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section Meaning, Definition & Usage

  1. noun a self-contained part of a larger composition (written or musical)
    • he always turns first to the business section
    • the history of this work is discussed in the next section
  2. noun a very thin slice (of tissue or mineral or other substance) for examination under a microscope
    • sections from the left ventricle showed diseased tissue
  3. noun a distinct region or subdivision of a territorial or political area or community or group of people
    • no section of the nation is more ardent than the South
    • there are three synagogues in the Jewish section
  4. noun one of several parts or pieces that fit with others to constitute a whole object
    • a section of a fishing rod
    • metal sections were used below ground
    • finished the final segment of the road
  5. noun a small team of policemen working as part of a police platoon
  6. noun one of the portions into which something is regarded as divided and which together constitute a whole
    division; part.
    • the written part of the exam
    • the finance section of the company
    • the BBC's engineering division
  7. noun a land unit equal to 1 square mile
  8. noun (geometry) the area created by a plane cutting through a solid
    plane section.
  9. noun a small class of students who are part of a larger course but are taught separately
    discussion section.
    • a graduate student taught sections for the professor's lecture course
  10. noun a division of an orchestra containing all instruments of the same class
  11. noun a small army unit usually having a special function
  12. noun a specialized division of a large organization
    • you'll find it in the hardware department
    • she got a job in the historical section of the Treasury
  13. noun a segment of a citrus fruit
    • he ate a section of the orange
  14. noun the cutting of or into body tissues or organs (especially by a surgeon as part of an operation)
    surgical incision; incision.
  15. verb divide into segments
    • segment an orange
    • segment a compound word

Sec"tion noun
L. sectio, fr. secare, sectum, to cut; akin to E. saw a cutting instrument: cf. F. section. See Saw, and cf. Scion, Dissect, Insect, Secant, Segment.
  1. The act of cutting, or separation by cutting; as, the section of bodies.
  2. A part separated from something; a division; a portion; a slice. Specifically: -- (a) A distinct part or portion of a book or writing; a subdivision of a chapter; the division of a law or other writing; a paragraph; an article; hence, the character §, often used to denote such a division.
    It is hardly possible to give a distinct view of his several arguments in distinct sections. Locke.
    (b) A distinct part of a country or people, community, class, or the like; a part of a territory separated by geographical lines, or of a people considered as distinct.
    The extreme section of one class consists of bigoted dotards, the extreme section of the other consists of shallow and reckless empirics. Macaulay.
    (c) One of the portions, of one square mile each, into which the public lands of the United States are divided; one thirty-sixth part of a township. These sections are subdivided into quarter sections for sale under the homestead and preëmption laws.
  3. (Geom.) The figure made up of all the points common to a superficies and a solid which meet, or to two superficies which meet, or to two lines which meet. In the first case the section is a superficies, in the second a line, and in the third a point.
  4. (Nat. Hist.) A division of a genus; a group of species separated by some distinction from others of the same genus; -- often indicated by the sign §.
  5. (Mus.) A part of a musical period, composed of one or more phrases. See Phrase.
  6. The description or representation of anything as it would appear if cut through by any intersecting plane; depiction of what is beyond a plane passing through, or supposed to pass through, an object, as a building, a machine, a succession of strata; profile. ✍ In mechanical drawing, as in these Illustrations of a cannon, a longitudinal section (a) usually represents the object as cut through its center lengthwise and vertically; a cross or transverse section (b), as cut crosswise and vertically; and a horizontal section (c), as cut through its center horizontally. Oblique sections are made at various angles. In architecture, a vertical section is a drawing showing the interior, the thickness of the walls, ets., as if made on a vertical plane passed through a building. Syn. -- Part; portion; division. -- Section, Part. The English more commonly apply the word section to a part or portion of a body of men; as, a section of the clergy, a small section of the Whigs, etc. In the United States this use is less common, but another use, unknown or but little known in England, is very frequent, as in the phrases "the eastern section of our country," etc., the same sense being also given to the adjective sectional as, sectional feelings, interests, etc.

Webster 1913

"Rowling never met an adverb she didn't like."

-Stephen King on J.K Rowling's excessive use of adverbs.

Fear not the Adverb Hell!

Writing Improvement Software
Writing Improvement Software