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 measure (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

Other Words from measure

Verb

measurer \ ˈme-​zhər-​ər How to pronounce measure (audio) , ˈmā-​ ; ˈmezh-​rə-​ , ˈmāzh-​ \ noun

Synonyms for measure

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

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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. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun President Joe Biden's coronavirus relief measure expanded it to cover treatment and vaccine costs as well. Arkansas Online, 8 May 2022 The first Mother’s Day celebrations took place in West Virginia and, in 1914, President Woodrow Wilson signed a measure establishing the second Sunday in May as Mother’s Day. Leada Gore | Lgore@al.com, al, 7 May 2022 In Missouri, mindful that patients are travelling to other states for abortions, Mary Elizabeth Coleman, a Republican legislator, drafted a measure that would allow a private citizen to sue anyone who helps a Missourian obtain one elsewhere. Peter Slevin, The New Yorker, 7 May 2022 The opponents won a major victory in November, when Maine voters passed a measure that halted the project. New York Times, 6 May 2022 In a way, the worse outcome may offer the better hope, at least politically; a half measure might confuse people into complacency. Emily Cooke, The New Republic, 6 May 2022 The Ozaukee County Board on April 6 took up a measure that would have provided $1 million to the Land Trust, bringing it closer to its final fundraising goal. Laura Schulte, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 6 May 2022 But the charter flight issue remains, a useful measure for how far the WNBA has to go in meaningfully valuing its players’ labor. Los Angeles Times, 5 May 2022 The county’s hotel tax collections are considered a measure of tourism’s month-to-month health. Stephen Hudak, Orlando Sentinel, 5 May 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb In the Lab, their skin is scanned with the Visia Complexion Analyzer machine to measure changes in the size and count of dark spots, plus pores, skin texture and lines and wrinkles before and after weeks of use, as pictured below. Nicole Saporita, Good Housekeeping, 10 May 2022 Volunteers from across Chicago have installed small devices on their routers, which allows researchers to measure internet performance as data travels to and from the household. Darcel Rockett, Chicago Tribune, 10 May 2022 While an economic lens is applied to measure climate impacts, the same treatment for taking stock of the impacts of invasive species is still underexplored. Sahana Ghosh, Quartz, 10 May 2022 McKenna says recommendations are likely to include tools to measure Scope 3—shorthand for a company’s emissions from activities that aren’t directly owned or controlled by business. Rachel Layne, Fortune, 9 May 2022 The research is part of the Marine Animal Remote Sensing Lab (MARE), designed to measure the health of the Antarctic marine ecosystem. Maria Jimenez Moya, USA TODAY, 6 May 2022 So running a small current through a mesh of gallium wires allows researchers to measure how the material is being twisted, stretched and pressed on. Kurt Kleiner, Smithsonian Magazine, 6 May 2022 The red hand moves to measure the bag's weight and carries the black hand along with it. Rena Behar, Travel + Leisure, 6 May 2022 The Myers-Briggs personality test is an introspective questionnaire that is designed to measure psychological responses to get an idea of how said person perceives the world, reacts around others and makes decisions. Starr Bowenbank, Billboard, 6 May 2022 See More

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.

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

Middle English mesure "act of measuring, instrument for measuring, standard unit of quantity, size, measurable amount, proper proportion, moderation, tempurance," borrowed from Anglo-French, going back to Latin mensūra "act of measuring, dimension determined by measurement, amount, instrument for measuring," from mensus, past participle of mētior, mētīrī "to determine the extent of, mark off by measuring" + -ūra -ure; mētior verbal derivative of an Indo-European noun *meh1-ti- "act of measuring" (whence Old English mǣth "measure, degree, efficacy," Greek mêtis "measure, skill, craft," Sanskrit māti- "measure, correct understanding"), nominal derivative of a verbal base *meh1-, whence, as a reduplicated present, Sanskrit mímite "(s/he) measures, shares," Avestan framimaθā "(s/he) should arrange"

Note: The irregular past participle mensus, alongside a regular derivative mētītus only found in later classical texts, may have been formed by analogy with pensus, past participle of pendere "to weigh."

Verb

Middle English mesuren "to calculate the measurements of, determine the extent of by measuring, apportion, moderate, control, judge," borrowed from Anglo-French mesurer, going back to Late Latin mensūrāre "to calculate the measurements of," derivative of mensūra measure entry 1

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Time Traveler for measure

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near measure

measurage

measure

measured

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Statistics for measure

Last Updated

11 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Measure.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/measure. Accessed 17 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for measure

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 measure (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

More from Merriam-Webster on measure

Nglish: Translation of measure for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of measure for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about measure

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