di·men·sion | \ də-ˈmen(t)-shən also dī- \

Definition of dimension 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a 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 dimension —Catherine Bates


dimensioned; dimensioning\-ˈmen(t)-shə-niŋ \

Definition of dimension (Entry 2 of 2)

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

Keep scrolling for more

Other words from dimension


dimensional \-ˈmench-nəl, -ˈmen(t)-shə-nᵊl \ adjective
dimensionality \-ˌmen(t)-shə-ˈna-lə-tē \ noun
dimensionally \-ˈmench-nə-lē, -ˈmen(t)-shə-nᵊl-ē \ adverb
dimensionless \-ˈmen(t)-shən-ləs \ adjective

Examples of dimension in a Sentence


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

Adding such a dimension is not the kind of thing that lies on the normal early career improvement curve. David Murphy, Philly.com, "Sixers might look the same, but potential for improvement is huge | David Murphy," 6 July 2018 The efforts to attract breweries from Baja California are meant to set National City apart from other cities by adding a new dimension to the region’s booming craft beer scene, Reynoso said. David Hernandez, sandiegouniontribune.com, "National City looks to attract breweries south of the border," 28 June 2018 Idk where people got the idea that Jamie Foxx couldn’t sing y’all must be living in a different dimension. Morgan Baila, refinery29.com, "BET Awards Recap: From Jamie Foxx's Dad Jokes To Meek Mill's XXXTentacion Hoodie," 25 June 2018 But Petra adds a totally different dimension with her voice and violin. Katherine Turman, Billboard, "James Williamson on His New Trio Pink Hearts & the Stooges' Legacy," 21 June 2018 But audiences who caught the DVD short Jack-Jack Attack discovered that, once triggered by a Mozart sonata, Jack-Jack can also shoot purple laser eyes and float around the house, teleporting through different dimensions. Shannon Liao, The Verge, "Here are all of Jack-Jack’s powers in the Incredibles 2," 16 June 2018 Smith-Levin and Dupre say the partnership will strengthen their ability to innovate and add a new dimension to Central Florida’s cultural scene. Matthew J. Palm, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Opera del Sol, Central Florida Vocal Arts team for 2018-19 season," 31 May 2018 Abdullah would bring a different dimension than the team’s current backs with his big-play ability and receiving skills out of the backfield. Jeff Zrebiec, baltimoresun.com, "Ravens news, notes and opinions on right tackle competition, Crockett Gillmore, next week's OTAs," 15 May 2018 More than just a catch-and-shoot threat, Hill has been known as a crafty pick-and-roll player for much of his career, providing a much different dimension than JR Smith, Kyle Korver or stand-in Jose Calderon. Chris Fedor, cleveland.com, "George Hill has made Cleveland Cavaliers' offense whole once again," 8 May 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: 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, "Poll: Which MLB slugger is most likely to challenge Barry Bonds' home-run record in 2018?," 23 Feb. 2018 Each barn is covered top to bottom in oversized shingles dimensioned to make the volume look smaller. Joseph Giovannini, ELLE Decor, "HOUSE TOUR: Contemporary Decor Blends With Farmhouse Tradition Inside A Hamptons Barn," 2 July 2015

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'dimension.' 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 dimension


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


1754, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for dimension


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


see dimension entry 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about dimension

Statistics for dimension

Last Updated

14 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dimension

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for dimension



English Language Learners Definition of dimension

: the length, width, height, or depth of something : a measurement in one direction (such as the distance from the ceiling to the floor in a room)

: the amount or number of things that something affects or influences

: a part of something


di·men·sion | \ də-ˈmen-shən \

Kids Definition of dimension

: the length, width, or height of something


di·men·sion | \ də-ˈmen-chən also dī- \

Medical Definition of dimension 

: measure in one direction specifically : one of three or four coordinates determining a position in space or space and time

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on dimension

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


occurring twice a year or every two years

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Name that Food Quiz

True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

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!