- comparative relation between things or magnitudes as to size, quantity, number, etc.; ratio.
- proper relation between things or parts: to have tastes way out of proportion to one's financial means.
- relative size or extent.
- proportions, dimensions or size: a rock of gigantic proportions.
- a portion or part in its relation to the whole: A large proportion of the debt remains.
- symmetry, harmony, or balance: an architect with a sense of proportion.
- the significance of a thing or event that an objective view reveals: You must try to see these mishaps in proportion.
- Mathematics. a relation of four quantities such that the first divided by the second is equal to the third divided by the fourth; the equality of ratios.Compare rule of three.
- Archaic. analogy; comparison.
- to adjust in proper proportion or relation, as to size, quantity, etc.
- to balance or harmonize the proportions of.
Origin of proportion
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for proportion
Like most such predators, their danger to humans is often blown out of proportion.Viral Video of the Day: Great White Shark Deathmatch
October 1, 2014
At the same time, single women now rival evangelicals as a proportion of the electorate.What Do Women Want? Not the GOP
September 8, 2014
Capitalist-led industrial growth shifted the proportion of the population living in cities.In the Future We'll All Be Renters: America's Disappearing Middle Class
August 10, 2014
First, the epidemiologic: The proportion of adults who choose not to be parents is growing and sits at 20 percent or so.Does Fatherhood Make Men Healthier?
June 14, 2014
This got blown out of proportion and made into headlines, and somehow I looked like I was picking on her.Jack White Apologizes For Trashing Meg White, Adele, The Black Keys, Lana Del Rey, Etc.
May 31, 2014
For a man's heart is sensitive in proportion to its greatness.
So important is this proportion that it should be memorized.Woman's Institute Library of Cookery, Vol. 4
Woman's Institute of Domestic Arts and Sciences
Perhaps some day I may get a reward out of all proportion to this small service.Thoroughbreds
W. A. Fraser
Pressure of wind increases in proportion to the square of the velocity.Flying Machines
W.J. Jackman and Thos. H. Russell
And by exactly that proportion they might be a day's or a five days' journey distant!The Leopard Woman
Stewart Edward White
- the relationship between different things or parts with respect to comparative size, number, or degree; relative magnitude or extent; ratio
- the correct or desirable relationship between parts of a whole; balance or symmetry
- a part considered with respect to the whole
- (plural) dimensions or sizea building of vast proportions
- a share, part, or quota
- maths a relationship that maintains a constant ratio between two variable quantitiesx increases in direct proportion to y
- maths a relationship between four numbers or quantities in which the ratio of the first pair equals the ratio of the second pair
- to adjust in relative amount, size, etc
- to cause to be harmonious in relationship of parts
Word Origin and History for proportion
late 14c., "due relation of one part to another," also "size, extent; compartative relation in size, degree, number, etc.," from Old French proporcion "measure, proportion" (13c.), from Latin proportionem (nominative proportio) "comparative relation, analogy," from phrase pro portione "according to the relation" (of parts to each other), from pro "for" (see pro-) + ablative of *partio "division," related to pars (see part (n.)). Phrase out of proportion attested by 1670s.
My fortunes [are] as ill proportioned as your legs. [John Marston, "Antonio and Mellida," 1602]
"to adjust or regulate the proportions of," late 14c., from proportion (n.) and in part from Middle French proporcioner and directly from Medieval Latin proportionare. Related: Proportioned; proportioning.
- A statement of equality between two ratios. Four quantities, a, b, c, and d, are said to be in proportion if ab = cd.
Idioms and Phrases with proportion
see out of proportion.