Meaning of STANDARD in English


I. ˈstandə(r)d, -aan- noun

( -s )

Etymology: Middle English standart, standard, from Middle French estandart, estandard rallying place, flag to mark a rallying place, from Old French, probably of Germanic origin; from a compound whose first element is akin to Old High German stantan to stand and whose second element is akin to Old High German ort point, corner — more at stand , odd

1. : a pole or spear bearing some conspicuous object (as a banner) at the top formerly used in an army or fleet to mark a rallying point, to signal, or to serve as an emblem


a. : a long narrow tapering flag of considerable size and richness that is personal to an individual or corporation and bears heraldic badges, usually a motto, and often other devices — distinguished from banner


(1) : the personal flag of the head of a state or of a member of a royal family — compare royal standard

(2) : a distinctive flag adopted by a government that is not a monarchy for some distinguishing purpose served by the monarch's personal flag under a monarchy

c. : an organization flag carried by a mounted or motorized military unit

regimental standard

d. : banner

e. obsolete : standard-bearer


a. : something that is established by authority, custom, or general consent as a model or example to be followed : criterion , test

b. : a definite level or degree of quality that is proper and adequate for a specific purpose

4. : something that is set up and established by authority as a rule for the measure of quantity, weight, extent, value, or quality ; especially : an original specimen measure or weight (as the international prototype meter and kilogram of the International Bureau of Weights and Measures) or an official copy of such a specimen used as the standard of comparison in testing other weights and measures


a. : the fineness of the metal used in coins and the legally fixed weight each coin should have when first minted

b. : standard of value


a. or standard hundred : any of various units of quantity for timber ; especially : a unit equal to 1980 board feet or 165 cubic feet — called also Petersburg standard

b. : standard deal


a. : a carefully thought-out method of performing a task

auditing standards

b. : carefully drawn specifications covering manufacturing material or equipment

8. Britain : a grade in an elementary school

had not gone beyond the fifth standard of her country school

9. standards plural : the punches (as H M O P h m o p) of a type font that are made first and that serve as a dimensional and design model for the other letters


[ standard (II) ]

: standard english

11. obsolete : a complete assortment : set , suit

12. : a structure built for or serving as a base or support for something

the standard for a Sèvres vase

standard for a set of flags

power-line standards

standard for a sewing machine


a. : a tall candlestick in a church ; especially : one of two or more set on a sanctuary or chancel floor

b. : standing cup

c. obsolete : a large chest : coffer

14. : an inverted knee timber placed upon the deck of a ship instead of beneath it

15. : a plant grown with an erect main stem so that it forms or resembles a tree: as

a. : a fruit tree and especially an apple grafted on a stock that does not induce dwarfing and grown in an essentially natural form as distinguished from an espalier

b. : an herbaceous plant (as a fuchsia or geranium) pruned and trained to a single stem that is induced to branch when the desired height is attained by pinching out the apical growth

c. : a woody plant (as a rose or wisteria) that is budded on a tall stock and pruned and trained to produce a broad head of scion growth at the top of the stock


a. : the large upper posterior petal of some flowers (as the pea) — called also banner, vexillum

b. : one of the three inner usually erect and incurved petals of an iris


a. : a tree permitted to remain after coppice felling

b. : a tree from one to two feet in diameter at breastheight


[ standard (II) ]

: a musical composition that has become a part of the standard repertoire


standard , criterion , gauge ( or gage ), yardstick , touchstone can designate, in common, any measure by which one judges a thing as authentic, good, or adequate or the degree to which it is authentic, good, or adequate. standard applies to any authoritative rule, principle, or measure used to determine the quantity, weight, or extent, or especially the value, quality, level, or degree of a thing

each generation … has its own ideals and its own standards of judgment — S.M.Crothers

the ideal of general cultivation has been one of the standards in education — C.W.Eliot

each breed has a written standard of perfection which supposedly describes the ideal specimen — J.W.Cross

criterion is the thing, whether formulated into a rule or principle or not, by appeal to which one arrives at or confirms a given judgment, as of value, quality, fitness, or correctness

the sole criterion of the truth of illusion is its inner congruity — J.L.Lowes

the size of sunspots is a meaningless criterion in predicting the havoc which may occur to radio transmission — C.L.Dawes

no exact criterion for a just and fruitful apportionment of the surplus wealth — J.A.Hobson

these laws … did establish useful criteria of conduct — Oscar Handlin

gauge ( or gage ), concretely a standard measure or scale or an instrument for measuring something that fluctuates, as in size or height, can in extension apply to any standard measure whether tangible or not

a piece of 1/8 inch thickness fiber or wood makes a convenient gage in setting brush holders — Mill & Factory

the gauges Hollywood uses to measure a picture's importance — Time

the degree of public acceptance of the opinions of leaders is the ultimate gauge of the importance and validity of those opinions — K.A.Rafferty

the thickness gage has leaves of various thickness, and its function is to measure clearances in presswork — Theory & Practice of Presswork

yardstick , in this comparison, is a more or less figurative and informal term for any criterion, especially for something intangible or immaterial

no absolute or universal yardstick about what constitutes a frustration — Abram Kardiner

the consumption of petroleum products, an accurate yardstick of economic growth — Lamp

touchstone , in this comparison, is any simple device by which authenticity or value may be determined, especially an authentic or superior instance of a class of things by comparison with which another thing may be judged authentic or superior

consistency is a touchstone by which the basic doctrine can often be distinguished from the propaganda line — L.C.Stevens

a Marxist critic using economic determinants, social perspectives, and class consciousness as his touchstones — C.I.Glicksberg

the chief touchstone to folklore is the manner in which it is transmitted: one man tells another, one man shows another — D.B.M.Emrich

Synonym: see in addition flag , model .

II. adjective

1. : constituting or affording a standard for comparison, measurement, or judgment

standard weight

standard silver


a. : having qualities or attributes required by law or established by custom

standard insurance policy

window of standard width

standard milk

standard ginger

b. of a fruit or vegetable : of medium-low to inferior quality : falling into the third and usually lowest quality class generally marketed

standard canned tomatoes are often a good buy for cooking


a. : regularly and widely available : readily supplied : not unusual or special

standard brand of coffee

standard model of automobile

b. : well-established and very familiar : not novel or experimental

standard automobile transmission

standard building practice

4. : having recognized and permanent value

standard history

standard authors

standard reference work

standard biography

5. : substantially uniform and well-established by usage in the speech and writing of the educated and widely recognized as acceptable and authoritative

standard German

standard pronunciation

standard spelling

standard grammar

6. : grown in natural form : not trained to a wall or support

standard fruit trees

7. of a typewriter : heavily constructed for constant service and designed for use on a desk or stand built for the purpose — compare portable , noiseless

8. cryptography : preserving alphabetic order

DCBAZY … GFE is a reversed standard sequence

III. transitive verb

( -ed/-ing/-s )

: to determine the fineness of (as gold, silver)

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.