[ adjective uh-prok-suh-mit; verb uh-prok-suh-meyt ]
/ adjective əˈprɒk sə mɪt; verb əˈprɒk səˌmeɪt /


verb (used with object), ap·prox·i·mat·ed, ap·prox·i·mat·ing.

verb (used without object), ap·prox·i·mat·ed, ap·prox·i·mat·ing.

to come near in position, character, amount, etc.

Nearby words

  1. approver,
  2. approving,
  3. approx.,
  4. approximal,
  5. approximant,
  6. approximately,
  7. approximation,
  8. approximation suture,
  9. appt.,
  10. apptd.

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 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for approximates

British Dictionary definitions for approximates


adjective (əˈprɒksɪmɪt)

almost accurate or exact
inexact; rough; looseonly an approximate fit
much alike; almost the same
near; close together

verb (əˈprɒksɪˌmeɪt)

(usually foll by to) to come or bring near or close; be almost the same (as)
maths to find an expression for (some quantity) accurate to a specified degreeSee accurate (def. 4)
Derived Formsapproximative, adjective

Word Origin for approximate

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 approximates
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for approximates


[ ə-prŏksə-māt′ ]


To bring together, as cut edges of tissue.


Relating to the contact surfaces, either proximal or distal, of two adjacent teeth; proximate.
Close together. Used of the teeth in the human jaw.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.