average

noun
av·​er·​age | \ ˈa-v(ə-)rij How to pronounce average (audio) \

Essential Meaning of average

1 : a number that is calculated by adding quantities together and then dividing the total by the number of quantities The average of 16, 8, and 6 is 10. Take all these temperatures and find their average. See More ExamplesAn average of 2,000 people attended the show each night. Prices have increased on average about eight percent. On average, women live longer than men. (US) He saves on the average about five percent of his income.Hide
2 : a level that is typical of a group, class, or series : a middle point between extremes His work has been better/worse than average. = His work has been above/below average. His work has been above the average.
3 baseball : batting average

Full Definition of average

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : a single value (such as a mean, mode, or median) that summarizes or represents the general significance of a set of unequal values
2a : an estimation of or approximation to an arithmetic mean
b : a level (as of intelligence) typical of a group, class, or series above the average
3 : a ratio expressing the average performance especially of an athletic team or an athlete computed according to the number of opportunities for successful performance a batting average
on average or on the average
: taking the typical example of the group under consideration Prices have increased on average by five percent. [=the average increase has been five percent]

average

adjective

Definition of average (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : equaling an arithmetic mean
2a : being about midway between extremes a man of average height
b : not out of the ordinary : common on an average day the average person

average

verb
averaged; averaging

Definition of average (Entry 3 of 3)

intransitive verb

1a : to be or come to an average The gain averaged out to 20 percent.
b : to have a medial value of colors that average to gray
2 : to buy on a falling market or sell on a rising market additional shares or commodities so as to obtain a more favorable average price usually used with down or up

transitive verb

1 : to do, get, or have on the average or as an average sum or quantity averages 12 hours of work a day
2 : to find the arithmetic mean of (a series of unequal quantities)
3a : to bring toward the average
b : to divide among a number according to a size, number, or amount that is directly related to or appropriate for something average a loss

Other Words from average

Adjective

averagely adverb
averageness noun

Synonyms for average

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Adjective

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Choose the Right Synonym for average

Noun

average, mean, median, norm mean something that represents a middle point. average is the quotient obtained by dividing the sum total of a set of figures by the number of figures. scored an average of 85 on tests mean may be the simple average or it may represent value midway between two extremes. a high of 70° and a low of 50° give a mean of 60° median applies to the value that represents the point at which there are as many instances above as there are below. average of a group of persons earning 3, 4, 5, 8, and 10 dollars an hour is 6 dollars, whereas the median is 5 dollars norm means the average of performance of a significantly large group, class, or grade. scores about the norm for fifth grade arithmetic

Did you know?

The word average came into English from Middle French avarie, a derivative of an Arabic word meaning “damaged merchandise.” Avarie originally meant damage sustained by a ship or its cargo, but came to mean the expenses of such damage. When the English borrowed the word, they altered it to conform to the pattern of words ending in -age. When a ship or its cargo was damaged at sea, the owners or insurers shared the expense, or average. An average-adjuster determined a division of costs among them. An average then became any equal distribution or division, like the determination of an arithmetic mean. Soon the arithmetic mean itself was called an average. Now the word may be applied to any mean or middle value or level.

Examples of average in a Sentence

Noun The average of 16, 8, and 6 is 10. Take all these temperatures and find their average. An average of 2,000 people attended the show each night. Prices have increased on average about eight percent. On average, women live longer than men. His work has been above the average. Adjective Take all these temperatures and find their average temperature. The investment had a higher average return. The average age of the company's employees is 36. The average woman lives longer than the average man. Do you know what the average person earns? the average American family buyer Sales were about average for the industry on the whole. Average grades are not good enough to get you into graduate school. She was an average student. She thought the performance was just average. Verb The teacher averaged the students' grades. What figure do you get when you average the amount of rainfall for the last three months?
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Johns Hopkins University calculates Arizona's seven-day moving average of percent positives at 11.5% as of Friday. Brieanna J. Frank, The Arizona Republic, 27 Nov. 2021 The Bulldogs entered the Bahamas Championship having won its four games by an average of 24 points. Brett Dawson, The Courier-Journal, 27 Nov. 2021 The entire range then depreciated by an average of 0.6% in the second month compared to the first. Chris Smith, BGR, 23 Nov. 2021 The game was viewed by an average of 6,450,000 viewers and peaked at 7,428,000 late in the fourth quarter. al, 23 Nov. 2021 Denver has lost its last four games by an average of 14.8 points while scoring just 98.8 points per game. oregonlive, 22 Nov. 2021 Of course, this is nothing new for the Tigers, who have won all their games this year by an average of 42 points. Wynn Mcdonald, The Enquirer, 21 Nov. 2021 The Redwings have beaten their first three opponents by an average of 37 points. Matt Le Cren, chicagotribune.com, 20 Nov. 2021 For those keeping score at home, the Dallas Cowboys have won by an average of 40 points after incorporating monkey rear ends into their game-planning. Jori Epstein, USA TODAY, 17 Nov. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The average amount of house fires caused by the trees may not seem like much, but during that timespan, each year averaged two deaths, 12 injuries and over $10 million in property damage. Jordan Mendoza, USA TODAY, 28 Nov. 2021 Led by tailback Adain Murphy’s 2,000-yard rushing season and more than 36 touchdowns, the Fighting Irish have won their last seven contests by an average margin of 24.3 points. Evan Merrill, The Enquirer, 28 Nov. 2021 The average person today carries a $30,000 loan debt after graduating. NBC News, 27 Nov. 2021 Another weak weather system brings some rain and snow showers for Sunday night and early Monday followed by a continuation of below average temperatures for much of next week. BostonGlobe.com, 27 Nov. 2021 By the Numbers: 49, Madison Academy’s average starting field position was the Oneonta 49-yard-line. al, 27 Nov. 2021 This is a fun map to click around in — find the nearest bus stop to you, click on it, and see how average weekday ridership has changed! Andy Larsen, The Salt Lake Tribune, 27 Nov. 2021 Nedeljkovic made 35 saves total against the Blues, improving his season numbers to a 2.76 goals-against average and .917 save percentage. Helene St. James, Detroit Free Press, 27 Nov. 2021 The average rent in Orlando is $1,712 for a one-bedroom apartment, according to ApartmentList.com. Trevor Fraser, orlandosentinel.com, 26 Nov. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Holiday spending is expected to average $1,463 per household, up 5% from 2020, according to a survey from Deloitte published last month. Julia Horowitz, CNN, 17 Nov. 2021 In 2021 daily time spent with mobile (non-voice) is expected to average 4 hours and 23 minutes, compared to 3 hours and 45 minutes in 2019. Brad Adgate, Forbes, 15 Oct. 2021 California’s unemployment rate, traditionally higher than the nation’s partly because of the state’s reliance on tourism, leisure and hospitality, is expected to average 7.6% this year, 5.6% next year and 4.4% in 2023. Margot Roosevelt, Los Angeles Times, 29 Sep. 2021 And while last year's Labor Day weekend gas prices were the lowest since 2004, this year prices at the pump are expected to average $3.11 per gallon. NBC News, 30 Aug. 2021 Bond investors now expect inflation to average 2.4% over the next five years, down from 2.7% in mid-May. CBS News, 13 July 2021 Bond investors now expect inflation to average 2.4% over the next five years, down from 2.7% in mid-May. Christopher Rugaber, chicagotribune.com, 13 July 2021 The checks are expected to average about $300 per child and start as early as mid-July. Editorial Board, Star Tribune, 21 May 2021 Growth is expected to average at 2.6% over the next five years. Tyler Van Dyke, Washington Examiner, 11 Feb. 2021

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

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First Known Use of average

Noun

1770, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Adjective

1746, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

1769, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for average

Noun, Adjective, and Verb

from earlier average proportionally distributed charge for damage at sea, modification of Middle French avarie damage to ship or cargo, from Old Italian avaria, from Arabic ʽawārīya damaged merchandise

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Time Traveler for average

Time Traveler

The first known use of average was in 1746

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Dictionary Entries Near average

aver

average

average agreement

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Statistics for average

Last Updated

29 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Average.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/average. Accessed 1 Dec. 2021.

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More Definitions for average

average

noun
av·​er·​age | \ ˈa-və-rij How to pronounce average (audio) , ˈav-rij \

Kids Definition of average

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a number that is calculated by adding quantities together and dividing the total by the number of quantities : arithmetic mean An average of 20 students are in each class.
2 : something usual in a group, class, or series His grades have been better than average.

average

adjective

Kids Definition of average (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : equaling or coming close to an average The average age of students in my class is eleven.
2 : being ordinary or usual the average person

average

verb
averaged; averaging

Kids Definition of average (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : to amount to usually We averaged ten miles a day.
2 : to find the average of Our teacher averaged our test scores.

More from Merriam-Webster on average

Nglish: Translation of average for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of average for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about average

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