Meaning of COMPACT in English


I. kəmˈpakt, (ˈ)käm|pakt adjective

( sometimes -er/-est )

Etymology: Middle English compacte, from Latin compactus, past participle of compingere to join, from com- + pangere to fasten — more at pact

1. obsolete : firmly put together, joined, or integrated

2. : predominantly formed or filled : composed , made — usually used with of

a figure compact of chivalry and faith

Miss Austen's novels are compact of delicate trivialities — Samuel Alexander

3. : marked by an arrangement of parts or units closely pressed, packed, grouped, or knit together with very slight intervals or intervening space: as

a. : brief , pithy

compact language

a compact style

a compact writer

: not diffuse or verbose

a compact statement

b. : having the twigs or branches so close together as to form a dense often rounded mass

compact evergreens

c. of bone : lacking in obvious interstices : dense , solid — compare cancellous

d. : dense 5


a. : suggesting firmness, soundness, and a degree of strength : not gangling, weak, spare, or ill-formed in appearance : solid and without excess flesh

he had a small, compact body that looked full of life — D.H.Lawrence

b. of an animal : close-coupled : stocky , cobby

5. : marked by concentration in a limited area : homogeneous and located within a limited definite space without straggling or rambling over a wide area

his long narrow strips did not lie next to one another in a compact farm — G.M.Trevelyan

downtown San Francisco, compact and accessible — American Guide Series: California

Synonyms: see close

II. verb

( -ed/-ing/-s )

transitive verb


a. : to knit or draw together (as into a unified or coherent whole) : combine , consolidate

racial and religious similarities helped compact the tribes into a great nation

b. : to press together (as parts, components, segments) : compress

thousands of crates compacted in a warehouse

a great human document, compacting the experience and reflection of a … unified life — M.R.Cohen

2. : to make up (as by uniting, connecting, combining) : compose , create

a mob compacted of all the more violent elements of the underworld

intransitive verb

: to become compacted

the old snow had compacted into the hardness of ice

Synonyms: see unify

III. ˈkämˌpakt noun

( -s )


a. : a compacted body, structure, or unit

the compact of business families forming the upper classes — Hugh MacLennan

b. : an object produced by the compression of metal powders

2. : a small cosmetic case for the purse

3. : a small automobile

IV. intransitive verb

( -ed/-ing/-s )

Etymology: Middle French compacter, from compact agreement, from Latin compactum

: to make a formal agreement

V. noun

( -s )

Etymology: Latin compactum agreement, from neuter of compactus past participle of compacisci to make an agreement, from com- + pacisci to agree, contract — more at pact

1. obsolete : conspiracy , plot

2. : an agreement, understanding, or covenant between two or more parties

the matrimonial compact

a compact with the devil

a five-nation compact to control opium traffic

specifically : an interstate agreement entered into to handle a particular problem or task

a Colorado River Compact … allocating rights to the waters of the Colorado among seven states — F.A.Ogg & P.O.Ray

3. : social contract

a man not having the power of his own life cannot by compact … enslave himself to anyone — John Locke

VI. adjective

: being a topological space (as a metric space) with the property that for any collection of open sets which contains it there is a subset of the collection with a finite number of elements which also contains it

• com·pact·ness noun

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