mea·​sles | \ˈmē-zəlz \

Definition of measles 

1a : an acute contagious disease that is caused by a morbillivirus (species Measles virus) and is marked especially by an eruption of distinct red circular spots

called also rubeola

b : any of various eruptive diseases (such as German measles)

2 [ Middle English mesel infested with tapeworms, literally, leprous, from Anglo-French, from Medieval Latin misellus leper, from Latin, wretch, from misellus, diminutive of miser miserable ] : infestation with or disease caused by larval tapeworms in the muscles and tissues

Examples of measles in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

And without staff and services in place to vaccinate people, more people aren’t getting vaccinated, and measles is spreading. Julia Belluz, Vox, "Measles cases have hit a record high in Europe. Blame austerity.," 24 Sep. 2018 The patient with measles went through the main lobby of the medical center and used elevators to get to the pediatric practice, but Beeler said the inpatient tower has a separate entrance and elevators. Andy Marso, kansascity, "Another KC medical center is a measles exposure site. Here's why that's a big concern | The Kansas City Star," 26 Apr. 2018 With a small and fraudulent study, Wakefield helped perpetuate the myth that the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine causes autism and ignited the modern anti-vaccine movement (even recently fanning a measles outbreak in Minnesota). Julia Belluz, Vox, "Measles cases have hit a record high in Europe. Blame austerity.," 24 Sep. 2018 State health officers say that the best protection against the measles is to have had two doses of the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine, known as the MMR vaccine. Maria Clark, NOLA.com, "Second measles cases confirmed in New Orleans, health officials say," 11 May 2018 Most children receive a measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine (MMR) shot at 12 to 15 months and another dose a few years later -- sometime between age 4 and 6, according to the CDC. Jennifer Earl, Fox News, "World Cup attendees urged to get measles vaccine: Signs and symptoms of the viral illness," 12 June 2018 The New Jersey Health Department has issued a measles warning in Burlington and Camden Counties after a woman who visited several locations there last week tested positive for the disease. Tricia L. Nadolny, Philly.com, "Measles warning issued in Camden, Burlington Counties," 23 June 2018 The case is not related to another measles case that was reported in early April, health officials said. Maria Clark, NOLA.com, "Second measles cases confirmed in New Orleans, health officials say," 11 May 2018 The Missouri measles cases are not related to an outbreak that started in March in a Johnson County daycare and has sickened at least 22 people in several Kansas counties. Andy Marso, kansascity, "Missouri measles outbreak up to 13 cases as more exposed at Walmart, medical clinic | The Kansas City Star," 4 May 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for measles

Middle English meseles, plural of mesel measles, spot characteristic of measles; akin to Middle Dutch masel spot characteristic of measles

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Dictionary Entries near measles

mease

measle

measled

measles

measly

measurage

measure

Statistics for measles

Last Updated

1 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for measles

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

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More Definitions for measles

measles

noun

English Language Learners Definition of measles

: a disease that causes a fever and red spots on the skin

measles

noun
mea·​sles | \ˈmē-zəlz \

Kids Definition of measles

1 : a contagious disease in which there are fever and red spots on the skin

2 : any of several diseases (as German measles ) resembling true measles

mea·​sles | \ˈmē-zəlz \

Medical Definition of measles 

1a : an acute contagious disease that is caused by a paramyxovirus of the genus Morbillivirus (species Measles virus), that commences with catarrhal symptoms, conjunctivitis, cough, and Koplik's spots on the oral mucous membrane, and that is marked by the appearance on the third or fourth day of an eruption of distinct red circular spots which coalesce in a crescentic form, are slightly raised, and after the fourth day of the eruption gradually decline

called also rubeola

b : any of various eruptive diseases (as German measles)

2 : infestation with or disease caused by larval tapeworms in the muscles and tissues specifically : infestation of cattle and swine with cysticerci of tapeworms that as adults parasitize humans — compare measle

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More from Merriam-Webster on measles

Spanish Central: Translation of measles

Nglish: Translation of measles for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of measles for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about measles

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