square

1 of 4

noun

1
: an instrument having at least one right angle and two straight edges used especially to lay out or test right angles
2
: a rectangle with all four sides equal
3
: any of the quadrilateral spaces marked out on a board for playing games
4
: the product of a number multiplied by itself
5
a
: an open place or area formed at the meeting of two or more streets
6
: a solid object or piece approximating a cube or having a square as its largest face
7
: an unopened cotton flower with its enclosing bracts
8
: a person who is conventional or conservative in taste or way of life
9
: a square meal
ate three squares a day

square

2 of 4

adjective

squarer; squarest
1
a
: having four equal sides and four right angles
b
: forming a right angle
square corner
c
: having a square base
a square pyramid
2
: raised to the second power
3
a
: being approximately a cube
square cabinet
b
: having a shape that is broad for the height and rectangular rather than curving in outline
square shoulders
a square, thick, hard-working manMaria Edgeworth
c
: rectangular and equilateral in section
square tower
4
a
: being or converted to a unit of area equal in measure to a square each side of which measures one unit of a specified unit of length
a square foot
see Metric System Table, Weights and Measures Table
b
: being of a specified length in each of two equal dimensions
10 feet square
5
a
: exactly adjusted : precisely constructed or aligned
b
: just, fair
a square deal
square in all his dealings
c
: leaving no balance : settled
d
: even, tied
e
: substantial, satisfying
square meal
f
: being unsophisticated, conservative, or conventional
6
: set at right angles with the mast and keel
used of the yards of a square-rigged ship
squareness noun

square

3 of 4

verb

squared; squaring

transitive verb

1
a
: to make square or rectangular
square a building stone
b
: to test for deviation from a right angle, straight line, or plane surface
2
: to bring approximately to a right angle
squared his shoulders
3
a
: to multiply (a number) by itself : raise to the second power
b
: to find a square equal in area to
square a circle
4
: to regulate or adjust by or to some standard or principle
square our actions by the opinions of othersJohn Milton
5
a
: balance, settle
square an account
b
: to even the score of
6
: to mark off into squares
7
a
: to set right : bring into agreement
squared their goals with their beliefs
b
: bribe, fix

intransitive verb

1
: to agree precisely : correspond
your actions should square with your words
2
: to settle matters
especially : to pay the bill
squarer noun

square

4 of 4

adverb

1
: in a straightforward or honest manner
2
a
: so as to face or be face-to-face
b
: at right angles
3
: with nothing intervening : directly
ran square into it
4
: in a firm manner
looked her square in the eye
5
: in a square shape
Phrases
on the square
1
: at right angles
2
: in a fair open manner : honestly
out of square
: not at an exact right angle

Example Sentences

Noun The fabric is decorated with circles and squares. Cut the brownies into squares. The board has red and black squares. Adjective The room has four square corners. received a square hearing from the disciplinary panel Verb The machine squares the wood into flat boards. If you square 3, you get 9. See More
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
The intersection of del Parlament and del Comte Borrell is now traffic-free, with trees and benches—an impromptu square for socializing. Paul Richardson, Condé Nast Traveler, 23 Jan. 2023 There are few restaurants downtown, so the city has invited food trucks to set up by the courthouse square. Valerie Bauerlein, WSJ, 23 Jan. 2023 But really, the important thing to note in terms of orbits is that the gravitational force on the object decreases with the square of the object’s distance from the center of the Earth. WIRED, 20 Jan. 2023 Made by court jewelers Garrard in 1920, according to the auction house, the pendant features square-cut amethyst stones in the shape of a cross, decorated with circular-cut diamonds in a distinct flowery design. Amarachi Orie, CNN, 19 Jan. 2023 The Attallah Cross is designed by royal jeweler Garrad and is made of square-cut amethysts that are accented by circular-cut diamonds. Isiah Magsino, Town & Country, 18 Jan. 2023 The Kardashians star bid for the piece — which features square-cut amethysts accented by circular-cut diamonds weighing in at 5.25 carats — and eventually snagged it for $197,453 within the last five minutes. Michelle Lee, Peoplemag, 18 Jan. 2023 The Attallah Cross—a pendant worn by Princess Diana made of square-cut amethysts accentuated by circular diamonds—sold for $197,453 at auction in London today. Christian Allaire, Vogue, 18 Jan. 2023 The Good Housekeeping Institute evaluated 33 different pairs of tweezers that fell into four categories: slanted, pointed, point-and-slant tip and square. Birnur K. Aral, Good Housekeeping, 13 Jan. 2023
Adjective
DiGeronimo said the grocery store would measure between 15,000 and 40,000 square feet. Bob Sandrick, cleveland, 24 Jan. 2023 The resort, which is just under a million square feet, comes with plenty of attractions, including a mile and a half of private beach, the largest exclusive stretch in Dubai. Glenn Garner, Peoplemag, 23 Jan. 2023 The job cuts along with other cost-saving efforts, including putting hundreds of thousands of square feet of office space up for sublease, aim to get Wayfair back to profitability sooner, Shah said in an interview with the Globe. Aaron Pressman, BostonGlobe.com, 20 Jan. 2023 In terms of heat, it's said to be able to heat a standard room up to 400 square feet. Alec Scherma, Good Housekeeping, 19 Jan. 2023 This Coway air purifier can handle room sizes up to 361 square feet. Kevin Cortez, Popular Mechanics, 18 Jan. 2023 The rental units will be about 280 to 400 square feet and include a bed, bathroom, small kitchen and living area. Blake Apgar, The Salt Lake Tribune, 26 Dec. 2022 The current square footage is 58,327, which will increase to 60,745 square feet when the project is completed, said Kathy Gavin, director of finance for District 807. Elena Ferrarin, Chicago Tribune, 20 Dec. 2022 Recommended for medium rooms (up to 155 square feet), the Honeywell HPA 100 features four air cleaning levels that work to filter and circulate air up to 4.8 times an hour. Stephanie Mlot, PCMAG, 9 Dec. 2022
Verb
Over the course of the fall, many experts came to suspect that tweaks to the IMF and other factors could be enough to square the very ancient galaxies lighting upon JWST’s instruments with ΛCDM. Quanta Magazine, 20 Jan. 2023 According to the American Trucking Associations’ 2019 driver shortage report, there are now nearly three commercial driver’s license holders for every job that requires one in the US: strange stats to square with a shortage. Andrew Kay, WIRED, 17 Jan. 2023 The triple-mixed metaphor says it all: Licht & Co. are struggling with the intractable problem of how to square the CNN brand’s promise — straight news — with the entertainment imperatives of nighttime television. Erik Wemple, Washington Post, 22 Dec. 2022 So the animated world of Harley Quinn (where Harley is in a committed relationship with Poison Ivy and recently joined the Batfam) doesn’t have to square itself against the Snyderverse (where Harley is straight, and also dead). Vulture, 27 Nov. 2022 At another point, Mr. Fetterman was asked to square his support for natural-gas fracking, an important economic driver in parts of Pennsylvania, with a past statement in opposition. Aaron Zitner, WSJ, 26 Oct. 2022 The Blue Devils marched 80 yards in 11 plays for its first TD capped by Bernard’s 16-yard keeper to square it at 7-all with 1:35 left. Brad Emons, Detroit Free Press, 22 Oct. 2022 Instead, Si Woo Kim made a 4-foot birdie putt to square the match on the 16th, and a 5-foot par putt to keep it tied on the 17th. BostonGlobe.com, 24 Sep. 2022 LaVine and Dosunmu both left Young wide open behind the 3-point arc in the third quarter, giving him time to square his shoulders and take a deep breath before sinking a shot to pull the Hawks within five points. Julia Poe, Chicago Tribune, 22 Dec. 2022
Adverb
Similar to a circle but with a sharper jawline is the square-shaped face. Cai Cramer, Peoplemag, 21 Sep. 2022 Indeed, Sunni Sunni’s styles, including square-toed mules with bold chain hardware and colorful heeled boots with python-print embossing, are available in a full range of men’s and women’s sizing. New York Times, 24 Mar. 2022 Trapani said Schild exited the backyard through a side gate and charged at officers while holding a metal framing square over his head. Perry Vandell, The Arizona Republic, 3 Jan. 2022 Healdsburg's redwood- and Bradford pear–canopied square. Kathryn Romeyn, Travel + Leisure, 4 Oct. 2021 Sarah Flint looked at pointe slippers—somewhat square-toed, but also rounded—in the design of these flats. Alexis Bennett, Vogue, 1 Apr. 2021 The driver got out to assess the damage, and the cyclist punched him square in the face. Molly Longman, refinery29.com, 22 Mar. 2021 Cut parts square and then trim away a few whisper-fine shavings of wood for a furniture-quality fit. Thomas Klenck, Popular Mechanics, 20 June 2020 Even in the Midwest, where the thin-crusted, square-cut pizzas originated, tavern pies tend to play second fiddle to the deep dish and pan pies of the world. Michael Russell, oregonlive, 25 Mar. 2020 See More

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

Word History

Etymology

Noun

Middle English, from Anglo-French esquarre, from Vulgar Latin *exquadra, from *exquadrare to square, from Latin ex- + quadrare to square — more at quadrate

First Known Use

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Adverb

circa 1582, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of square was in the 13th century

Dictionary Entries Near square

Cite this Entry

“Square.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/square. Accessed 2 Feb. 2023.

Kids Definition

square

1 of 4 noun
ˈskwa(ə)r How to pronounce square (audio)
ˈskwe(ə)r
1
: an instrument having at least one right angle and two straight edges used to draw or test right angles
2
: a rectangle with all four sides equal
3
: any of the four-sided spaces marked out on a board for playing games
4
: the product of a number multiplied by itself
4 is the square of 2
5
a
: an open place or area formed at the meeting of two or more streets

square

2 of 4 adjective
squarer; squarest
1
a
: having four equal sides and four right angles
a square piece of paper
b
: forming a right angle
a square corner
c
: having a square base
a square pyramid
2
a
: being approximately a cube
a square cabinet
b
: of a shape suggesting strength and toughness
a square jaw
square shoulders
c
: having the shape of a square as its cross section
a square tower
3
a
: being a unit of area that has the shape of a square and sides of a specified unit length
a square foot
b
: being of a specified length in each of two equal dimensions
10 feet square
4
a
: exactly adjusted : well made
b
: just entry 1 sense 2a, fair
a square deal
c
: leaving no balance : settled
d
: being tied in score
the golfers were all square after five holes
e
: large enough to satisfy
three square meals a day
5
: not knowing or following the latest styles
squareness noun

square

3 of 4 verb
squared; squaring
1
: to form with right angles, straight edges, and flat surfaces : make square or rectangular
square a timber
2
: to bring to a right angle
squared his shoulders
3
a
: to multiply (a number) by itself : to raise (a number) to the second power
b
: to find a square equal in area to
square a circle
4
: to agree or make agree
his story does not square with the facts
5
: balance entry 2 sense 1, settle
square an account
6
: to mark off into squares
7
8
: to take a fighting stance
the two squared off

square

4 of 4 adverb
: in a direct, firm, or honest manner
looked her square in the eye

Medical Definition

square

adjective
: being or converted to a unit of area equal in measure to a square each side of which measures one unit of a specified unit of length
a square foot

Legal Definition

square

adjective
: fitting the factual or legal situation at bar
we have been shown no square holding of a Florida court to that effectMilhet Caterers, Inc. v. North Western Meat, Inc., 185 So. 2d 196 (1966)
squarely adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on square

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