sectional (adj.)

1806, "pertaining to a division of a larger part;" see section (n.) + -al (1). Originally and especially "of or pertaining to some particular section or region of a country as distinct from others," in which sense it loomed large in the U.S. political vocabulary in the decades before the Civil War.

The meaning "composed or made up of several independent sections that fit together" is by 1875, originally mechanical. The noun meaning "piece of furniture composed of sections which can be used separately" is attested by 1961, short for sectional seat, sectional sofa, etc. (1949).

updated on March 25, 2022

Definitions of sectional from WordNet
sectional (adj.)
relating to or based upon a section (i.e. as if cut through by an intersecting plane);
a sectional view
sectional drawings
sectional (adj.)
consisting of or divided into sections;
a sectional sofa
Synonyms: sectioned
sectional (adj.)
related or limited to a distinct region or subdivision of a territory or community or group of people;
sectional tensions arose over slavery
sectional (n.)
a piece of furniture made up of sections that can be arranged individually or together;
Etymologies are not definitions. From, not affiliated with etymonline.