equal

adjective
\ ˈē-kwəl How to pronounce equal (audio) \

Definition of equal

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a(1) : of the same measure, quantity, amount, or number as another
(2) : identical in mathematical value or logical denotation : equivalent
b : like in quality, nature, or status
c : like for each member of a group, class, or society provide equal employment opportunities
2 : regarding or affecting all objects in the same way : impartial
3 : free from extremes: such as
a : tranquil in mind or mood
b : not showing variation in appearance, structure, or proportion
4a : capable of meeting the requirements of a situation or a task
b : suitable bored with work not equal to his abilities

equal

noun

Definition of equal (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : one that is equal insists that women can be absolute equals with men— Anne Bernays
2 : an equal quantity

equal

verb
equaled or equalled; equaling or equalling

Definition of equal (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to be equal to especially : to be identical in value to
2 archaic : equalize
3 : to make or produce something equal to

Keep scrolling for more

Choose the Right Synonym for equal

Adjective

same, selfsame, very, identical, equivalent, equal mean not different or not differing from one another. same may imply and selfsame always implies that the things under consideration are one thing and not two or more things. took the same route derived from the selfsame source very, like selfsame, may imply identity, or, like same may imply likeness in kind. the very point I was trying to make identical may imply selfsameness or suggest absolute agreement in all details. identical results equivalent implies amounting to the same thing in worth or significance. two houses equivalent in market value equal implies being identical in value, magnitude, or some specified quality. equal shares in the business

Examples of equal in a Sentence

Adjective

an equal number of apples and oranges We divided the profits into three equal shares. The play combines tragedy and comedy in equal measure. The opposing candidate has demanded equal time on television. The fractions 1/2 and 2/4 are equal. providing equal opportunities for children of all races We need to have equal academic standards for male and female students.

Noun

I consider him my equal. We are all equals here.

Verb

Nothing can ever equal that experience. See if you can equal that! a weight lifter attempting to equal his rival's performance No one can equal him in chess.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

That's equal to nearly 20 percent of Exxon's global oil and gas production today. Jordan Blum, Houston Chronicle, "Exxon Mobil announces new Guyana discovery as first production looms," 16 Sep. 2019 Those who believe that all production is created equal could only be impressed with his stat line: 21.4 PPG, 8.7 RPG and 3.1 APG. Rob Mahoney, SI.com, "Top 100 NBA Players of 2020," 12 Sep. 2019 Not all praise is created equal That is certainly not to say that all women are wallflowers, or that women in general respond negatively to awards. William Park, Quartz at Work, "Why employee rewards are frequently ineffective and potentially counterproductive," 11 Sep. 2019 Meieran, an emergency room doctor, said one pot of e-cigarette Juul is equal to the nicotine of 20 cigarettes. oregonlive, "Oregon Sen. Ron Wyden announces plan to tax e-cigarettes," 4 Sep. 2019 All moms are not created equal, and all moms do not enjoy every aspect of parenting. Robyn Merrett, PEOPLE.com, "Eva Longoria and Gabrielle Union Want to Normalize Bringing Babies on the Red Carpet and to Work," 23 Aug. 2019 For two weeks of fall camp, for better or worse, all USC quarterbacks were created equal. Ryan Kartje, Los Angeles Times, "Decision in USC quarterback battle is expected soon," 17 Aug. 2019 Forms of boredom That said, not all types of tedium are created equal. Ephrat Livni, Quartz, "To be your most interesting self, get good at being bored," 10 Aug. 2019 For all skin types: Patchology Breakout Box 3-in-1 Acne Treatment Kit Not all zits are created equal, which is why this set offers three types of patches to target the most common types. Deanna Pai, Condé Nast Traveler, "6 Spot Treatments to Save Your Skin from Breaking Out While Traveling," 5 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Her sisters had earned none of this, yet, suddenly, they were presented as her equals. Roxana Robinson, The New Yorker, "The Rivalry Between Georgia O’Keeffe and Her Sister Ida," 4 Sep. 2019 Up against receivers that are close to his athletic equal, but have played the position their whole lives, Miller isn’t a starter. Doug Lesmerises, cleveland.com, "Can Braxton Miller really help the Browns (or at least teach them some lessons)? Doug Lesmerises," 21 Aug. 2019 At work, women demand to be treated as equals, both intellectually and physically. Dahleen Glanton, chicagotribune.com, "Column: When a man offers a woman his seat on the train or bus, is it an act of kindness or sexism?," 9 Sep. 2019 Billed as a merger of equals, the deal would reunite the two companies, which separated in 2008 to focus on international and domestic markets, respectively. NBC News, "Tobacco giants Philip Morris and Altria in talks to merge," 27 Aug. 2019 Dog breeding and dog shows are among the few sports in which men and women — as owners, trainers, and handlers — can compete as equals. Brian T. Allen, National Review, "Dog Days of Summer? Visit the New Museum of the Dog," 24 Aug. 2019 Fundamentally, these men do not see women as equals. Soraya Roberts, Longreads, "This (Wo)Man’s Work," 19 July 2019 Suggesting the two are equals in any way would have been ridiculous 12 months ago, and remains ridiculous now, with Pogba possessing a clear pedigree that the Newcastle man can't yet come close to. SI.com, "Man Utd Preparing £30m Bid for Sean Longstaff 'This Week' as Red Devils Step Up Pursuit of Toon Star," 7 July 2019 For over 100 years Sunnyvale has had a council of equals—seven at-large council members who select the mayor selected from within their ranks. Mei-ling Shek-stefan, The Mercury News, "No directly elected mayor for Sunnyvale," 18 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Paulo Moutinho, senior fellow at the Woods Hole Research Center, says that would equal a decade’s worth of global carbon emissions at current rates. Washington Post, "What you need to know about the Amazon rainforest fires," 27 Aug. 2019 Paulo Moutinho, senior fellow at the Woods Hole Research Center, says that would equal a decade's worth of global carbon emissions at current rates. oregonlive.com, "What you need to know about the Amazon rainforest fires," 27 Aug. 2019 Paulo Moutinho, senior fellow at the Woods Hole Research Center, says that would equal a decade’s worth of global carbon emissions at current rates. Andrew Freedman, BostonGlobe.com, "What you need to know about the Amazon rainforest fires," 27 Aug. 2019 The new policy, which was aimed at reducing congestion, capped a waiver of Hong Kong’s hefty vehicle registration tax that can equal a car’s sticker price, and made a new Model S more than 1.5 times more expensive. Echo Huang, Quartz, "Tesla’s sales never recovered after Hong Kong cut a tax break," 29 July 2019 United ended a three-game MLS losing streak with a scoring goal production that equaled their total in the last nine league games. Andy Greder, Twin Cities, "Minnesota United offense comes alive in 7-1 thrashing of Cincinnati," 29 June 2019 That would equal about one-seventh of India’s total annual energy load today, but the real threat is peak-time usage. Russell Gold, WSJ, "Can India Afford to Cool Down?," 21 Nov. 2018 Golf fans generally see him as a fading legend battling injuries and demons, pursuing the final four majors that would equal Jack Nicklaus’ l8. Marcus Hayes, Philly.com, "Tiger Woods still 'moves the needle' at the U.S. Open | Marcus Hayes," 12 June 2018 Iliad is now converting it to a members-only facility with just 60 spaces, with the assumption that more space between cars equals fewer dings. New York Times, "Private Parking Goes Deluxe," 13 Sep. 2019

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

Adjective

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

Noun

1573, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1590, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for equal

Adjective

Middle English, from Latin aequalis, from aequus level, equal

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about equal

Statistics for equal

Last Updated

5 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for equal

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for equal

equal

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of equal

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: the same in number, amount, degree, rank, or quality
: having the same mathematical value
: not changing : the same for each person

equal

noun

English Language Learners Definition of equal (Entry 2 of 3)

: someone or something that is as good, skillful, valuable, etc., as another person or thing

equal

verb

English Language Learners Definition of equal (Entry 3 of 3)

used to say that one amount or number is the same as another
: to be as good as (something else)
: to produce something that is as good as (something else) or to do something as well as (someone else)

equal

adjective
\ ˈē-kwəl How to pronounce equal (audio) \

Kids Definition of equal

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : exactly the same in number, amount, degree, rank, or quality an equal share of equal importance
2 : the same for each person equal rights
3 : having enough strength, ability, or means He's equal to the task.

Other Words from equal

equally \ ˈē-​kwə-​lē \ adverb We shared the profit equally.

equal

verb
equaled or equalled; equaling or equalling

Kids Definition of equal (Entry 2 of 3)

: to be the same in number, amount, degree, rank, or quality as

equal

noun

Kids Definition of equal (Entry 3 of 3)

: someone or something that is as good or valuable as another

equal

adjective

Legal Definition of equal

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : like in quality, nature, or status
2 : like for each member of a group, class, or society
3 : regarding or affecting all objects in the same way : impartial

equal

noun

Legal Definition of equal (Entry 2 of 2)

: one that is equal

History and Etymology for equal

Adjective

Latin aequalis, from aequus level, equal

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on equal

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with equal

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for equal

Spanish Central: Translation of equal

Nglish: Translation of equal for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of equal for Arabic Speakers

Comments on equal

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

WORD OF THE DAY

involving a confidence or trust

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Word Puzzles

  • alt 57589b2b4c6a3
  • Which answer pairs best with each of the following words? living, estate, club, music, road, mile
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Add Diction

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

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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