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

The work will also provide landscaping improvements, as well as shade trees along the median and near the bus shelters. Thomas Jewell, cleveland.com, "Shaker Heights ponies up for Clean & Safe program, busway in Van Aken District," 2 Sep. 2019 The lower is the median — the number in the middle, with half of wages higher and half lower. Ken Fisher, USA TODAY, "Watch out, investors, statistics can lie. Your 401(k) will thank you seeing the truth," 1 Sep. 2019 Day said the sticking up medians were fixed this morning before service started. London Gibson, Indianapolis Star, "Hit-and-run, scraping noises and a surprise unloading: Your Red Line questions answered after Day One," 1 Sep. 2019 The overall median in Southern California was up 1.9 percent in a year to $540,000. San Diego Union-Tribune, "San Diego home sales up for first time in a year," 28 Aug. 2019 After-tax median incomes are up more than 25 percent just since 1999. John Hood, National Review, "New Nationalists Make Three Big Bets," 28 Aug. 2019 At one point, representatives noted that Citigroup pays its CEO about 486 times more than the median for employees. Los Angeles Times, "Citigroup adopts $15 minimum wage after prod from Rep. Maxine Waters," 28 Aug. 2019 Brisson ran over a median, knocked down two crosswalk signals and crossed into the northbound lanes, Johnson said. Ashley Remkus | Aremkus@al.com, al, "‘Highly intoxicated’ driver crashed into Huntsville cop car, police say," 27 Aug. 2019 But the Bears can contend for a Super Bowl if their quarterback simply keeps his play close to the league median. David Haugh, chicagotribune.com, "Column: The Bears can be great in 2019 if Mitch Trubisky is merely good," 22 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

On the Block For about the median price of a single-family home in the state, choose between Capes in Abington and Canton. Jon Gorey, BostonGlobe.com, "For sale: What $450,000 buys you south of Boston," 6 Sep. 2019 The median price of a condo sold in August was $373,782, a decline of 0.64% from July, and up 4.4% from August of 2018. Aldo Svaldi, The Denver Post, "Home sales decline continues in metro Denver in August," 5 Sep. 2019 The median price barely eked out a gain, rising less than one half of one percent. Kenneth R. Gosselin, courant.com, "At the close of a sluggish home sale season, here are the 10 towns where real estate is hot in Connecticut," 3 Sep. 2019 Standard EVs get anywhere from 150 miles (Nissan Leaf) to 310 miles (Tesla Model 3) at prices close to or under the median car price in the US. Michael J. Coren, Quartz, "People are starting to buy electric cars for the same reason they buy any other car," 3 Sep. 2019 The median price of a home in the area rose 4 percent to $239,500 in July and sales jumped 6 percent. Madison Iszler, ExpressNews.com, "Report: San Antonio ranks third for home-price growth," 2 Sep. 2019 By comparison, the median price per square foot for condos in San Francisco is about $1,600 for high-rise and $1,500 for mid-rise buildings, according to brokerage firm Polaris Pacific. Kathleen Pender, SFChronicle.com, "Race to the top: Developers push a panoply of penthouses in San Francisco," 30 Aug. 2019 Resale condos: The median price was $435,000, down from the peak of $437,000 last month. San Diego Union-Tribune, "San Diego home sales up for first time in a year," 28 Aug. 2019 The median price for Portland-area homes sold in June was $420,000, according to the listing service RMLS. Elliot Njus, oregonlive.com, "Portland leads West Coast metros in rising home prices amid slowdown," 27 Aug. 2019

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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Statistics for median

Last Updated

11 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for median

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

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More Definitions for median

median

noun

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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Comments on median

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