English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

When I show screenshots and I want those who see the screenshot to focus on the area of the screenshot I marked as surrounded with a quadrilateral (usually a rectangle), I would say "see the area encircled in red".

It turns out that this is an incorrect usage of the word "encircled", as it means "to surround somebody/something completely in a circle".

Is there a word similar to "encircled", but meaning "to surround in a rectangle or a quadrilateral", instead of a circle?

share|improve this question

framed - put in a frame, usually rectangular. Framed in red would be probably what you need.

share|improve this answer

Boxed-in - enclosed in or as if in a box.

share|improve this answer
I thought of fenced-in, too – although that would be a terrible choice for talking about which part of a screen was highlighted. It could work for a piece of real estate, though. – J.R. Nov 11 '12 at 4:10
Or just boxed area. – Peter Shor Nov 11 '12 at 4:37
I think boxed area works well, or even highlighted area can be used in that context. – user23679 Nov 11 '12 at 5:33
Even enclosed in , which you included in the definition for boxed in would work well. – Nathan Nov 11 '12 at 5:35

Encircle can be used to mean surround something or someone completely without the object being a circle. You can also use bound for your purpose.

share|improve this answer
True, but the OP's problem is that he would want to contrast with a circle used for the purpose. – Kris Nov 11 '12 at 8:20

Without being so precise, you could be less precise, and speak about the highlighted area, or focussed...

With more information, you could say, "Remember the name in the blue highlighted area," if you surrounded it with a blue rectangle.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.