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

  • n. Chiefly British Variant of caliber.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Diameter of the bore of a firearm, typically measured between opposite lands.
  • n. The diameter of round or cylindrical body, as of a bullet, a projectile, or a column.
  • n. A nominal name for a cartridge type, which may not exactly indicate its true size and may include other measurements such as cartridge length or black powder capacity. Eg 7.62x39 or 38.40.
  • n. Unit of measure used to express the length of the bore of a weapon. The number of calibres is determined by dividing the length of the bore of the weapon, from the breech face of the tube to the muzzle, by the diameter of its bore. A gun tube the bore of which is 40 feet (480 inches) long and 12 inches in diameter is said to be 40 calibers long.
  • n. Relative size, importance, magnitude.
  • n. Capacity or compass of mind.
  • n. : Degree of importance or station in society.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. See caliber.

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

  • n. diameter of a tube or gun barrel
  • n. a degree or grade of excellence or worth


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From French calibre ("bore of a gun, size, capacity (literally, and figuratively), also weight"). Origin uncertain, perhaps, from Latin qua libra ("of what dimensions, weight")



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  • JM is interested in becoming a human cannonball but wonders if he’s the right calibre.

    May 25, 2011