lev·​el | \ ˈle-vəl How to pronounce level (audio) \

Definition of level

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a device for establishing a horizontal line or plane by means of a bubble in a liquid that shows adjustment to the horizontal by movement to the center of a slightly bowed glass tube
2 : a measurement of the difference of altitude of two points by means of a level
3 : horizontal condition especially : equilibrium of a fluid marked by a horizontal surface of even altitude water seeks its own level
4a : an approximately horizontal line or surface taken as an index of altitude Charts were arranged at eye level.
b : a practically horizontal surface or area (as of land) the level of the plateau
5 : a position in a scale or rank (as of achievement, significance, or value) funded at the national level the job appeals to me on many levels
6a : a line or surface that cuts perpendicularly all plumb lines that it meets and hence would everywhere coincide with a surface of still water
b : the plane of the horizon or a line in it
7 : a horizontal passage in a mine intended for regular working and transportation
8 : a concentration of a constituent especially of a body fluid (such as blood) a normal blood-sugar level
9 : the magnitude of a quantity considered in relation to an arbitrary reference value broadly : magnitude, intensity a high level of hostility
on the level


leveled or levelled; leveling or levelling\ ˈle-​və-​liŋ How to pronounce levelling (audio) , ˈlev-​liŋ \

Definition of level (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to make (a line or surface) horizontal : make flat or level level a field level off a house lot
2a : to bring to a horizontal aiming position
b : aim, direct leveled a charge of fraud
3 : to bring to a common level or plane : equalize love levels all ranks— W. S. Gilbert
4a : to lay level with or as if with the ground : raze
b : to knock down leveled him with one punch
5 : to make (something, such as color) even or uniform
6 : to find the heights of different points in (a piece of land) especially with a surveyor's level

intransitive verb

1 : to attain or come to a level the plane leveled off at 10,000 feet
2 : to aim a gun or other weapon horizontally
3 : to bring persons or things to a level
4 : to deal frankly and openly



Definition of level (Entry 3 of 3)

1a : having no part higher than another : conforming to the curvature of the liquid parts of the earth's surface
b : parallel with the plane of the horizon : horizontal
2a : even or unvarying in height
b : equal in advantage, progression, or standing
c : proceeding monotonously or uneventfully
d(1) : steady, unwavering gave him a level look
(2) : calm, unexcited spoke in level tones
3 : reasonable, balanced arrive at a justly proportional and level judgment on this affair— Sir Winston Churchill
4 : distributed evenly level stress
5 : being a surface perpendicular to all lines of force in a field of force : equipotential
6 : suited to a particular rank or plane of ability or achievement top-level thinking
7 : of or relating to the spreading out of a cost or charge in even payments over a period of time
level best
: very best

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Other Words from level


levelly \ ˈle-​və(l)-​lē How to pronounce levelly (audio) \ adverb
levelness \ ˈle-​vəl-​nəs How to pronounce levelness (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for level

Synonyms: Noun

degree, echelon, footing, place, position, rank, ranking, reach(es), rung, situation, standing, station, status, stratum

Synonyms: Verb

balance, equalize, equate, even

Synonyms: Adjective

even, flat, flush, plane, smooth

Antonyms: Adjective

bumpy, coarse, lumpy, rough, uneven, unsmoothed

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Choose the Right Synonym for level


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


level, flat, and even mean having a surface without bends, curves, or interruptions. level is used especially for a surface or a line that does not slant up or down. We traveled a level road between two hills. flat is used for a surface that is free from curves or bumps or hollows whether or not it is parallel to the ground. I need a flat work surface. even is used when there is a lack of breaks or bumps in a line or surface. Dad trimmed the hedge to make it even.

Examples of level in a Sentence


The pictures were hung on the wall at eye level. The pictures were hung at different levels. There was a high level of alcohol in his blood. a normal level of intelligence Prices have risen to a new level. She rose to the level of manager. She has reached a rare level of financial success. These problems affect people at all levels of society. Can this problem be dealt with at a national level or must it be addressed at an international level?


They will level the field. We need to level the garden before we plant anything. The earthquake leveled the city. He leveled his opponent with a right hook. The robber leveled a gun at his head. Several complaints have been leveled at the store. Criticism has been leveled against the government for not responding to this crisis.


We pitched the tent on level ground. an airplane in level flight Interest rates have remained level.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Small Victory is a speakeasy bar on the second level of, yes, a parking garage. Ross Dellenger, SI.com, "The Rundown: Week 2 Stars, Surprises and Statements and a New Top 10," 8 Sep. 2019 The Eagles partnered with Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and nonprofit KultureCity in the offseason to build a state-of-the-art sensory room on a suite level inside the Linc to accommodate fans and families managing sensory challenges. Washington Post, "Eagles build room in Linc for fans with sensory needs," 7 Sep. 2019 On the national level the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) represents more than 140,000 members. Stacy Argo |, Houston Chronicle, "GHBA Remodelers Council: Credentials and why they matter," 7 Sep. 2019 Public restrooms on the lower level will remain open unless the specific work being done requires closing off the hallway. courant.com, "Community News For The South Windsor Edition," 6 Sep. 2019 Students across all degree levels play a vital role in her lab through data collection, analysis and dissemination. Laura Groch, San Diego Union-Tribune, "CSUSM, SDSU professors recognized by Cal State University system," 5 Sep. 2019 This reduction led to $2 million in savings—making them more competitive, without any impact on the level of care. Cassandra Thiel, Fortune, "If Hospitals Made Efforts to Go Green, Health Care Costs Would Go Down," 5 Sep. 2019 Facebook dating will likely be a small feature within the broader Facebook service, but the symbolism of combining the products on the consumer level is notable, especially given the other changes happening at Facebook behind the scenes. Kurt Wagner / Bloomberg, Time, "Facebook's New Dating Feature Lets You Pick a 'Secret Crush' From Your Instagram Network," 5 Sep. 2019 For his superior performance across three different organizational levels, Luis Robert is the 2019 USA TODAY Minor League Player of the Year. Steve Gardner, USA TODAY, "With 30-30 season, White Sox prospect Luis Robert wins Minor League Player of the Year award," 4 Sep. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Medvedev broke to take a 2-1 lead, but Nadal broke right back to level the opening set. Daniel Rapaport, SI.com, "Big Three's Dominance Continues (for Now) After Rafael Nadal Captures Another Major," 9 Sep. 2019 The blast happened just over a year after a gas explosion leveled two buildings on Park Avenue in East Harlem, killing eight people. Jan Ransom, New York Times, "An Illegal Gas Line Killed 2 People. Should the Landlord Go to Prison?," 9 Sep. 2019 An automatic volume leveling feature aims to keep you from scrambling for your remote every time there’s a jump or dip in the volume when the scene changes. Wired, "Roku Debuts a Soundbar, and It Comes With a Roku Built In," 4 Sep. 2019 Dorian flattened buildings, perhaps leveling entire towns. Reis Thebault, chicagotribune.com, "A storm chaser who went silent as Dorian slammed the Bahamas resurfaced with a harrowing story: ‘It was like we were in a washing machine’," 4 Sep. 2019 Dorian flattened buildings, perhaps leveling entire towns. Reis Thebault, Anchorage Daily News, "A storm chaser went silent as Dorian slammed the Bahamas. He emerged with a harrowing story.," 4 Sep. 2019 The strip was once thick with olive groves but the Israeli army has levelled well over a thousand acres of them. The Economist, "How to eat well while living under siege," 2 Aug. 2019 The actress is among the dozens of women who have leveled accusations against Weinstein in accounts published by The New York Times, The New Yorker and other outlets. Washington Post, "Legal questions loom as Harvey Weinstein case nears trial," 26 Aug. 2019 In a one-on-one from point-blank range, Marta fired the shot with her first touch and leveled the score at 1-1. Julia Poe, Pro Soccer USA, "Orlando Pride fall 2-1 to Washington Spirit in front of sold-out Audi Field crowd," 26 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Frida Maanum pulled Norway back on level terms shortly after the half-time break as England threw away a lead for the second time in as many games. SI.com, "Norway 2-1 England: Lionesses Suffer World Cup Revenge After Georgia Stanway Screamer," 3 Sep. 2019 Several roads are built without curbs, so that all forms of transportation mix on level ground, a European tactic proven to slow down cars. Matt Mcfarland, CNN, "Scooters are a huge problem for cities. No one knows how to solve it yet," 30 Aug. 2019 Now there will be a far more level playing field for trade with China. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Econometer: Should the U.S. cut ties with China?," 30 Aug. 2019 Tammy Abraham's third-minute opener was quickly cancelled out by Todd Cantwell 155 seconds later, while goals from Mason Mount and Teemu Pukki ensured the sides went into half-time on level terms. SI.com, "Super Frank: Twitter Reacts as Tammy Abraham Nets Twice in Lampard's First-Ever Win as Chelsea Boss," 24 Aug. 2019 There is not the competitive, level playing-field described in textbooks: in sector after sector, there are a few dominant firms that create almost insurmountable barriers to entry. K.n.c., The Economist, "If capitalism is broken, maybe it’s fixable," 8 July 2019 Higher level deputy city attorneys will receive immediate pay hikes of 7.5 percent. San Diego Union-Tribune, "San Diego approves raises of at least 7.5 percent for deputy city attorneys," 25 June 2019 That person with the level head alongside him on the golf course is Reed’s caddie, Kessler Karain. Steve Dimeglio, USA TODAY, "Inner Circle: Patrick Reed relies on caddie to keep him grounded," 17 June 2019 But with the left wing revitalized in the Democratic Party, and fat cats running amok among Republicans, my cadre of capitalists, ready to compete vigorously and creatively on level ground, is politically homeless. David Von Drehle, The Denver Post, "Von Drehle: How Democrats can respond when President Trump cries socialism," 23 June 2019

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for level

Noun and Verb

Middle English, plumb line, from Anglo-French livel, from Vulgar Latin *libellum, alteration of Latin libella, from diminutive of libra weight, balance

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Statistics for level

Last Updated

11 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for level

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

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More Definitions for level



English Language Learners Definition of level

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: a specific height
: a part of a building that is at a specific height
: an amount of something



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

: to make (something) flat or level
: to knock (someone or something) down to the ground
: to point (a weapon) at someone



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

: having a flat or even surface
: not going up or down
: having the same height as something else


lev·​el | \ ˈle-vəl How to pronounce level (audio) \

Kids Definition of level

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a horizontal line or surface usually at a named height Hold it at eye level.
2 : a step or stage in height, position, or rank She rose to the level of manager.
3 : a device used (as by a carpenter) to find a horizontal line or surface


leveled or levelled; leveling or levelling

Kids Definition of level (Entry 2 of 3)

: to make or become horizontal, flat, or even



Kids Definition of level (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : having a flat even surface Find a level place to set up the tent.
2 : horizontal entry 1 … the bridge, instead of rising, went across just level— Anna Sewell, Black Beauty
3 : of the same height or rank : even
4 : steady and cool in judgment The rescuers kept level heads.


lev·​el | \ ˈlev-əl How to pronounce level (audio) \

Medical Definition of level

1 : a characteristic and fairly uniform concentration of a constituent of the blood or other body fluid a normal blood-sugar level
2a : a degree of ability or aptitude or measure of performance
b : a grade of mental and emotional development or maturity evidence as to levels of personality development (e.g., anal, oral)— G. P. Murdock

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More from Merriam-Webster on level

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with level

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for level

Spanish Central: Translation of level

Nglish: Translation of level for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of level for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about level

Comments on level

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


to make a temporary encampment

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