from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Relating to, located in, or extending toward the middle.
  • adjective Anatomy Of, relating to, or situated in or near the plane that divides a bilaterally symmetrical animal into right and left halves; mesial.
  • adjective Statistics Relating to or constituting the middle value in a distribution.
  • noun A median point, plane, line, or part.
  • noun The dividing area, either paved or landscaped, between opposing lanes of traffic on some highways.
  • noun Statistics The middle value in a distribution, above and below which lie an equal number of values.
  • noun A line that joins a vertex of a triangle to the midpoint of the opposite side.
  • noun The line that joins the midpoints of the nonparallel sides of a trapezoid.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Of or pertaining to Media, an ancient kingdom of Asia. Also Medic.
  • noun Same as Mede.
  • Pertaining to or situated in the middle; specifically, in anatomy and zoology, intermediate as dividing the body by a longitudinal and vertical plane: medial; mesal: as, the linea alba is the median line of the abdomen; in botany, situatedin or along, or belonging to, the middle of a structure having a right side and a left. See below.
  • In crystal., same as mean line and bisectrix. See bisectrix, 1.
  • In climatology, the average central course of a trade-wind.
  • In botany, a nerve traversing the middle of a leaf or leaf-like expansion.
  • In botany, of a flower or other lateral structure of a plant, a vertical plane which bisects the anterior and posterior sides, and which, if prolonged, would pass through the center of the parent axis. Goebel. Also called anteroposterior plane.
  • In entomology, the third main longitudinal vein or rib of an insect's wing, counting from the anterior border.
  • Noting the middle number of a series; having as many before as behind (or above as below) a certain number: distinguished from average: as, the median age of the population was found to be 21 (that is, there were as many persons above 21 as below it), while the average age was found to be 25.
  • Such a point on the x -axis of the frequency polygon that the ordinate from it bisects the polygon of rectangles or the continuous curve.
  • noun In geometry: A sect whose endpoints are the bisection-points of opposite sides of a quadrilateral.
  • noun A sect from a vertex of a triangle to the bisection-point of the opposite side.
  • noun The measure or observation which has as many of the separate measures or observations above as below it.
  • noun In entomology, the median vein of an insect's wing.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun (Geom.) A median line or point.
  • adjective Being in the middle; running through the middle.
  • adjective (Zoöl.) Situated in the middle; lying in a plane dividing a bilateral animal into right and left halves; -- said of unpaired organs and parts.
  • adjective (Anat.), (Geom.) The line drawn from an angle of a triangle to the middle of the opposite side; any line having the nature of a diameter.
  • adjective (Anat.) the mesial plane.
  • adjective (Geom.) the point where the three median lines of a triangle mutually intersect.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun the value below which 50% of the cases fall
  • adjective dividing an animal into right and left halves
  • adjective relating to or constituting the middle value of an ordered set of values (or the average of the middle two in a set with an even number of values)
  • adjective relating to or situated in or extending toward the middle


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Latin mediānus, from medius, middle; see medhyo- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle French median, from Latin medianus ("of or pertaining to the middle", adjective), from medius ("middle") (see medium), from Proto-Indo-European *medhy- (“middle”). Cognate with Old English midde, middel ("middle"). More at middle.


Help support Wordnik (and make this page ad-free) by adopting the word median.



Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.