test

1 of 5

noun (1)

1
a
: a means of testing: such as
(1)
: something (such as a series of questions or exercises) for measuring the skill, knowledge, intelligence, capacities, or aptitudes of an individual or group
(2)
: a procedure, reaction, or reagent used to identify or characterize a substance or constituent
b
: a positive result in such a test
2
a(1)
: a critical examination, observation, or evaluation : trial
specifically : the procedure of submitting a statement to such conditions or operations as will lead to its proof or disproof or to its acceptance or rejection
a test of a statistical hypothesis
(2)
: a basis for evaluation : criterion
b
: an ordeal or oath required as proof of conformity with a set of beliefs
c
chiefly British : cupel
3
: a result or value determined by testing
4

test

2 of 5

verb

tested; testing; tests

transitive verb

1
: to put to test or proof : try
often used with out
2
: to require a doctrinal oath of

intransitive verb

1
a
: to undergo a test
b
: to be assigned a standing or evaluation on the basis of tests
tested positive for cocaine
the cake tested done
2
: to apply a test as a means of analysis or diagnosis
used with for
test for mechanical aptitude
testability noun
testable adjective

test

3 of 5

adjective

1
: of, relating to, or constituting a test
2
: subjected to, used for, or revealed by testing
a test group
test data

test

4 of 5

noun (2)

: an external hard or firm covering (such as a shell) of many invertebrates (such as a foraminifer or a mollusk)

Test

5 of 5

abbreviation

Phrases
test the waters or less commonly test the water
: to make a preliminary test or survey (as of reaction or interest) before embarking on a course of action

Example Sentences

Verb Weekly quizzes will test your understanding of the material. The students will all be tested again at the end of the school year. The school nurse will be testing students' hearing next week. She tested positive for AIDS. The water gets tested regularly.

Word History

Etymology

Noun (1)

Middle English, vessel in which metals were assayed, potsherd, from Anglo-French test, tees pot, Latin testum earthen vessel; akin to Latin testa earthen pot, shell

Noun (2)

Latin testa shell

First Known Use

Noun (1)

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2c

Verb

1748, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Adjective

1687, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun (2)

circa 1842, in the meaning defined above

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

Dictionary Entries Near test

Cite this Entry

“Test.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/test. Accessed 5 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition

test 1 of 3

noun

1
: a means of finding out the nature, quality, or value of something
put the new car to the test
2
: a procedure or method for identifying something
a test for starch
allergy tests
3
: a set of questions or problems designed to find out a person's knowledge, skills, or intelligence
4
: a result of or rating based on a test
uses 80-pound test fishing line

test

2 of 3

verb

1
: to put to test or proof : try
test out your strength
2
a
: to take part in a test
actors testing for roles in the play
b
: to achieve or be assigned a rating on the basis of tests
the class tested high in math
3
: to use tests as a way to analyze or identify
test for copper
testable
ˈtes-tə-bəl
adjective

test

3 of 3

noun

: a firm or rigid covering (as a shell) of many invertebrates

Medical Definition

test 1 of 3

noun

1
: a critical examination, observation, evaluation, or trial
specifically : the procedure of submitting a statement to such conditions or operations as will lead to its proof or disproof or to its acceptance or rejection
a test of a statistical hypothesis
2
: a means of testing: as
a(1)
: a procedure or reaction used to identify or characterize a substance or constituent
a test for starch using iodine
(2)
: a reagent used in such a test
b
: a diagnostic procedure for determining the presence or nature of a condition or disease or for revealing a change in function
c
: something (as a series of questions or exercises) for measuring the skill, knowledge, intelligence, capacities, or aptitudes of an individual or group
3
: a result or value determined by testing

test

2 of 3

transitive verb

: to subject to a test

intransitive verb

1
: to undergo a test
2
: to apply a test as a means of analysis or diagnosis
used with for
test for the presence of starch

test

3 of 3

adjective

1
: of, relating to, or constituting a test
the test environment affected the scores
2
: subjected to, used for, or revealed by testing
test substances

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