machine

noun, often attributive
ma·​chine | \ mə-ˈshēn How to pronounce machine (audio) \

Definition of machine

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a mechanically, electrically, or electronically operated device for performing a task a machine for cleaning carpets
b : conveyance, vehicle especially : automobile
c : a coin-operated device a cigarette machine
d(1) : an assemblage (see assemblage sense 1) of parts that transmit forces, motion, and energy one to another in a predetermined manner
(2) : an instrument (such as a lever) designed to transmit or modify the application of power, force, or motion
e : machinery used with the or in plural
f : any of various apparatuses formerly used to produce stage effects
2a : one that resembles a machine (as in being methodical, tireless, or consistently productive) a gifted publicist and quote machine— John Lancaster
b(1) : a combination of persons acting together for a common end along with the agencies they use building a powerful war machine
(2) : a highly organized political group under the leadership of a boss or small clique a politician who challenged the local party machine
c : a living organism or one of its functional systems
3 : a literary device or contrivance introduced for dramatic effect
4a archaic : a constructed thing whether material or immaterial
b archaic : a military engine

machine

verb
machined; machining

Definition of machine (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to process by or as if by machine especially : to reduce or finish by or as if by turning, shaping, planing, or milling by machine-operated tools

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from machine

Verb

machinability or less commonly machineability \ mə-​ˌshē-​nə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce machine (audio) \ noun
machinable or less commonly machineable \ mə-​ˈshē-​nə-​bəl How to pronounce machine (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for machine

Synonyms: Noun

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of machine in a Sentence

Noun Shovels are tools; bulldozers are machines. Do you know how to operate this machine? The machine is working properly. He was bragging about his new machine. The coach turned the team into a scoring machine. My younger brother is an eating machine. a politician who dared to challenge the local party machine Their army is a well-oiled machine. Verb The parts of the engine have been precisely machined.
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The lack of a single, continuous belt and the large gap that exists between the belt of the machine and the floor make the Tread+ uniquely dangerous compared to other treadmills. Jacob Siegal, BGR, "Peloton just recalled its treadmills following the death of a child," 5 May 2021 The first of only 500 examples, the striking speed machine remains in pristine condition and will likely fetch big money because of that. Bryan Hood, Robb Report, "Racing Legend Parnelli Jones’s Personal Ford Mustang Saleen Is Heading to Auction," 5 May 2021 Intermediate violations included mold on the interior of the ice machine and a lack of pressure from the sink to properly clean hands. Garfield Hylton, orlandosentinel.com, "2 Volusia County restaurants shut down after health inspection," 5 May 2021 Asked why the letters were postmarked the day after they were dropped off, Postal Service spokeswoman Naddia Dhalai stated in an email that letters arriving at the cancellation machine after midnight get a next-day postmark. Peter Krouse, cleveland, "In small test of mail delivery, U.S. Postal Service delivered just 1 of 8 letters on time," 5 May 2021 And, thanks to the efforts of a devoted fan base and the movie machine behind the series alike, May 4 is just the day to do it. Gregory Mcnamee, CNN, "Celebrate Star Wars Day: May the 4th be with you," 4 May 2021 In a city like Chicago, the partisan political machine can often muscle candidates to victory. Dallas News, "3 election takeaways: Trump king of GOP, Mayor Johnson’s political setback, Dems humbled in CD-6," 3 May 2021 The machine then created a file containing all of these tiny sequences and uploaded it to a server. New York Times, "To Solve 3 Cold Cases, This Small County Got a DNA Crash Course," 3 May 2021 Candidate Castillo’s threat to freedom is so serious that Nobel Prize-winning author Mario Vargas Llosa, whose intense dislike of the Fujimori political machine is well-known, has endorsed Keiko. Mary Anastasia O’grady, WSJ, "Will Peru Get on the Marxist Path?," 2 May 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The ferrule is fully machined, and the Anix Blade Locking System keeps the blades secure at all times. Jace Bauserman, Field & Stream, "The Best New Broadheads from the 2020 Archery Trade Show," 9 Jan. 2020 Check out those wheels, looking like they were machined from a solid chunk of attitudinum. Ezra Dyer, Car and Driver, "Tested: 2020 Genesis G90 Would Like Your Attention," 30 Mar. 2020 The gun is guaranteed sub-MOA with match ammunition, features in-house machined and matched upper and lower receivers. John Haughey, Outdoor Life, "The Most Versatile Semi-Automatic Rifles," 10 Apr. 2019 The SRC-11—with upper and lower receivers machined from billet 7075-T6 aluminum—chambered in the 6.5 Grendel is ideally suited to big-game hunting. Richard Mann, Field & Stream, "The 30 Best AR-Style Rifles for Hunting and Personal Defense," 17 Sep. 2019 The Geneva concept has a carbon-fiber center console machined from a solid block made from 280 individual layers of composite material, something that requires 90 hours on a five-axis milling machine. Mike Duff, Car and Driver, "Aston Martin Shows Off Q Version of DBX," 24 Feb. 2020 The plant will be able to machine parts parts, weld and join parts and perform additive manufacturing, Pacheco said. Lee Roop | Lroop@al.com, al, "Blue Origin will ‘rapidly move’ ahead at new Huntsville engine plant," 18 Feb. 2020 The ferrule is machined from grade-5 titanium with a precision-ground tip. Jace Bauserman, Field & Stream, "The Best New Broadheads from the 2020 Archery Trade Show," 9 Jan. 2020 Also new, and totally cool, is Hoyt’s Integrate Mounting System, which is machined directly into the riser and allows compatible rests to be securely mounted perfectly flush and square. The Editors, Field & Stream, "Best New Bows of the 2020 Archery Trade Show," 11 Jan. 2020

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

Noun

circa 1545, in the meaning defined at sense 4a

Verb

1853, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for machine

Noun

Middle French, from Latin machina, from Greek mēchanē (Doric dialect machana), from mēchos means, expedient — more at may entry 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about machine

Time Traveler for machine

Time Traveler

The first known use of machine was circa 1545

See more words from the same year

Statistics for machine

Last Updated

8 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Machine.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/machine. Accessed 16 May. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for machine

machine

noun

English Language Learners Definition of machine

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a piece of equipment with moving parts that does work when it is given power from electricity, gasoline, etc.
informal : a vehicle (such as a car or motorcycle)
: a person or group that does something efficiently, quickly, or repeatedly like a machine

machine

verb

English Language Learners Definition of machine (Entry 2 of 2)

: to shape (something) by using a machine

machine

noun
ma·​chine | \ mə-ˈshēn How to pronounce machine (audio) \

Kids Definition of machine

1 : a device with moving parts that does some desired work when it is provided with power a sewing machine
2 : vehicle sense 1 a flying machine

Comments on machine

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

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Words Used by Nabokov Quiz

  • image1676440788
  • Choose the best definition or synonym for the word in bold: "There are some eructations that sound like cheers—at least, mine did." Lolita
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!