- a table or display case on which goods can be shown, business transacted, etc.
- (in restaurants, luncheonettes, etc.) a long, narrow table with stools or chairs along one side for the patrons, behind which refreshments or meals are prepared and served.
- a surface for the preparation of food in a kitchen, especially on a low cabinet.
- anything used in keeping account, as a disk of metal or wood, used in some games, as checkers, for marking a player's position or for keeping score.
- an imitation coin or token.
- a coin; money.
- over the counter,
- (of the sale of stock) through a broker's office rather than through the stock exchange.
- (of the sale of merchandise) through a retail store rather than through a wholesaler.
- under the counter, in a clandestine manner, especially illegally: books sold under the counter.
Origin of counter1
- a person who counts.
- a device for counting revolutions of a wheel, items produced, etc.
- Cards. card counter.
- Computers. a storage register or program variable used to tally how often something of interest occurs.
- Electronics. scaler(def 2).
- Physics. any of various instruments for detecting ionizing radiation and for registering counts.
Origin of counter2
- in the wrong way; contrary to the right course; in the reverse or opposite direction.
- contrary; in opposition (usually preceded by run or go): to run counter to the rules.
- opposite; opposed; contrary.
- something that is opposite or contrary to something else.
- a blow delivered in receiving or parrying another blow, as in boxing.
- a statement or action made to refute, oppose, or nullify another statement or action.
- Fencing. a circular parry.
- a piece of leather or other material inserted between the lining and outside leather of a shoe or boot quarter to keep it stiff.
- Nautical. the part of a stern that overhangs and projects aft of the sternpost of a vessel.
- Also called void. Typesetting. any part of the face of a type that is less than type-high and is therefore not inked.
- Engineering, Building Trades. a truss member subject to stress only under certain partial loadings of the truss.
- the part of a horse's breast that lies between the shoulders and under the neck.
- to go counter to; oppose; controvert.
- to meet or answer (a move, blow, etc.) by another in return.
- to make a counter or opposing move.
- to give a blow while receiving or parrying one, as in boxing.
Origin of counter3
- to encounter in opposition or combat.
Origin of counter4
- to check over (the separate units or groups of a collection) one by one to determine the total number; add up; enumerate: He counted his tickets and found he had ten.
- to reckon up; calculate; compute.
- to list or name the numerals up to: Close your eyes and count ten.
- to include in a reckoning; take into account: There are five of us here, counting me.
- to reckon to the credit of another; ascribe; impute.
- to consider or regard: He counted himself lucky to have survived the crash.
- to count the items of a collection one by one in order to determine the total: She counted three times before she was satisfied that none was missing.
- to list or name numerals in order: to count to 100 by fives.
- to reckon numerically.
- to have a specified numerical value.
- to be accounted or worth something: That first try didn't count—I was just practicing.
- to have merit, importance, value, etc.; deserve consideration: Every bit of help counts.
- to have worth; amount (usually followed by for): Intelligence counts for something.
- the act of counting; enumeration; reckoning; calculation: A count of hands showed 23 in favor and 16 opposed.
- the number representing the result of a process of counting; the total number.
- an accounting.
- Baseball. the number of balls and strikes, usually designated in that order, that have been called on a batter during a turn at bat: a count of two balls and one strike.
- Law. a distinct charge or theory of action in a declaration or indictment: He was found guilty on two counts of theft.
- a number representing the size or quality of yarn, especially the number based on the relation of weight to length of the yarn and indicating its degree of coarseness.
- the number of warp and filling threads per square inch in woven material, representing the texture of the fabric.
- Bowling. the number of pins struck down by the first ball rolled by a bowler in the frame following a spare and included in the score for the frame in which the spare was made.
- a single ionizing reaction registered by an ionization chamber, as in a Geiger counter.
- the indication of the total number of ionizing reactions registered by an ionization chamber in a given period of time.
- Archaic. regard; notice.
- the count, Boxing. the calling aloud by the referee of the seconds from 1 to 10 while a downed boxer remains off his feet. Completion of the count signifies a knockout, which the referee then declares: A hard right sent the challenger down for the count.Also called the full count.
- noting a number of items determined by an actual count: The box is labeled 50 count.
- count down, to count backward, usually by ones, from a given integer to zero.
- count in, to include: If you're going to the beach, count me in.
- count off, (often used imperatively, as in the army) to count aloud by turns, as to arrange positions within a group of persons; divide or become divided into groups: Close up ranks and count off from the left by threes.
- count on/upon, to depend or rely on: You can always count on him to lend you money.
- count out,
- Boxing.to declare (a boxer) a loser because of inability to stand up before the referee has counted 10 seconds.
- to exclude: When it comes to mountain climbing, count me out.
- to count and apportion or give out: She counted out four cookies to each child.
- to disqualify (ballots) illegally in counting, in order to control the election.
- count coup. coup1(def 4).
Origin of count1
- a combining form of counter3, used with the meanings “against,” “contrary,” “opposite,” “in opposition or response to” (countermand); “complementary,” “in reciprocation,” “corresponding,” “parallel” (counterfoil; counterbalance); “substitute,” “duplicate” (counterfeit).
Origin of counter-
Related Words for counterantithetical, respond, resist, foil, oppose, offset, retaliate, counteract, conflicting, antipodal, reverse, contrasting, obverse, converse, contrary, opposed, contradictory, anti, impeding, hindering
Examples from the Web for counter
Contemporary Examples of counter
This led to the formation of a Christian militant group to counter the rebels, and all-out sectarian violence exploded.The Year’s Most Forgotten Humanitarian Crisis
January 1, 2015
If you need to store the bottle in the fridge, let it warm up for a few minutes on the counter before serving.Champagne: You’re Drinking It All Wrong
December 20, 2014
Even local chickens were more expensive than in the summer, Smirnova and another woman at the counter complained.How Crimea Crashed the Russian Economy
December 17, 2014
Sensing his opportunity, Joey Biden pounced: “I walked up behind him and smashed his head next to the counter.”Joe Biden: ‘I’ll Kill Your Son’
December 12, 2014
The further forward bare-boned science goes, however, the more forceful the counter- response.Honey Boo Boo, Snake Oil, and Ebola: The Weird World of Young Living Essential Oils
December 5, 2014
Historical Examples of counter
You meet heroes across a counter—and they are on both sides of that counter.
It is as eager on behalf of the man behind a counter as on that of him who is governing a country.The Conquest of Fear
Oh, yes, this is the counter for them to be found in endless variety.Ester Ried Yet Speaking
They passed out into the hall, and drew up at the clerk's counter.In the Midst of Alarms
She turned away to range some boxes on the shelves behind the counter.The Secret Agent
- a horizontal surface, as in a shop or bank, over which business is transacted
- (in some cafeterias) a long table on which food is served to customers
- a small flat disc of wood, metal, or plastic, used in various board games
- a similar disc or token used as an imitation coin
- a person or thing that may be used or manipulated
- a skating figure consisting of three circles
- under the counter (under-the-counter when prenominal) (of the sale of goods, esp goods in short supply) clandestine, surreptitious, or illegal; not in an open manner
- over the counter (over-the-counter when prenominal) (of security transactions) through a broker rather than on a stock exchange
Word Origin for counter
- in a contrary direction or manner
- in a wrong or reverse direction
- run counter to to have a contrary effect or action to
- opposing; opposite; contrary
- something that is contrary or opposite to some other thing
- an act, effect, or force that opposes another
- a return attack, such as a blow in boxing
- fencing a parry in which the foils move in a circular fashion
- the portion of the stern of a boat or ship that overhangs the water aft of the rudder
- Also called: void printing the inside area of a typeface that is not type high, such as the centre of an "o", and therefore does not print
- the part of a horse's breast under the neck and between the shoulders
- a piece of leather forming the back of a shoe
- to say or do (something) in retaliation or response
- (tr) to move, act, or perform in a manner or direction opposite to (a person or thing)
- to return the attack of (an opponent)
Word Origin for counter
Word Origin for counter
- against; opposite; contrarycounterattack
- complementary; correspondingcounterfoil
- duplicate or substitutecounterfeit
Word Origin for counter-
- to add up or check (each unit in a collection) in order to ascertain the sum; enumeratecount your change
- (tr) to recite numbers in ascending order up to and including
- (tr often foll by in) to take into account or includewe must count him in
- not counting excluding
- (tr) to believe to be; consider; think; deemcount yourself lucky
- (intr) to recite or list numbers in ascending order either in units or groupsto count in tens
- (intr) to have value, importance, or influencethis picture counts as a rarity
- (intr often foll by for) to have a certain specified value or importancethe job counts for a lot
- (intr) music to keep time by counting beats
- the act of counting or reckoning
- the number reached by counting; sum
- law a paragraph in an indictment containing a distinct and separate charge
- physics the total number of photons or ionized particles detected by a counter
- keep count to keep a record of items, events, etc
- lose count to fail to keep an accurate record of items, events, etc
- boxing wrestling the act of telling off a number of seconds by the referee, as when a boxer has been knocked down or a wrestler pinned by his opponent
- out for the count boxing knocked out and unable to continue after a count of ten by the referee
- take the count boxing to be unable to continue after a count of ten
- archaic notice; regard; account
Word Origin for count
- a nobleman in any of various European countries having a rank corresponding to that of a British earl
- any of various officials in the late Roman Empire and under various Germanic kings in the early Middle Ages
- a man who has received an honour (papal knighthood) from the Pope in recognition of good deeds, achievements, etc
Word Origin for count
Word Origin and History for counter
mid-14c., "table where a money lender does business," from Old French contouer, comptoir (14c.) "counting room, table of a bank," from Medieval Latin computatorium "place of accounts," from Latin computatus, past participle of computare (see compute). Generalized 19c. from banks to shops, then extended to display cases for goods. Phrase under the counter is from 1926.
"go against," late 14c., from Old French countre "facing opposite" (see counter-). Related: Countered; countering. As an adverb, from mid-15c.; as an adjective, from 1590s.
mid-14c., from Old French conter "add up," but also "tell a story," from Latin computare (see compute). Related: Counted; counting. Modern French differentiates compter "to count" and conter "to tell," but they are cognates.
title of nobility, c.1300, from Anglo-French counte (Old French conte), from Latin comitem (nominative comes) "companion, attendant," the Roman term for a provincial governor, from com- "with" (see com-) + stem of ire "to go" (see ion). The term was used in Anglo-French to render Old English eorl, but the word was never truly naturalized and mainly was used with reference to foreign titles.
word-forming element meaning "against; in return; corresponding," from Anglo-French countre-, French contre-, from Latin contra "opposite, contrary to, against, in return," also used as a prefix (see contra-).
- One that counts, especially an electronic or mechanical device that automatically counts occurrences or repetitions of phenomena or events.
- To name or list the units of a group or collection one by one in order to determine a total.
- The act of counting or calculating.
- The totality of specific items in a particular sample.
- Contrary; opposite; opposing:countertransport.
- Corresponding; complementary:counterincision.
Idioms and Phrases with counter
see run counter to; under the counter.
In addition to the idioms beginning with count
- count against
- count down
- count for
- count in
- count noses
- count off
- count on
- count one's chickens before they hatch
- count out
- count to ten
- down for the count
- every minute counts
- out for (the count)
- stand up and be counted