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arc

[ahrk]
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noun
  1. Geometry. any unbroken part of the circumference of a circle or other curved line.
  2. Also called electric arc. Electricity. a luminous bridge formed in a gap between two electrodes.Compare spark1(def 2).
  3. Astronomy. the part of a circle representing the apparent course of a heavenly body.
  4. anything bow-shaped.
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verb (used without object), arced [ahrkt] /ɑrkt/ or arcked, arc·ing [ahr-king] /ˈɑr kɪŋ/ or arck·ing.
  1. to form an electric arc.
  2. to move in a curve suggestive of an arc.
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Origin of arc

1350–1400; Middle English ark < Latin arcus bow, arch, curve
Can be confusedarc ark

ARC

or A.R.C.

  1. American Red Cross.
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ARC

[ahrk]
noun
  1. Pathology. AIDS-related complex.
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Arc, d'

[dark]
noun
  1. Jeanne [zhahn] /ʒɑn/. Joan of Arc.
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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for arc

arch, curvature, bow, crescent, round, bend, half-moon

Examples from the Web for arc

Contemporary Examples of arc

Historical Examples of arc

  • But of the arc which He disclosed no one group of His followers has as yet perceived the whole.

  • Simba indicated the sun, and swept his hand across the arc of the heavens.

    The Leopard Woman

    Stewart Edward White

  • Had that animal Coupeau gone to the Arc de Triomphe to get his dram?

    L'Assommoir

    Emile Zola

  • It is, of course, not necessary to use mercury vapor for the arc.

  • An arc light had sprung into being, and—he stopped with a gasp.

    Mixed Faces

    Roy Norton


British Dictionary definitions for arc

arc

noun
  1. something curved in shape
  2. part of an unbroken curved line
  3. a luminous discharge that occurs when an electric current flows between two electrodes or any other two surfaces separated by a small gap and a high potential difference
  4. astronomy a circular section of the apparent path of a celestial body
  5. maths a section of a curve, graph, or geometric figure
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verb arcs, arcing, arced, arcs, arcking or arcked
  1. (intr) to form an arc
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prefix
  1. maths specifying an inverse trigonometric function: usually written arcsin, arctan, arcsec, etc, or sometimes sin –1, tan –1, sec –1, etc
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Word Origin for arc

C14: from Old French, from Latin arcus bow, arch

ARC

abbreviation for
  1. AIDS-related complex: an early condition in which a person infected with the AIDS virus may suffer from such mild symptoms as loss of weight, fever, etc
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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 arc

n.

late 14c., originally in reference to the sun's apparent motion in the sky, from Old French arc "bow, arch, vault" (12c.), from Latin arcus "a bow, arch," from PIE root *arku- "bowed, curved" (cf. Gothic arhvazna "arrow," Old English earh, Old Norse ör; also, via notion of "supple, flexible," Greek arkeuthos, Latvian ercis "juniper," Russian rakita, Czech rokyta, Serbo-Croatian rakita "brittle willow"). Electrical sense is from 1821.

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v.

1893, in the electrical sense, from arc (n.). Meaning "to move in an arc" attested by 1954. Related: Arced; arcing.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

arc in Medicine

arc

(ärk)
n.
  1. A curved line or segment of a circle.
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ARC

abbr.
  1. AIDS-related complex
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

arc in Science

arc

[ärk]
  1. A segment of a circle.
  2. See electric arc.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.