mid·​dle | \ ˈmi-dᵊl How to pronounce middle (audio) \

Definition of middle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : equally distant from the extremes : medial, central the middle house in the row
2 : being at neither extreme : intermediate
3 capitalized
a : constituting a division intermediate between those prior and later or upper and lower Middle Paleozoic
b : constituting a period of a language or literature intermediate between one called Old and one called New or Modern Middle Dutch
4 of a verb form or voice : typically asserting that a person or thing both performs and is affected by the action represented



Definition of middle (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a middle part, point, or position
2 : the central portion of the human body : waist
3 : the position of being among or in the midst of something in the middle of the crowd
4 : something intermediate between extremes : mean
5 : the center of an offensive or defensive formation especially : the area between the second baseman and the shortstop
middle of nowhere
: an extremely remote and isolated place ran out of gas in the middle of nowhere

Examples of middle in a Sentence

Adjective during the century's middle decades High temperatures today should be in the middle 80s. Franklin D. Roosevelt's middle initial stood for “Delano.” Noun A good essay will have a clear beginning, middle, and end. He stood exactly in the middle of the room. She opened the book to the middle and began to read. The car stopped in the middle of the road. The house should be finished by the middle of next summer. The beginning and ending of the movie were good, but the middle was pretty boring. She put her arms around his middle. He tied the sash around his middle. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective This is the humor of irony and conversational banter, the deflections used when intense grief threatens to overwhelm ordinary middle-class existence. Sam Sacks, WSJ, 20 May 2022 The middle-class mindset believes that putting away a little bit each month for retirement is the solution to losing a paycheck. Steve Davis, Forbes, 20 May 2022 The housing crisis in America is not new, but in the wake of the pandemic, millions of middle-class Americans are now experiencing housing instability in the face of rapidly ballooning rent and real estate prices. Jessica Geltstaff Writer, Los Angeles Times, 19 May 2022 According to Trinity’s synopsis: Beverly Frasier, a Black, suburban, middle-class mom, is preparing a family dinner for her Mama’s birthday party. Lauren Daley, BostonGlobe.com, 19 May 2022 The coming-of-age story features a young, middle-class Jewish boy (Repeta) who moves from public to private school with the help of his stern but loving grandfather (Anthony Hopkins). Rebecca Keegan, The Hollywood Reporter, 19 May 2022 Although virtual and usually performed by middle-class white adherents, these are real people engaging in real spiritual practices that add eudaimonia to their lives. Gregory Grieve, The Conversation, 19 May 2022 Access to information about safe and effective contraception, like condoms and how to use them, was hidden to many, yet accessible to predominantly white, middle-class men and women. Alexandra M. Lord, Smithsonian Magazine, 19 May 2022 All seven were Black women between the ages of 31 and 43 and lived in middle-class households, averaging an annual income between $40,000 and $126,000. Natalia Galicza, Sun Sentinel, 18 May 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Andre Hall found himself in the middle of a scam in December, after roofers showed up at his home in St. Johns offering to inspect his roof for damage. Jon Schuppe, NBC News, 21 May 2022 The country music superstar, who just released a new album, Palomino, is in the middle of her Bandwagon tour and preparing for a Las Vegas residency. Katie Bowlby, Country Living, 21 May 2022 In the middle of the taping, both women left the arena, but not before leaving their belts in the office of John Laurinaitis, who is the WWE head of talent relations. Scooby Axson, USA TODAY, 21 May 2022 Marco Andretti, beginning his warm up for his initial qualifying attempt, came upon Sato's No. 51 in the middle of the backstretch on his cooldown lap, instead of running in the warmup lane as drivers are directed. Nathan Brown, The Indianapolis Star, 21 May 2022 For instance, in the middle of the 2007-2009 bear market, there were two separate days where the S&P 500 surged roughly 11%, as well as leaps of better than 9% during and shortly after the roughly monthlong 2020 bear market. CBS News, 20 May 2022 Three bogeys in the middle of his round ruined a good start for Woods. Doug Ferguson, Hartford Courant, 20 May 2022 While many of these people are appointees, they are getting caught in the middle of local partisan political battles. Jared Decoste, Scientific American, 20 May 2022 In the middle of breaking news, when people are searching for information, some platforms can present more questions than answers. Samantha Murphy Kelly, CNN, 20 May 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of middle


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for middle


Middle English middel, from Old English; akin to Old English midde

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Time Traveler for middle

Time Traveler

The first known use of middle was before the 12th century

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Dictionary Entries Near middle



middle age

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Statistics for middle

Last Updated

22 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Middle.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/middle. Accessed 28 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for middle


mid·​dle | \ ˈmi-dᵊl How to pronounce middle (audio) \

Kids Definition of middle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : equally distant from the ends : central the middle aisle
2 : being at neither extreme : halfway between two opposite states or conditions of middle size



Kids Definition of middle (Entry 2 of 2)

: the part, point, or position that is equally distant from the ends or opposite sides : center the middle of the room

More from Merriam-Webster on middle

Nglish: Translation of middle for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of middle for Arabic Speakers


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