Definify.com

Webster 1913 Edition


center

cen′ter

(sĕn′tẽr)
,
Noun.
[F.
centre
, fr. L.
centrum
, fr. Gr.
κέντρον
any sharp point, the point round which a circle is described, fr.
κεντεῖν
to prick, goad.]
1.
A point equally distant from the extremities of a line, figure, or body, or from all parts of the circumference of a circle; the middle point or place.
2.
The middle or central portion of anything.
3.
A principal or important point of concentration; the nucleus around which things are gathered or to which they tend; an object of attention, action, or force;
as, a
center
of attraction
.
4.
The earth.
[Obs.]
Shak.
5.
Those members of a legislative assembly (as in France) who support the existing government. They sit in the middle of the legislative chamber, opposite the presiding officer, between the conservatives or monarchists, who sit on the right of the speaker, and the radicals or advanced republicans who occupy the seats on his left, See
Right
, and
Left
.
6.
(Arch.)
A temporary structure upon which the materials of a vault or arch are supported in position until the work becomes self-supporting.
7.
(Mech.)
(a)
One of the two conical steel pins, in a lathe, etc., upon which the work is held, and about which it revolves.
(b)
A conical recess, or indentation, in the end of a shaft or other work, to receive the point of a center, on which the work can turn, as in a lathe.
☞ In a lathe the
live center
is in the spindle of the head stock; the
dead center
is on the tail stock.
Planer centers
are stocks carrying centers, when the object to be planed must be turned on its axis.
Center of an army
,
the body or troops occupying the place in the line between the wings.
Center of a curve
or
Center of a surface
(Geom.)
(a)
A point such that every line drawn through the point and terminated by the curve or surface is bisected at the point.
(b)
The fixed point of reference in polar coordinates. See
Coordinates
.
Center of curvature of a curve
(Geom.)
,
the center of that circle which has at any given point of the curve closer contact with the curve than has any other circle whatever. See
Circle
.
Center of a fleet
,
the division or column between the van and rear, or between the weather division and the lee.
Center of gravity
(Mech.)
,
that point of a body about which all its parts can be balanced, or which being supported, the whole body will remain at rest, though acted upon by gravity.
Center of gyration
(Mech.)
,
that point in a rotating body at which the whole mass might be concentrated (theoretically) without altering the resistance of the intertia of the body to angular acceleration or retardation.
Center of inertia
(Mech.)
,
the center of gravity of a body or system of bodies.
Center of motion
,
the point which remains at rest, while all the other parts of a body move round it.
Center of oscillation
,
the point at which, if the whole matter of a suspended body were collected, the time of oscillation would be the same as it is in the actual form and state of the body.
Center of percussion
,
that point in a body moving about a fixed axis at which it may strike an obstacle without communicating a shock to the axis.
Center of pressure
(Hydros.)
,
that point in a surface pressed by a fluid, at which, if a force equal to the whole pressure and in the same line be applied in a contrary direction, it will balance or counteract the whole pressure of the fluid.

Webster 1828 Edition


Center

CENTER

,
Noun.
1.
A point equally distant from the extremities of a line, figure or body; the middle point or place.
2.
The middle or central object. In an army, the body of troops occupying the place in the line between the wings. In a fleet, the division between the van and rear of the line of battle, and between the weather division and lee, in the order of sailing.
3.
A single body or house.
These institutions collected all authority into one center, kings, nobles and people.
Center of gravity, in mechanics, the point about which all the parts of a body exactly balance each other.
Center o motion, the point which remains at rest, while all the other parts of a body move round it.

CENTER

,
Verb.
T.
1.
To place on a center; to fix on a central point.
2.
To collect to a point.
Thy joys are centered all in me alone.

CENTER

,
Verb.
I.
1.
To be collected to a point.
Our hopes must center on ourselves alone.
2.
To be collected to a point; to rest on.
3.
To be placed in the middle.

Definition 2022


Center

Center

See also: center

English

Proper noun

Center

  1. A town in Colorado.
  2. A city/town in Missouri.
  3. A village in Nebraska.
  4. A city/town in North Dakota.
  5. One of two towns in Wisconsin.
  6. A city in Texas.

German

Noun

Center n (genitive Centers, plural Center)

  1. centre / center
  2. shopping centre

Declension

center

center

See also: Center

English

Alternative forms

  • centre (UK, Ireland and all commonwealth countries including Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa etc)

Noun

center (plural centers) (American)

  1. The point in the interior of a circle that is equidistant from all points on the circumference. [from 14th c.]
    • 1908, Thomas L. Heath, translating Euclid, Elements, III.9:
      If a point be taken within a circle, and more than two equal straight lines fall from the point on the circle, the point taken is the centre of the circle.
  2. The point in the interior of a sphere that is equidistant from all points on the circumference. [from 14th c.]
    • 2005, David Adam, The Guardian, 4 Jun 2005:
      Japanese scientists are to explore the centre of the Earth. Using a giant drill ship launched next month, the researchers aim to be the first to punch a hole through the rocky crust that covers our planet and to reach the mantle below.
  3. The middle portion of something; the part well away from the edges.
  4. (geometry) The point on a line that is midway between the ends.
  5. (geometry) The point in the interior of any figure of any number of dimensions that has as its coordinates the arithmetic mean of the coordinates of all points on the perimeter of the figure (or of all points in the interior for a center of volume).
  6. A place where some function or activity occurs.
    shopping center
    convention center
  7. A topic that is particularly important in a given context.
    the center of the controversy
    the center of attention
  8. (basketball) The player, generally the tallest, who plays closest to the basket.
  9. (ice hockey) The forward that generally plays between the left wing and right wing and usually takes the faceoffs.
  10. (American football, Canadian football) The person who holds the ball at the beginning of each play.
  11. (netball) A player who can go all over the court, except the shooting circles.
  12. (soccer) A pass played into the centre of the pitch.
    • 2010 December 28, Owen Phillips, “Sunderland 0 - 2 Blackpool”, in BBC:
      Bent twice sent efforts wide of the far post after cutting in from the left, Wellbeck missed his kick from an inviting centre and failed to get on the end of a looping pass when six yards out.
  13. (rugby) One of the backs operating in a central area of the pitch, either the inside centre or outside centre.
    • 2011 February 4, Gareth Roberts, “Wales 19-26 England”, in BBC:
      Gatland's side got back to within striking distance when fly-half Jones's clever pass sent centre Jonathan Davies arcing round Shontayne Hape.
  14. (architecture) A temporary structure upon which the materials of a vault or arch are supported in position until the work becomes self-supporting.
  15. (engineering) One of the two conical steel pins in a lathe, etc., upon which the work is held, and about which it revolves.
  16. (engineering) A conical recess or indentation in the end of a shaft or other work, to receive the point of a center, on which the work can turn, as in a lathe.
  17. (politics) The ensemble of moderate or centrist political parties.

Synonyms

Antonyms

Derived terms

Translations

Adjective

center (not comparable) (American)

  1. Of, at, or related to a center.

Synonyms

Translations

Verb

center (third-person singular simple present centers, present participle centering, simple past and past participle centered) (American)

  1. (transitive) To cause (an object) to occupy the center of an area.
    • Prior
      Thy joys are centred all in me alone.
    He centered the heading of the document.
  2. (transitive) To cause (some attribute, such as a mood or voltage) to be adjusted to a value which is midway between the extremes.
  3. (transitive) To give (something) a central basis.
    • 2012, Michael Kaminski et al., Myth, Media, and Culture in Star Wars: An Anthology, chapter 7, 87:
      However, Lucas also centered the plot around the protection of the secret Death Star plans, which now filled the role of the clan treasure the enemy is seeking in Hidden Fortress; []
  4. (intransitive) To concentrate on (something), to pay close attention to (something).
    The plot centers on the life of a working-class family.
    The discussion centered around the recent issues.
  5. (engineering) To form a recess or indentation for the reception of a center.

Translations

Related terms

Usage notes

The spelling centre is standard in UK English. In Canada it is typical in proper names, e.g. Toronto Centre for the Arts, but "center" is also commonly used otherwise, e.g. shopping center, center of town. Both spellings can be encountered even in the same text, e.g. in NHL hockey where there are many Canadian and US teams, reference might be made to the "center" forward position and a "centre" where a game is played.

The indirect object of the intransitive verb is given the prepositions on, in, at, or around. At is primary used only in mathematical contexts.

Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary observes that center around is objected to by some people on the grounds that it is illogical, but states that it is an idiom, and thus that such objections are irrelevant. It offers revolve around as an alternative to center around for those who would avoid the idiom.

Anagrams


Spanish

Noun

center m (plural centers)

  1. (baseball) center

Swedish

Noun

center c, n

  1. n a centre; a place where some function or activity occurs; see also centrum
  2. c (uncountable, politics) the political centre, parties and politicians in between the left and right wings
  3. c (sports) a centre; midplayer of a team

Declension

Inflection of center 
Singular Plural
Indefinite Definite Indefinite Definite
Nominative center centret center centren
Genitive centers centrets centers centrens