- the designed and structured surface of a picture: In Mondrian's later work he organized space in highly complex rhythms.
- the illusion of depth on a two-dimensional surface.
verb (used with object), spaced, spac·ing.
- to separate (words, letters, or lines) by spaces.
- to extend by inserting more space or spaces (usually followed by out).
Origin of space
- unoccupied area or roomthere is no space for a table
- (in combination)space-saving Related adjective: spacious
- the region beyond the earth's atmosphere containing the other planets of the solar system, stars, galaxies, etc; universe
- (as modifier)a space probe; space navigation
- the region beyond the earth's atmosphere occurring between the celestial bodies of the universe. The density is normally negligible although cosmic rays, meteorites, gas clouds, etc, can occur. It can be divided into cislunar space (between the earth and moon), interplanetary space, interstellar space, and intergalactic space
- (as modifier)a space station; a space simulator
- a piece of metal, less than type-high, used to separate letters or words in hot-metal printing
- any of the gaps used to separate letters, words, or lines in photocomposition, desktop publishing, etc
Word Origin for space
c.1300, "an area, extent, expanse, lapse of time," a shortening of Old French espace, from Latin spatium "room, area, distance, stretch of time," of unknown origin. Astronomical sense of "stellar depths" is first recorded 1667 in "Paradise Lost."
Space isn't remote at all. It's only an hour's drive away if your car could go straight upwards. [Sir Fred Hoyle, "London Observer," 1979]
Typographical sense is attested from 1670s (typewriter space bar is from 1888). Space age is attested from 1946; spacewalk is from 1965. Many compounds first appeared in science fiction and speculative writing, e.g. spaceship (1894, "Journey in Other Worlds"); spacesuit (1920); spacecraft (1930, "Scientific American"); space travel (1931); space station (1936, "Rockets Through Space"); spaceman (1942, "Thrilling Wonder Stories;" earlier it meant "journalist paid by the length of his copy," 1892). Space race attested from 1959. Space shuttle attested by 1970.
1703, "to arrange at set intervals," from space (n.). Meaning "to be in a state of drug-induced euphoria" is recorded from 1968. Space cadet "eccentric person disconnected with reality" (often implying an intimacy with hallucinogenic drugs) is a 1960s phrase, probably traceable to 1950s U.S. sci-fi television program "Tom Corbett, Space Cadet," which was watched by many children who dreamed of growing up to be one and succeeded.
Stupefy or disorient, as if or from a drug. For example, This medication spaces me out so I can't think clearly, or I wonder what those kids are on—they look totally spaced out. [1960s] Also see zone out.
In addition to the idiom beginning with space
- space out
- breathing space
- take up space