# mean

^{1}

[ meen ]

/ min /

### verb (used with object), meant, mean·ing.

### verb (used without object), meant, mean·ing.

to be minded or disposed; have intentions: Beware, she means ill, despite her solicitous manner.

### Idioms for mean

mean well,
to have good intentions; try to be kind or helpful: Her constant queries about your health must be tiresome, but I'm sure she means well.

## Origin of mean

^{1}

before 900; Middle English
menen, Old English
mǣnan; cognate with German
meinen, Dutch
meenen

## synonym study for mean

1. See
intend.

## WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH mean

mean mien## Words nearby mean

## Definition for mean (2 of 3)

mean

^{2}
[ meen ]

/ min /

### adjective, mean·er, mean·est.

## Origin of mean

^{2}

## synonym study for mean

2.
Mean,
low,
base,
sordid, and
vile all refer to ignoble characteristics worthy of dislike, contempt, or disgust.
Mean suggests pettiness and small-mindedness:
to take a mean advantage.
Low suggests coarseness and vulgarity:
low company.
Base suggests selfish cowardice or moral depravity:
base motives.
Sordid suggests a wretched uncleanness, or sometimes an avariciousness without dignity or moral scruples:
a sordid slum; sordid gain.
Vile suggests disgusting foulness or repulsiveness:
vile insinuation; a vile creature.
3. See
stingy

^{1}.## Definition for mean (3 of 3)

mean

^{3}
[ meen ]

/ min /

### noun

### adjective

occupying a middle position or an intermediate place, as in kind, quality, degree, or time: a mean speed; a mean course; the mean annual rainfall.

## Origin of mean

^{3}

## WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH mean

mean median## Example sentences from the Web for mean

## British Dictionary definitions for mean (1 of 3)

mean

^{1}
/ (miːn) /

### verb means, meaning or meant (mainly tr)

## Word Origin for mean

Old English
mænan; compare Old Saxon
mēnian to intend, Dutch
meenen

## usage for mean

In standard English,
mean should not be followed by
for when expressing intention:
I didn't mean this to happen (not
I didn't mean for this to happen)

## British Dictionary definitions for mean (2 of 3)

mean

^{2}
/ (miːn) /

### adjective

## Derived forms of mean

meanly, adverb meanness, noun## Word Origin for mean

C12: from Old English
gemǣne common; related to Old High German
gimeini, Latin
communis common, at first with no pejorative sense

## British Dictionary definitions for mean (3 of 3)

mean

^{3}
/ (miːn) /

### noun

the middle point, state, or course between limits or extremes

moderation

maths

- the second and third terms of a proportion, as b and c in a/b = c/d
- another name for average (def. 2) See also geometric mean

statistics
a statistic obtained by multiplying each possible value of a variable by its probability and then taking the sum or integral over the range of the variable

### adjective

intermediate or medium in size, quantity, etc

occurring halfway between extremes or limits; average

See also
means

## Word Origin for mean

C14: via Anglo-Norman from Old French
moien, from Late Latin
mediānus
median

## Medical definitions for mean

mean

[ mēn ]

### n.

Something having a position, quality, or condition midway between extremes; a medium.

A number that typifies a set of numbers, such as a geometric mean or an arithmetic mean.

The average value of a set of numbers.

### adj.

Occupying a middle or intermediate position between two extremes.

Intermediate in size, extent, quality, time, or degree; medium.

## Scientific definitions for mean

mean

[ mēn ]

A number or quantity having a value that is intermediate between other numbers or quantities, especially an arithmetic mean or average. See more at arithmetic mean.

Either the second or third term of a proportion of four terms. In the proportion 23 = 46, the means are 3 and 4. Compare extreme.

## Cultural definitions for mean (1 of 2)

## Cultural definitions for mean (2 of 2)

mean

In statistics, an average of a group of numbers or data points. With a group of numbers, the mean is obtained by adding them and dividing by the number of numbers in the group. Thus the mean of five, seven, and twelve is eight (twenty-four divided by three). (Compare median and mode.)

## Idioms and Phrases with mean

mean