dimension

1 of 2

noun

di·​men·​sion də-ˈmen(t)-shən How to pronounce dimension (audio)
also
dī- How to pronounce dimension (audio)
1
a mathematics
(1)
: measure in one direction
the dimensions of the room
specifically : one of three coordinates (see coordinate entry 3 sense 1a) determining a position in space or four coordinates determining a position in space and time
(2)
: one of a group of properties whose number is necessary and sufficient to determine uniquely each element of a system of usually mathematical entities (such as an aggregate of points in real or abstract space)
the surface of a sphere has two dimensions
also : a parameter (see parameter sense 1) or coordinate variable assigned to such a property
the three dimensions of momentum
(3)
: the number of elements in a basis (see basis sense 5) of a vector space
b
: the quality of spatial extension : magnitude, size
… the town's modest dimensions and leisurely ways …Jane Shellhase
c
: a lifelike or realistic quality
uses eccentric dialogue to add dimension to her characters
d
: the range over which or the degree to which something extends : scope
usually used in plural
the vast dimensions of the disaster
e
: one of the elements or factors making up a complete personality or entity : aspect
the social and political dimensions of the problem
2
obsolete : bodily form or proportions
… my dimensions are as well compact, my mind as generous, and my shape as true …Shakespeare
3
mathematics : any of the fundamental units (as of mass, length, or time) on which a derived unit is based
also : the power of such a unit
4
: wood or stone cut to pieces of specified size
5
: a level of existence or consciousness
… a secular as well as spiritual dimensionCatherine Bates
dimensional
də-ˈmench-nəl How to pronounce dimension (audio)
also
dī- How to pronounce dimension (audio)
-ˈmen(t)-shə-nᵊl
adjective
dimensionality noun
dimensionally
də-ˈmench-nə-lē How to pronounce dimension (audio)
 also  dī-
-ˈmen(t)-shə-nᵊl-ē
adverb
dimensionless adjective

dimension

2 of 2

verb

dimensioned; dimensioning də-ˈmen(t)-shə-niŋ How to pronounce dimension (audio)
 also  dī-

transitive verb

1
: to form to the required dimensions (see dimension entry 1 sense 1a(1))
a table dimensioned to fit the space
2
: to indicate the dimensions of (as on a drawing)
dimensioning the plans

Examples of dimension in a Sentence

Noun She carefully measured each dimension of the room. The social dimensions of the problem must also be taken into account.
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
Statistics from Mexico’s federal government paint an incomplete but helpful illustration of the true dimensions of the problem. Nathaniel Parish Flannery, Forbes, 28 Feb. 2024 Introduction For a true phase transition in one dimension, mathematicians had proved that two of these exponents must be greater than 2. Charlie Wood, Quanta Magazine, 26 Feb. 2024 In addition to the four familiar dimensions—three infinitely large spatial dimensions plus one of time—string theory suggests that there are six exceedingly tiny spatial dimensions. Steve Nadis, WIRED, 25 Feb. 2024 Note that this formula is for just one dimension (width or height) of your chip. Michael E. Bakich, Discover Magazine, 24 Feb. 2024 The original Nickelodeon show portrayed Aang’s bending with a bluish, swirling look, but the team behind Netflix’s adaptation had a challenge on their hands when rendering those techniques in three dimensions. Jordan Moreau, Variety, 24 Feb. 2024 Take the issue of grass fields that has fueled much conversation in recent months, only to surface in another dimension this week due to the questionable quality of the practice fields the San Francisco 49ers are using at UNLV in advance of Super Bowl 58. USA TODAY, 23 Feb. 2024 How was the study conducted? To identify the best and worst places for singles in the U.S., WalletHub experts evaluated 29 metrics under three main dimensions of dating economics, dating opportunities and romance and fun. Marina Johnson, The Courier-Journal, 23 Feb. 2024 Personality is merely one dimension explored in research on microtargeting. Stephan Lewandowsky, Scientific American, 21 Feb. 2024
Verb
Aaron Judge, New York Yankees: Another huge man with huge power playing in the same Little League-dimensioned ballpark as Stanton. Ted Berg, For The Win, 23 Feb. 2018 Each barn is covered top to bottom in oversized shingles dimensioned to make the volume look smaller. Joseph Giovannini, ELLE Decor, 2 July 2015 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'dimension.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Noun and Verb

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin dimension-, dimensio, from dimetiri to measure out, from dis- + metiri to measure — more at measure

First Known Use

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1754, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of dimension was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near dimension

Cite this Entry

“Dimension.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dimension. Accessed 2 Mar. 2024.

Kids Definition

dimension

noun
di·​men·​sion
də-ˈmen-chən,
 also  dī-
1
a
: extension in one direction
the dimensions of length, width, and height
b
: measure of extension in one direction or in all directions : size
2
: the range over which something extends : scope
usually used in plural
dimensional
-ˈmench-nəl
-ˈmen-chən-ᵊl
adjective
dimensionally
-ˈmench-nə-lē
-ˈmen-chən-ᵊl-ē
adverb
dimensionless
-ˈmen-chən-ləs
adjective
Etymology

Noun

Middle English dimensioun "dimension," from early French dimension (same meaning), from Latin dimensio "measurement, dimension," from dimetiri "to measure out," from di-, dis- "apart" and metiri "to measure" — related to immense, measure

Medical Definition

dimension

noun
di·​men·​sion
də-ˈmen-chən also dī-
: measure in one direction
specifically : one of three or four coordinates determining a position in space or space and time

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