Definitions

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

  • adjective Situated at, in, or near the center.
  • adjective Forming the center.
  • adjective Having dominant or controlling power or influence.
  • adjective Of basic importance; essential or principal.
  • adjective Easily reached from various points.
  • adjective Of or constituting a single source controlling all components of a system.
  • adjective Of, relating to, or originating from the nervous system.
  • adjective Relating to a centrum.
  • adjective Linguistics Articulated in the middle of the oral cavity; neither front nor back. Used of vowels, as the u in cut.
  • adjective Holding to a moderate ideological position between two extremes.
  • noun A telephone exchange.
  • noun An operator at a telephone exchange.
  • noun A location or agency for the control or coordination of a group of related activities.
  • noun Informal A location or area of intense activity.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • In an at., of or relating to the centrum of a vertebra.
  • In neural., pertaining to a nerve-center: opposed to peripheral, or pertaining to the nerve-fibers or to the nervous terminations in sense-organs and muscles.
  • noun In a telephone system, the office from which the public and private lines radiate and in which the connections are made between the different lines, by means of a central switch-board.
  • Pertaining to or constituting the center: as, the central point of a circle; a central country of Europe.
  • Nuclear in constitution or principle; constituting that from which other related things proceed, or upon which they depend: as, the central facts of history; a central idea.
  • Passing through or near the center or middle; median: as, a central line; the New York Central Railroad.
  • noun Cane-grinding apparatus which serves for several sugar plantations.

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

  • adjective Relating to the center; situated in or near the center or middle; containing the center; of or pertaining to the parts near the center; equidistant or equally accessible from certain points.
  • adjective (Math.) a force acting upon a body towards or away from a fixed or movable center.
  • adjective (Astron.) a name given to a hypothetical body about which Mädler supposed the solar system together with all the stars in the Milky Way, to be revolving. A point near Alcyone in the Pleiades was supposed to possess characteristics of the position of such a body.
  • noun (Anat.) The central, or one of the central, bones of the carpus or or tarsus. In the tarsus of man it is represented by the navicular.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adjective being in the centre
  • adjective being the most important
  • adjective having or containing the centre of something
  • adjective being very important, or key to something

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

  • adjective serving as an essential component
  • adjective in or near a center or constituting a center; the inner area
  • noun a workplace that serves as a telecommunications facility where lines from telephones can be connected together to permit communication

Etymologies

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

[Latin centrālis, from centrum, center; see center.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Latin centrālis.

Examples

  • The enormous depth of alluvial soil found in the _bolsones_ or depressions of the Mexican plateau, formed from rock-decay, or of volcanic material accumulated by the great lakes of recent times which covered them in the central part of the great _mesa central_, bear striking evidence to the filling-up process of the past.

    Mexico Its Ancient and Modern Civilisation, History, Political Conditions, Topography, Natural Resources, Industries and General Development

  • Too, which criteria matches the term central England?

    Unthreaded #5 « Climate Audit

  • The moves by Mr. Maliki come after Mr. Allawi's Iraqiya bloc announced over the weekend that it was indefinitely suspending its participation in parliament to protest what it called the "central government's iron fist" in dealing with a bid by Sunni Arab leaders in several provinces to become regions with more powers independent of Baghdad.

    Government Teeters Amid Feuding

  • The few times the yuan has significantly weakened against the dollar during the trading day, rather than being guided down by Beijing through the daily setting of what it calls the central parity rate, have been due to the PBOC engineering a dollar shortage in China's interbank market, prompting banks to buy dollars on the foreign-exchange market to meet their own funding needs.

    Speculative Inflows Could Plague Beijing Again

  • In 1958, Francis Crick used and characterized the concept of information in the context of stating what he called the central dogma of molecular biology.

    Molecular Biology

  • COLLINS: Obama also talked about Afghanistan, which he calls the central front in the war on terror.

    CNN Transcript Jul 22, 2008

  • Our National Executive Committee said this in the context of addressing what it identified as the central task of the NDR - the intensification of the struggle for the eradication of poverty.

    ANC Today

  • He said he had gals come over to the condo to give him massages, that he had found the number in the "Washingtonian" magazine and recently he been using some what he called central American gals to give him massages.

    CNN Transcript Apr 29, 2007

  • Our National Executive Committee said this in the context of addressing what it identified as the central task of the NDR - the intensification of the struggle for the eradication of poverty.

    ANC Today

  • WARNER: I had the opportunity to question him, because I was concerned about this recent military action and whether that sort of sidetracked the -- what I called the central focus now on electing a unified -- not electing, but forming a unified government.

    CNN Transcript Mar 28, 2006

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  • The idea is central to .. , the central idea

    February 19, 2012