Definition of sphere
1a (1) : the apparent surface of the heavens of which half forms the dome of the visible sky (2) : any of the concentric and eccentric revolving spherical transparent shells in which according to ancient astronomy stars, sun, planets, and moon are setb : a globe depicting such a sphere; broadly : globe a
2a : a globular body : ballb : planet, starc (1) : a solid that is bounded by a surface consisting of all points at a given distance from a point constituting its center — see volume table (2) : the bounding surface of a sphere
3 : natural, normal, or proper place; especially : social order or rank <not in the same sphere as his moneyed friends>
4a obsolete : orbitb : an area or range over or within which someone or something acts, exists, or has influence or significance <the public sphere>
sphericplay \ˈsfir-ik, ˈsfer-\ adjective, archaic
sphericityplay \sfir-ˈi-sə-tē\ noun
Examples of sphere in a sentence
All points on a sphere are the same distance from the center.
Women at that time were confined to the domestic sphere.
They recognize that jobs in the public sphere are valuable.
Origin and Etymology of sphere
Middle English spere globe, celestial sphere, from Anglo-French espere, from Latin sphaera, from Greek sphaira, literally, ball; perhaps akin to Greek spairein to quiver — more at spurn
First Known Use: 14th century
First Known Use of sphere
SPHERE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of sphere for English Language Learners
: a round object
geometry : a three-dimensional shape that looks like a ball
: an area of influence or activity
SPHERE Defined for Kids
Definition of sphere for Students
1 : an object (as the moon) shaped like a ball
2 : a figure so shaped that every point on its surface is an equal distance from its center
3 : a field of influence or activity <Electrical work is outside a plumber's sphere.>
Learn More about sphere
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up sphere? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).