: an instrument for determining the pressure of the atmosphere and hence for assisting in forecasting weather and for determining altitude
: something that indicates fluctuations (as in public opinion) <housing sales and other economic barometers>
Examples of BAROMETER
- <a legendary Broadway flop that has subsequently become the barometer by which failure in the theater is judged>
First Known Use of BAROMETER
Related to BAROMETER
- bar, standard, benchmark, criterion, gold standard, grade, mark, measure, metric, par, touchstone, yardstick
barometer noun (Concise Encyclopedia)
Device used to measure atmospheric pressure. Because atmospheric pressure changes with distance above or below sea level, a barometer can also be used to measure altitude. In the mercury barometer, atmospheric pressure balances a column of mercury, the height of which can be precisely measured. Normal atmospheric pressure is about 14.7 lb per square inch, equivalent to 30 in. (760 mm) of mercury. Other liquids can be used in barometers, but mercury is the most common because of its great density. An aneroid barometer indicates pressure on a dial using a needle that is mechanically linked to a partially evacuated chamber, which responds to pressure changes.
Learn More About BAROMETER
Seen & Heard
What made you want to look up barometer? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).