large

[ lahrj ]
/ lɑrdʒ /

adjective, larg·er, larg·est.

noun

Music. the longest note in mensural notation.
Obsolete. generosity; bounty.

adverb

Nautical. with the wind free or abaft the beam so that all sails draw fully.

Idioms

    at large,
    1. free from restraint or confinement; at liberty: The murderer is still at large.
    2. to a considerable extent; at length: to treat a subject at large.
    3. as a whole; in general: the country at large.
    4. Also at-large. representing the whole of a state, district, or body rather than one division or part of it: a delegate at large.
    5. Also at-large. having a general, as opposed to a specific, role in an organization or project: She’s the magazine’s editor-at-large.
    in large, on a large scale; from a broad point of view: a problem seen in large.Also in the large.

Origin of large

1125–75; Middle English < Old French < Latin larga, feminine of largus ample, generous

Related forms

large·ness, nouno·ver·large, adjectiveul·tra·large, adjectiveun·large, adjective

Can be confused

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

British Dictionary definitions for at large

large

/ (lɑːdʒ) /

adjective

noun

at large
  1. (esp of a dangerous criminal or wild animal) free; not confined
  2. roaming freely, as in a foreign country
  3. as a whole; in general
  4. in full detail; exhaustively
  5. ambassador-at-large See ambassador (def. 4)
in large or in the large as a totality or on a broad scale

adverb

Derived Forms

largeness, noun

Word Origin for large

C12 (originally: generous): via Old French from Latin largus ample, abundant
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

Culture definitions for at large

at large


A descriptive term for the election of public officials by an entire governmental unit rather than by subdivisions of the unit. For example, a delegate at large does not represent any specific district or locale, but speaks instead for a much wider group of people.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with at large (1 of 2)

at large


1

Free, unconfined, especially not confined in prison, as in To our distress, the housebreakers were still at large. [1300s]

2

At length, fully; also, as a whole, in general. For example, The chairman talked at large about the company's plans for the coming year, or, as Shakespeare wrote in Love's Labour's Lost (1:1): “So to the laws at large I write my name” (that is, I uphold the laws in general). This usage is somewhat less common. [1400s]

3

Elected to represent an entire group of voters rather than those in a particular district or other segment—for example, alderman at large, representing all the wards of a city instead of just one, or delegate at large to a labor union convention. [Mid-1700s]

Idioms and Phrases with at large (2 of 2)

large


see at large; big (large) as life; by and large; cog in the (a large) wheel; in some (large) measure; loom large; writ large.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.