range

1 of 2

noun

often attributive
1
a(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
3
a
: 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
5
a(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
6
a
: 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
7
a
: 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
8
a
: the set of values a function may take on
b
: the class of admissible values of a variable
9

range

2 of 2

verb

ranged; ranging

transitive verb

1
a
: 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
2
a
: 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

1
a
: to roam at large or freely
b
: to move over an area so as to explore it
2
: to take a position
3
a
: 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.
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
The company offers goods across a broad range of categories, such as phones and electronics, home appliances, fast-moving consumer goods, fashion and beauty. Charlotte Observer, 21 May 2024 The unofficial start of summer is finally here, and Amazon is celebrating with steep discounts across a wide range of categories, including fashion. Gabriella Maestri, Travel + Leisure, 21 May 2024 See all Example Sentences for range 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'range.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Noun

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

Verb

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

First Known Use

Noun

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

Verb

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

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

Dictionary Entries Near range

Cite this Entry

“Range.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/range. Accessed 25 May. 2024.

Kids Definition

range

1 of 2 noun
1
: a series of things in a line
a range of mountains
2
: a cooking stove
3
a
: open land over which livestock may roam and feed
b
: the place where a certain kind of animal or plant naturally lives
4
: the act of ranging about
5
a
: the maximum distance a weapon can shoot, a missile can travel, or a vehicle can go without refueling
b
: the distance between a weapon and its target
c
: a place where shooting is practiced
a rifle range
6
a
: the distance or amount included or gone over : scope
the range of one's knowledge
b
: the extent of pitch covered by a voice or instrument or a melody
7
a
: a sequence, series, or scale between limits
out of our price range
a wide range of colors
b
: the difference between the least and greatest of a set of values

range

2 of 2 verb
ranged; ranging
1
a
: to set in a row or in proper order
b
: to set in place among others of the same kind
2
: to roam freely
3
: to vary within limits
the temperature ranged from 50° to 90°

Medical Definition

range

1 of 2 noun
often attributive
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

range

2 of 2 intransitive verb
ranged; ranging
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

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