median

noun
me·​di·​an | \ ˈmē-dē-ən How to pronounce median (audio) \

Definition of median

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a medial (see medial sense 2b) part (such as a vein or nerve)
2a : a value in an ordered set of values below and above which there is an equal number of values or which is the arithmetic mean of the two middle values if there is no one middle number
b : a vertical line that divides the histogram of a frequency distribution into two parts of equal area
c : a value of a random variable for which all greater values make the cumulative distribution function greater than one half and all lesser values make it less than one half
3a : a line from a vertex (see vertex sense 2) of a triangle to the midpoint of the opposite side
b : a line joining the midpoints of the nonparallel sides of a trapezoid (see trapezoid sense 1a)

median

adjective

Definition of median (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : being in the middle or in an intermediate position : medial
2 : lying in the plane dividing a bilateral animal into right and left halves
3 : relating to or constituting a statistical median
4 : produced without occlusion along the lengthwise middle line of the tongue

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Other Words from median

Adjective

medianly adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for median

Noun

average, mean, median, norm mean something that represents a middle point. average is the quotient obtained by dividing the sum total of a set of figures by the number of figures. scored an average of 85 on tests mean may be the simple average or it may represent value midway between two extremes. a high of 70° and a low of 50° give a mean of 60° median applies to the value that represents the point at which there are as many instances above as there are below. average of a group of persons earning 3, 4, 5, 8, and 10 dollars an hour is 6 dollars, whereas the median is 5 dollars norm means the average of performance of a significantly large group, class, or grade. scores about the norm for fifth grade arithmetic

Did You Know?

People often use the word average without realizing that there are two common forms of average. Suppose you want to find the average net worth of a group of people—that is, the average value of everything they possess. To find one type of average, called the mean, you'd simply add up the total value of money and property of everyone in the group and divide it by the number of people. To find the other type, called the median, you'd identify the net worth of the person who is richer than half the people and poorer than the other half. So if Warren Buffett drove through a tiny village in India, the mean net worth of those in the village would suddenly rise to perhaps a billion dollars, but their median net worth would remain close to zero. Which figure would be more meaningful?

Examples of median in a Sentence

Adjective What is the median price of homes in this area? the median price of a home in the area
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Those responses were then aggregated and the median was calculated. USA Today, "We're one-third of the way to a widely available coronavirus vaccine, experts say," 30 June 2020 Eastbound Entrance from AT&T Way/Baird Farm Road will continue to be closed until July 1 for pavement reconstruction in the median. Brayden Garcia, Dallas News, "Abram Street at State Highway 360 to be closed this weekend in Arlington, plus other city closures," 25 June 2020 The demonstration on Tuesday was the group’s second effort at hosting a gathering at the Semmes monument, which sits at the median at Government and Royal streets. al, "Man arrested for chalking Alabama Confederate monument spends birthday in jail, gets $500 bond," 24 June 2020 The father was driving southbound on Interstate 45 near FM 1960 when their black Jeep SUV spun out of control and careened into the median around 9:30 p.m., said Lt. Gwendolyn Wu, Houston Chronicle, "Father, 4-year-old struck and killed on North Freeway," 21 June 2020 The officer then pulled the unconscious driver from the truck and took him to the grassy median. Miriam Marini, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan State Police trooper pulls unconscious driver out of burning vehicle on I-94," 9 June 2020 In Cleveland, the median was $51,750, up from $47,500 during the same month a year ago. Rich Exner, cleveland, "Home prices up, number of sales down in Cuyahoga County," 9 June 2020 Across 32 countries surveyed by Pew last year, a median of 61% had a favourable opinion of the UN, against 26% with an unfavourable view. The Economist, "The new world disorder Global leadership is missing in action," 18 June 2020 The Missouri State Highway Patrol said at the time that Henderson’s eastbound pickup truck crossed the median into the westbound lanes, striking the minivan head-on. Jim Salter, The Courier-Journal, "Missouri man charged in crash that killed Louisville moms, daughters in Valentine's Day crash," 16 June 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The median age that survey respondents identified for reaching this turning point was 21, and yet less than half of 21-year-olds had actually reached it. Joe Pinsker, The Atlantic, "The Pandemic’s Boomerang Generation Has Settled In," 3 July 2020 In recent weeks, coronavirus infections have become more prevalent among young people in Florida, with the median age of cases dipping down to 37 years old earlier this week; that's a major drop from 65 in March, per Gov. Ron DeSantis. Dakin Andone, CNN, "An 11-year-old boy is Florida's youngest person to die from Covid-19 complications," 3 July 2020 In Florida, the median age of cases increased to 37 from 36 a day earlier. Jonathan Levin, Bloomberg.com, "Florida Virus Cases, Hospitalizations Hit Record; Deaths Up," 2 July 2020 As the state nears 800 coronavirus deaths, many of the trends that emerged early on with COVID-19 deaths in Wisconsin have continued: The median age of those who have died is 76, according to the detailed cases in the Journal Sentinel spreadsheet. John Diedrich, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Nearly 800 people have died from COVID-19 in Wisconsin. Here's what we are learning so far.," 2 July 2020 People under 30 make up the largest share of the state’s cases, and since April, the median age of those testing positive has fallen from the mid-50s to the mid-30s. Washington Post, "Live updates: Fauci to testify to Senate committee on reopening schools amid coronavirus surge," 30 June 2020 The median age of someone who is hospitalized is 64. Laura Hancock, cleveland, "New coronavirus cases exceed 700: Monday update," 29 June 2020 In Florida, the median age of those testing positive has dropped to 35. Chronicle Staff, SFChronicle.com, "Coronavirus news from the Bay Area: June 26-27," 28 June 2020 In Florida, the new median age for people testing positive is 35, which is down from 65 just three months ago. Mitch Albom, Detroit Free Press, "Mitch Albom: Young people, bars and the coronavirus. What did we expect?," 28 June 2020

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

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1592, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for median

Noun

Middle English mediane, from Late Latin mediana (vena) median (vein), from feminine of Latin medianus in the middle, central, from medius middle — more at mid

Adjective

Latin medianus — see median entry 1

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Time Traveler for median

Time Traveler

The first known use of median was in the 15th century

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Statistics for median

Last Updated

6 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Median.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/median. Accessed 13 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for median

median

noun
How to pronounce median (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of median

 (Entry 1 of 2)

mathematics : the middle value in a series of values arranged from smallest to largest

median

adjective

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

: in the middle especially, mathematics : having a value that is in the middle of a series of values arranged from smallest to largest

median

noun
me·​di·​an | \ ˈmē-dē-ən \

Kids Definition of median

: a value in a series arranged from smallest to largest below and above which there are an equal number of values or which is the average of the two middle values if there is no one middle value The median of the set 1, 3, 7, 12, 19 is 7.

median

noun
me·​di·​an | \ ˈmēd-ē-ən How to pronounce median (audio) \

Medical Definition of median

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a medial part (as a vein or nerve)
2a : a value in an ordered set of values below and above which there is an equal number of values or which is the arithmetic mean of the two middle values if there is no one middle number
b : a vertical line that divides the histogram of a frequency distribution into two parts of equal area

median

adjective

Medical Definition of median (Entry 2 of 2)

: situated in the middle specifically : lying in a plane dividing a bilateral animal into right and left halves

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