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 The lineaments of a more equitable, sustainable, and cooperative world sketched out by advocates of a Green New Deal have given way, in stunningly short order, to a race to a new global bottom, equal parts Thomas Hobbes and Mad Max. Emily Atkin, The New Republic, "The Blood-Dimmed Tide," 16 Sep. 2019 No need to worry, the bracelet is equal parts fabulous and functional, perfect for the modern woman. James Love, Essence, "Lagos Launches A Stunning Second Generation of Smart Caviar Bracelets," 16 Sep. 2019 Signing a partner who was equal parts financially stable and willing to sink millions to have their name plastered on the stadium likely consumed much of Ellis’ time over the last few months. Ryan O’halloran, The Denver Post, "State of the Broncos: Expectations low, but confidence high entering regular season," 8 Sep. 2019 From their 1997 heartbreak opus, Dig Me Out, to 2005’s equal parts experimental and psychedelic The Woods, their records have offered women catharsis by way of disarmingly raw lyrics and thrashing sounds. Lauren Valenti, Vogue, "Sleater-Kinney Are Still Here to Subvert, With a New Album and Aesthetic," 6 Sep. 2019 Adidas knows how to make sneakers that are equal parts practical and pretty, and its Cloudfoam Pure running shoes are no exception. Kelsey Mulvey, Good Housekeeping, "Amazon Has Adidas' Best-Selling Sneakers on Sale for as Little as $35," 6 Sep. 2019 This is Andy Blank, a new art company that's equal parts Banksy and Ikea. Hadley Keller, House Beautiful, "This New Company Wants to be the Ikea of Art," 5 Sep. 2019 The dress, from Monse's Resort 2020 collection, was equal parts elegant and summery (fall trends be damned!). Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Priyanka Chopra Sizzles in a Leg Slit and Major Fringe in New York City," 4 Sep. 2019 Kawah Ijen Volcano, Java, Indonesia The Kawah Injen volcano in Indonesia is equal parts terrifying and spectacular. Caitlin Morton, Condé Nast Traveler, "Creepy Catacombs, Islands of Dolls, and 18 Other Terrifying Places for Thrill Seekers," 4 Sep. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Even as tensions grew, Ms. Vangrieken continued to ask for patience from her clan, arguing that, as Wayuu, the new arrivals had to be treated as equals. New York Times, "They Survived Colonization and War. But Venezuela’s Collapse Was Too Much.," 30 July 2019 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 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb According to the section record book, Kreutzmann’s 45 completions in 58 attempts broke the record of 39 set by El Cajon Valley’s Abraham Muheize in 2005 and equaled by Anthony Lawrence of Grossmont in 2012. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Week 2: Prep football notable stories, performances," 31 Aug. 2019 Your sister's caregiving of your parents has value, which might be equaled out by her years of free room and board. Ask Amy, al, "Ask Amy: Resentment builds as friends and family turn down invitations to visit," 26 Aug. 2019 Your sister’s caregiving of your parents has value, which might be equaled out by her years of free room and board. Amy Dickinson, Detroit Free Press, "Hometown visits wear thin for tired traveler," 26 Aug. 2019 Your sister’s caregiving of your parents has value, which might be equaled out by her years of free room and board. Amy Dickinson, The Denver Post, "Ask Amy: Hometown visits wear thin for tired traveler," 26 Aug. 2019 Landsea writes that normally the air's pressure equals about 10 metric tons weighing down on each square meter of surface. Ryan W. Miller, USA TODAY, "You can't nuke a hurricane to stop it, as Trump reportedly suggested. Here's why," 26 Aug. 2019 Your sister’s caregiving of your parents has value, which might be equaled out by her years of free room and board. Amy Dickinson, Washington Post, "Ask Amy: Hometown visits wear thin for tired traveler," 26 Aug. 2019 Your sister’s caregiving of your parents has value, which might be equaled out by her years of free room and board. Amy Dickinson, BostonGlobe.com, "Hometown visits wear thin for tired traveler," 24 Aug. 2019 This makes the unobservant think that the prices are holding steady, while savvy shoppers realize that a decrease in contents simply equals a raise in price. Steve West, sun-sentinel.com, "Do the math | Opinion," 11 July 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

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for equal

equal

adjective
How to pronounce equal (audio)

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

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for equal

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with 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

a calculated move

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Confusing Words—A Quiz

  • alice with tweedle dee and tweedle dum
  • I invented a brand new toaster robot and ______ it "Sir Toasts-a-Lot."
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Dictionary Devil

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!