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a prefix with the meaning “round about, around,” found in Latin loanwords, especially derivatives of verbs that had the general senses “to encompass or surround” (circumference; circumjacent; circumstance) or “to go around” by the means or in the manner specified by the verb (circumnavigate; circumscribe); on this basis forming adjectives in English with the meaning “surrounding” that named by the stem (circumocular; circumpolar).
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Other definitions for circum- (2 of 2)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use circum- in a sentence
I stated this circum- stance to F. Kohlmann, at breakfast, and requested him to accompany me.The Works of Robert G. Ingersoll, Vol. 5 (of 12)|Robert G. Ingersoll
Omne vafer vitium ridenti Flaccus amicoTangit, et admissus circum præcordia ludit.Discourses on Satire and on Epic Poetry|John Dryden
The latter had a large comitatus of his own: magnum numerum equitatus suo sumptu semper alere et circum se habere (I 18).The Heroic Age|H. Munro Chadwick
At noon satisfactory sets of circum-meridional altitudes were obtained with two good sextants.
“Omne vafer vitium ridenti Flaccus amico Tangit, et admissus circum præcordia ludit,” &c.A Defence of Poesie and Poems|Philip Sidney
British Dictionary definitions for circum-
around; surrounding; on all sidescircumlocution; circumrotate
Word Origin for circum-
from Latin circum around, from circus circle
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
Scientific definitions for circum-
A prefix meaning around, as in circumscribe, to draw a figure around another figure.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.