Definitions

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

  • adjective Of or relating to a circle.
  • adjective Shaped like or nearly like a circle; round.
  • adjective Moving in or forming a circle.
  • adjective Circuitous; roundabout.
  • adjective Using a premise to prove a conclusion that in turn is used to prove the premise.
  • adjective Defining one word in terms of another that is itself defined in terms of the first word.
  • adjective Addressed or distributed to a large number of persons.
  • noun A printed advertisement, directive, or notice intended for mass distribution.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Having the form of a circle; round.
  • Moving in or forming a circle, circuit, or round; returning to the starting-point: as, circular motion.
  • Related to the circle: as, circular points. See below.
  • Figuratively, passing through a round or circuit of events or experiences; successive in order and recurrent.
  • Adhering to a certain cycle of legends; cyclic: applied to certain poets. See cyclic.
  • Intended for circulation among certain persons. See circular letter, below.
  • Complete; perfect.
  • Roundabout; circuitous; circumlocutory.
  • noun A letter, notice, or printed paper containing information, or an announcement, or a request, etc., intended for general circulation or for circulation among a particular class or circle of persons; a circular letter: as, a business circular; a diplomatic circular.
  • noun [Cf. cyclas, ciclaton.] ‘A kind of long cape or sleeveless cloak worn by women: as, a fur circular.

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

  • noun A circular letter, or paper, usually printed, copies of which are addressed or given to various persons.
  • noun A sleeveless cloak, cut in circular form.
  • adjective In the form of, or bounded by, a circle; round.
  • adjective repeating itself; ending in itself; reverting to the point of beginning; hence, illogical; inconclusive.
  • adjective Adhering to a fixed circle of legends; cyclic; hence, mean; inferior. See Cyclic poets, under Cyclic.
  • adjective Addressed to a circle, or to a number of persons having a common interest; circulated, or intended for circulation.
  • adjective obsolete Perfect; complete.
  • adjective any portion of the circumference of a circle.
  • adjective (Math.) curves of the third order which are imagined to pass through the two circular points at infinity.
  • adjective (Math.) See under Function.
  • adjective mathematical instruments employed for measuring angles, in which the graduation extends round the whole circumference of a circle, or 360°.
  • adjective straight lines pertaining to the circle, as sines, tangents, secants, etc.
  • adjective (Com.), (Diplomacy) A letter addressed in identical terms to a number of persons.
  • adjective (Arith.) those whose powers terminate in the same digits as the roots themselves; as 5 and 6, whose squares are 25 and 36.
  • adjective (Geom.) two imaginary points at infinite distance through which every circle in the plane is, in the theory of curves, imagined to pass.
  • adjective (Min.) See under Polarization.
  • adjective (Naut.) the method of sailing by the arc of a great circle.
  • adjective See under Saw.

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

  • adjective Of or relating to a circle
  • adjective in the shape of, or moving in a circle
  • adjective circuitous or roundabout
  • adjective defining one word in terms of another that is itself defined in terms of the first word
  • adjective distributed to a large number of persons
  • noun A printed advertisement, directive, or notice intended for mass distribution; a flyer
  • noun In the Administration, a circular letter
  • noun dated A sleeveless cloak, cut in circular form.

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

  • adjective having a circular shape
  • noun an advertisement (usually printed on a page or in a leaflet) intended for wide distribution
  • adjective describing a circle; moving in a circle

Etymologies

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

[Middle English circuler, from Anglo-Norman, from Latin circulāris, from circulus, circle; see circle.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English, from Old French circulier, from Latin circularis, from circulus, diminutive of circus ("ring").

Examples

  • Circular composition traceable in what has been first conceived as pyramidal or rectangular, circular composition as the first intention, expressed either on a vertical plane or in perspective, i.e., circular or elliptical — and composition _made circular_ not by any arrangement of parts, but by sacrifice and elimination of edges and corners are the three forms of composition which produce circular observation.

    Pictorial Composition and the Critical Judgment of Pictures

  • Circular observation in pictures whose structure was apparently not circular leads to the consideration of _circular composition, _ or that class of pictures where the evident intention is to compose under the influence of circular observation — where the circle expresses the first thought in the composition.

    Pictorial Composition and the Critical Judgment of Pictures

  • Frank DiBello, the chief executive of Space Florida—a state-fundedn economic-development agency that normally would be a White House ally—lamented what he called a "circular and endless debate" about NASA's future.

    Blastoff Obscures NASA's Troubles

  • U.S. official stress that they believe this is what they call circular reporting, when we at CNN say security has been increased at the Golden Gate Bridge, in the next few days you hear conversations in this group that is closely monitored by the intelligence community about security at the Golden Gate Bridge.

    CNN Transcript Sep 10, 2002

  • This is circular logic and results in what I call circular injustice.

    Liblogs.ca latest blog entries

  • This is circular logic and results in what I call circular injustice.

    Liblogs.ca latest blog entries

  • This is circular logic and results in what I call circular injustice.

    Liblogs.ca latest blog entries

  • This is circular logic and results in what I call circular injustice.

    Liblogs.ca latest blog entries

  • Consider two planets of mass m and 2m, orbiting the same star in circular orbits.

    Forces Star | SciFi, Fantasy & Horror Collectibles

  • Valuation is intrinsically an exercise in circular reasoning, which is why appraisers rely on comparavle sales.

    Matthew Yglesias » Maybe Geithner Knows What He’s Doing

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