measure

noun
mea·​sure | \ ˈme-zhər How to pronounce measure (audio) , ˈmā- How to pronounce measure (audio) \

Definition of measure

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a(1) : an adequate or due portion all too few of the British actresses … have received their measure of remembranceSaturday Review
(2) : a moderate degree also : moderation, temperance
(3) : a fixed or suitable limit : bounds rich beyond measure
b : the dimensions, capacity, or amount of something ascertained by measuring took his measure for a coat
c : an estimate of what is to be expected (as of a person or situation) the measure of their tragedy is now beyond our imagination— G. F. Kennan
d(1) : a measured quantity
(2) : amount, degree giving children a greater measure of freedom
2a : an instrument (such as a yardstick) or utensil (such as a graduated cup) for measuring
b(1) : a standard or unit of measurement — see Weights and Measures Table
(2) : a system of standard units of measure metric measure
3 : the act or process of measuring settled by a measure made by a surveyor
4a(1) : melody, tune
(2) : dance especially : a slow and stately dance
b : rhythmic structure or movement : cadence: such as
(1) : poetic rhythm measured by temporal (see temporal entry 1 sense 3) quantity or accent specifically : meter
(2) : musical time
c(1) : a grouping of a specified number of musical beats located between two consecutive vertical lines on a staff
(2) : a metrical unit : foot
5 : an exact divisor of a number 6 being the greatest common measure of 42 and 12
6 : a basis or standard of comparison wealth is not a measure of happiness
7 : a step planned or taken as a means to an end took strong measures against the rebels specifically : a proposed legislative act sponsored an anti-inflation measure in the senate
for good measure
: in addition to the minimum required : as an extra added another illustration for good measure

measure

verb
measured; measuring\ ˈme-​zhə-​riŋ How to pronounce measuring (audio) , ˈmā-​ ; ˈmezh-​riŋ , ˈmāzh-​ \

Definition of measure (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to choose or control with cautious restraint : regulate measure his acts
b : to regulate by a standard : govern
2 : to allot or apportion in measured amounts measure out three cups
3 : to lay off by making measurements
4 : to ascertain the measurements of
5 : to estimate or appraise by a criterion measures his skill against his rival
6 archaic : to travel over : traverse
7 : to serve as a means of measuring a thermometer measures temperature

intransitive verb

1 : to take or make a measurement
2 : to have a specified measurement

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Other Words from measure

Verb

measurability \ ˌme-​zhə-​rə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce measurability (audio) , ˌmā-​ ; ˌmezh-​rə-​ , ˌmāzh-​ \ noun
measurable \ ˈme-​zhə-​rə-​bəl How to pronounce measurable (audio) , ˈmā-​ ; ˈmezh-​rə-​ , ˈmāzh-​ \ adjective
measurably \ ˈme-​zhə-​rə-​blē How to pronounce measurably (audio) , ˈmā-​ ; ˈmezh-​rə-​ , ˈmāzh-​ \ adverb
measurer \ ˈme-​zhər-​ər How to pronounce measurer (audio) , ˈmā-​ ; ˈmezh-​rə-​ , ˈmāzh-​ \ noun

Synonyms for measure

Synonyms: Noun

expedient, means, move, shift, step

Synonyms: Verb

gauge (also gage), scale, span

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Examples of measure in a Sentence

Noun

She felt equal measures of hope and fear. Their actions were motivated in large measure by a desire for revenge. An occasion like this calls for some measure of decorum. The meter is a measure of length. The dictionary includes a table of weights and measures. The legislature has passed a measure aimed at protecting consumers. The governor has proposed a number of cost-cutting measures. They were forced to resort to desperate measures. We need to take measures to protect ourselves.

Verb

using a ruler to measure a piece of paper an instrument for measuring air pressure mental abilities measured by IQ testing He's being measured for a new suit. His success cannot be measured solely on the basis of his popularity. The cloth measures 3 meters. The room measures 15 feet wide by 30 feet long.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

According to Michael Schmidtke, the Fishery Management Plan Coordinator for ASMFC, the stock assessments (a measure of how many crabs are out there in the first place) have not taken the biomedical crab harvest into account. Caren Chesler, Popular Mechanics, "The Blood of the Crab," 23 Aug. 2019 One measure of the startup activity is the level of investment, particularly from fintech giants who are wise to the potential upside of backing local players with a deeper understanding of markets across Africa. Yomi Kazeem, Quartz Africa, "Jumia wants to spin off its payments business as it struggles to stem mounting losses," 22 Aug. 2019 The union’s chief is asking for an apology, better news clipping procedures, and a review of safety measures for immigration judges. Ellen Mcgirt, Fortune, "Department of Justice Distributes a Memo to Immigration Court Employees With a Link to A White Supremacist Site: raceAhead," 23 Aug. 2019 Across the country, beleaguered renters and their allies have taken this perspective as a starting point and begun to organize, fighting their own displacement through a variety of measures. Brian Goldstone, The New Republic, "The New American Homeless," 21 Aug. 2019 But Bork, a professor at Yale Law School and later a nominee for the Supreme Court, argued that many of these antitrust measures had been unnecessary. Sheelah Kolhatkar, The New Yorker, "How Elizabeth Warren Came Up with a Plan to Break Up Big Tech," 20 Aug. 2019 The group's job is to find ways to reduce violent crime outside of law enforcement measures. Dallas News, "More secret tape fallout in Texas House, Beto O'Rourke's reboot, Dallas mayor creates crime task force," 20 Aug. 2019 Policymakers have already responded to the economic slowdown with a range of measures this year. Laura He, CNN, "China's central bank is cutting interest rates by stealth," 19 Aug. 2019 Democrats in Congress are renewing their push for a slate of gun-safety measures in the wake of deadly mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio. Talis Shelbourne, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Proponents of stricter gun laws to rally in Red Arrow Park on Sunday," 17 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

So your carbon footprint a way to measure the environmental impact your lifestyle has. Leah Asmelash, CNN, "What you need to know about carbon footprints," 8 Sep. 2019 Though Carter has not come across a quantifiable way to measure the success of including playlists on Tarpon Cellars labels at present, there have been signs demonstrating that the time invested in this project has already paid off. Fortune, "Your Next Spotify Playlist Might Be Curated with Wine Pairings in Mind," 8 Sep. 2019 For the new study, the researchers took this wealth of data and measured it against the lunar cycle, focusing specifically on changes in the moon’s brightness. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian, "Moonlight Helps White Barn Owls Stun Their Prey," 4 Sep. 2019 The new claim is massive, measuring well over twice the size of what Parker mined last season and would normally take three years to mine. oregonlive, "‘Gold Rush’ returns for Season 10, with new claims, permit problems and gold fever gambles," 3 Sep. 2019 New this year: Whoever brings the biggest Beaver Dam Pepper, as measured from top to bottom, wins $100. Mary Bergin, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "A little-known heirloom pepper has its own festival in Beaver Dam, where it arrived in America long ago," 3 Sep. 2019 After measuring the baseline testosterone levels of 600 volunteers, the team gave each man the first half of the RMET. Emily Underwood, Science | AAAS, "Study challenges idea that autism is caused by an overly masculine brain," 3 Sep. 2019 Just having a rigorous and transparent way to measure, monitor and verify forest protections could be more valuable than generating offsets. Bloomberg, The Mercury News, "How California can help save Brazil’s burning rainforests," 28 Aug. 2019 This is the standard way to measure tick abundance. BostonGlobe.com, "A tick detective wants to understand what drives tick abundance," 22 Aug. 2019

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

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a(1)

Verb

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

History and Etymology for measure

Noun and Verb

Middle English mesure, from Anglo-French, from Latin mensura, from mensus, past participle of metiri to measure; akin to Old English mǣth measure, Greek metron

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Statistics for measure

Last Updated

27 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for measure

The first known use of measure was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for measure

measure

noun

English Language Learners Definition of measure

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an amount or degree of something
: something (such as a cup or a ruler) that is used to measure things
: a unit used in measuring something

measure

verb

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

: to find out the size, length, or amount of (something)
: to find out the size of (someone) for clothing
: to judge the importance, value, or extent of (something)

measure

noun
mea·​sure | \ ˈme-zhər How to pronounce measure (audio) \

Kids Definition of measure

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : extent sense 2, degree, amount Our plan did succeed in large measure.
2 : the size, capacity, or quantity of something that has been determined Use equal measures of flour and milk.
3 : something (as a yardstick or cup) used in determining size, capacity, or quantity
4 : a unit used in determining size, capacity, or quantity An inch is a measure of length.
5 : a system of determining size, capacity, or quantity liquid measure
6 : the notes and rests between bar lines on a musical staff
7 : a way of accomplishing something a safety measure The new law is a measure to save energy.
for good measure
: as something added or extra We gave the wall another coat of paint for good measure.

measure

verb
measured; measuring

Kids Definition of measure (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to find out the size, extent, or amount of You should measure the cloth before cutting.
2 : to separate out a fixed amount She measured the rice.
3 : estimate entry 1 I had to measure the distance with my eye.
4 : to bring into comparison Why don't you measure your skill against mine?
5 : to give a determination of size, capacity, or quantity : indicate A thermometer measures temperature.
6 : to have as its size, capacity, or quantity The cloth measures ten meters.
measure up
: to satisfy needs or requirements They did not measure up to expectations.

measure

noun
mea·​sure | \ ˈmezh-ər How to pronounce measure (audio) , ˈmāzh- How to pronounce measure (audio) \

Medical Definition of measure

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an instrument or utensil for measuring
2 : a standard or unit of measurement also : a system of such measures metric measure

measure

verb
measured; measuring\ ˈmezh-​(ə-​)riŋ, ˈmāzh-​ How to pronounce measuring (audio) \

Medical Definition of measure (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to allot or apportion in measured amounts
2 : to ascertain the measurements of
3 : to serve as a measure of a thermometer measures temperature

intransitive verb

: to have a specified measurement

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