Try Our Apps


Avoid these words. Seriously.


[meyl] /meɪl/
a person bearing an X and Y chromosome pair in the cell nuclei and normally having a penis, scrotum, and testicles, and developing hair on the face at adolescence; a boy or man.
an organism of the sex or sexual phase that normally produces a sperm cell or male gamete.
Botany. a staminate plant.
of, relating to, or being a male animal or plant.
pertaining to or characteristic of a male person; masculine:
a male voice.
composed of males:
a male choir.
  1. designating or pertaining to a plant or its reproductive structure producing or containing microspores.
  2. (of seed plants) staminate.
Machinery. made to fit into a corresponding open or recessed part:
a male plug.
Compare female (def 8).
Origin of male
1300-50; Middle English < Middle French ma(s)le < Latin masculus. See masculine
Related forms
maleness, noun
antimale, noun, adjective
intermale, adjective
supermale, noun
Can be confused
mail, male.
macho, male, masculine (see synonym study at the current entry)
1. See man1 . 4–7. Male, masculine, virile are adjectives that describe men and boys or attributes and conduct culturally ascribed to them. Male, which is applied to plants and animals as well as to human beings, is a biological or physiological descriptor, classifying individuals on the basis of their potential or actual ability to inseminate in bisexual reproduction. It contrasts with female in all such uses: his oldest male relative; the male parts of the flower. Masculine refers essentially to qualities, characteristics, or behaviors deemed by a culture or society to be especially appropriate to or ideally associated with men and boys. In American and Western European culture, these have traditionally included features such as strength, forthrightness, and courage: a firm, masculine handshake; a masculine impatience at indecision. Virile implies a vigor and muscularity associated with mature manhood and often carries a suggestion of sexual or procreative potency: his virile good looks; a swaggering, virile walk. See also manly.


[mah-ley, -lee] /ˈmɑ leɪ, -li/
a city in and the capital of the Maldives.


a combining form meaning “evil,” occurring in loanwords from Latin:
Compare mal-.
From Latin; See origin at mal-


[mawl-deevz, mal-dahyvz] /ˈmɔl divz, ˈmæl daɪvz/
a republic in the Indian Ocean, SW of India, consisting of about 2000 islands: British protectorate 1887–1965. 115 sq. mi. (298 sq. km).
Capital: Male.
Also called Maldive Islands.
Related forms
[mawl-div-ee-uh n, mal‐] /mɔlˈdɪv i ən, mæl‐/ (Show IPA),
adjective, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for male
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • She simply lived by her wits, and perhaps by some want of that article in her male friends.

    Malbone Thomas Wentworth Higginson
  • Fabri's wife and another woman were announced as good actresses of male parts.

    Handel Edward J. Dent
  • The two figures in male attire broke into a laugh simultaneously.

    Thoroughbreds W. A. Fraser
  • This afternoon a male biped is coming to this house, and he's not coming to see Eileen.

    Her Father's Daughter Gene Stratton-Porter
  • There came a clattering of hoofs on the road and the sound of male voices.

    In the Valley Harold Frederic
British Dictionary definitions for male


of, relating to, or designating the sex producing gametes (spermatozoa) that can fertilize female gametes (ova)
of, relating to, or characteristic of a man; masculine
for or composed of men or boys: a male choir
(of gametes) capable of fertilizing an egg cell in sexual reproduction
(of reproductive organs, such as a testis or stamen) capable of producing male gametes
(of flowers) bearing stamens but lacking a functional pistil
(electronics, mechanical engineering) having a projecting part or parts that fit into a female counterpart: a male plug
a male person, animal, or plant
Derived Forms
maleness, noun
Word Origin
C14: via Old French from Latin masculusmasculine


plural noun
Republic of Maldives, a republic occupying an archipelago of 1087 coral islands in the Indian Ocean, southwest of Sri Lanka: came under British protection in 1887; became independent in 1965 and a republic in 1968; a member of the Commonwealth. The economy and infrastructure were severely damaged in the Indian Ocean tsunami of December 2004. Official language: Divehi. Official religion: (Sunni) Muslim. Currency: rufiyaa. Capital: Malé. Pop: 393 988 (2013 est). Area: 298 sq km (115 sq miles) Also known as the Maldive Islands


the capital of the Republic of Maldives, on Malé Island in the centre of the island group. Pop: 90 000 (2005 est)
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for male

late 14c., "male human being; male fish or land animal," from Old French masle (adj.) "masculine, male, adult," also used as a noun (12c., Modern French mâle), from Latin masculus "masculine, male, worthy of a man" (cf. Provençal mascle, Spanish macho, Italian maschio), diminutive of mas (genitive maris) "male person or animal, male."


late 14c., from Old French male, masle "male, masculine; a male" (see male (n.)). Mechanical sense of "part of an instrument that penetrates another part" is from 1660s.


probably from Sanskrit maladvipa "garland of islands," from mala "garland" + dvipa "island." Related: Maldivian.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
male in Medicine

male (māl)
Of, relating to, or designating the sex that has organs to produce spermatozoa for fertilizing ova. n.

  1. A member of the sex that begets young by fertilizing ova.

  2. A man or boy.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source
male in Science
  1. In organisms that reproduce sexually, being the gamete that is smaller and more motile than the other corresponding gamete of the same species (the female gamete). The sperm cells of higher animals and plants are male gametes.

  2. Possessing or being a structure that produces only male gametes. The testicles of humans are male reproductive organs. Male flowers possess only stamens and no carpels.

Noun  A male organism.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Nearby words for male

Difficulty index for male

All English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for male

Scrabble Words With Friends