- an essential or distinctive characteristic, property, or attribute: the chemical qualities of alcohol.
- character or nature, as belonging to or distinguishing a thing: the quality of a sound.
- character with respect to fineness, or grade of excellence: food of poor quality; silks of fine quality.
- high grade; superiority; excellence: wood grain of quality.
- a personality or character trait: kindness is one of her many good qualities.
- native excellence or superiority.
- an accomplishment or attainment.
- good or high social position: a man of quality.
- the superiority or distinction associated with high social position.
- Acoustics. the texture of a tone, dependent on its overtone content, that distinguishes it from others of the same pitch and loudness.
- Phonetics. the tonal color, or timbre, that characterizes a particular vowel sound.
- Logic. the character of a proposition as affirmative or negative.
- Thermodynamics. the proportion or percentage of vapor in a mixture of liquid and vapor, as wet steam.
- social status or position.
- a person of high social position: He's quality, that one is.
- of or having superior quality: quality paper.
- producing or providing products or services of high quality or merit: a quality publisher.
- of or occupying high social status: a quality family.
- marked by a concentrated expenditure of involvement, concern, or commitment: Counselors are urging that working parents try to spend more quality time with their children.
Origin of quality
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for qualities
But the qualities Mario Cuomo brought to public life—compassion, integrity, commitment to principle—remain in short supply today.President Cuomo Would’ve Been a Lion
January 2, 2015
“We look for the qualities that are evocative of V.S.O.P Privilege,” explained Hennessy Senior Vice President Rodney Williams.
But what about stuff that has no obvious redeeming qualities to it?Yes, Your Toddler Can Watch TV: The New Rules for Screen Time
December 26, 2014
So I was happy to see that the European theory of terroir was in action, promoting with pride the qualities of a specific region.Beer Countries vs. Wine Countries
December 7, 2014
A popular general was president, “celebrated for qualities other than moral enthusiasm.”How Rock and Roll Killed Jim Crow
October 26, 2014
Rarely has there been exhibited so complete a combination of qualities in statesmanship.The Grand Old Man
Richard B. Cook
Gerald Raymount was a man of an unusual combination of qualities.Weighed and Wanting
The passage was stormy--the Bay of Biscay, in particular, giving us a touch of its qualities.Ned Myers
James Fenimore Cooper
We can never, therefore, have any reason to suppose the existence of these qualities.
He loved her dearly; but at that age her qualities were half developed.Alice, or The Mysteries, Complete
- a distinguishing characteristic, property, or attribute
- the basic character or nature of something
- a trait or feature of personality
- degree or standard of excellence, esp a high standard
- (formerly) high social status or the distinction associated with it
- musical tone colour; timbre
- logic the characteristic of a proposition that is dependent on whether it is affirmative or negative
- phonetics the distinctive character of a vowel, determined by the configuration of the mouth, tongue, etc, when it is articulated and distinguished from the pitch and stress with which it is uttered
- (modifier) having or showing excellence or superioritya quality product
Word Origin and History for qualities
c.1300, "temperament, character, disposition," from Old French qualite "quality, nature, characteristic" (12c., Modern French qualité), from Latin qualitatem (nominative qualitas) "a quality, property; nature, state, condition" (said [Tucker, etc.] to have been coined by Cicero to translate Greek poiotes), from qualis "what kind of a," from PIE pronomial base *kwo- (see who).
Meaning "degree of goodness" is late 14c. Meaning "social rank, position" is c.1400. Noun phrase quality time first recorded 1977. Quality of life is from 1943. Quality control first attested 1935.