cen·​ti·​me·​ter | \ ˈsen-tə-ˌmē-tər How to pronounce centimeter (audio) , ˈsän- How to pronounce centimeter (audio) \

Definition of centimeter

: a unit of length equal to ¹/₁₀₀ meter — see Metric System Table

Keep scrolling for more

Did You Know?

In the metric system, which is used in most countries of the world, each basic unit of measure of length, area, or volume can be divided into centimeters. A meter consists of 100 centimeters, a square meter consists of 10,000 square centimeters, and a cubic meter consists of 1,000,000 cubic centimeters.

Examples of centimeter in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Despite initially registering at 203 centimeters and reducing his height to 202.1 centimeters, Simon was still barred from continuing to play in the KBL, the Yonhap News Agency reported. Allyson Chiu, chicagotribune.com, "South Korean basketball league ousts foreign players for being too tall. Some attempt to shrink.," 12 Apr. 2018 Wang's rubber saTENG can produce around 10 to 20 microwatts per square centimeter of material, a fairly impressive feat. William Herkewitz, Popular Mechanics, "Rubbery Power Source Makes Electricity When It Bends," 17 June 2016 There were at least 20 centimeters of wood missing, which represents a lot of years. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian, "Europe’s Oldest Known Tree Discovered in Italy," 29 May 2018 In these trackways, individual footprints are between 80 and 110 centimeters apart, but a normal human stride—based on the length of the footprint left behind—should measure only 60 centimeters or so. Sid Perkins, Science | AAAS, "Ancient human-sloth hunt hinted at in 15,000-year-old footprints," 25 Apr. 2018 The tiny translucent strip of elastic polymer is only a little over a centimeter long, but its capable of moving forward, climbing a slope, squeezing through small cracks, and carrying ten times its weight. Sophie Weiner, Popular Mechanics, "This Tiny, Soft Robot Was Inspired by A Caterpillar," 19 Aug. 2016 By directing radio-frequency heat one to three centimeters under the skin, this device claims to tighten and contour the arms, legs, abdomen, jaw line, and regions around the eyes. Allure, "The Skin-Care Glossary: A Comprehensive Guide to Everything You Need to Know," 17 Aug. 2018 Each was implanted with a spring about a centimeter long, compressed inside a gelatin capsule that gradually dissolved to let loose the spring’s outward force. Kelly Servick, Science | AAAS, "Lab-created ‘miniguts’ grow larger when you load them with springs," 4 June 2018 The Interior Ministry released a sketch of a bearded man wearing a baseball cap, and described him as being in his early 40s, between 175 and 180 centimeters tall, of average build and with gray in his beard. Angela Dewan, Antonia Mortensen And Denis Lapin, CNN, "Russia, Ukraine blame each other for journalist killing," 30 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'centimeter.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of centimeter

1794, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about centimeter

Statistics for centimeter

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for centimeter

The first known use of centimeter was in 1794

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for centimeter



English Language Learners Definition of centimeter

: a length equal to ¹/₁₀₀ meter


cen·​ti·​me·​ter | \ ˈsen-tə-ˌmē-tər How to pronounce centimeter (audio) \

Kids Definition of centimeter

: a unit of length equal to ¹/₁₀₀ meter


variants: or chiefly British centimetre \ ˈsent-​ə-​ˌmēt-​ər How to pronounce centimetre (audio) , ˈsänt-​ How to pronounce centimetre (audio) \

Medical Definition of centimeter

: a unit of length equal to ¹/₁₀₀ meter

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on centimeter

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with centimeter

Spanish Central: Translation of centimeter

Nglish: Translation of centimeter for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of centimeter for Arabic Speakers

Comments on centimeter

What made you want to look up centimeter? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to move with exaggerated bouncy motions

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Finance Words Quiz

  • a-piggy-bank
  • The etymology of mortgage is related most closely to which two words?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!