inch


inch
inch1
/inch/, n.
1. a unit of length, 1/12 foot, equivalent to 2.54 centimeters.
2. a very small amount of anything; narrow margin: to win by an inch; to avert disaster by an inch.
3. by inches,
a. narrowly; by a narrow margin: escaped by inches.
b. Also, inch by inch. by small degrees or stages; gradually: The miners worked their way through the narrow shaft inch by inch.
4. every inch, in every respect; completely: That horse is every inch a thoroughbred.
5. within an inch of, nearly; close to: He came within an inch of getting killed in the crash.
v.t., v.i.
6. to move by inches or small degrees: We inched our way along the road.
[bef. 1000; ME; OE ynce < L uncia twelfth part, inch, ounce. See OUNCE1]
inch2
/inch/, n. Scot.
a small island near the seacoast.
[1375-1425; late ME < ScotGael innse, gen. of innis island, OIr inis, c. Welsh ynys]

* * *

Unit of measure equal to 1/36 yard and since 1959 defined officially as 2.

54 cm (see metre). David I of Scotland (с 1150) defined the inch as the breadth of a man's thumb at the base of the nail; usually the thumb breadths of three men
one small, one medium, and one large
were added and then divided by three. During the reign of England's Edward II, the inch was defined as "three grains of barley, dry and round, placed end to end lengthwise." At various times it has also been defined as the combined lengths of 12 poppy seeds. See also foot; International System of Units; measurement; metric system.

* * *

▪ unit of measurement
      unit of British Imperial (British Imperial System) and United States Customary measure equal to 1/36 of a yard. The unit derives from the Old English ince, or ynce, which in turn came from the Latin unit uncia, which was “one-twelfth” of a Roman foot, or pes. (The Latin word uncia was the source of the name of another English unit, the ounce.) The old English ynce was defined by King David I (David I) of Scotland about 1150 as the breadth of a man's thumb at the base of the nail. To help maintain consistency of the unit, the measure was usually achieved by adding the thumb breadth of three men—one small, one medium, and one large—and then dividing the figure by three. During the reign of King Edward II (Edward II), in the early 14th century, the inch was defined as “three grains of barley, dry and round, placed end to end lengthwise.” At various times the inch has also been defined as the combined lengths of 12 poppyseeds. Since 1959 the inch has been defined officially as 2.54 cm.

* * *


Universalium. 2010.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Inch — Inch, n. [OE. inche, unche, AS. ynce, L. uncia the twelfth part, inch, ounce. See {Ounce} a weight.] [1913 Webster] 1. A measure of length, the twelfth part of a foot, commonly subdivided into halves, quarters, eights, sixteenths, etc., as among… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • inch — inch1 [inch] n. [ME inche < OE ynce < L uncia, twelfth part, inch, OUNCE1] 1. a unit of length in the FPS system, equal to 1/ 12 foot (2.54 cm): symbol, ″: abbrev. in 2. a fall (of rain, snow, etc.) equal to the amount that would cover a… …   English World dictionary

  • Inch — 〈[ ı̣ntʃ] m. od. n.; , es; bei Maßangaben Pl.: ; Abk.: in.; 〉 engl. Längenmaß, Zoll, 2,54 cm [engl.] * * * Inch [ɪnt̮ʃ], der; [es], es […t̮ʃɪs] <aber: 4 Inch[es]> [engl. inch, aengl. ynce < lat. uncia, ↑ 1Unze]: Längeneinheit in… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • inch — [ɪntʆ] noun [countable] a unit for measuring length, equal to 2.54 centimetres * * * Ⅰ. inch UK US /ɪnʃ/ noun [C] (abbreviation in., symbol ʺ) ► MEASURES a unit of measure equal to one twelfth of a foot or 2.54 centimetres: » …   Financial and business terms

  • inch — ► NOUN 1) a unit of linear measure equal to one twelfth of a foot (2.54 cm). 2) a quantity of rainfall that would cover a horizontal surface to a depth of one inch. 3) a very small amount or distance: don t yield an inch. ► VERB ▪ move along… …   English terms dictionary

  • Inch —    INCH, a parish, in the county of Wigton, 2½ miles (E.) from Stranraer; containing, with the hamlets of Aird, Cairnryan, and Lochans, 2950 inhabitants. This place, which is of great antiquity, and distinguished for its lochs, appears to have… …   A Topographical dictionary of Scotland

  • Inch — Inch, a. Measuring an inch in any dimension, whether length, breadth, or thickness; used in composition; as, a two inch cable; a four inch plank. [1913 Webster] {Inch stuff}, boards, etc., sawed one inch thick. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • inch — inch·er; inch·ling; inch·ma·ree; inch·meal; inch; mi·cro·inch; mil·inch; …   English syllables

  • inch — s.m. Unitate de măsură pentru lungime, egală cu 2,54 cm, folosită în Anglia şi în Statele Unite ale Americii. [pr.: inci] – cuv. engl. Trimis de valeriu, 25.11.2008. Sursa: DEX 98  inch (unitate de măsură pentru lungime) s. m. [pron. engl. inci] …   Dicționar Român

  • Inch — Inch, v. i. To advance or retire by inches or small degrees; to move slowly; as, to inch forward. [1913 Webster] With slow paces measures back the field, And inches to the walls. Dryden. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • inch — n a unit of length equal to 1/36 yard or 2.54 centimeters * * * (in) (inch) a unit of linear measure, one twelfth of a foot, being the equivalent of 2.54 cm …   Medical dictionary


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.