• synonyms


[adjective uh-prok-suh-mit; verb uh-prok-suh-meyt]
  1. near or approaching a certain state, condition, goal, or standard.
  2. nearly exact; not perfectly accurate or correct: The approximate time was 10 o'clock.
  3. near; close together.
  4. very similar; nearly identical.
Show More
verb (used with object), ap·prox·i·mat·ed, ap·prox·i·mat·ing.
  1. to come near to; approach closely to: to approximate an ideal.
  2. to estimate: We approximated the distance at three miles.
  3. to simulate; imitate closely: The motions of the stars can be approximated in a planetarium.
  4. to bring near.
Show More
verb (used without object), ap·prox·i·mat·ed, ap·prox·i·mat·ing.
  1. to come near in position, character, amount, etc.
Show More

Origin of approximate

1400–50; late Middle English < Late Latin approximātus drawn near to, approached (past participle of approximāre). See ap-1, proximate
Related formsap·prox·i·mate·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for approximated

Historical Examples

  • This conduct of venery is an ideal that is only approximated.

    The Leopard Woman

    Stewart Edward White

  • It must be confessed that the latter is often approximated by reality--and everybody knows it.

    The Forest

    Stewart Edward White

  • Of course, conditions on Earth could be approximated on another planet.

  • Here, in some cases at least, the West Indian conditions were approximated.

  • The edges must then be pared and approximated as directed above.

British Dictionary definitions for approximated


adjective (əˈprɒksɪmɪt)
  1. almost accurate or exact
  2. inexact; rough; looseonly an approximate fit
  3. much alike; almost the same
  4. near; close together
Show More
verb (əˈprɒksɪˌmeɪt)
  1. (usually foll by to) to come or bring near or close; be almost the same (as)
  2. maths to find an expression for (some quantity) accurate to a specified degreeSee accurate (def. 4)
Show More
Derived Formsapproximative, adjective

Word Origin

C15: from Late Latin approximāre, from Latin proximus nearest, from prope near
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

Word Origin and History for approximated



early 15c., from Latin approximatus, past participle of approximare "to come near to," from ad- "to" (see ad-) + proximare "come near," from proximus "nearest," superlative of prope "near" (see propinquity).

Show More



early 15c., "to bring or put close," from approximate (adj.). Meaning "to come close" is from 1789. Related: Approximated; approximating.

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

approximated in Medicine


  1. To bring together, as cut edges of tissue.
Show More
  1. Relating to the contact surfaces, either proximal or distal, of two adjacent teeth; proximate.
  2. Close together. Used of the teeth in the human jaw.
Show More
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.