oblong cake of pressed tobacco.
He preferred a of tobacco to loose chaw.
  1. (context, US, slang) A high, tapering silk hat.
  2. (context, US, slang) A worthless horse.
That sorry old is ready for the glue factory!
  1. (context, construction) A block of wood let into a wall to afford a hold for nails.
  2. A mention of a product (usually a book, film or play) in an interview, or an interview which features one or more of these.
During the interview, the author put in a for his latest novel.
  1. (Geology) A body of once molten rock that hardened in a volcanic vent. Usually round or oval in shape.
Pressure built beneath the in the caldera, eventually resulting in a catastrophic explosion of pyroclastic shrapnel and ash.
  1. (context, fishing) A type of lure consisting of a rigid, buoyant or semi-buoyant body and one or more hooks.
The fisherman cast the into a likely pool, hoping to catch a whopper.
verb (plug, g, ed)
  1. (transitive) To stop with a plug; to make tight by stopping a hole.
He attempted to the leaks with some caulk.
  1. (transitive) To mention a particular product or service.
The main guest on the show just kept plugging his latest movie: it got so tiresome.
  1. (intransitive) (informal) To persist or continue with something.
Keep plugging at the problem until you find a solution.
  1. (transitive) To shoot a bullet into something with a gun.
    • 1884, s:Author:H. Rider Haggard, H. Rider Haggard, s:The Witch's Head/Book II/Chapter II, The Witch's Head
    • :I am awfully glad that you kept your nerve and plugged him; it would have been better if you could have nailed him through the right shoulder, which would not have killed him...
plum Tweet Definition of plum Like Definition of plum on Facebook
noun
  1. The edible, fleshy stone fruit of Prunus domestica, often of a dark red or purple colour.
  2. The stone-fruit tree which bears this fruit, Prunus domestica.
  3. A dark bluish-red color/colour, the colour of some plums.
<table><tr><td>plum colour: &nbsp;</td><td bgcolor="
  1. 5F4951" width="80">&nbsp; </td></tr></table>
    1. A desirable thing.
    2. A raisin, when used in a pudding or cake.
    3. (pejorative) A fool, idiot
    4. (slang, usually in plural) A testicle.
    5. The edible, fleshy stone of Prunus mume, an Asian fruit more closely related to the apricot than the plum, usually consumed pickled, dried, or as a juice or wine; ume.
    6. The tree which bears this fruit, Prunus mume. See plum blossom.
adjective (more, -)
  1. (comparable) Of a dark bluish-red colour.
  2. (not comparable) choice, Choice; especially lavish or preferred.
She landed a position as an executive for the firm.
adverb
  1. completely, Completely; utterly.
You're going to think I'm crazy for this, but I want to adopt all seven kittens.
plumb Tweet Definition of plumb Like Definition of plumb on Facebook
noun
  1. A little mass of lead, or the like, attached to a line, and used by builders, etc., to indicate a vertical direction; a plummet; a plumb bob (UK); a plumb line (US).
  2. A weight on the end of a long line, used by sailors to determine the depth of water.
verb
  1. To determine the depth of water with a plumb; to sound.
  2. To use a plumb bob to test for vertical alignment.
  3. To make something vertical or perpendicular accurately.
  4. (dated) To seal something with lead.
  5. (intransitive): To work as a plumber.
adjective
  1. truly vertical
  2. (cricket) Describing an LBW where the batsman is hit on the pads directly in front on his wicket and should be given out.
adverb
  1. In a vertical direction.
  2. (informal) squarely or directly
It hit him in the middle of his face.
plumbery Tweet Definition of plumbery Like Definition of plumbery on Facebook
noun
  1. (obsolete) The business of a plumber
  2. A place where plumbing is carried on; a lead works.
plumbing Tweet Definition of plumbing Like Definition of plumbing on Facebook
noun (uncountable)
  1. The pipes, together with the joints, tanks, stopcocks, taps and other fixtures of a water, gas or sewage system in a house or other building.
  2. The trade or occupation of a plumber.
  3. (informal) A system of vessels or ducts in the human body, especially the genitourinary system.
My plumbing was playing up, so I had to see the doctor.
plunger Tweet Definition of plunger Like Definition of plunger on Facebook
noun s (used for removing blockages).]]
  1. A device that is used to remove blockages from a toilet or sink by suction.
  2. The remote sliding activator of an explosive device.
  3. The part of a cafetière that is pushed down to remove grounds from coffee.
  4. One who plunges.
plywood Tweet Definition of plywood Like Definition of plywood on Facebook
noun
  1. A type of construction material supplied in sheets, and made of layered wood, several layers being glued on top of each other.
pocket Tweet Definition of pocket Like Definition of pocket on Facebook
noun
  1. A bag stitched to an item of clothing, used for carrying small items.
  2. (context, sports, billiards, snooker, pool) A net or similar struture at each corner, and halfway along the edge, of a billiard table into which balls are to be struck.
  3. An enclosed volume of one substance surrounded by another.
The drilling expedition discovered a pocket of natural gas.
  1. An area of land surrounded by a loop of a river (Australian English)
  2. (aussie-rules) The area of the field to the side of the goal posts (four pockets in total on the field, one to each side of the goals at each end of the ground). The pocket is only a roughly defined area, extending from the behind post, at an angle, to perhaps about 30 metres out.
verb
  1. To put (something) into a pocket.
  2. (context, sports, billiards, snooker, pool) To cause a ball to go into one of the pockets of the table.
  3. (slang) To take and keep (especially money) that is not one's own.
adjective (no (compar) or (superl))
  1. Of a size suitable for putting into a pocket.
pocket dictionary
point Tweet Definition of point Like Definition of point on Facebook
noun
  1. A location or place.
  2. (geometry) A zero-dimensional mathematical object representing a location in one or more dimensions.
  3. A particular moment in an event or occurrence.
At this point in the meeting, I'd like to propose a new item for the agenda.
  1. The sharp tip of an object.
  2. A peninsula.
  3. (arithmetic) A decimal point (used when reading decimal fractions aloud).
10.5 ("ten point five"; = ten and a half)
  1. An opinion which adds (or supposedly adds) to the discussion.
  2. A unit of measure of success or failure in a game or competition; the unit of score, scoring.
The one with the most points will win the game
Germany awarded Greece the maximum 12 points in the Eurovision Song Contest.
  1. The color/colour on the extremities of an animal (typically darker or richer) than the rest of the coat).
The point color of that cat was a deep, rich sable.
  1. (rail transport, Commonwealth) a device by which trains change tracks; switch
  2. (cricket) a fielding position square of the wicket on the off side, between gully and cover.
  3. The position at the front or vanguard of an advancing force.
    • 2005: Willie Jones decided to become Kimani Jones, Black Panther, on the day his best friend, Otis Nicholson, stepped on a mine while walking during a sweep in the central highlands. " Martin Torgoff, Can't Find My Way Home (Simon & Schuster 2005, p. 189)
    • (nautical) An angle equivalent to eleven and a quarter degrees, that is 1/32 of a circle. Most commonly used to indicate a relative bearing to an object or vessel, but can be used to describe a compass bearing.
verb
  1. (intransitive) To extend the index finger in the direction of something in order to show where it is or to draw attention to it.
It's rude to at other people.
  1. (transitive) To direct or encourage (someone) in a particular direction
If he asks for food, him toward the refrigerator.
pointing Tweet Definition of pointing Like Definition of pointing on Facebook
noun
  1. (context, usually singular or collective) Mortar that has been placed between bricks to hold them together.
  2. The action of the verb to point.
verb
  1. (present participle of, point)
prefab Tweet Definition of prefab Like Definition of prefab on Facebook
noun
  1. a prefabricated building, or section of a building
  2. a single-storey prefabricated home built in many British cities immediately after the World War II and still in use
abbreviation
  1. prefabricated
prestressed concrete Tweet Definition of prestressed concrete Like Definition of prestressed concrete on Facebook
noun
  1. concrete with stresses induced in it before use so as to counteract stresses that will be produced by load; often contains stretched steel bars or wires called tendons
pretension Tweet Definition of pretension Like Definition of pretension on Facebook
noun (usually pretension to)
  1. A claim or aspiration to a particular status or quality.
  2. pretentiousness, Pretentiousness.
pry Tweet Definition of pry Like Definition of pry on Facebook
noun (pries)
  1. A lever.
  2. leverage, Leverage.
verb (pr, i, ed)
  1. To use leverage to open or widen.
  2. (context, of eyes) Opening and looking where one is not welcome; being nosey.