What does figure mean?

Definitions for figure
ˈfɪg yər; esp. Brit. ˈfɪg ərfig·ure

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

Princeton's WordNet

  1. figure, fig(noun)

    a diagram or picture illustrating textual material

    "the area covered can be seen from Figure 2"

  2. human body, physical body, material body, soma, build, figure, physique, anatomy, shape, bod, chassis, frame, form, flesh(noun)

    alternative names for the body of a human being

    "Leonardo studied the human body"; "he has a strong physique"; "the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak"

  3. digit, figure(noun)

    one of the elements that collectively form a system of numeration

    "0 and 1 are digits"

  4. figure(noun)

    a model of a bodily form (especially of a person)

    "he made a figure of Santa Claus"

  5. name, figure, public figure(noun)

    a well-known or notable person

    "they studied all the great names in the history of France"; "she is an important figure in modern music"

  6. figure(noun)

    a combination of points and lines and planes that form a visible palpable shape

  7. figure(noun)

    an amount of money expressed numerically

    "a figure of $17 was suggested"

  8. figure(noun)

    the impression produced by a person

    "he cut a fine figure"; "a heroic figure"

  9. number, figure(noun)

    the property possessed by a sum or total or indefinite quantity of units or individuals

    "he had a number of chores to do"; "the number of parameters is small"; "the figure was about a thousand"

  10. trope, figure of speech, figure, image(noun)

    language used in a figurative or nonliteral sense

  11. figure(noun)

    a unitary percept having structure and coherence that is the object of attention and that stands out against a ground

  12. design, pattern, figure(noun)

    a decorative or artistic work

    "the coach had a design on the doors"

  13. figure(verb)

    a predetermined set of movements in dancing or skating

    "she made the best score on compulsory figures"

  14. calculate, estimate, reckon, count on, figure, forecast(verb)

    judge to be probable

  15. figure, enter(verb)

    be or play a part of or in

    "Elections figure prominently in every government program"; "How do the elections figure in the current pattern of internal politics?"

  16. visualize, visualise, envision, project, fancy, see, figure, picture, image(verb)

    imagine; conceive of; see in one's mind

    "I can't see him on horseback!"; "I can see what will happen"; "I can see a risk in this strategy"

  17. calculate, cipher, cypher, compute, work out, reckon, figure(verb)

    make a mathematical calculation or computation

  18. figure(verb)


    "He didn't figure her"


  1. figure(Noun)

    A drawing or representation conveying information.

  2. figure(Noun)

    A person or thing representing a certain consciousness.

  3. figure(Noun)

    A human figure, which dress or corset must fit to; the shape of human body.

  4. figure(Noun)

    A numeral.

  5. figure(Noun)

    A number.

  6. figure(Noun)

    A shape.

  7. figure(Noun)

    A visible pattern as in wood or cloth.

  8. figure(Noun)

    A dance figure.

  9. figure(Noun)

    A figure of speech.

  10. figure(Verb)

    To solve a mathematical problem.

  11. figure(Verb)

    To come to understand.

    I can't figure if he's telling the truth or lying.

  12. figure(Verb)

    to be reasonable

  13. figure(Verb)

    to enter, be a part of

  14. Origin: From figure, from figure, from figura, from fingere

Webster Dictionary

  1. Figure(noun)

    the form of anything; shape; outline; appearance

  2. Figure(noun)

    the representation of any form, as by drawing, painting, modeling, carving, embroidering, etc.; especially, a representation of the human body; as, a figure in bronze; a figure cut in marble

  3. Figure(noun)

    a pattern in cloth, paper, or other manufactured article; a design wrought out in a fabric; as, the muslin was of a pretty figure

  4. Figure(noun)

    a diagram or drawing; made to represent a magnitude or the relation of two or more magnitudes; a surface or space inclosed on all sides; -- called superficial when inclosed by lines, and solid when inclosed by surface; any arrangement made up of points, lines, angles, surfaces, etc

  5. Figure(noun)

    the appearance or impression made by the conduct or carrer of a person; as, a sorry figure

  6. Figure(noun)

    distinguished appearance; magnificence; conspicuous representation; splendor; show

  7. Figure(noun)

    a character or symbol representing a number; a numeral; a digit; as, 1, 2,3, etc

  8. Figure(noun)

    value, as expressed in numbers; price; as, the goods are estimated or sold at a low figure

  9. Figure(noun)

    a person, thing, or action, conceived of as analogous to another person, thing, or action, of which it thus becomes a type or representative

  10. Figure(noun)

    a mode of expressing abstract or immaterial ideas by words which suggest pictures or images from the physical world; pictorial language; a trope; hence, any deviation from the plainest form of statement

  11. Figure(noun)

    the form of a syllogism with respect to the relative position of the middle term

  12. Figure(noun)

    any one of the several regular steps or movements made by a dancer

  13. Figure(noun)

    a horoscope; the diagram of the aspects of the astrological houses

  14. Figure(noun)

    any short succession of notes, either as melody or as a group of chords, which produce a single complete and distinct impression

  15. Figure(noun)

    a form of melody or accompaniment kept up through a strain or passage; a musical or motive; a florid embellishment

  16. Figure(noun)

    to represent by a figure, as to form or mold; to make an image of, either palpable or ideal; also, to fashion into a determinate form; to shape

  17. Figure(noun)

    to embellish with design; to adorn with figures

  18. Figure(noun)

    to indicate by numerals; also, to compute

  19. Figure(noun)

    to represent by a metaphor; to signify or symbolize

  20. Figure(noun)

    to prefigure; to foreshow

  21. Figure(noun)

    to write over or under the bass, as figures or other characters, in order to indicate the accompanying chords

  22. Figure(noun)

    to embellish

  23. Figure(verb)

    to make a figure; to be distinguished or conspicious; as, the envoy figured at court

  24. Figure(verb)

    to calculate; to contrive; to scheme; as, he is figuring to secure the nomination

  25. Origin: [F., figure, L. figura; akin to fingere to form, shape, feign. See Feign.]


  1. Figure

    A musical figure or figuration is the shortest idea in music, a short succession of notes, often recurring. It may have melodic pitch, harmonic progression and rhythmic. The 1964 Grove's Dictionary defines the figure as "the exact counterpart of the German 'motiv' and the French 'motif'": it produces a "single complete and distinct impression". To Scruton, however, "A figure is distinguished from a motif in that a figure is background while a motif is foreground: "A figure resembles a moulding in architecture: it is 'open at both ends', so as to be endlessly repeatable. In hearing a phrase as a figure, rather than a motif, we are at the same time placing it in the background, even if it is...strong and melodious." A phrase originally presented or heard as a motif may become a figure which accompanies another melody, such as in the second movement of Claude Debussy's String Quartet. It is perhaps best to view a figure as a motif when it has special importance in a piece. According to White, motives are, "significant in the structure of the work," while figures or figurations are not and, "may often occur in accompaniment passages or in transitional or connective material designed to link two sections together," with the former being more common.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Figure

    fig′ūr, n. the form of anything in outline: the representation of anything in drawing, &c.: a drawing: a design: a statue: appearance: a character denoting a number: value or price: (rhet.) a deviation from the ordinary mode of expression, in which words are changed from their literal signification or usage: (logic) the form of a syllogism with respect to the position of the middle term: steps in a dance: a type or emblem.—v.t. to form or shape: to make an image of: to mark with figures or designs: to imagine: to symbolise: to foreshow: to note by figures.—v.i. to make figures: to appear as a distinguished person.—n. Figurabil′ity, the quality of being figurable.—adjs. Fig′urable; Fig′ural, represented by figure.—n. Fig′urante, a ballet dancer, one of those dancers who dance in troops, and form a background for the solo dancers:—masc. Fig′urant.—adj. Fig′urate, of a certain determinate form: (mus.) florid.—n. Figurā′tion, act of giving figure or form: (mus.) mixture of chords and discords.—adj. Fig′urative (rhet.), representing by, containing, or abounding in figures: metaphorical: flowery: typical.—adv. Fig′uratively.—ns. Fig′urativeness, state of being figurative; Fig′ure-cast′er, an astrologer; Fig′ure-cast′ing, the art of preparing casts of animal or other forms.—adj. Fig′ured, marked or adorned with figures.—ns. Fig′ure-dance, a dance consisting of elaborate figures; Fig′urehead, the figure or bust under the bowsprit of a ship; Fig′ure-weav′ing, the weaving of figured fancy fabrics; Fig′urine, a small carved or sculptured figure, often specially such as are adorned with painting and gilding; Fig′urist, one who uses or interprets figures.—Figurate numbers, any series of numbers beginning with unity, and so formed that if each be subtracted from the following, and the series so formed be treated in the same way, by a continuation of the process, equal differences will be obtained. [Fr.,—L. figura, fingĕre, to form.]

Dictionary of Nautical Terms

  1. figure

    The principal piece of carved work or ornament at the head of a ship, whether scroll, billet, or figure-head.

Military Dictionary and Gazetteer

  1. figure

    In fortification, the plan of any fortified place, or the interior polygon. Of this there are two sorts, regular and irregular; a regular figure is that where the sides and angles are equal; an irregular one where they are unequal.

Suggested Resources

  1. figure

    Song lyrics by figure -- Explore a large variety of song lyrics performed by figure on the Lyrics.com website.

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'figure' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #555

  2. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'figure' in Written Corpus Frequency: #835

  3. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'figure' in Nouns Frequency: #94

  4. Verbs Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'figure' in Verbs Frequency: #916

How to pronounce figure?

  1. Alex
    US English

How to say figure in sign language?

  1. figure


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of figure in Chaldean Numerology is: 7

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of figure in Pythagorean Numerology is: 3

Examples of figure in a Sentence

  1. Donald Trump:

    No matter how you figure it.

  2. Victor Isuku:

    Total casualty figure is now 54.

  3. Donald Trump:

    They have to figure it out fast.

  4. Adolf Hitler.But King:

    They can figure out who they are.

  5. Fortin Magana:

    That figure is extremely alarming.

Images & Illustrations of figure

  1. figurefigurefigurefigurefigure

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for figure

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

  • дзе́ячBelarusian
  • фигура, личност, телосложение, цифра, изчислявам, представям сиBulgarian
  • figura, xifra, figurar-seCatalan, Valencian
  • postava, obrázek, ilustrace, vyřešitCzech
  • skikkelse, ciffer, tal, figur, beregne, slutteDanish
  • Gestalt, Form, Abbildung, Figur, ZifferGerman
  • εικόναGreek
  • figuroEsperanto
  • cifra, figura, ocurrírseleSpanish
  • شکلPersian
  • muoto, kuva, hahmo, figuuri, kuvio, luku, numero, vartalo, hoksata, tajuta, keksiäFinnish
  • figure, silhouette, personnage, personnalité, forme, chiffre, réaliser, comprendre, résoudreFrench
  • pearsa, uimhir, fíor, deilbhIrish
  • dèanamh, figearScottish Gaelic
  • ספרה, צורה, שרטוט, דמותHebrew
  • alak, ábra, számjegy, forma, rájön, kitalálHungarian
  • պատկերArmenian
  • angkaIndonesian
  • personaggio, forma fisica, forma, cifra, figura, calcolare, risolvereItalian
  • 人物, 体型Japanese
  • figūra, attēls, ciparsLatvian
  • whikaMāori
  • ആകൃതിMalayalam
  • figuur, cijfer, personage, afbeelding, vorm, berekenen, menenDutch
  • figurNorwegian
  • postać, osoba, kształt, sylwetka, figura, rysunek, cyfra, zrozumiećPolish
  • figura, cifra, número, resolver, perceber, compreenderPortuguese
  • figurăRomanian
  • цифра, рисунок, фигура, телосложение, вычислять, соображать, пониматьRussian
  • स्वरूपःSanskrit
  • figur, siffraSwedish
  • అంకెTelugu
  • şekil, çözmekTurkish
  • hình, nhân vật, hình vẽ, tưởng tượng, đoán, tưởngVietnamese
  • 人物Chinese

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