length

noun
\ ˈleŋ(k)th How to pronounce length (audio) , ˈlen(t)th How to pronounce length (audio) \
plural lengths\ ˈleŋ(k)ths How to pronounce lengths (audio) , ˈlen(t)ths , ˈleŋ(k)s \

Definition of length

1a : the longer or longest dimension of an object
b : a measured distance or dimension 10 feet in length — see Metric System Table, Weights and Measures Table
c : the quality or state of being long the length of the journey
2a : duration or extent in time
b : relative duration or stress of a sound (such as a vowel or syllable in prose or a note in music)
3a : distance or extent in space a street with its length of colonial houses
b : the length of something taken as a unit of measure his horse led by a length
4 : the degree to which something (such as a course of action or a line of thought) is carried often used in plural went to great lengths to learn the truth
5a : a long expanse or stretch her lengths of lustrous hair
b : a piece constituting or usable as part of a whole or of a connected series : section a length of pipe
6 : the longer or vertical dimension of a piece of clothing often used in combination elbow-length sleeves
at length
1 : fully, comprehensively The issue was debated at length.
2 : at last : finally We at length reached the top of the mountain.

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Examples of length in a Sentence

The length of the table is six feet, and its width is three feet. These pins are available in one- and two-inch lengths. The adult animals reach a maximum length of two meters. Your essay should be no more than 250 words in length. the length of a movie They were two car lengths behind us.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Fold the seats for about 6.5 feet of length for car camping, bikes or boards. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Honda Passport: off-road ready, city-smart," 11 Aug. 2019 Ridden by Vinnie Bednar for trainer Scott Willoughby, Chocolatito won his 400-yard trial by ¾ lengths in 19.698 seconds. Los Angeles Times, "Racing! Santa Anita downhill course to stay closed," 9 Aug. 2019 The researchers chose nouns with roughly the same accent and length as the cat’s name and had both the cat’s owner and a stranger record them. Cnn.com Wire Service, The Mercury News, "Cats understand their names and are probably just choosing to ignore you, a study suggests," 9 Aug. 2019 Last year’s schedule included differing lengths of time for each class, six in total, along with a 40-minute lunch and a 13-minute nutrition break. Andrew J. Campa, Burbank Leader, "Changes are in store for Luther Burbank Middle School’s class schedule," 8 Aug. 2019 Would Taylor Swift really go to such elaborate lengths for her fans? Abby Aguirre, Vogue, "Taylor Swift on Sexism, Scrutiny, and Standing Up for Herself," 8 Aug. 2019 The researchers chose nouns with roughly the same accent and length as the cat's name and had both the cat's owner and a stranger record them. Allen Kim, CNN, "Cats understand their names and are probably just choosing to ignore you, a study suggests," 8 Aug. 2019 Getting enough water after exercise depends on many factors, namely the length and intensity of the exercise, the environmental conditions, and your individual physiology. SELF, "What to Eat Before and After a Workout, According to a Registered Dietitian," 7 Aug. 2019 Lake says the company’s algorithms are great at handling data like people’s measurements, with information like skirt length, sleeve opening, and button height all factoring into finding the perfect fit. Patrick Lucas Austin, Time, "Why TIME's 2019 Tech Optimists Are Upbeat About Silicon Valley's Future," 7 Aug. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'length.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of length

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

History and Etymology for length

Middle English lengthe, from Old English lengthu, from lang long

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Statistics for length

Last Updated

12 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for length

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

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More Definitions for length

length

noun

English Language Learners Definition of length

: the distance from one end of something to the other end : a measurement of how long something is
: the size or extent of a piece of writing
: the quality or state of being long

length

noun
\ ˈleŋth How to pronounce length (audio) \

Kids Definition of length

1 : the measured distance from one end to the other of the longer or longest side of an object
2 : a measured distance The road is three miles in length.
3 : the amount of time something takes The movie is two hours in length.
4 : a piece of something that is long She bought a length of pipe.
5 : the distance from top to bottom of an article of clothing knee-length pants
6 : the sound of a vowel or syllable as it is affected by the time needed to pronounce it
at length
1 : very fully We discussed the problem at length.
2 : at the end : finally They decided at length to order pizza.

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More from Merriam-Webster on length

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for length

Spanish Central: Translation of length

Nglish: Translation of length for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of length for Arabic Speakers

Comments on length

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