What does whole mean?

Definitions for whole

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word whole.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. wholenoun

    all of something including all its component elements or parts

    "Europe considered as a whole"; "the whole of American literature"

  2. whole, unitadjective

    an assemblage of parts that is regarded as a single entity

    "how big is that part compared to the whole?"; "the team is a unit"

  3. wholeadjective

    including all components without exception; being one unit or constituting the full amount or extent or duration; complete

    "gave his whole attention"; "a whole wardrobe for the tropics"; "the whole hog"; "a whole week"; "the baby cried the whole trip home"; "a whole loaf of bread"

  4. wholeadjective

    (of siblings) having the same parents

    "whole brothers and sisters"

  5. unharmed, unhurt, unscathed, wholeadjective

    not injured

  6. hale, wholeadjective

    exhibiting or restored to vigorous good health

    "hale and hearty"; "whole in mind and body"; "a whole person again"

  7. solid, unanimous, wholeadverb

    acting together as a single undiversified whole

    "a solid voting bloc"

  8. wholly, entirely, completely, totally, all, altogether, wholeadverb

    to a complete degree or to the full or entire extent (`whole' is often used informally for `wholly')

    "he was wholly convinced"; "entirely satisfied with the meal"; "it was completely different from what we expected"; "was completely at fault"; "a totally new situation"; "the directions were all wrong"; "it was not altogether her fault"; "an altogether new approach"; "a whole new idea"


  1. wholenoun

    Something complete, without any parts missing.

  2. wholenoun

    An entirety.

  3. wholeadverb

    in entirety; entirely; wholly

    I ate a fish whole!

  4. wholeadjective


    I ate a whole fish.

  5. wholeadjective

    sound, uninjured, healthy.

    He is of whole mind, but the same cannot be said about his physical state.

  6. Etymology: From hool, from hal, from hailaz (compare Low German heel/heil, Dutch heel, German heil, Danish hel), from kóhₐilus, coel 'omen', Breton kel 'omen, mention', Old Prussian kails 'healthy', Albanian gjallë 'alive, unhurt', Old Church Slavonic cĕlŭ 'healthy, unhurt', Ancient Greek koîlu 'good'). Related to hale, health, and heal.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Wholeadjective

    Etymology: walg , Saxon; heal, Dutch.

    Burn the whole ram upon the altar. Ex. xxix. 18.

    All the whole army stood agaz’d at him. William Shakespeare.

    Fierce extremes,
    Contiguous might distemper the whole frame. John Milton.

    Anguish is come upon me, because my life is yet whole in me. 2 Sa. i. 9.

    When they had done circumcising all the people, they abode in the camp, till they were whole. Jos. v. 8.

  2. Wholenoun

    The totality; no part omitted; the complex of all the parts.

    Fear God, and keep his commandments, for this is the whole of man. Ecclesiastes.

    Begin with sense, of ev’ry art the soul;
    Parts answering parts, shall slide into a whole. Alexander Pope.

    It contained the whole of religion amongst the antients; and made philosophy more agreeable. William Broome.

    There is a metaphysical whole, when the essence of a thing is said to consist of two parts, the genus and the difference, i.e. the general and the special nature, which, being joined together, make up a definition. Isaac Watts, Logick.


  1. whole

    Whole refers to something that is complete or intact, lacking nothing and without any parts missing or separated. It can also be used to describe a unit or entity that is considered as a single entity, rather than being divided or fragmented.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Wholeadjective

    containing the total amount, number, etc.; comprising all the parts; free from deficiency; all; total; entire; as, the whole earth; the whole solar system; the whole army; the whole nation

  2. Wholeadjective

    complete; entire; not defective or imperfect; not broken or fractured; unimpaired; uninjured; integral; as, a whole orange; the egg is whole; the vessel is whole

  3. Wholeadjective

    possessing, or being in a state of, heath and soundness; healthy; sound; well

  4. Wholenoun

    the entire thing; the entire assemblage of parts; totality; all of a thing, without defect or exception; a thing complete in itself

  5. Wholenoun

    a regular combination of parts; a system

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Whole

    hōl, adj. sound, as in health (so in B.): unimpaired: containing the total amount, number, &c.: all: not defective: complete: in mining, as yet unworked.—n. the entire thing: a system or combination of parts.—adv. wholly.—adjs. Whole′-col′oured, all of one colour; Whole′-foot′ed (coll.) unreserved; Whole′-heart′ed, -souled, noble: hearty, generous; Whole′-hoofed, having undivided hoof; Whole′-length, giving the whole figure, as a portrait: full-length.—n. a portrait or statue giving the whole figure.—ns. Whole′ness; Whole′sāle, sale of goods by the whole piece or large quantity.—adj. buying and selling in large quantities: extensive.—n. Whole′sāler, one who sells by wholesale.—adjs. Whole′-skinned, having an unbroken skin: unhurt: safe in reputation; Whole′some, healthy: sound: salutary: (Shak.) prosperous.—adv. Whole′somely.—ns. Whole′someness; Whole′-stitch, a lace-making stitch used in filling.—adv. Wholly (hō′li), completely, altogether.—n. Wholth, wholeness, soundness.—Whole number, a unit, or a number composed of units, an integral number.—Upon, On, the whole, generally speaking, to sum up.—With whole skin, safe, unscathed. [A.S. hál, healthy; Ice. heill, Ger. heil. By-form hale (1).]

Editors Contribution

  1. whole

    Having the complete element or facet.

    The whole business is represented at the management meeting and it is so clear teamwork and unity makes the plan work.

    Submitted by MaryC on February 9, 2020  

Matched Categories

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'whole' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #447

  2. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'whole' in Written Corpus Frequency: #377

  3. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'whole' in Nouns Frequency: #500

  4. Adjectives Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'whole' in Adjectives Frequency: #47

How to pronounce whole?

How to say whole in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of whole in Chaldean Numerology is: 8

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of whole in Pythagorean Numerology is: 9

Examples of whole in a Sentence

  1. Alfred North Whitehead:

    There are no whole truths all truths are half- truths. It is trying to treat them as whole truths that plays the devil.

  2. Danielle Javernig:

    The whole point wasn’t to be Wonder Woman by myself. The whole superhero thing was about the whole family, there are also so many women and children surviving chemo every day. Everyone in that chemo ward are all superheroes.

  3. Richard Bensinger:

    If we had petitioned for the whole district, they'd say the vote should be the whole state. If we petitioned for a vote for the whole state, they'd say the vote should be the whole nation.

  4. Puyallup Police Officer David LaSalata:

    I think the life experience helps some but ultimately it’s learning a whole new trade, a whole new craft re-teaching yourself to see things in a whole new way than you are used to seeing them.

  5. Jeff Melvoin:

    I've been over what I'm supposed to say and I've got to tell you, it's pretty persuasive stuff, but is it the whole truth It's a slice of truth, a morsel, a fraction. It's a piece of the pie, certainly not the whole enchilada, and now that I've been thinking about it, I don't think I could tell the whole truth about anything. That's a pretty heavy burden, because we all just view the world through this little piece of coke bottle. Is there such a thing as objective truth I wonder.

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Translations for whole

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"whole." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 2 Oct. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/whole>.

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1 Comment
  • Anthony Lopez Chavez
    Anthony Lopez Chavez
    LikeReply8 years ago

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(of especially persons) lacking sense or understanding or judgment
  • A. soft-witted
  • B. omnifarious
  • C. elusive
  • D. arbitrary

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