Dictionary > English Dictionary > Definition, synonym and antonym of measure
Meaning of measure by Wiktionary Dictionary



    Middle English mesure, from French mesure, from Latin mēnsūra ( “a measuring, rule, something to measure by” ), from mēnsus, past participle of mētīrī ( “to measure, mete” ). Displaced native Middle English mǣte, mete ( “measure” ) ( n. ) ( from Old English met ( “measure” ), compare Old English mitta ( “a measure” ) ), Middle English ameten, imeten ( “to measure” ) ( from Old English āmetan, ġemetan "to mete, measure ), Middle English hof, hoof ( “measure, reason” ) ( from Old Norse hōf ( “measure, reason” ) ), Old English mǣþ ( “measure, degree” ) .


    • IPA: /ˈmɛʒə/, X-SAMPA: /"mEZ@/
    • Rhymes: -ɛʒə( r )
    • Hyphenation: mea‧sure


    measure ( plural: measures )

    1. The quantity, size, weight, distance or capacity of a substance compared to a designated standard .
    2. An ( unspecified ) quantity or capacity :
      a measure of salt
    3. The precise designated distance between two objects or points .
    4. The act of measuring .
    5. A musical designation consisting of all notes and or rests delineated by two vertical bars; an equal and regular division of the whole of a composition .
    6. A rule, ruler or measuring stick .
    7. A tactic, strategy or piece of legislation .
      He took drastic measures to halt inflation .
    8. ( mathematics ) A function that assigns a non-negative number to a given set following the mathematical nature that is common among length, volume, probability and the like .
    9. An indicator; Something used to assess some property .
      The average price of basic household goods is a measure for inflation .
      Honesty is the true measure of a man .



    measure ( third-person singular simple present measures present participle measuring, simple past and past participle measured )

    1. To ascertain the quantity of a unit of material via calculated comparison with respect to a standard .
      We measured the temperature with a thermometer .
      You should measure the angle with a spirit level .
    2. To estimate the unit size of something .
      I measure that at 10 centimetres .
    3. To obtain or set apart; to mark in even increments .
    4. ( rare ) To traverse, cross, pass along; to travel over .

    External links

    • measure in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913
    • measure in The Century Dictionary, The Century Co., New York, 1911
    • measure at OneLook Dictionary Search

Explanation of measure by Wordnet Dictionary


    1. express as a number or measure or quantity

    2. determine the measurements of something or somebody, take measurements of

    3. Measure the length of the wall
    4. evaluate or estimate the nature, quality, ability, extent, or significance of

    5. have certain dimensions

    6. This table surfaces measures 20 inches by 36 inches
    1. how much there is or how many there are of something that you can quantify

    2. any maneuver made as part of progress toward a goal

    3. the situation called for strong measures
    4. the act or process of assigning numbers to phenomena according to a rule

    5. the measurements were carefully done
      his mental measurings proved remarkably accurate
    6. a container of some standard capacity that is used to obtain fixed amounts of a substance

    7. measuring instrument having a sequence of marks at regular intervals

    8. a statute in draft before it becomes law

    9. musical notation for a repeating pattern of musical beats

    10. the accent in a metrical foot of verse

    11. a basis for comparison

    12. they set the measure for all subsequent work

    Definition of measure by GCIDE Dictionary


    1. measure ( mĕzhur; 135 ), n. [OE. mesure, F. mesure, L. mensura, fr. metiri, mensus, to measure; akin to metrum poetical measure, Gr. μέτρον, E. meter. Cf. Immense, Mensuration, Mete to measure.]
      1. A standard of dimension; a fixed unit of quantity or extent; an extent or quantity in the fractions or multiples of which anything is estimated and stated; hence, a rule by which anything is adjusted or judged.

      2. An instrument by means of which size or quantity is measured, as a graduated line, rod, vessel, or the like.

      False ells and measures be brought all clean adown. R. of Gloucester.

      3. The dimensions or capacity of anything, reckoned according to some standard; size or extent, determined and stated; estimated extent; as, “to take one's measure for a coat”.

      The measure thereof is longer than the earth, and broader than the sea. Job xi. 9.

      4. The contents of a vessel by which quantity is measured; a quantity determined by a standard; a stated or limited quantity or amount.

      It is like leaven which a woman took and hid in three measures of meal. Luke xiii. 21.

      5. Extent or degree not excessive or beyong bounds; moderation; due restraint; esp. in the phrases, in measure; with measure; without or beyond measure.

      Hell hath enlarged herself, and opened her mouth without measure. Is. v. 14.

      6. Determined extent, not to be exceeded; limit; allotted share, as of action, influence, ability, or the like; due proportion.

      Lord, make me to know mine end, and the measure of my days. Ps. xxxix. 4.

      7. The quantity determined by measuring, especially in buying and selling; as, “to give good or full measure”.

      8. Undefined quantity; extent; degree.

      There is a great measure of discretion to be used in the performance of confession. Jer. Taylor.

      9. Regulated division of movement: ( Dancing ) A regulated movement corresponding to the time in which the accompanying music is performed; but, especially, a slow and stately dance, like the minuet. ( Mus. ) The group or grouping of beats, caused by the regular recurrence of accented beats. The space between two bars. See Beat, Triple, Quadruple, Sextuple, Compound time, under Compound, a., and Figure. ( Poetry ) The manner of ordering and combining the quantities, or long and short syllables; meter; rhythm; hence, a foot; as, “a poem in iambic measure”.

      10. ( Arith. ) A number which is contained in a given number a number of times without a remainder; as in the phrases, the common measure, the greatest common measure, etc., of two or more numbers; a denominator. See common denominator under denominator.

      11. A step or definite part of a progressive course or policy; a means to an end; an act designed for the accomplishment of an object; as, “political measures; prudent measures; an inefficient measure.”

      His majesty found what wrong measures he had taken in the conferring that trust, and lamented his error. Clarendon.

      12. The act of measuring; measurement. Shak.

      13. pl. ( Geol. ) Beds or strata; as, “coal measures; lead measures.”

      linear measure, lineal measure, or long measure, measure of length; the measure of lines or distances. -- Liquid measure, the measure of liquids. -- Square measure, the measure of superficial area of surfaces in square units, as inches, feet, miles, etc. -- To have hard measure, to have harsh treatment meted out to one; to be harshly or oppressively dealt with. -- To take measures, to make preparations; to provide means. -- To take one's measure, to measure one, as for a garment; hence, to form an opinion of one's disposition, character, ability, etc. -- To tread a measure, to dance in the style so called. See 9

      Say to her, we have measured many miles

      To tread a measure with her on this grass. Shak.

    2. Measure, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Measured ; p. pr. & vb. n. Measuring.] [F. mesurer, L. mensurare. See Measure, n.]
      1. To ascertain by use of a measuring instrument; to compute or ascertain the extent, quantity, dimensions, or capacity of, by a certain rule or standard; to take the dimensions of; hence, to estimate; to judge of; to value; to appraise.

      Great are thy works, Jehovah, infinite

      Thy power! what thought can measure thee? Milton.

      2. To serve as the measure of; as, “the thermometer measures changes of temperature”.

      3. To pass throught or over in journeying, as if laying off and determining the distance.

      A true devoted pilgrim is not weary

      To measure kingdoms with his feeble steps. Shak.

      4. To adjust by a rule or standard.

      To secure a contented spirit, measure your desires by your fortunes, not your fortunes by your desires. Jer. Taylor.

      5. To allot or distribute by measure; to set off or apart by measure; -- often with out or off.

      With what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again. Matt. vii. 2.

      That portion of eternity which is called time, measured out by the sun. Addison.

      To measure swords with one, to try another's skill in the use of the sword; hence, figuratively, to match one's abilities against an antagonist's.

    3. Measure v. i.
      1. To make a measurement or measurements.

      2. To result, or turn out, on measuring; as, “the grain measures well; the pieces measure unequally.”

      3. To be of a certain size or quantity, or to have a certain length, breadth, or thickness, or a certain capacity according to a standard measure; as, “cloth measures three fourths of a yard; a tree measures three feet in diameter.”