/ ˈkælɪbə /


  1. the diameter of a cylindrical body, esp the internal diameter of a tube or the bore of a firearm
  2. the diameter of a shell or bullet
  3. ability; distinction

    a musician of high calibre

  4. personal character

    a man of high calibre

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Derived Forms

  • ˈcalibred, adjective

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Word History and Origins

Origin of calibre1

C16: from Old French, from Italian calibro, from Arabic qālib shoemaker's last, mould

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Example Sentences

He added that it exposed the calibre of forces that Nato was able deploy.

Romney did not deliver last night the calibre performance he displayed during the first debate.

It would have been pure calibre that determined the outcome.

Every cadence of their voices, every gesture, proclaimed the radical difference of nature and calibre.

I earnestly pray he will get right again quickly for there are not many Commanders of his calibre.

The Germans continued to bombard Ypres with large calibre shells, heaping ruins upon ruins.

I found I had a mould for that calibre, and you shall have four-and-twenty cartridges to-day, brother.

Because Arsne Lupin is the only man in France of sufficient calibre to invent and carry out a scheme of that magnitude.