level

noun
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

level

verb
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

level

adjective

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

Adjective

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

Adjective

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

Adjective

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

Noun

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?

Verb

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.

Adjective

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

Nepal’s Department of Hydrology and Meteorology warned of more troubles ahead for the southern region near the main rivers, urging people to keep watch on rising water levels and move to higher ground when needed. Binaj Gurubacharya, SFChronicle.com, "Heavy rain leaves scores dead in Nepal, India, Bangladesh," 14 July 2019 All eyes were on the Mississippi River, as forecasts showed a potential storm surge of 2 to 3 feet that could have raised the river's level to 19 feet in New Orleans. Madeline Holcombe, CNN, "'Don't let your guard down.' Tropical Storm Barry is expected to weaken today, but flooding threat remains," 14 July 2019 The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations said two years ago that farmers will have increase their food production by 70 percent, compared to 2007 levels. William Thornton | Wthornton@al.com, al.com, "Cotton, once king in Alabama, still rules on these family farms," 14 July 2019 Greece gotcha: The Sea Turtles hacking group breached Greece's top level domain registrar. Jeff John Roberts, Fortune, "In Apple We Trust—Cyber Saturday," 13 July 2019 The heart rate goes up; blood pressure goes up; stress-hormone levels go up; the immune system is activated. Isaac Chotiner, The New Yorker, "How the Stress of Separation and Detention Changes the Lives of Children," 13 July 2019 When trans and nonbinary people who were assigned male at birth begin to transition, they are usually prescribed hormone blockers to suppress natural testosterone levels. NBC News, "Neither male nor female: Why some nonbinary people are 'microdosing' hormones," 13 July 2019 These are two young men (now 27) who didn’t grow up in the same neighborhood, didn’t go to the same school at any level -- elementary school, high school, or even college. Bird Brown, baltimoresun.com/maryland/carroll, "Bird Brown: Time spent with teammates makes lasting memories," 13 July 2019 The final budget will spend $4.9 billion in general funds, a 12% reduction and the lowest spending level since 2005. Anchorage Daily News, "Full text and video of Gov. Mike Dunleavy’s June 28 news conference announcing more than $400 million in budget vetoes," 13 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Altach leveled things up 24 minutes later through Manfred Fischer. SI.com, "Pre-Season Roundup: Man Utd Win in Australia, Mixed Fortunes for Chelsea & More," 15 July 2019 Gangwal had levelled serious charges of a lapse in governance. Niharika Sharma, Quartz India, "Despite the boardroom tussle, IndiGo may hold on to its top spot in Indian aviation," 12 July 2019 Alongside the proposed new technical regulations, the FIA and Liberty Media, who bought F1 for $8 billion in 2017, also want to introduce a budget cap of around $175 million to help level the playing field among the teams. Sarah Holt, CNN, "British Grand Prix: Can Lewis Hamilton overtake Michael Schumacher in Formula 1's record books?," 11 July 2019 The two candidates have gotten the same amount of matching funds from the city — taxpayer money meant to help level the playing field for grass-roots candidates. Maloy Moore, latimes.com, "This Valley candidate got more votes with less money. Can she do it again?," 11 July 2019 Deaths from methamphetamine leveled out while overdoses from cocaine and benzodiazepines decreased. Ryan Faircloth, Twin Cities, "Minnesota opioid deaths decreased in 2018. Has state turned the corner in drug battle?," 9 July 2019 The powerful blast leveled a defunct pizza shop, Pizzafire, at the north end of the Market on University, 1041 S. University Drive, and reverberated from Weston to Sunrise. Lisa J. Huriash, sun-sentinel.com, "Criminal charges still possible in Plantation explosion," 8 July 2019 Vista Walk has now been leveled out and elevated, which provides more dramatic ocean views. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Hotel Del Coronado reaches first milestone — a new ocean-view restaurant — on its way to $200M transformation," 29 June 2019 His report — part of the two organizations' partnership aimed at improving the lives of Marion County residents — found a few common sense reforms could help level the playing field without harming landlords. Tony Cook, Indianapolis Star, "3 'common sense' ways Indiana could protect renters from bad landlords — but doesn't," 26 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

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 For instance, our steel frame required exacting symmetry: The pieces had to be cut at exactly the same length in order for the frame to be completely level. Jourdan Fairchild, House Beautiful, "I Renovated My Fireplace After Watching Hours of YouTube, and This is What You Should Know," 12 June 2019 Front-wheel drive is best for level ground with a lot of obstacles. Roy Berendsohn, Popular Mechanics, "The Lawn Mower Buyer's Guide: Everything You Need to Know to Buy the Right Mower," 22 Feb. 2019 Nuclear weapons are enormously destructive devices capable of level entire cities, and arguably ending human civilization in the case of an all-out nuclear exchange. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "What If We Blew Up All The World’s Nukes at Once?," 1 Apr. 2019 And Levelhead, coming in November, is an indie take on the likes of Super Mario Maker (thus beating Nintendo to that niche on the Switch), which even allows up to four people to collaborate on level creation together, either locally or online. Sam Machkovech, Ars Technica, "Switch checks off its indie-game wishlist with Into the Breach, Towerfall," 28 Aug. 2018

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

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

Adjective

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

17 Jul 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

level

noun

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

level

verb

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

level

adjective

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

level

noun
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

level

verb
leveled or levelled; leveling or levelling

Kids Definition of level (Entry 2 of 3)

: to make or become horizontal, flat, or even

level

adjective

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.

level

noun
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

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