Dictionary.com
definitions
  • synonyms

male

[meyl]
See more synonyms for male on Thesaurus.com
noun
  1. a person bearing an X and Y chromosome pair in the cell nuclei and normally having a penis, scrotum, and testicles, and developing hair on the face at adolescence; a boy or man.
  2. an organism of the sex or sexual phase that normally produces a sperm cell or male gamete.
  3. Botany. a staminate plant.
Show More
adjective
  1. of, relating to, or being a male animal or plant.
  2. pertaining to or characteristic of a male person; masculine: a male voice.
  3. composed of males: a male choir.
  4. Botany.
    1. designating or pertaining to a plant or its reproductive structure producing or containing microspores.
    2. (of seed plants) staminate.
  5. Machinery. made to fit into a corresponding open or recessed part: a male plug.Compare female(def 8).
Show More

Origin of male

1300–50; Middle English < Middle French ma(s)le < Latin masculus. See masculine
Related formsmale·ness, nounan·ti·male, noun, adjectivein·ter·male, adjectivesu·per·male, noun
Can be confusedmail malemacho male masculine. (see synonym study at the current entry)

Synonyms

See more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
1. See man1. 4–7. Male, masculine, virile are adjectives that describe men and boys or attributes and conduct culturally ascribed to them. Male, which is applied to plants and animals as well as to human beings, is a biological or physiological descriptor, classifying individuals on the basis of their potential or actual ability to inseminate in bisexual reproduction. It contrasts with female in all such uses: his oldest male relative; the male parts of the flower. Masculine refers essentially to qualities, characteristics, or behaviors deemed by a culture or society to be especially appropriate to or ideally associated with men and boys. In American and Western European culture, these have traditionally included features such as strength, forthrightness, and courage: a firm, masculine handshake; a masculine impatience at indecision. Virile implies a vigor and muscularity associated with mature manhood and often carries a suggestion of sexual or procreative potency: his virile good looks; a swaggering, virile walk. See also manly.

Antonyms

Male

[mah-ley, -lee]
noun
  1. a city in and the capital of the Maldives.
Show More

male-

  1. a combining form meaning “evil,” occurring in loanwords from Latin: malediction.
Show More
Compare mal-.

Origin of male-

From Latin; see origin at mal-

Maldives

[mawl-deevz, mal-dahyvz]
noun
  1. a republic in the Indian Ocean, SW of India, consisting of about 2000 islands: British protectorate 1887–1965. 115 sq. mi. (298 sq. km). Capital: Male.
Show More
Also called Maldive Islands.
Related formsMal·div·i·an [mawl-div-ee-uh n, mal‐] /mɔlˈdɪv i ən, mæl‐/, adjective, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

boyguyfathermachosirgrandfathergentlemanbrotherfellowsonhusbandgentMr.hemanlikemanlypaternalpotentvirilemanful

Examples from the Web for male

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • She simply lived by her wits, and perhaps by some want of that article in her male friends.

    Malbone

    Thomas Wentworth Higginson

  • Fabri's wife and another woman were announced as good actresses of male parts.

    Handel

    Edward J. Dent

  • The two figures in male attire broke into a laugh simultaneously.

    Thoroughbreds

    W. A. Fraser

  • This afternoon a male biped is coming to this house, and he's not coming to see Eileen.

    Her Father's Daughter

    Gene Stratton-Porter

  • There came a clattering of hoofs on the road and the sound of male voices.

    In the Valley

    Harold Frederic


British Dictionary definitions for male

male

adjective
  1. of, relating to, or designating the sex producing gametes (spermatozoa) that can fertilize female gametes (ova)
  2. of, relating to, or characteristic of a man; masculine
  3. for or composed of men or boysa male choir
  4. (of gametes) capable of fertilizing an egg cell in sexual reproduction
  5. (of reproductive organs, such as a testis or stamen) capable of producing male gametes
  6. (of flowers) bearing stamens but lacking a functional pistil
  7. electronics mechanical engineering having a projecting part or parts that fit into a female counterparta male plug
Show More
noun
  1. a male person, animal, or plant
Show More
Derived Formsmaleness, noun

Word Origin

C14: via Old French from Latin masculus masculine

Maldives

pl n
  1. Republic of Maldives a republic occupying an archipelago of 1087 coral islands in the Indian Ocean, southwest of Sri Lanka: came under British protection in 1887; became independent in 1965 and a republic in 1968; a member of the Commonwealth. The economy and infrastructure were severely damaged in the Indian Ocean tsunami of December 2004. Official language: Divehi. Official religion: (Sunni) Muslim. Currency: rufiyaa. Capital: Malé. Pop: 393 988 (2013 est). Area: 298 sq km (115 sq miles)Also known as: the Maldive Islands
Show More

Malé

noun
  1. the capital of the Republic of Maldives, on Malé Island in the centre of the island group. Pop: 90 000 (2005 est)
Show More
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 male

n.

late 14c., "male human being; male fish or land animal," from Old French masle (adj.) "masculine, male, adult," also used as a noun (12c., Modern French mâle), from Latin masculus "masculine, male, worthy of a man" (cf. Provençal mascle, Spanish macho, Italian maschio), diminutive of mas (genitive maris) "male person or animal, male."

Show More

adj.

late 14c., from Old French male, masle "male, masculine; a male" (see male (n.)). Mechanical sense of "part of an instrument that penetrates another part" is from 1660s.

Show More

Maldives

probably from Sanskrit maladvipa "garland of islands," from mala "garland" + dvipa "island." Related: Maldivian.

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

male in Medicine

male

(māl)
adj.
  1. Of, relating to, or designating the sex that has organs to produce spermatozoa for fertilizing ova.
Show More
n.
  1. A member of the sex that begets young by fertilizing ova.
  2. A man or boy.
Show More
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

male in Science

male

[māl]
Adjective
  1. In organisms that reproduce sexually, being the gamete that is smaller and more motile than the other corresponding gamete of the same species (the female gamete). The sperm cells of higher animals and plants are male gametes.
  2. Possessing or being a structure that produces only male gametes. The testicles of humans are male reproductive organs. Male flowers possess only stamens and no carpels.
Show More
Noun
  1. A male organism.
Show More
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.