- what is intended to be, or actually is, expressed or indicated; signification; import: the three meanings of a word.
- the end, purpose, or significance of something: What is the meaning of life? What is the meaning of this intrusion?
- the nonlinguistic cultural correlate, reference, or denotation of a linguistic form; expression.
- linguistic content (opposed to expression).
- intentioned (usually used in combination): She's a well-meaning person.
- full of significance; expressive: a meaning look.
Origin of meaning
SynonymsSee more synonyms for meaning on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for meanings
True Detective creator Nic Pizzolatto also wants to layer his show with meaning—or meanings.‘True Detective’s’ Godless Universe: Is the HBO Show Anti-Christian?
March 6, 2014
This is one of the meanings of the famous Zen koan, “If you see the Buddha on the road, kill him.”The Shocking Scandal at the Heart of American Zen
November 14, 2013
And like many pivotal historical events, it has, over time, acquired a number of meanings.Black Hawk Down’s Long Shadow
October 9, 2013
But I'm not sure they have any investment in which meanings they produce.Our Family Pet Was a Sculpture
September 18, 2013
Nor do I think there are any “hidden” or “secret” meanings in The Shining.‘Room 237’ Subject Bill Blakemore Writes About His ‘The Shining’ Theories
March 29, 2013
The meanings are in those forms already, else they could be no garment of unveiling.A Dish Of Orts
The discussion warmed and I began to catch words and meanings.The Cavalier
George Washington Cable
To be just in all the meanings of the word is the duty of man and his proper goal.Initiation into Philosophy
I am a word, with meanings many; To plunge, is just as good as any.
What a range of meanings and what perpetual pertinence has the story of Prometheus!Essays, First Series
Ralph Waldo Emerson
- the sense or significance of a word, sentence, symbol, etc; import; semantic or lexical content
- the purpose underlying or intended by speech, action, etc
- the inner, symbolic, or true interpretation, value, or messagethe meaning of a dream
- valid content; efficacya law with little or no meaning
- the sense of an expression; its connotation
- the reference of an expression; its denotation. In recent philosophical writings meaning can be used in both the above sensesSee also sense (def. 12)
- expressive of some sense, intention, criticism, etca meaning look
Word Origin and History for meanings
"sense, import, intent," c.1300, from mean (v.).