Definition of measure in English:


See synonyms for measure

Translate measure into Spanish

transitive verb

[with object]
  • 1Ascertain the size, amount, or degree of (something) by using an instrument or device marked in standard units or by comparing it with an object of known size.

    ‘the amount of water collected is measured in pints’
    • ‘they will measure up the room and install the cabinets’
    • ‘Either measure the amount in ounces or measure the depth of water in each jar.’
    • ‘A nautical instrument used to measure the altitude of stars and planets in the sky in order to determine a ship's exact direction.’
    • ‘Devices that measure the evaporation of water such as atmometers may be useful.’
    • ‘The equipment is similar to the device for measuring earthquakes.’
    • ‘The wireless device measures a variety of parameters such as temperature, pulse, blood oxygen saturation and heart rate.’
    • ‘Using a standard method, they measured the hybrids' fermentation efficiency.’
    • ‘The group's device allows researchers to measure the heat given off by these electrons, and devise ways to get around the problem, Blick says.’
    • ‘They can measure force - the amount of pressure being exerted.’
    • ‘If a water meter isn't installed on the system, a short-term pumping plant test can be run using one of a variety of devices to measure the flow rate.’
    • ‘Geologists use centimeter-precision GPS devices to measure the movement of continental plates.’
    • ‘A rotary encoder is a digital input device used to measure angular rotation and direction.’
    • ‘The units will also measure electromagnetic fields from other sources, such as radio and TV.’
    • ‘Volatility is typically measured by the standard deviation of the return of an investment.’
    • ‘Now you've also been attaching devices to them that measure the depth to which they dive.’
    • ‘The movement of the pillar is measured in millimetres.’
    • ‘For one test, a device called a reflectometer is used to measure the degree of whiteness in processed tuber samples destined to become chips.’
    • ‘When the tank team fed the fish they also measured the water temperature and counted the fish.’
    • ‘He's currently in our waters to measure whale numbers, and to audit the impact of man-made pollutants on marine creatures.’
    • ‘Plus, we provide the control and safety systems and instrumentation used to measure the oil flow.’
    • ‘Continue to pump out water until the pump turns off, and again measure the water level.’
    take the measurements of, calculate, compute, estimate, count, meter, quantify, weigh, size, evaluate, rate, assess, appraise, gauge, plumb, measure out, determine, judge, survey
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1Be of (a specified size or degree)
      ‘the fabric measures 45 inches wide’
      • ‘An earthquake measuring 5.5 in magnitude rocked the region today.’
      • ‘That's no problem as the juicer measures a compact 15 inches high by ten inches wide, so it can fit easily into most kitchen cupboards or presses.’
      • ‘In October an earthquake measuring 6.8 on the Richter scale struck Japan's Niigata prefecture.’
      • ‘Last September, Taiwan suffered a massive earthquake which measured 7.3 on the Richter scale.’
      • ‘It measures 7.75 inches wide by 4.25 inches high by 12.75 inches long and weighs about 4 pounds.’
      • ‘The earthquake, measuring 6.8 on the Richter scale, hit the country on Saturday afternoon.’
      • ‘The sculptures, measuring 17 to 31 inches tall, feature the romantic images of beautiful women and couples, which Hessam often depicts in his paintings.’
      • ‘TVs measuring 3 or 4 inches thick are opening up placement opportunities hitherto unknown, including above fireplaces and in kitchens and game rooms.’
      • ‘The display is typically a computer screen with 480 pixels down and 640 pixels across, measuring approximately 0.7 inches on the diagonal.’
      • ‘It's much larger than the other two, measuring 78 by 48 inches.’
      • ‘The rectangular slab is slightly curved, measuring 17 inches thick at the center and tapering to 10 inches on the sides.’
      • ‘Of the 21 works at Howard Scott, The Open Boat is the largest, measuring 45 by 69 inches.’
      • ‘The suggested retail price of this year's poster, which measures 28 by 23 inches, is $30.’
      • ‘The square measured approximately two inches from side to side.’
      • ‘Last year's international survey of recent architecture measured 18 by 12 inches and took a trolley to move about the room.’
      • ‘Sewn from a rich green vinyl, the outside sleeves each measured about 16 inches long.’
      • ‘The posters, which measure 27 by 40 inches, will be on sale through March 15 for $25.’
      • ‘Madeira is the largest of the islands, measuring about 57 km wide and 22 km long.’
      • ‘The paper editions measure approximately 24 by 34 inches and the canvas editions measure 40 by 55 inches.’
      • ‘The length of the dorsal wall of the medial claw is approximately 7.5 cm when measured from the apex to the coronary band.’
    2. 1.2Ascertain the size and proportions of (someone) in order to make or provide clothes for them.
      ‘he will be measured for his tuxedo next week’
      • ‘They were tailors, and they promptly began measuring her for clothes.’
      • ‘It raised its rotting hands, mentally measuring Ben to see what size clothes he was best suited for.’
      • ‘I am going to measure you and then recommend a bra size.’
      • ‘‘My older daddy is gonna make it for me, just as soon as he measures me,’ Katie said proudly.’
      • ‘We won't see any suit, just you being measured for a suit.’
      • ‘They measured me: arms and legs, waist and chest.’
      • ‘She tried not to shift as the plump woman measured her.’
      • ‘While Vandy measured him, Doriel began to tell one of the more tame war stories, but Malindila and Vandy both shook their heads.’
      • ‘Elizabeth stepped off the stool and began looking around the small shop as Kathryn was measured.’
      • ‘Sakura blushed as he measured her, his skin brushing against hers now and then.’
      • ‘It fit her perfectly, as if David had measured her himself, but it wasn't what she was used too.’
      • ‘Make sure that you're properly measured by a qualified fitter at a reputable ski shop.’
      • ‘Mareen came in with two palace tailors to measure me for the wedding.’
      • ‘She turned to Colette and lifted her down from the bed and asked the modiste to measure her.’
      • ‘Caderyn measured her, as one of the blacksmiths wrote the measurements and began to draw the sword.’
      • ‘She measured me every which way: arms, back, height, shoulders, waist, hips, chest.’
      • ‘When we got back, Jen showed me some simple stitches and measured me for a dress before the dance.’
      • ‘He'd forgotten how maddening it was being measured for new clothes.’
      • ‘A tailor was brought in to measure Willow for clothes.’
      • ‘They had been being standing in Gayle's sitting room for nearly six hours, being continuously measured and pricked by pins and needles for clothes to be worn tomorrow.’
    3. 1.3measure something outTake an exact quantity or fixed amount of something.
      ‘she helped to measure out the ingredients’
      • ‘However, compared to how much it costs to buy a small 1/2 lb block of chocolate normally, it turned out to be good value, and it keeps well if you store it in a cool dark place, not to mention the ease with which you can measure it out!’
      • ‘Mama took some time cutting the sugar-cake and I was certain it was because she was measuring it out, making sure everyone got the same sized piece.’
      • ‘I don't measure them out in coffee spoons, you know.’
      • ‘While his mom measured out the ingredients, it became our job to stir; he would stir, and then hand it to me for my turn.’
      mark off, mark the boundaries of, mark the limits of, measure out, demarcate, delimit, delineate, outline, describe, define, stake out
      pour out, dole out, deal out
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  • 2Estimate or assess the extent, quality, value, or effect of (something)

    ‘it is hard to measure teaching ability’
    • ‘Many corporations are recognizing the importance of measuring a variety of factors, says Hoog.’
    • ‘It's very hard for me to measure the success of that.’
    • ‘Contemporary buildings have long lost their ability to accurately measure the urban significance of what they hold.’
    • ‘The hard part in measuring a site's success is often determining what the goals of the site should be - what should you be looking for.’
    • ‘One typically measures the quality of a published scholarly book by an important pedagogical yardstick.’
    • ‘There is a growing interest in evaluating teachers by measuring student learning.’
    • ‘The amount of energy and intelligence and direction that the right CEO can bring to a corporation can be the single most determining factor in measuring the success of the company.’
    • ‘Companies need to take a broad prospective to measure the true value of their search engine marketing efforts.’
    choose carefully, select with care, consider, think carefully about, plan, calculate
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    1. 2.1measure someone/something againstJudge someone or something by comparison with (a certain standard)
      ‘she did not need to measure herself against some ideal’
      • ‘In 50 years' time, will we still be measuring educational standards against O-levels?’
      • ‘Districts choose from commercially available standardized tests to measure students against national norms.’
      • ‘He set standards that all great bowlers are measured against.’
      • ‘The guide also comprised several small tables measuring universities against a number of criteria.’
      • ‘As such, we've established baselines that we need to be constantly measuring our performance against.’
      • ‘Instead, it uses an independent survey programme that measures its performance against the charter.’
      • ‘For the first time ever, I realized that my mother measured my achievements against those of my sisters.’
      • ‘I encourage organizations to measure their financial performance against two-year plans.’
      • ‘Before I was able to find such a host, I had to measure each company against four stringent criteria.’
      • ‘Each person's abilities are measured against the job requirements and expected tasks.’
      compare with, contrast with, put into competition with
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    2. 2.2measure upno object Reach the required or expected standard; fulfill expectations.
      ‘I'm afraid we didn't measure up to the standards they set’
      • ‘I had been making my first movie in my head for so long, I don't think anything would have measured up to my standards.’
      • ‘If the milk measures up to quality standards, it is hooked up to a receiving pump, passed through a filter and forwarded to one of six silos depending on its composition.’
      • ‘The table below shows how the United States measures up to this simple standard of fairness.’
      • ‘Sadly, the rest of the film doesn't measure up to her impressive standards.’
      • ‘He didn't see how he could ever measure up to his father's standards.’
      • ‘Here we have a clear cut case of film trying to measure up to a literary work, or of an audience expecting to make such a comparison.’
      • ‘Many companies seem to have set too high a standard for their employees to measure up to.’
      • ‘It must be their tragic flaws that make them fail to measure up in our eyes.’
      • ‘I wanted to conquer this fear of not measuring up, so I took a ton of classes.’
      • ‘If it's not measuring up, what else needs to be done?’
      come up to standard, achieve the required standard, fulfil expectations, fill the bill, fit the bill, pass muster, do well
      achieve, meet, come up to, equal, be equal to, match, rival, vie with, bear comparison with, be on a level with, serve, satisfy, fulfil, comply with
      View synonyms
    3. 2.3Scrutinize (someone) keenly in order to form an assessment of them.
      ‘the two shook hands and silently measured each other up’
      • ‘I looked at the family more closely because I could tell that they were measuring me up.’
      • ‘Narrowed brown eyes studied her, measuring her up.’
      • ‘She glared at Ellee, measuring her up with her own angry eyes.’
      • ‘He glanced at her out of the corner of his eye, measuring her up.’
      • ‘Alice looked up at me and measured me up in her vision.’
      • ‘Caleb looked at me for a second or two like he had measured me up and made his decision.’
      • ‘She frowned at him and measured him up with a glance.’
      • ‘Harry measured her up, wondering whether to say any more.’
      • ‘I have measured her up and she seems to be the only one I can think of who is worthy of you.’
      • ‘While I was measuring up my aunt, she was giving me the once over too.’
      evaluate, rate, assess, appraise, judge, adjudge, weigh up, size up, survey
      View synonyms
  • 3 archaic Travel over (a certain distance or area)

    • ‘we must measure twenty miles today’



/ˈmeZHər/ /ˈmɛʒər/


  • 1A plan or course of action taken to achieve a particular purpose.

    ‘cost-cutting measures’
    • ‘children were evacuated as a precautionary measure’
    • ‘A company spokesman said no further cost-cutting measures were planned for its Irish operations.’
    • ‘It said cost-cutting measures and cost control remain the focus for more than one-third of organisations in 2004.’
    • ‘Banks will also be asked to draw up measures to achieve gender equality, and agree a plan for achieving targets.’
    • ‘It added that these international players have started initiating cost-cutting measures to improve their cost-structure.’
    • ‘‘Of course, we understand Dublin's desire to take precautionary measures,’ a British spokesman said.’
    • ‘The Green Party's new election manifesto contains a programme of realistic, mutually consistent and self-reinforcing measures to achieve localisation.’
    • ‘But the remedial measures planned expose the government's failure to understand the realities that the country will face in the coming decades.’
    • ‘Boston also contends that the plan does not offer measures to stimulate the economy.’
    • ‘Another measure planned will allow for cross-investments between sub-funds run by the same fund manager.’
    • ‘The company has already said it will take a restructuring charge this year due to cost-cutting measures in its operations.’
    • ‘The Board was planning measures which would lead to the reduction of the illegal practice.’
    • ‘Some of these measures have been achieved, to an extent, but often outside the UN framework.’
    • ‘But the Court said that, while such an objective was legitimate, the measures used to achieve it went beyond what was necessary.’
    • ‘It must publish and implement clear, enforceable measures to achieve enhanced productivity from those that will still be employed by the state.’
    • ‘This is part of our precautionary measure to avoid double claiming and unwarranted abuse of this program by some unscrupulous elements.’
    • ‘Layoffs, streamlining operations, and other cost cutting measures are the norm these days as businesses contemplate their futures.’
    • ‘Control measures should be initiated as soon as possible, both to improve effectiveness and reduce total control costs.’
    • ‘There are, however, control measures in operation which reduce this risk.’
    • ‘The bad news is that more cost-cutting measures are likely.’
    • ‘Don't assume someone else will clean up after an accident, and take precautionary measures to prevent the next one.’
    action, act, course, course of action, deed, proceeding, procedure, step, means, expedient
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    1. 1.1A legislative bill.
      ‘the Senate passed the measure by a 48–30 vote’
      • ‘Yet the odds are against the measure as legislated policy.’
      • ‘In this tidal wave of deregulatory measures, the anti-discrimination legislation escaped almost unscathed.’
      • ‘Since 1997, the UK construction sector has seen the introduction of a raft of legislative measures and incentives.’
      • ‘All of these legislative measures made it much easier for labor unions to accomplish their goals.’
      • ‘In an exclusive interview finance minister Charlie McCreevy discusses tax measures in the Finance Bill, tax amnesties, the bank levy and public spending.’
      • ‘Those backing the Bill say the new measures simply bring new communication technologies in line with regulations governing traditional telephony services.’
      • ‘Many other counties, including Sonoma, Alameda, and Santa Barbara, are organizing to pass similar measures.’
      • ‘The new measures in the Pensions Bill requiring consultation on changes to future benefits will be welcome from an employee's perspective.’
      • ‘Protestors said that the measures in the bill are similar to those recently introduced in China.’
      • ‘The bill extends measures aimed at individuals and to lesser extent corporations.’
      • ‘The European Council has passed the measure but the deadline for its adoption into the laws of EU member states is still 15 months away.’
      • ‘Vetoes, threats of vetoes, and government shutdowns kept most anti-environmental measures from becoming law.’
      • ‘However, before becoming law the measure will have to go through several more stages and needs to be approved by EU ministers.’
      • ‘In a bold response, Congressional leaders added a measure to the energy bill raising fuel economy by one mile per gallon.’
      • ‘Already, more than two dozen states have passed measures against garbage mail.’
      • ‘The measure passed in 2000 was to finish the job.’
      • ‘In 1997, the House passed a measure to abolish the agency, but the Senate restored its funding.’
      • ‘He signed the measure into law on May 9 of that year.’
      • ‘Critics of the measure worry that the bill will depress the price of US labour in the tech sector.’
      statute, act, bill, law, legislation
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    2. 1.2 archaic Punishment or retribution imposed or inflicted on someone.
      • ‘Sir Walter had hard measure dealt out to him by his vain and weak sovereign’
  • 2A standard unit used to express the size, amount, or degree of something.

    ‘a furlong is an obsolete measure of length’
    • ‘tables of weights and measures’
    • ‘Most confusing are the measures of kilos, hectares, kilometers, centimeters, and grams.’
    • ‘It was an old one, with weight and measures on the top.’
    • ‘Invariable uniformity of value in the currency, has a relation to the interests of the people, similar to that of uniformity of weights and measures.’
    • ‘The unit of toxin measure is the hemagglutinating unit (hau).’
    • ‘Similarly, units of measure had to be reconciled.’
    • ‘You already know about selecting your units of measure.’
    • ‘As all units of measure are determined arbitrarily in the first place, though not fixed by law, obviously they can be altered by law.’
    • ‘For that it needed a flexible, easily deployed system that would enable operations people to forecast by various units of measure.’
    • ‘The basic mechanisms of RAM memory are detailed, and memory units of measure are outlined and explained.’
    • ‘In layman's terms, standard deviation is a unit of statistical measure that also expresses the probability of a given outcome arising.’
    system, standard, units, scale
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    1. 2.1A system or scale of standard measuring units.
      ‘the original dimensions were in imperial measure’
      • ‘Often the two sets of data have very different scales of measure, so a bar graph would not work.’
      statute, act, bill, law, legislation
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    2. 2.2A particular amount of something.
      • ‘ a measure of egg white as a binding agent’
    3. 2.3A standard official amount of an alcoholic drink as served in a licensed establishment.
      ‘heavy drinking may be five measures of spirits per day’
      • ‘Don't let the late-night munchies make you pay £1.50 for a Mars bar or £6 for a single measure of spirits.’
      portion, quantity, amount, quota, ration, allowance, allocation
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    4. 2.4A container of standard capacity used for taking fixed amounts of a substance.
      • ‘gifts have included silver measures from a whiskey company’
    5. 2.5A graduated rod or tape used for ascertaining the size of something.
      • ‘most schools had only metric measures available’
      ruler, tape measure, rule, gauge, meter, scale, level, yardstick
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    6. 2.6Mathematics A quantity contained in another an exact number of times; a divisor.
    7. 2.7Printing The width of a full line of type or print, typically expressed in picas.
  • 3A certain quantity or degree of something.

    ‘the states retain a large measure of independence’
    • ‘This they did with a fair measure of success from the 1940s through to the 1970s.’
    • ‘Well, if we're all still speaking at the end and the PIC site is being accessed and used, we have a good measure of success.’
    • ‘There was more than one instance where claws sunk into soft tissue and offered them a small measure of success.’
    • ‘Creative Assembly has done a masterful job of balancing the various factions' capabilities while still retaining a significant measure of historical accuracy.’
    • ‘Indeed, a good measure of success in this endeavour has already been achieved.’
    • ‘She concentrated on centering herself, achieving a slight measure of control.’
    • ‘By the late 70s he had achieved a measure of fame.’
    • ‘Much of her art has required a substantial measure of patience in its extended procedures.’
    • ‘The carpet beside the bed indicates a chamber decorated for Costanza's lying in; its bare floor indicates a measure of austerity appropriate to her station.’
    certain amount, amount, degree, quantity
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    1. 3.1An indication or means of assessing the degree, extent, or quality of something.
      ‘it was a measure of the team's problems that they were still working after 2 a.m.’
      • ‘It would at least have given a clear measure of the extent of anti-agreement sentiment in the unionist community.’
      • ‘It is a measure of the quality you can expect to hear, however, that whatever you pay to see them will probably be worth it.’
      • ‘I'm happy to accept this wager as a measure of the quality of my predictions about the long term sustainability of commons-based peer production.’
      • ‘That alone is a measure of the extent to which the listeners were drawn into the music, but subsequent conversation proved the point.’
      • ‘Customer loyalty and satisfaction are key measures of success.’
      • ‘This is one of the most visible and encouraging measures of the success of these institutions.’
      yardstick, test, standard, norm, barometer, touchstone, litmus test, criterion, benchmark
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  • 4The rhythm of a piece of poetry or a piece of music.

    ‘The golden measure of poetry does not yet exist, only the rhythm of the maracas, the exact sound of the kettledrum.’
    • ‘The show coasted on sheer mastery of compas, the rhythmic measure that defines all flamenco, and on the charisma of the artists probing the art's dark and light moods.’
    metre, cadence, rhythm, foot
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    1. 4.1A particular metrical unit or group.
      • ‘measures of two or three syllables are more frequent in English prose’
    2. 4.2North American Any of the sections, typically of equal time value, into which a musical composition is divided, shown on a score by vertical lines across the staff; bar.
      ‘Play the last four notes of each measure staccato, or make a crescendo into the next measure.’
      • ‘We sense the tragedy of the poetic ballad and the noble lineage of its characters in the very opening measures of the musical rendering.’
      • ‘There are rarely more than four measures of music without a voice-over.’
      • ‘I can't think of too many recitals where you'd hire two extra singers for a few measures of music.’
      • ‘The first sixteen measures end with an arpeggiated cadence in piano two.’
      • ‘On the second, they were shown the first two measures of each piece and then asked to play as much as they could remember (cued recall).’
      • ‘The first few measures of music drifted easily through the air, reaching Jynx's ears and beckoning her to find its source.’
      • ‘At measure 31, a cadenza is marked in the flute parts; however, it is not noted in the piano part or the original score.’
      • ‘Medtner's concerto storms right from the opening measures and sings heroically throughout.’
      • ‘I heard the first few measures of Mozart's third violin concerto in my head set to the rhythm of the crude chant.’
      • ‘The first four measures sound practiced and include accurate articulation, steady rhythm and even a dynamic shade or two.’
      • ‘The final presto measures will leave you breathless.’
      • ‘His playing is so awful in these few measures, which form the very heart of the piece, as to create a metaphor for his performance of the entire work.’
      • ‘This practice technique establishes the student's security in starting a work on downbeats of measures.’
      • ‘At his first rehearsal with us he conducted about two measures and then put his baton down.’
      • ‘In measures 68 and 69, an A-major chord, the dominant of the key, is sounded, signaling the end of the piece.’
      • ‘Fingering is given where hand position shifts are required, on chromatic lines and on first beats of measures where a new phrase begins.’
      • ‘Could the French horn line be omitted for a few measures without disturbing the score's overall harmony and rhythmic flow?’
      • ‘Students coordinate some measures naturally, while stumbling through other more difficult measures.’
      • ‘The second movement is morbidly dreamy, and its final measures have never sounded so beautiful!’
      • ‘At a signal, they stop for six measures but continue to count silently with no physical movement.’
    3. 4.3 archaic A dance, typically one that is grave or stately.
      ‘now tread we a measure!’
      • ‘The birds twitter, the horn calls back, the mountain folk dance a droll measure, and all's right with the Alpine world.’
      • ‘Ben watched with amazement that turned to pride as Hoss delicately guided Alberta Evans into the first few measures of the dance.’
      • ‘Ian laughed lightly and then swept her into the first measure of the dance.’
      dance, step, caper, hop
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  • 5measureswith modifier A group of rock strata.



/ˈmeZHər/ /ˈmɛʒər/


    beyond measure
    • To a very great extent.

      ‘it irritates him beyond measure’
      • ‘The previous night had rendered me absolutely useless, as I had stayed up all night working on the next-to-last chapter of my book, and was exhausted beyond measure.’
      • ‘Relieved beyond measure, he downed the pill gratefully.’
      • ‘It was perverse beyond measure, but it was not selfish.’
      • ‘They are known to be valiant and brave beyond measure.’
      • ‘He had been rich beyond measure, and suddenly he was poor.’
      • ‘The idea that she might kill him terrified him beyond measure.’
      • ‘He nodded understandingly, but I knew he was puzzled beyond measure.’
      • ‘She padded her brow and face several times with the sleeve of her robe, and looked fatigued beyond measure.’
      • ‘Rachel pressed her lips together, confused beyond measure as to whether she wanted him to go or stay.’
      • ‘She had always had a love for beautiful things, and these were beautiful beyond measure.’
    for good measure
    • In addition to what has already been done, said, or given.

      ‘he added a couple of chili peppers for good measure’
      • ‘All the major hits are here with a couple of new tracks thrown in for good measure.’
      • ‘He didn't let the weakness last long; he shoved me again for good measure.’
      • ‘There's even some romance thrown in for good measure.’
      • ‘A cash bonus of £25 is being offered to those who open an account online and free annual travel insurance is thrown in for good measure.’
      • ‘Haley rolls her eyes and splashes him one more time for good measure.’
      • ‘He had on his hunting clothes but he added a cloak for good measure.’
      • ‘Some have even thrown insurance into the mix for good measure.’
      • ‘Could I have a copy of your report just for good measure?’
      • ‘I scrawled the word on the board and underlined it twice for good measure.’
      • ‘I crossed my fingers underneath the table, and my legs too for good measure.’
    have the measure of
    • Be aware of or familiar with the character or abilities of (someone or something)

      • ‘Murray looked as though he had the measure of Herbert's crafty game’
    in — measure
    • To the degree specified.

      ‘his rapid promotion was due in some measure to his friendship with the CEO’
      • ‘This is in large measure due to the feeling that the rules of behaviour in international affairs are in the process of being re-written.’
      • ‘Admiration and irritation are often expressed in equal measure.’
      • ‘Somehow, it manages to move me and make me laugh in equal measure.’
      • ‘And it's sweet and it's sad and it's funny in equal measure.’
      • ‘As a result of this diligence, I have received commendation and commiseration in equal measure from both the paid and the voluntary participants.’
      • ‘His risk-taking designs are loved - and loathed - by critics and customers in equal measure.’
      • ‘It's badly acted, badly staged and badly directed, all in equal measure.’
      • ‘Who had pleased and disappointed her in equal measure?’
      • ‘Hilarious and heartbreaking in equal measure, there isn't a dull moment in this set of episodes.’
      • ‘I believe there is, and often in no small measure!’
    measure one's words
    • Consider (one's words or actions) carefully.

      ‘I had better measure my words so as not to embarrass anyone’
      • ‘He measures his words carefully as he turns the hide over in his hands.’
      • ‘What a difference it would make if we measured our words more carefully.’
      • ‘Today I shall try to measure my words very carefully.’
      • ‘He pauses again, measuring his words, trying to find the ones that fit.’
      • ‘He measured his words, trying to control his anger.’
      • ‘No longer, then, do we call upon the great books or teachings of western culture to measure our words or gauge our actions.’
      • ‘‘You have been very,’ Kale paused, measuring his words.’
      • ‘Shara saw Deidre looking at her strangely, as if measuring her words for duplicity.’
      • ‘He knew he'd need to take care to measure his words with this man.’
      • ‘‘I have tickets to the new musical at the Melbourne Theater, unless you don't like musicals,’ Darla babbled, trying to measure her words.’
    take the measure of
    • Assess the character or abilities of (someone or something)

      • ‘he's taken the measure of Washington and decided his country's fate and fortune lie elsewhere’


Middle English (as a noun in the senses ‘moderation’, ‘instrument for measuring’, ‘unit of capacity’): from Old French mesure, from Latin mensura, from mens- ‘measured’, from the verb metiri.