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Definition of VERNIER
: a short scale made to slide along the divisions of a graduated instrument for indicating parts of divisions
a: a small auxiliary device used with a main device to obtain fine adjustment
b: any of two or more small supplementary rocket engines or gas nozzles on a missile or a rocket vehicle for making fine adjustments in the speed or course or controlling the attitude —called also vernier engine
Instrument for making very accurate linear or angular measurements. Introduced in 1631 by Pierre Vernier (c. 1580–1637), it uses two graduated scales: a main scale similar to that on a ruler, and a specially graduated scale, the vernier, that slides parallel to the main scale and enables readings to be made to a fraction of a division on the main scale.