reference point


: something that is used to judge or understand something else
The professor used the study as a reference point for evaluating and discussing other theories.

Examples of reference point in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Many wine drinkers’ lone reference point for Beaujolais is the barely drinkable plonk that arrives on our shores around Thanksgiving every year. Jeremy Repanich, Robb Report, 12 May 2024 The warm synth-pop of Midnights serves as the closest reference point, but that album was cleanly orchestrated, while The Tortured Poets Department wants to get in the mud with soft-loud dissonance and tracklist sprawl. Jason Lipshutz, Billboard, 19 Apr. 2024 The system also works with the Nest smart home family of tools, offering a reference point for people trying to locate a product in their home. Chris Morris, Fortune, 9 Apr. 2024 That gives scientists a longer reference point to evaluate what temperatures were like before fossil fuels became popular. Evan Bush, NBC News, 5 Feb. 2024 Complex rules govern the discipline of taxonomy, and typically a specimen must be designated as a reference point when it’s first named. Lila Seidman, Los Angeles Times, 29 Mar. 2024 Judging who wins and loses in war is incredibly murky, and people may make their determinations by comparing the battlefield result with a (somewhat arbitrary) reference point—their expectations. Dominic Tierney, Foreign Affairs, 25 Mar. 2024 Archaeologists did not specify how tall the newfound tomb is but the roughly 30-foot-tall Queen’s Tomb next to it serves as a reference point. Aspen Pflughoeft, Miami Herald, 27 Feb. 2024 This is actually the mean solar day, which uses the center of the sun’s disk as a reference point and is an average of every day of the year. Phil Plait, Scientific American, 23 Feb. 2024

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

Dictionary Entries Near reference point

Cite this Entry

“Reference point.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 May. 2024.

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