What does define mean?

Definitions for define

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word define.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. specify, define, delineate, delimit, delimitateverb

    determine the essential quality of

  2. defineverb

    give a definition for the meaning of a word

    "Define `sadness'"

  3. defineverb

    determine the nature of

    "What defines a good wine?"

  4. define, delineateverb

    show the form or outline of

    "The tree was clearly defined by the light"; "The camera could define the smallest object"

  5. specify, set, determine, define, fix, limitverb

    decide upon or fix definitely

    "fix the variables"; "specify the parameters"


  1. defineverb

    To determine.

  2. defineverb

    To express the essential nature of something.

  3. defineverb

    To state the meaning of a word or word group or a sign or symbol.

  4. defineverb

    To describe, explain, or make definite and clear.

  5. defineverb

    To demark sharply the outlines or limits of an area or concept.

  6. Etymology: From definen, from definer, variant of definir, from definio, from de + finio

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. To DEFINEverb

    Etymology: definio, Lat. definir, French.

    Whose loss can’st thou mean,
    That do’st so well their miseries define? Philip Sidney, b. ii.

    Though defining be thought the proper way to make known the proper signification, yet there are some words that will not be defined. John Locke.

    When the rings, or some parts of them, appeared only black and white, they were very distinct and well defined, and the blackness seemed as intense as that of the central spot. Newt.

  2. To Defineverb

    To determine; to decide; to decree.

    The unjust judge is the capital remover of landmarks, when he defineth amiss of lands and properties. Francis Bacon, Ess. 57.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Defineverb

    to fix the bounds of; to bring to a termination; to end

  2. Defineverb

    to determine or clearly exhibit the boundaries of; to mark the limits of; as, to define the extent of a kingdom or country

  3. Defineverb

    to determine with precision; to mark out with distinctness; to ascertain or exhibit clearly; as, the defining power of an optical instrument

  4. Defineverb

    to determine the precise signification of; to fix the meaning of; to describe accurately; to explain; to expound or interpret; as, to define a word, a phrase, or a scientific term

  5. Defineverb

    to determine; to decide

  6. Etymology: [OE. definer, usually, to end, to finish, F. dfinir to define, L. definire to limit, define; de- + finire to limit, end, finis boundary, limit, end. See Final, Finish.]

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Define

    de-fīn′, v.t. to fix the bounds or limits of: to determine with precision: to describe accurately: to fix the meaning of.—adj. Defin′able, that may be defined.—n. Define′ment (Shak.), description.—adj. Def′inite, defined: having distinct limits: fixed: exact: clear.—adv. Def′initely.—ns. Def′initeness; Defini′tion, a defining: a description of a thing by its properties: an explanation of the exact meaning of a word, term, or phrase.—adj. Defin′itive, defining or limiting: positive: final.—n. (gram.) an adjective used to limit the signification of a noun.—adv. Defin′itively.—ns. Defin′itiveness; Defin′itude, definitiveness. [Fr.,—L. definīre, -ītum, to set bounds to—de, finis, a limit.]

Editors Contribution

  1. define

    To create a definition for the meaning of a word.

    She did always define things simply and clearly.

    Submitted by MaryC on February 1, 2020  
  2. define

    To create an accurate and exact definition, meaning, term or reason.

    They did define the constitution easily and efficiently.

    Submitted by MaryC on February 20, 2020  
  3. define

    To create perfect, easy, accurate, specific, simple and just budgets, goals, law, legislation, objectives, plans, processes, procedures, rules, strategy, structures, systems, vision and treaties.

    The business management team had a team meeting for a complete working day to work together to create the business vision, goals, objectives, plans, processes, procedures, action.

    Submitted by MaryC on March 26, 2020  
  4. define

    To create specific, accurate, simple and just eligibility criteria, employees, expenditure, funding, guidelines, income, IT systems, liquidity, management, policies, resources and technology.

    The business management team had a team meeting for a complete working day to work together to create the business vision, goals, objectives, plans, processes, procedures, action.

    Submitted by MaryC on March 26, 2020  

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'define' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #3960

  2. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'define' in Written Corpus Frequency: #3382

  3. Verbs Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'define' in Verbs Frequency: #239

How to pronounce define?

How to say define in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of define in Chaldean Numerology is: 1

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of define in Pythagorean Numerology is: 7

Examples of define in a Sentence

  1. Hillary Rodham Clinton:

    Women are always being tested...but ultimately, each of us has to define who we are individually and then do the very best job we can to grow into it.

  2. Bill Cassidy:

    You have to have an umpire, even if the umpire occasionally gets it wrong, because otherwise you are only accepting analysis by people with motivations define certain answers, and so I am very reluctant to disregard what the CBO score is.

  3. Edward Albee:

    Good writers define reality bad ones merely restate it. A good writer turns fact into truth a bad writer will, more often than not, accomplish the opposite.

  4. Walt Whitman:

    Either define the moment or the moment will define you.

  5. Mwanandeke Kindembo:

    Hope is the daughter of patience. The longer you wait will define you at the end of the journey.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for define

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    being essentially equal to something
    • A. defiant
    • B. ultimo
    • C. equivalent
    • D. arbitrary

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