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square Meaning, Definition & Usage

  1. noun (geometry) a plane rectangle with four equal sides and four right angles; a four-sided regular polygon
    • you can compute the area of a square if you know the length of its sides
  2. noun the product of two equal terms
    second power.
    • nine is the second power of three
    • gravity is inversely proportional to the square of the distance
  3. noun an open area at the meeting of two or more streets
    public square.
  4. noun something approximating the shape of a square
  5. noun someone who doesn't understand what is going on
  6. noun a formal and conservative person with old-fashioned views
    square toes.
  7. noun any artifact having a shape similar to a plane geometric figure with four equal sides and four right angles
    • a checkerboard has 64 squares
  8. noun a hand tool consisting of two straight arms at right angles; used to construct or test right angles
    • the carpenter who built this room must have lost his square
  9. verb make square
    square up.
    • Square the circle
    • square the wood with a file
  10. verb raise to the second power
  11. verb cause to match, as of ideas or acts
  12. verb position so as to be square
    • He squared his shoulders
  13. verb be compatible with
    • one idea squares with another
  14. verb pay someone and settle a debt
    • I squared with him
  15. verb turn the paddle; in canoeing
  16. verb turn the oar, while rowing
  17. adjective having four equal sides and four right angles or forming a right angle
    • a square peg in a round hole
    • a square corner
  18. adjective characterized by honesty and fairness
    • straight dealing
    • a square deal
  19. adjective satellite providing abundant nourishment
    solid; substantial; hearty; satisfying.
    • a hearty meal
    • good solid food
    • ate a substantial breakfast
    • four square meals a day
  20. adjective satellite leaving no balance
    • my account with you is now all square
  21. adjective satellite without evasion or compromise
    straight; straightforward.
    • a square contradiction
    • he is not being as straightforward as it appears
  22. adjective satellite rigidly conventional or old-fashioned
  23. adverb in a straight direct way
    • looked him squarely in the eye
    • ran square into me
  24. adverb in a square shape
    • a squarely cut piece of paper
    • folded the sheet of paper square
  25. adverb firmly and solidly
    • hit the ball squarely
    • the bat met the ball squarely
    • planted his great bulk square before his enemy

Square noun
OF. esquarre, esquierre, F. équerre a carpenter's square (cf. It. squadra), fr. (assumed) LL. exquadrare to make square; L. ex + quadrus a square, fr. quattuor four. See Four, and cf. Quadrant, Squad, Squer a square.
  1. (Geom.) (a) The corner, or angle, of a figure. Obs. (b) A parallelogram having four equal sides and four right angles.
  2. Hence, anything which is square, or nearly so; as: (a) A square piece or fragment.
    He bolted his food down his capacious throat in squares of three inches. Sir W. Scott.
    (b) A pane of glass. (c) (Print.) A certain number of lines, forming a portion of a column, nearly square; -- used chiefly in reckoning the prices of advertisements in newspapers. (d) (Carp.) One hundred superficial feet.
  3. An area of four sides, generally with houses on each side; sometimes, a solid block of houses; also, an open place or area for public use, as at the meeting or intersection of two or more streets.
    The statue of Alexander VII. stands in the large square of the town. Addison.
  4. (Mech. & Joinery) An instrument having at least one right angle and two or more straight edges, used to lay out or test square work. It is of several forms, as the T square, the carpenter's square, the try-square., etc.
  5. Hence, a pattern or rule. Obs.
  6. (Arith. & Alg.) The product of a number or quantity multiplied by itself; thus, 64 is the square of 8, for 8 × 8 = 64; the square of a + b is a2 + 2ab + b2.
  7. Exact proportion; justness of workmanship and conduct; regularity; rule. Obs.
    They of Galatia [were] much more out of square. Hooker.
    I have not kept my square. Shak.
  8. (Mil.) A body of troops formed in a square, esp. one formed to resist a charge of cavalry; a squadron. "The brave squares of war." Shak.
  9. Fig.: The relation of harmony, or exact agreement; equality; level.
    We live not on the square with such as these. Dryden.
  10. (Astrol.) The position of planets distant ninety degrees from each other; a quadrate. Obs.
  11. The act of squaring, or quarreling; a quarrel. R.
  12. The front of a woman's dress over the bosom, usually worked or embroidered. Obs. Shak.
Square adjective
  1. (Geom.) Having four equal sides and four right angles; as, a square figure.
  2. Forming a right angle; as, a square corner.
  3. Having a shape broad for the height, with rectilineal and angular rather than curving outlines; as, a man of a square frame.
  4. Exactly suitable or correspondent; true; just.
    She's a most truimphant lady, if report be square to her. Shak.
  5. Rendering equal justice; exact; fair; honest, as square dealing.
  6. Even; leaving no balance; as, to make or leave the accounts square.
  7. Leaving nothing; hearty; vigorous.
    By Heaven, square eaters. More meat, I say. Beau. & Fl.
  8. (Naut.) At right angles with the mast or the keel, and parallel to the horizon; -- said of the yards of a square-rigged vessel when they are so braced. Square is often used in self-explaining compounds or combination, as in square-built, square-cornered, square-cut, square-nosed, etc.
Square transitive verb
Cf. OF. escarrer, esquarrer. See Square, n.
imperfect & past participle Squared ; present participle & verbal noun Squaring
  1. To form with four sides and four right angles. Spenser.
  2. To form with right angles and straight lines, or flat surfaces; as, to square mason's work.
  3. To compare with, or reduce to, any given measure or standard. Shak.
  4. To adjust; to regulate; to mold; to shape; to fit; as, to square our actions by the opinions of others.
    Square my trial To my proportioned strength. Milton.
  5. To make even, so as leave no remainder of difference; to balance; as, to square accounts.
  6. (Math.) To multiply by itself; as, to square a number or a quantity.
  7. (Astrol.) To hold a quartile position respecting.
    The icy Goat and Crab that square the Scales. Creech.
  8. (Naut.) To place at right angles with the keel; as, to square the yards.
Square intransitive verb
  1. To accord or agree exactly; to be consistent with; to conform or agree; to suit; to fit.
    No works shall find acceptamce . . . That square not truly with the Scripture plan. Cowper.
  2. To go to opposite sides; to take an attitude of offense or defense, or of defiance; to quarrel. Obs.
    Are you such fools To square for this? Shak.
  3. To take a boxing attitude; -- often with up, sometimes with off. Colloq. Dickens.

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!

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