\ ˈē-vən How to pronounce even (audio) \

Definition of even

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1a : having a horizontal surface : flat even ground
b : being without break, indentation, or irregularity : smooth
c : being in the same plane or line
2a : free from variation : uniform his disposition was even
3a : equal, fair an even exchange
b(1) : leaving nothing due on either side : square we will not be even until you repay my visit
(2) : fully revenged
c : being in equilibrium : balanced specifically : showing neither profit nor loss
d obsolete : candid
4a : being any of the integers (such as −2, 0, and +2) that are divisible by two without leaving a remainder
b : marked by an even number
c : being a mathematical function such that f(x) = f(−x) where the value remains unchanged if the sign of the independent variable is reversed
5 : exact, precise an even dollar
6 : as likely as not : fifty-fifty an even chance of winning
on an even keel or less commonly on even keel
: in a sound or stable condition



Definition of even (Entry 2 of 4)

1a used as an intensive to stress an extreme or highly unlikely condition or instanceso simple even a child can do it
b used as an intensive to stress the comparative degreeshe did even better
c used as an intensive to indicate a small or minimum amountdidn't even try
d used as an intensive to emphasize the identity or character of somethingforgot his car keys and even left the engine running
2a : to a degree that extends : fully, quite faithful even unto death
b : at the very time raining even as the sun came out


evened; evening\ ˈēv-​niŋ How to pronounce evening (audio) , ˈē-​və-​ \

Definition of even (Entry 3 of 4)

transitive verb

: to make even

intransitive verb

: to become even



Definition of even (Entry 4 of 4)


Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from even


evenly adverb
evenness \ ˈē-​vən-​nəs How to pronounce evenness (audio) \ noun


evener \ ˈēv-​nər How to pronounce evener (audio) , ˈē-​və-​ \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for even

Synonyms: Adjective

Synonyms: Adverb

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Verb

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Choose the Right Synonym for even


level, flat, plane, even, smooth mean having a surface without bends, curves, or irregularities. level applies to a horizontal surface that lies on a line parallel with the horizon. the vast prairies are nearly level flat applies to a surface devoid of noticeable curvatures, prominences, or depressions. the work surface must be flat plane applies to any real or imaginary flat surface in which a straight line between any two points on it lies wholly within that surface. the plane sides of a crystal even applies to a surface that is noticeably flat or level or to a line that is observably straight. trim the hedge so it is even smooth applies especially to a polished surface free of irregularities. a smooth skating rink

steady, even, equable mean not varying throughout a course or extent. steady implies lack of fluctuation or interruption of movement. steady progress even suggests a lack of variation in quality or character. an even distribution equable implies lack of extremes or of sudden sharp changes. maintain an equable temper

Examples of even in a Sentence

Adjective We finally reached even ground after the long climb. They slowed down and waited for him to draw even. She spoke with a calm, even voice. the even beat of the drum Adverb the blue whale is a huge, even awesome animal by any measure I will love you even to the end of time. Verb even the filling before adding the top layer of the cake the contention that producing more arms will even us with the enemy and therefore make us more secure
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Expected to bolster scoring on a team starved for offense, Kessel scored just two even-strength goals before the holiday break in December and failed to find much consistency on the Coyotes' power play. Richard Morin, The Arizona Republic, "A year of Phil: How has Kessel trade worked out for Arizona Coyotes?," 30 June 2020 Walker went on to reveal the three products that give her bouncy dewy skin, an even complexion and a boost of radiance in under 10 minutes. Jennifer Ford, Essence, "Felicia Walker Shares The Products In Her 3-Step Skin Care Routine," 29 June 2020 If Cooper signs the bill, counties would receive an even share of the $150 million and would be required to disperse 25 percent to its municipalities. Nyamekye Daniel, Washington Examiner, "North Carolina General Assembly approves second coronavirus relief package," 26 June 2020 The justices work together to ensure there is a relatively even distribution of labor. Mark Sherman, Fortune, "Simple math suggests a complex backstory behind landmark LGBT rights Supreme Court decision," 20 June 2020 Wet your hands and firmly press the mixture to form an even layer. cleveland, "Easy homemade energy bars to sustain and share," 16 June 2020 This enabled Pitt to get back to an even keel, arguing that the Canadian Javelin case had been very complicated, involving fugitives from justice and manipulators in both foreign and domestic markets. J.c. Hallman, The New Republic, "When Mr. Sloan Went to Washington," 11 June 2020 Max Homa and Viktor Hovland, a pair of popular picks to go low this week, each post even-par 70s. Scott Bell, Dallas News, "No fans? No problem: Our live updates from Round 1 of the Charles Schwab Challenge at Colonial," 11 June 2020 But to date, it's picked an even number (and often an equal number) of power and performance cores. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "Intel announces its first new 'Lakefield' chips for the thinnest, lightest PCs," 10 June 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb Mr Trump’s expressed commitment to pegging back a more assertive China was timely—even if less agenda-setting than often suggested, his former national security adviser writes. The Economist, "Lexington Is Donald Trump tough on China?," 27 June 2020 Holleback said even one property owner putting up a single nesting box and a simple birdbath can make a difference for bluebirds. Jennifer Rude Klett, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Wisconsin’s Bluebird Comeback: Beautiful native bird is thriving with human help," 25 June 2020 The Maricopa County Attorney's Office chose not to pursue charges against the head coach and school administrators even though police said there was evidence of them failing to report abuse. Lauren Castle, The Arizona Republic, "Maricopa County attorney candidate apologizes for using racial slur," 25 June 2020 Ironically, the opposite has proven true, but over a half-century later, the parties have indeed broken even. Kevin Mahnken, The New Republic, "The Democrats’ Future Depends on D.C. Statehood," 25 June 2020 Billy Crystal wore blackface while impersonating Sammy Davis Jr. in the 1980s, even while acting opposite civil rights leader Jesse Jackson, who hosted the show in 1984. Bethonie Butler, Washington Post, "Blackface has long been an issue in comedy. Look no further than ‘Saturday Night Live’ for proof.," 25 June 2020 Others, even some supporters, have lost their patience. Jenny Berg, USA TODAY, "A month after George Floyd's death, the hard work begins in Minneapolis, St. Paul," 25 June 2020 The Senate requires 60 votes to even begin debate on the measure, and Republicans control only 53 votes. Susan Ferrechio, Washington Examiner, "Democrats hope public pressure and civil unrest will force GOP to accept more drastic police reforms," 25 June 2020 The leadership ranks over 16 years shrank from 740 to 650 even as sales almost doubled. Shawn Tully, Fortune, "Former Honeywell CEO David Cote just wrote one of the best guides ever on how to lead a company," 25 June 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb That number includes cuts all around, but it is expected to even out with the athletic department's expenditure budget, the proposal details. Cameron Teague Robinson, The Courier-Journal, "University of Louisville athletics expects revenue decrease of $9M in 2020-21," 12 June 2020 Thanks to redistricting ordered by the state Supreme Court, congressional candidates were able to even out the delegation's partisan divide too, from 12 Republicans and six Democrats to nine lawmakers apiece. Naomi Lim, Washington Examiner, "Democrats aim hard for Pennsylvania after 2016 whiff by Hillary Clinton," 11 June 2020 Today, those kind of population swings in the metro area have generally evened out. Mike Gousha And John Johnson, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Milwaukee lagging its Midwestern peers in a key metric of economic vitality: population growth," 28 May 2020 Trailing 2-0, Phoenix evened the series with two wins at home and was brimming with confidence for Game 5 in Los Angeles. Duane Rankin, azcentral, "Phoenix Suns had better chance to win NBA title with Charles Barkley than Steve Nash," 18 May 2020 Brandon Spaulding evened things up at 5:39 and Matthew Pelletier scored from the point on the power play — the first of three markers on the man advantage — at 13:37 to push the Cardinals in front. Jim Clarkand Michael Mcmahon, BostonGlobe.com, "Anthony Messuri helps top-seeded Arlington ice it against Framingham," 27 Feb. 2020 After climbing 600 feet for just over half a mile, the trail evens out before dropping down to Middle Gaylor Lake. Washington Post, "Disturbing the peace? 5 hikes to avoid Yosemite crowds," 25 Nov. 2019 On Wednesday evening an officer shot and killed Dreasjon Reed after a high-speed pursuit. Rebekah Riess, CNN, "Indianapolis enlists independent oversight after protests over officer-involved shootings," 8 May 2020 Now that streaming has become dominant and CDs (or even iTunes downloads) aren’t prime stocking stuffers, chart patterns have evened out a bit, almost to the point of November and December being extra light on new releases. Billboard Staff, Billboard, "Five Burning Questions: Billboard Staffers Discuss Selena Gomez's Narrow No. 1 Debut For 'Rare' Album," 23 Jan. 2020

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2c


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for even


Middle English, from Old English efen; akin to Old High German eban even


Middle English, from Old English efne, from efen, adjective


Middle English even, eve, from Old English ǣfen

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about even

Time Traveler for even

Time Traveler

The first known use of even was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for even

Last Updated

9 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Even.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/even. Accessed 9 Jul. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for even

How to pronounce even (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of even

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: having a flat, smooth, or level surface
: not having breaks or bumps
: located next to someone or something else



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

used to stress something that is surprising or unlikely
used to stress the difference between two things that are being compared
used after a negative word (such as not or a contraction of not) to stress the smallness of an amount or effort



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

: to make (something) equal
\ ˈē-vən How to pronounce even (audio) \

Kids Definition of even

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : having a flat, smooth, or level surface even ground
2 : being on the same line or level Water is even with the rim of a glass.
3 : staying the same over a period of time even breathing
4 : equal in size, number, or amount The bread was cut in even slices.
5 : not giving an advantage to one side : fair an even trade
6 : able to be divided by two into two equal whole numbers Fourteen is even, but fifteen is odd.

Other Words from even

evenly adverb
evenness noun



Kids Definition of even (Entry 2 of 3)

1 used to stress a highly unlikely condition or instanceeven his mustache looked more cheerful.— Lloyd Alexander, Time Cat
2 : to a greater extent or degree : still even better
3 : so much as She didn't even offer to help.
4 : indeed We were willing, even eager, to help.
5 : at the very time It's happening even as we speak.


evened; evening

Kids Definition of even (Entry 3 of 3)

: to make or become smooth or equal I evened out the rug. That point evens the score.

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on even

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for even

Spanish Central: Translation of even

Nglish: Translation of even for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of even for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about even

Comments on even

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


See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

A More Exception(al) Quiz

  • hot dog  hot dog  hot dog  hot dog cat
  • Which of the following words is not a synonym for ‘a young person’?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Bee Cubed

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!