/dəˈgri / (say duh'gree)

1. a step or stage in an ascending or descending scale, or in a course or process.
2. Genetics, Law, etc. a certain distance or remove in the line of descent or consanguinity.
3. a stage in a scale of rank or dignity; relative rank, station, etc.: a man of high degree.
4. a stage in a scale of intensity or amount: to the last degree; in the least degree.
5. the angle between two radii of a circle which cut off on the circumference an arc equal to ¹⁄₃₆₀ of that circumference (often indicated by the sign °, as 45°); 17.453 293 × 10-3 radians.
6. Algebra the sum of the exponents of the variables in an algebraic expression: x3 and 2x2y are terms of degree three.
7. a unit in the measurement of temperature.
8. a unit on an arbitrary scale of measurement.
a. Geography the unit of measurement of latitude or longitude, usually employed to indicate position on the earth's surface, the position of a line or point being fixed by its angular distance measured in degrees from the equator or a given meridian.
b. Astronomy the position of a line or point in the celestial sphere fixed by its angular distance measured from the equator (equinoctial) or a given meridian.
10. a qualification conferred by a university for successful work, as judged by examination, or as an honorary recognition of achievement.
11. Grammar one of the three parallel formations (positive, comparative, and superlative) of adjectives and adverbs, showing differences in quality, quantity, or intensity in the attribute referred to, as English low, lower, lowest.
12. Music
a. the interval from one note to another on a stave.
b. one of the eight progressive intervals from the tonic in an octave.
13. US a classification of certain crimes according to their seriousness: first degree murder.
14. by degrees, gradually.
15. to a degree, to an undefined but not great extent.
{Middle English degre, from Old French, from de- de- + gre, from Latin gradus step, degree, grade}

Australian English dictionary. 2014.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Degree — may refer to: Contents 1 As a unit of measurement 2 In mathematics 3 In education …   Wikipedia

  • Degree — De*gree , n. [F. degr[ e], OF. degret, fr. LL. degradare. See {Degrade}.] 1. A step, stair, or staircase. [Obs.] [1913 Webster] By ladders, or else by degree. Rom. of R. [1913 Webster] 2. One of a series of progressive steps upward or downward,… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • degree — de·gree n 1: a step in a direct line of descent or in the line of ascent to a common ancestor 2 a: a measure of the seriousness of a crime see also fifth degree, first degree, f …   Law dictionary

  • degree — [di grē′] n. [ME degre < OFr degré, degree, step, rank < VL * degradus < degradare: see DEGRADE] 1. any of the successive steps or stages in a process or series 2. a step in the direct line of descent [a cousin in the second degree] 3.… …   English World dictionary

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  • degree — early 13c., from O.Fr. degré (12c.) a step (of a stair), pace, degree (of relationship), academic degree; rank, status, position, said to be from V.L. *degradus a step, from L.L. degredare, from L. de down (see DE (Cf. de )) + gradus step (see… …   Etymology dictionary

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