• IPA: /ˈsɪmbəl/

symbol (plural symbols)

  1. A character or glyph representing an idea, concept or object.
    $ is the symbol for dollars in the US and some other countries.
    Chinese people use word symbols for writing.
  2. Any object, typically material, which is meant to represent another (usually abstract) even if there is no meaningful relationship.
    The lion is the symbol of courage; the lamb is the symbol of meekness or patience.
  3. (linguistics) A type of noun whereby the form refers to the same entity independently of the context; a symbol arbitrarily denotes a referent. See also icon and index.
  4. A summary of a dogmatic statement of faith.
    The Apostles, Nicene Creed and the confessional books of Protestantism, such as the Augsburg Confession of Lutheranism are considered symbols.
  5. (crystallography) The numerical expression which defines a plane's position relative to the assumed axes.
  6. (obsolete) That which is thrown into a common fund; hence, an appointed or accustomed duty.
    • They do their work in the days of peace […] and come to pay their symbol in a war or in a plague.
  7. (obsolete) Share; allotment.
    • The persons who are to be judged […] shall all appear to receive their symbol.
  8. (programming) An internal identifier used by a debugger to relate parts of the compiled program to the corresponding names in the source code.
  9. (telecommunications) A signalling event on a communications channel; a signal that cannot be further divided into meaningful information.
Related terms Translations Translations Translations
  • French: symbole
  • Russian: си́мвол
  • French: symbole
  • Russian: си́мвол

symbol (symbols, present participle symboling; past and past participle symboled)

  1. To symbolize.

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