noun, often attributive
\ ˈrānj How to pronounce range (audio) \

Definition of range

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a(1) : a series of things in a line : row
(2) : a series of mountains
(3) : one of the north-south rows of townships in a U.S. public-land survey that are numbered east and west from the principal meridian of the survey
b : an aggregate of individuals in one order
c : a direction line
2 : a cooking stove that has an oven and a flat top with burners or heating elements
3a : a place that may be ranged over
b : an open region over which animals (such as livestock) may roam and feed
c : the region throughout which a kind of organism or ecological community naturally lives or occurs
4 : the act of ranging about
5a(1) : the horizontal distance to which a projectile can be propelled
(2) : the horizontal distance between a weapon and target
b : the maximum distance a vehicle or craft can travel without refueling
c(1) : a place where shooting is practiced
6a : the space or extent included, covered, or used : scope
b : the extent of pitch covered by a melody or lying within the capacity of a voice or instrument
7a : a sequence, series, or scale between limits a wide range of patterns
b : the limits of a series : the distance or extent between possible extremes
c : the difference between the least and greatest values of an attribute or of the variable of a frequency distribution
8a : the set of values a function may take on
b : the class of admissible values of a variable


ranged; ranging

Definition of range (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to set in a row or in the proper order
b : to place among others in a position or situation
c : to assign to a category : classify
2a : to rove over or through
b : to sail or pass along
3 : to arrange (an anchor cable) on deck
4 : to graze (livestock) on a range

intransitive verb

1a : to roam at large or freely
b : to move over an area so as to explore it
2 : to take a position
3a : to correspond in direction or line : align
b : to extend in a particular direction
4 : to have range
5 : to change or differ within limits
6 of an organism : to live or occur in or be native to a region

Choose the Right Synonym for range


range, gamut, compass, sweep, scope, orbit mean the extent that lies within the powers of something (as to cover or control). range is a general term indicating the extent of one's perception or the extent of powers, capacities, or possibilities. the entire range of human experience gamut suggests a graduated series running from one possible extreme to another. a performance that ran the gamut of emotions compass implies a sometimes limited extent of perception, knowledge, or activity. your concerns lie beyond the narrow compass of this study sweep suggests extent, often circular or arc-shaped, of motion or activity. the book covers the entire sweep of criminal activity scope is applicable to an area of activity, predetermined and limited, but somewhat flexible. as time went on, the scope of the investigation widened orbit suggests an often circumscribed range of activity or influence within which forces work toward accommodation. within that restricted orbit they tried to effect social change

Examples of range in a Sentence

Noun knew exactly how many head of cattle were turned out on the range that morning to graze didn't know she had such a wide range of knowledge until I talked to her Verb The selection of food ranged from mild to very spicy. Items on the menu range from American fare like hamburgers and hot dogs to Italian pasta dishes. Grizzly bears range over a much smaller area than they once did. The plant once ranged across the island. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Though most Russian artillery cannot reach Mykolaiv, Russian forces have hit it with long-range rockets. Michael Schwirtz, BostonGlobe.com, 8 Aug. 2022 Beyond the firing of 11 short-range ballistic missiles during the four earlier days of exercises, Chinese warships, fighter jets and drones maneuvered extensively around the island. Reuters, NBC News, 8 Aug. 2022 The People’s Liberation Army said the exercises focused on testing its long-range air and ground strikes. Los Angeles Times, 8 Aug. 2022 Chinese military drills across six zones around Taiwan, which on Sunday included joint air and sea exercises to hone long-range airstrike capabilities, allowed the military to practice blockading the island in the event of an invasion. New York Times, 7 Aug. 2022 The half-cent sales tax proposal was drafted by labor and environmental groups to provide early funding for the long-range, $160 billion transportation proposal by the San Diego Association of Governments. Michael Smolens, San Diego Union-Tribune, 7 Aug. 2022 The fighting in this stage of the war between Russia and Ukraine has shifted toward an exchange of long-range artillery and missile strikes. Adela Suliman, Washington Post, 6 Aug. 2022 The newcomer held firm for nearly an hour at St. James' Park but couldn't prevent Newcastle's Fabian Schar from finally breaking the deadlock with a long-range shot. Mattias KarÉn, ajc, 6 Aug. 2022 Mykolaiv was hit three times in the early morning with long-range artillery and rockets, destroying a house and causing a fire, according to the municipality. Yaroslav Trofimov, WSJ, 5 Aug. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb On the first, Ashton Dulin broke off his route toward the sideline and Ryan threw a fade, allowing Indianapolis free safety Julian Blackmon to range back and make a diving interception. The Indianapolis Star, 8 Aug. 2022 Fans speculated the considerable boost to range over the regular Plaid’s 348 miles must come from using the next-generation 4680 cells designed to cement Tesla’s techological lead. Christiaan Hetzner, Fortune, 4 Aug. 2022 The company expects revenue in the three months through September to range from $2.78 billion to $2.88 billion, higher than Wall Street’s average estimate of $2.77 billion. Preetika Rana, WSJ, 2 Aug. 2022 The mystery sauce, which appears to range from an opaque blush to a vibrant fuchsia, has fascinated and horrified people online. Lauren Wilson, NBC News, 21 July 2022 With a lefty at the plate, Story might be shifted toward the right field grass, giving him more room to range to his right. Globe Staff, BostonGlobe.com, 20 July 2022 Highs today are expected to range from the mid- to upper 80s in north and central Alabama to the low 90s in south Alabama. Leigh Morgan, al, 27 June 2022 According to Electric Sage, the average cost to fully charge a Tesla is $13.96, though the cost can be expected to range anywhere from $9.62 to $18.30, depending on the model. Jacob Livesay, USA TODAY, 24 June 2022 The back pay collected by individuals is expected to range from $445.29 to up to $7,862.77 per person, based on when they might have been hired without the biased exams, according to documents filed in federal court by county and DOJ officials. Darcy Costello, Baltimore Sun, 24 June 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'range.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of range


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


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

History and Etymology for range


Middle English, row of persons, from Anglo-French range, renge, from renger to range


Middle English, from Anglo-French renger, from renc, reng line, place, row — more at rank entry 1

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Time Traveler for range

Time Traveler

The first known use of range was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near range



range angle

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Statistics for range

Last Updated

10 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Range.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/range. Accessed 11 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for range


\ ˈrānj How to pronounce range (audio) \

Kids Definition of range

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a series of things in a line a range of mountains
2 : the distance over which someone or something can be seen, heard, or reached
3 : a cooking stove
4 : open land over which livestock may roam and feed
5 : a variety of choices within a scale a range of colors
6 : the difference between the least and greatest of a set of values
7 : the distance a gun will shoot
8 : a place where shooting is practiced


ranged; ranging

Kids Definition of range (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to arrange in a particular place or order There were at least a thousand musicians ranged in a great arc …— Norton Juster, The Phantom Tollbooth
2 : to roam over or through The horses range freely.
3 : to come within specified limits We range in age from 7 to 13.


noun, often attributive
\ ˈrānj How to pronounce range (audio) \

Medical Definition of range

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the region throughout which a kind of organism or ecological community naturally lives or occurs
2 : the difference between the least and greatest values of an attribute or of the variable of a frequency distribution


intransitive verb
ranged; ranging

Medical Definition of range (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to change or differ within limits symptoms range in severity from mild to severe
2 of an organism : to live or occur in or be native to a region

More from Merriam-Webster on range

Nglish: Translation of range for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of range for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about range


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