lens

noun
\ ˈlenz How to pronounce lens (audio) \

Definition of lens

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : a piece of transparent material (such as glass) that has two opposite regular surfaces either both curved or one curved and the other plane and that is used either singly or combined in an optical instrument for forming an image by focusing rays of light
b : a combination of two or more simple lenses
c : a piece of glass or plastic used (as in safety goggles or sunglasses) to protect the eye
2 : a device for directing or focusing radiation other than light (such as sound waves, radio microwaves, or electrons)
3 : something shaped like a biconvex optical lens lens of sandstone
4 : a highly transparent biconvex lens-shaped or nearly spherical body in the eye that focuses light rays (as upon the retina) — see eye illustration
5 : something that facilitates and influences perception, comprehension, or evaluation viewing the current legal battle … through partisan lensesNew Republic

lens

verb
lensed; lensing; lenses

Definition of lens (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

: to make a motion picture of : film

Lens

geographical name
\ ˈläⁿs How to pronounce Lens (audio) \

Definition of Lens (Entry 3 of 3)

commune in northern France southwest of Lille population 35,032

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Other Words from lens

Noun

lensed \ ˈlenzd How to pronounce lensed (audio) \ adjective
lensless \ ˈlenz-​ləs How to pronounce lensless (audio) \ adjective

Examples of lens in a Sentence

Noun Make sure the lens of the microscope is clean.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun On the front of the new iPhones, Kuo suggests Apple will add a smaller lens for a smaller notch on the front of the device. Marc Saltzman, USA TODAY, "Rumors are swirling online about the upcoming Apple iPhone 12 models," 1 Aug. 2020 As was a Sporting News cover photo Bostock posed for, wearing sunglasses with a dollar sign painted on each lens. SFChronicle.com, "Khris Davis’ slump brings back sad memory of long-ago Angels outfielder Lyman Bostock," 1 Aug. 2020 Alex gazes into the lens, and starts to sign in ASL. Jingnan Peng, The Christian Science Monitor, "Bringing light to the news, for those who can’t hear it (video)," 31 July 2020 But their entire genetic code sits on a server, an open secret that will last only as long as their forgetting, like a smudged lens, waiting to be wiped clean. Caitlin Harrington, Wired, "There's No Such Thing as Family Secrets in the Age of 23andMe," 30 July 2020 The time is now to be motivated from a simple values lens – activating corporate values in meaningful, tangible and measurable ways. NBC News, "Easterseals CEO: 'Just because someone is different, it does not mean they are deficient'," 9 July 2020 The camera lens is a big unblinking eye staring at you. Anne Raup, Anchorage Daily News, "How photographers sought to redefine the image of Alaska’s sexual assault survivors," 1 June 2020 Bing’s work, which earned her magazine assignments, portrait commissions and gallery shows, celebrated how the world looked through the lens of a 35 millimeter camera. Steven Litt, cleveland, "Cleveland Museum of Art celebrates mid-century modern photography by Ilse Bing, ‘Queen of the Leica’," 12 July 2020 Writer and essayist James Baldwin’s words and actions are examined through today’s political lens. Washington Post, "Washington Post hardcover bestsellers," 8 July 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb And as Jee and her colleagues now show, H0LiCOW’s lensed quasars are the gift that keeps on giving: They can be sliced and diced in a completely different way to estimate the Hubble constant. Michael Greshko, National Geographic, "The universe might be acting weird. Cosmic 'lenses' may help reveal why.," 12 Sep. 2019 Yang's directorial debut, Tigertail is deliberately shot, lensing each setting distinctly. Isaac Feldberg, Fortune, "‘Tigertail’ director Alan Yang on making the past not ‘a memory, but a beautiful dream’," 9 Apr. 2020 Sometimes, the light of distant supernovae is bent, or lensed, by an intervening galaxy, creating multiple images of the same supernova. Daniel Clery, Science | AAAS, "Big telescopes join hunt for things that go flash in the night," 12 Feb. 2020 Cinematographer Checco Varese excels in lensing Pennywise’s nightmarish interludes with a gorgeous, surreal and inviting texture. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Review: Overlong ‘It Chapter Two’ confronts scarier evils than Pennywise the clown," 5 Sep. 2019 Also during the cinematography festival's closing ceremony, Camerimage awarded the Silver Frog to Fernando Meirelles' Netflix release The Two Popes, lensed by Uruguayan DP Cesar Charlone. Carolyn Giardina, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Joker' Wins Golden Frog at Camerimage," 16 Nov. 2019 Cinematographer Checco Varese excels in lensing Pennywise’s nightmarish interludes with a gorgeous, surreal and inviting texture. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Review: Overlong ‘It Chapter Two’ confronts scarier evils than Pennywise the clown," 5 Sep. 2019 Cinematographer Checco Varese excels in lensing Pennywise’s nightmarish interludes with a gorgeous, surreal and inviting texture. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Review: Overlong ‘It Chapter Two’ confronts scarier evils than Pennywise the clown," 5 Sep. 2019 Cinematographer Checco Varese excels in lensing Pennywise’s nightmarish interludes with a gorgeous, surreal and inviting texture. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Review: Overlong ‘It Chapter Two’ confronts scarier evils than Pennywise the clown," 5 Sep. 2019

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

Noun

1673, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1942, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for lens

Noun

New Latin lent-, lens, from Latin, lentil; from its shape

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Statistics for lens

Last Updated

4 Aug 2020

Cite this Entry

“Lens.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/lens. Accessed 5 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for lens

lens

noun
How to pronounce Lens (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of lens

: a clear curved piece of glass or plastic that is used in eyeglasses, cameras, telescopes, etc., to make things look clearer, smaller, or bigger
: the clear part of the eye that focuses light to form clear images

lens

noun
\ ˈlenz How to pronounce lens (audio) \

Kids Definition of lens

1 : a clear curved piece of material (as glass) used to bend the rays of light to form an image
2 : a clear part of the eye behind the pupil and iris that focuses rays of light on the retina to form clear images

lens

noun
variants: also lense \ ˈlenz How to pronounce lense (audio) \

Medical Definition of lens

1 : a curved piece of glass or plastic used singly or combined in eyeglasses or an optical instrument (as a microscope) for forming an image by focusing rays of light
2 : a device for directing or focusing radiation other than light (as sound waves, radio microwaves, or electrons)
3 : a highly transparent biconvex lens-shaped or nearly spherical body in the eye that focuses light rays entering the eye typically onto the retina, lies immediately behind the pupil, is made up of slender curved rod-shaped ectodermal cells in concentric lamellae surrounded by a tenuous mesoblastic capsule, and alters its focal length by becoming more or less spherical in response to the action of the ciliary muscle on a peripheral suspensory ligament

Other Words from lens

lensed adjective
lensless adjective

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More from Merriam-Webster on lens

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with lens

Spanish Central: Translation of lens

Nglish: Translation of lens for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of lens for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about lens

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