middle

adjective
mid·​dle | \ˈmi-dᵊl \

Definition of middle 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : equally distant from the extremes : medial, central the middle house in the row

2 : being at neither extreme : intermediate

3 capitalized

a : constituting a division intermediate between those prior and later or upper and lower Middle Paleozoic

b : constituting a period of a language or literature intermediate between one called Old and one called New or Modern Middle Dutch

4 of a verb form or voice : typically asserting that a person or thing both performs and is affected by the action represented

middle

noun

Definition of middle (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a middle part, point, or position

2 : the central portion of the human body : waist

3 : the position of being among or in the midst of something in the middle of the crowd

4 : something intermediate between extremes : mean

5 : the center of an offensive or defensive formation especially : the area between the second baseman and the shortstop

middle of nowhere

: an extremely remote and isolated place ran out of gas in the middle of nowhere

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Synonyms & Antonyms for middle

Synonyms: Adjective

central, halfway, intermediary, intermediate, medial, median, mediate, medium, mid, midmost

Synonyms: Noun

center, core, midpoint, midst

Antonyms: Adjective

extreme, farthest, farthermost, furthermost, furthest, outermost, outmost, remotest, utmost

Antonyms: Noun

perimeter, periphery

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Examples of middle in a Sentence

Adjective

during the century's middle decades High temperatures today should be in the middle 80s. Franklin D. Roosevelt's middle initial stood for “Delano.”

Noun

A good essay will have a clear beginning, middle, and end. He stood exactly in the middle of the room. She opened the book to the middle and began to read. The car stopped in the middle of the road. The house should be finished by the middle of next summer. The beginning and ending of the movie were good, but the middle was pretty boring. She put her arms around his middle. He tied the sash around his middle.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Billy Brown Brown family patriarch Billy grew up in Texas, and had an upper-middle-class childhood. Megan Friedman, Country Living, "‘Alaskan Bush People' Cast: How Well Do You Know the Brown Family?," 23 Sep. 2018 At the first of two solo Boston dates on Wednesday night at the Wang Theatre, Young mostly stuck to the crowd-pleasing middle path, though his middle remains more interesting than most artists’ fringe. Terence Cawley, BostonGlobe.com, "At the Wang, a free-wheeling journey through Neil Young’s past," 12 July 2018 An inexperienced driver might chose to keep his car as low as possible, keeping all four tires on the even, though chunky, middle path. Jakob Schiller, Outside Online, "Pick the Right Line, Drive Over Anything," 19 June 2018 Portland gave the amendment its biggest per capita support, with the largest majorities in precincts inhabited by middle-class and skilled working-class voters. Longreads, "Oregon’s Racist Past," 12 July 2018 That's a middle-class job in Poplar Bluff where the median income is just over $31,000 a year. Heather Long, Anchorage Daily News, "Analysis: The first layoffs from Trump's tariffs are here," 26 June 2018 But the study may not apply broadly because the research is predominately focused on middle-class and white families. Josh Magness, miamiherald, "Fighting parents can be unhealthy for kids — but a close brother or sister helps, study says," 25 June 2018 Failing to do so guarantees that these middle-class jobs will only be available to the select few that can afford the ever increasing cost of tuition. BostonGlobe.com, "Should Massachusetts drop tuition and fees for in-state students at its public colleges and universities?," 22 June 2018 Kohan famously used Orange’s white, middle-class lead as a Trojan horse, moving past her story to spotlight the lives of poor, nonwhite, LGBT and mentally ill women who are rarely depicted onscreen. Judy Berman, Time, "Glow Fades But Stays Fun in Its Second Season," 21 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

That would include the Boston cream pie, as well as the simpler Washington pie, a split sponge cake with jam in the middle and powdered sugar on top that, in later years, was often filled with cream. Gabriella Gershenson, WSJ, "Is Boston Cream Pie the World’s Most Delicious...Cake?," 9 Nov. 2018 Her hair was parted in the middle and included just a touch of waviness at the ends. Lauren Rearick, Teen Vogue, "Beyoncé Wore Silver Lipstick," 23 Oct. 2018 Arrange 1 1/2 cups hash browns in even layer in the middle and strips of bacon around it. Redbook Test Kitchen, Redbook, "Potato-Leek Soup," 20 Aug. 2018 For her wedding day, Markle clung to her signature minimalism, choosing a low-slung bun with a part in the middle and the sides pushed back. Wendy Sy, Allure, "Happy Birthday, Duchess: See Meghan Markle’s Hair Evolution Through the Years," 4 Aug. 2018 The three kids were distributed between the middle and back seats (thank god for the Pilot’s three rows). Alex Postman, Condé Nast Traveler, "What They Don't Tell You About Cross-Country Family Road Trips," 23 July 2018 The Phillies are middle of the pack in terms of runs scored, but this matchup against Cobb gives them significant upside. Mike Barner, SI.com, "MLB DFS Plays for July 3," 3 July 2018 She was born in Plainville on April 24, 1930 and was the middle of three children born to the late Joseph and Anna (Spinelli) Battista. courant.com, "Clara Cellino," 1 July 2018 So, the Brewers, who are middle of the pack in runs scored, wait for the others to join the fun. Tom Haudricourt, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Haudricourt: Numbers tell the story of the Brewers' offensive ups and downs," 22 June 2018

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

Adjective

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for middle

Adjective

Middle English middel, from Old English; akin to Old English midde

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Statistics for middle

Last Updated

14 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for middle

The first known use of middle was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for middle

middle

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of middle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: equally distant from the ends or sides : halfway between two points

: in a state or place between two things or people

middle

noun

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

: a middle part, point, or position

: the middle part of a person's body

middle

adjective
mid·​dle | \ˈmi-dᵊl \

Kids Definition of middle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : equally distant from the ends : central the middle aisle

2 : being at neither extreme : halfway between two opposite states or conditions of middle size

middle

noun

Kids Definition of middle (Entry 2 of 2)

: the part, point, or position that is equally distant from the ends or opposite sides : center the middle of the room

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Comments on middle

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