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# circumference

[ser-kuhm-fer-uh ns] /sərˈkʌm fər əns/
noun
1.
the outer boundary, especially of a circular area; perimeter:
the circumference of a circle.
2.
the length of such a boundary:
a one-mile circumference.
3.
the area within a bounding line:
the vast circumference of his mind.
Origin of circumference
1350-1400
1350-1400; Middle English < Late Latin circumferentia, equivalent to circum- circum- + fer- (stem of ferre to carry) + -entia -ence
Can be confused
Synonyms
1. periphery, circuit.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for circumference
Contemporary Examples
• The rest that extends beyond the circumference of the meat quickly melts down onto the surface of the flattop.

June 22, 2014
• Pi is officially defined as the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter.

March 14, 2013
Historical Examples
• Draw a diagram representing the circumference line and pitch in feet.

W.J. Jackman and Thos. H. Russell
• Melville is an island of more than a mile in circumference, with low, rocky shores.

James Fenimore Cooper
• From points near the circumference these circles or curves are very small.

• Draw a few straight lines, from the centre to the circumference of a circle.

John Ruskin
• The diameter is then multiplied by 3.1416 to obtain the circumference.

Raymond Francis Yates
• There is no outside, no inclosing wall, no circumference to us.

Ralph Waldo Emerson
• The soul of the world was diffused everywhere from the centre to the circumference.

Plato
• The visible creation is the terminus or the circumference of the invisible world.

Ralph Waldo Emerson
British Dictionary definitions for circumference

## circumference

/səˈkʌmfərəns/
noun
1.
the boundary of a specific area or geometric figure, esp of a circle
2.
the length of a closed geometric curve, esp of a circle. The circumference of a circle is equal to the diameter multiplied by π
Derived Forms
Word Origin
C14: from Old French circonference, from Latin circumferre to carry around, from circum- + ferre to bear
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for circumference
n.

late 14c., from Latin circumferentia, neuter plural of circumferens, present participle of circumferre "to lead around, take around, carry around," from circum "around" (see circum-) + ferre "to carry" (see infer). A loan-translation of Greek periphereia "periphery, the line round a circular body," literally "a carrying round" (see periphery). Related: Circumferential.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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circumference in Science
 circumference   (sər-kŭm'fər-əns)    The boundary line of a circle.The boundary line of a figure, area, or object.The length of such a boundary. The circumference of a circle is computed by multiplying the diameter by pi.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
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circumference in Culture
circumference [(suhr-kum-fuhr-uhns)]

The measure of the distance around a circle.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
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### Difficulty index for circumference

Few English speakers likely know this word

### Word Value for circumference

24
30
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