quality

[kwol-i-tee]

noun, plural qual·i·ties.

adjective


Origin of quality

1250–1300; Middle English qualite < Old French < Latin quālitās, equivalent to quāl(is) of what sort + -itās -ity
Related formsqual·i·ty·less, adjectivenon·qual·i·ty, noun, plural non·qual·i·ties.sub·qual·i·ty, noun, plural sub·qual·i·ties.

Synonyms for quality

Synonym study

1. Quality, attribute, property agree in meaning a particular characteristic (of a person or thing). A quality is a characteristic, innate or acquired, that, in some particular, determines the nature and behavior of a person or thing: naturalness as a quality; the quality of meat. An attribute was originally a quality attributed, usually to a person or something personified; more recently it has meant a fundamental or innate characteristic: an attribute of God; attributes of a logical mind. Property applies only to things; it means a characteristic belonging specifically in the constitution of, or found (invariably) in, the behavior of a thing: physical properties of uranium or of limestone.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for qualities

Contemporary Examples of qualities

Historical Examples of qualities

  • Rarely has there been exhibited so complete a combination of qualities in statesmanship.

    The Grand Old Man

    Richard B. Cook

  • Gerald Raymount was a man of an unusual combination of qualities.

    Weighed and Wanting

    George MacDonald

  • The passage was stormy--the Bay of Biscay, in particular, giving us a touch of its qualities.

    Ned Myers

    James Fenimore Cooper

  • We can never, therefore, have any reason to suppose the existence of these qualities.

  • He loved her dearly; but at that age her qualities were half developed.



British Dictionary definitions for qualities

quality

noun plural -ties

a distinguishing characteristic, property, or attribute
the basic character or nature of something
a trait or feature of personality
degree or standard of excellence, esp a high standard
(formerly) high social status or the distinction associated with it
musical tone colour; timbre
logic the characteristic of a proposition that is dependent on whether it is affirmative or negative
phonetics the distinctive character of a vowel, determined by the configuration of the mouth, tongue, etc, when it is articulated and distinguished from the pitch and stress with which it is uttered
(modifier) having or showing excellence or superioritya quality product

Word Origin for quality

C13: from Old French qualité, from Latin quālitās state, nature, from quālis of what sort
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 qualities

quality

n.

c.1300, "temperament, character, disposition," from Old French qualite "quality, nature, characteristic" (12c., Modern French qualité), from Latin qualitatem (nominative qualitas) "a quality, property; nature, state, condition" (said [Tucker, etc.] to have been coined by Cicero to translate Greek poiotes), from qualis "what kind of a," from PIE pronomial base *kwo- (see who).

Meaning "degree of goodness" is late 14c. Meaning "social rank, position" is c.1400. Noun phrase quality time first recorded 1977. Quality of life is from 1943. Quality control first attested 1935.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper