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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
department store
▪ So I became a shoe salesman in a department store that had a predominantly black clientele.
▪ The department store chain will consolidate its regional businesses into its Schaumburg, Illinois.
▪ The Edel MacBride label is already familiar to Chicago with clothing being sold at a large department store in the city.
▪ The same uneasy juxtaposition of man and technology is evident if you take the lift in a department store.
The Collaborative International Dictionary
Department store

Department store \De*part"ment store\ A store keeping a great variety of goods which are arranged in several departments.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary
department store

1878; a store that sells a variety of items, organized by department.\n\nThe "Department Store" is the outgrowth of the cheap counter business originated by Butler Brothers in Boston about ten years ago. The little "Five Cent Counter" then became a cornerstone from which the largest of all the world's branches of merchandising was to be reared. It was the "Cheap Counter" which proved to the progressive merchant his ability to sell all lines of wares under one roof. It was the Five Cent Counter "epidemic" of '77 and '78 which rushed like a mighty whirlwind from the Atlantic to the Pacific and all along its path transformed old time one line storekeepers into the wide-awake merchant princes of the present day. It was this same epidemic which made possible the world famed Department Stores of Houghton, of Boston; Macy, of New York; Wanamaker, of Philadelphia; and Lehman, of Chicago.

["American Storekeeper," 1885]

department store

n. A large shop containing many different departments each of which deals in different goods or services.

department store

n. a large retail store organized into departments offering a variety of merchandise; commonly part of a retail chain [syn: emporium]

Department store

A department store is a retail establishment offering a wide range of consumer goods in different product categories known as "departments". In modern major cities, the department store made a dramatic appearance in the middle of the 19th century, and permanently reshaped shopping habits, and the definition of service and luxury. Similar developments were under way in London (with Whiteleys), in Paris ( Le Bon Marché in 1852) and in New York (with Stewart's).

Department stores today have sections that sell the following: clothing, furniture, home appliances, toys, cosmetics, houseware, gardening, toiletries, sporting goods, do it yourself, paint, and hardware and additionally select other lines of products such as food, books, jewelry, electronics, stationery, photographic equipment, baby products, and products for pets. Customers check out near the front of the store or, alternatively, at sales counters within each department. Some are part of a retail chain of many stores, while others may be independent retailers. In the 1970s, they came under heavy pressure from discounters. Since 2010, they have come under even heavier pressure from online stores such as Amazon.

Big-box stores, hypermarkets, and discount stores are modern equivalent of historical department stores.

Department Store (film)

Department Store is a 1935 British crime film directed by Leslie S. Hiscott and starring Geraldine Fitzgerald, Eve Gray, Garry Marsh and Sebastian Shaw. It is also known by the alternative title Bargain Basement.

Department Store (1939 film)

Department Store'' (Italian:I grandi magazzini'') is a 1939 Italian comedy film directed by Mario Camerini.

It was made at the Cinecittà studios in Rome. The film entered the competition at the 7th Venice International Film Festival.

Usage examples of "department store".

Audrey's mind made a brief attempt to persuade her it was something else a department store mannequin, perhaps, dumped for some reason on Billingsley's lawn then gave it up.