character

[kar-ik-ter]
|||

noun

adjective

Theater.
  1. (of a part or role) representing a personality type, especially by emphasizing distinctive traits, as language, mannerisms, physical makeup, etc.
  2. (of an actor or actress) acting or specializing in such roles.

verb (used with object) Archaic.

to portray; describe.
to engrave; inscribe.

Idioms

    in character,
    1. in harmony with one's personal character or disposition: Such behavior is not in character for him.
    2. in accordance with the role or personality assumed in a performance: an actor in character.
    out of character,
    1. out of harmony with one's personal character or disposition: Her remarks were out of character.
    2. away from the role or personality assumed in a performance: The actor stepped out of character.

Origin of character

1275–1325; < Latin < Greek charaktḗr graving tool, its mark, equivalent to charak- (base of charáttein to engrave) + -tēr agent suffix; replacing Middle English caractere < Middle French < Latin, as above
Related formschar·ac·ter·less, adjectiveun·char·ac·tered, adjective

Synonyms for character

5. name, repute. 14. sign.

Synonym study

1. Character, individuality, personality refer to the sum of the characteristics possessed by a person. Character refers especially to moral qualities, ethical standards, principles, and the like: a man of sterling character. Individuality refers to the distinctive qualities that make one recognizable as a person differentiated from others: a woman of strong individuality. Personality refers particularly to the combination of outer and inner characteristics that determine the impression that a person makes upon others: a child of vivid or pleasing personality. 5. See reputation.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019


Examples from the Web for characterless

Historical Examples of characterless

  • Were his crowns to be only the thornless, characterless ones that went with his profession?

    The Dominant Strain

    Anna Chapin Ray

  • At first sight he had struck her as undefined, characterless.

    Virgin Soil

    Ivan S. Turgenev

  • The sap is characterless and seems to be utterly rejected at the factory.

    American Forest Trees

    Henry H. Gibson

  • But the pity of it is that most of the new things are characterless and dreary.

  • It is a term of reproach, and means, as nearly as may be, "characterless."


British Dictionary definitions for characterless

character

noun

the combination of traits and qualities distinguishing the individual nature of a person or thing
one such distinguishing quality; characteristic
moral force; integritya man of character
  1. reputation, esp a good reputation
  2. (as modifier)character assassination
a summary or account of a person's qualities and achievements; testimonialmy last employer gave me a good character
capacity, position, or statushe spoke in the character of a friend rather than a father
a person represented in a play, film, story, etc; role
an outstanding personone of the great characters of the century
informal an odd, eccentric, or unusual personhe's quite a character
an informal word for person a shady character
a symbol used in a writing system, such as a letter of the alphabet
Also called: sort printing any single letter, numeral, punctuation mark, or symbol cast as a type
computing any letter, numeral, etc, which is a unit of information and can be represented uniquely by a binary pattern
a style of writing or printing
genetics any structure, function, attribute, etc, in an organism, which may or may not be determined by a gene or group of genes
a short prose sketch of a distinctive type of person, usually representing a vice or virtue
in character typical of the apparent character of a person or thing
out of character not typical of the apparent character of a person or thing

verb (tr)

to write, print, inscribe, or engrave
rare to portray or represent
Derived Formscharacterful, adjectivecharacterless, adjective

Word Origin for character

C14: from Latin: distinguishing mark, from Greek kharaktēr engraver's tool, from kharassein to engrave, stamp
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 characterless

character

n.

mid-14c., carecter, "symbol marked or branded on the body;" mid-15c., "symbol or drawing used in sorcery," from Old French caratere "feature, character" (13c., Modern French caractère), from Latin character, from Greek kharakter "engraved mark," also "symbol or imprint on the soul," also "instrument for marking," from kharassein "to engrave," from kharax "pointed stake," from PIE root *gher- "to scrape, scratch." Meaning extended in ancient times by metaphor to "a defining quality."

You remember Eponina, who kept her husband alive in an underground cavern so devotedly and heroically? The force of character she showed in keeping up his spirits would have been used to hide a lover from her husband if they had been living quietly in Rome. Strong characters need strong nourishment. [Stendhal "de l'Amour," 1822]

Meaning "sum of qualities that define a person" is from 1640s. Sense of "person in a play or novel" is first attested 1660s, in reference to the "defining qualities" he or she is given by the author. Meaning "a person" in the abstract is from 1749; especially "eccentric person" (1773). Colloquial sense of "chap, fellow" is from 1931. The Latin ch- spelling was restored from 1500s. Character actor attested from 1861; character assassination from 1888; character-building (n.) from 1886.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

characterless in Medicine

character

[kărək-tər]

n.

A distinguishing feature or attribute, as of an individual, group, or category.
A structure, function, or attribute determined by a gene or group of genes.
In psychoanalysis, an individual's personality or temperament.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

characterless in Science

character

[kărək-tər]

Genetics A structure, function, or attribute determined by a gene or a group of genes.
Computer Science A symbol, such as a letter, number, or punctuation mark, that occupies one byte of memory. See more at ASCII.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

characterless in Culture

character

A person in a literary work. For example, Ebenezer Scrooge is a character in A Christmas Carol, by Charles Dickens.

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 characterless

character

see in character; out of character.

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