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Webster 1913 Edition


Symbol

Sym′bol

(sĭm′bŏl)
,
Noun.
[L.
symbolus
,
symbolum
, Gr.
σύμβολον
a sign by which one knows or infers a thing, from
συμβάλλειν
to throw or put together, to compare;
σύν
with +
βάλλειν
to throw: cf. F.
symbole
. Cf.
Emblem
,
Parable
.]
1.
A visible sign or representation of an idea; anything which suggests an idea or quality, or another thing, as by resemblance or by convention; an emblem; a representation; a type; a figure;
as, the lion is the
symbol
of courage; the lamb is the
symbol
of meekness or patience
.
A
symbol
is a sign included in the idea which it represents, e. g., an actual part chosen to represent the whole, or a lower form or species used as the representative of a higher in the same kind.
Coleridge.
2.
(Math.)
Any character used to represent a quantity, an operation, a relation, or an abbreviation.
☞ In crystallography, the symbol of a plane is the numerical expression which defines its position relatively to the assumed axes.
3.
(Theol.)
An abstract or compendium of faith or doctrine; a creed, or a summary of the articles of religion.
4.
[Gr. [GREEK] contributions.]
That which is thrown into a common fund; hence, an appointed or accustomed duty.
[Obs.]
They do their work in the days of peace . . . and come to pay their
symbol
in a war or in a plague.
Jer. Taylor.
5.
Share; allotment.
[Obs.]
The persons who are to be judged . . . shall all appear to receive their
symbol
.
Jer. Taylor.
6.
(Chem.)
An abbreviation standing for the name of an element and consisting of the initial letter of the Latin or New Latin name, or sometimes of the initial letter with a following one;
as,
C
for carbon,
Na
for sodium (Natrium),
Fe
for iron (Ferrum),
Sn
for tin (Stannum),
Sb
for antimony (Stibium), etc.
See the list of names and symbols under
Element
.
☞ In pure and organic chemistry there are symbols not only for the elements, but also for their grouping in formulas, radicals, or residues, as evidenced by their composition, reactions, synthesis, etc. See the diagram of
Benzene nucleus
, under
Benzene
.
Syn. – Emblem; figure; type. See
Emblem
.

Sym′bol

,
Verb.
T.
To symbolize.
[R.]
Tennyson.

Webster 1828 Edition


Symbol

SYM'BOL

,
Noun.
[L. symbolum; Gr. with, and to throw; to compare.]
1.
The sign or representation of any moral thing by the images or properties of natural things. Thus the lion is the symbol of courage; the lamb is the symbol of meekness or patience. Symbols are of various kinds, as types, enigmas, parables, fables, allegories, emblems, hieroglyphics, &c.
2.
An emblem or representation of something else. Thus in the eucharist, the bread and wine are called symbols of the body and blood of Christ.
3.
A letter or character which is significant. The Chinese letters are most of them symbols. The symbols in algebra are arbitrary.
4.
In medals, a certain mark or figure representing a being or thing, as a trident is the symbol of Neptune, the peacock of June, &c.
5.
Among christians, an abstract or compendium; the creed, or a summary of the articles of religion.
6.
Lot; sentence of adjudication. [Not in use.]

Definition 2022


Symbol

Symbol

See also: symbol

German

Noun

Symbol n (genitive Symbols, plural Symbole)

  1. symbol, icon

Declension

Synonyms

Related terms

Derived terms

  • Symbolcharakter
  • Friedenssymbol

symbol

symbol

See also: Symbol

English

Noun

symbol (plural symbols)

  1. A character or glyph representing an idea, concept or object.
    $ is the symbol for dollars in the US and some other countries.
    '#' is the octothorpe symbol.
    Chinese people use word symbols for writing.
    The lion is the symbol of courage; the lamb is the symbol of meekness or patience.
  2. Any object, typically material, which is meant to represent another (usually abstract) even if there is no meaningful relationship.
    The dollar symbol has no relationship to the concept of currency or any related idea.
  3. (linguistics) A type of noun whereby the form refers to the same entity independently of the context; a symbol arbitrarily denotes a referent. See also icon and index.
  4. A summary of a dogmatic statement of faith.
    The Apostles, Nicene Creed and the confessional books of Protestantism, such as the Augsburg Confession of Lutheranism are considered symbols.
  5. Visible traces or impressions, made using a writing device or tool, that are connected together and/or are slightly separated. Sometimes symbols represent objects or events that occupy space or things that are not physical and do not occupy space.
  6. (crystallography) The numerical expression which defines a plane's position relative to the assumed axes.
  7. That which is thrown into a common fund; hence, an appointed or accustomed duty.
    • Jeremy Taylor
      They do their work in the days of peace [] and come to pay their symbol in a war or in a plague.
  8. Share; allotment.
    • Jeremy Taylor
      The persons who are to be judged [] shall all appear to receive their symbol.

Derived terms

Related terms

Translations

Verb

symbol (third-person singular simple present symbols, present participle symboling or symbolling, simple past and past participle symboled or symbolled)

  1. To symbolize.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Tennyson to this entry?)

Translations

See also


Czech

Noun

symbol m

  1. symbol

Declension

Related terms


Danish

Etymology

From Ancient Greek σύμβολον (súmbolon, a sign by which one infers something; a mark, token, badge, ticket, tally, check, a signal, watchword, outward sign).

Pronunciation

  • IPA(key): /symboːl/, [symˈb̥oːˀl]

Noun

symbol n (singular definite symbolet, plural indefinite symboler)

  1. symbol

Inflection

Related terms

Derived terms

External links


Norwegian Bokmål

Etymology

From Ancient Greek

Noun

symbol n (definite singular symbolet, indefinite plural symbol or symboler, definite plural symbola or symbolene)

  1. a symbol

Related terms

Derived terms


Norwegian Nynorsk

Etymology

From Ancient Greek

Noun

symbol n (definite singular symbolet, indefinite plural symbol, definite plural symbola)

  1. a symbol

Related terms

Derived terms


Swedish

Pronunciation

Etymology

From Latin symbolum, cognate with English symbol.

Noun

symbol c

  1. symbol

Declension

Inflection of symbol 
Singular Plural
Indefinite Definite Indefinite Definite
Nominative symbol symbolen symboler symbolerna
Genitive symbols symbolens symbolers symbolernas

Derived terms

References