Meaning of POINT in English

I. ˈpȯint dial ˈpīnt noun

( -s )

Etymology: Middle English, partly from Old French point prick, sting, small spot, dot, item, point in time or space, from Latin punctum small hole, spot, point in time or space, from neuter of punctus, past participle of pungere to prick, sting, pierce; partly from Old French pointe sharp end, from (assumed) Vulgar Latin puncta, from Latin, feminine of punctus, past participle — more at pungent



(1) : one of the indivisible parts of an extended usually abstract whole : an individual detail of a pair or group of details : item , particular

said there were two points in the proposal that were important

carefully considered each point of the argument

said that in his new job he would have to watch a couple of points

(2) : a distinguishing trait or feature : a differentiating detail : individualizing mark : characteristic

was well aware of the teacher's good and bad points

tact is one of her strong points

specifically : a feature of an animal's physical qualities or behavior especially as figuring in evaluation of the animal's relative excellence of breed

judges at a dog show carefully noting the points of each dog

(3) points plural : the facial markings of a Siamese cat : mask


(1) : the most important essential in some discussion or matter : the principal or central element : the precise part on which the rest turns or depends

the point of his talk was that more effort was needed

the point is they are doing as well as they can

asked them not to digress and to keep to the point

became impatient with the witness and asked her to come to the point

(2) : the part of something spoken or written that gives it effectiveness or meaningfulness : the element on which applicability or cogency depends : the main idea or vital feature

could not see the point of such a remark

missed the whole point of the joke

c. : the quality of something spoken or written of being able to arouse interest and of being generally effective : pungent effectiveness arising especially out of applicability : cogency , force , punch

is a basically sound book but somehow lacks point

2. obsolete : the state of being in a particular physical condition

looked fairer and in better point than all the rest — John Evelyn



(1) : an end or object to be achieved : aim , purpose

did not see what point there was in continuing the discussion

(2) : something to be gained : benefit , good

wondered whether there would be any point in seeing her

b. : something that one has proposed and is trying to get established or accepted : a particular line of argument : what one is driving at : thesis , proposition

said he was beginning to see her point

has unquestionably won his point

carried the point without difficulty and did as she wanted to

made their point so that everyone was convinced


(1) : something that is the subject of discussion or attention

asked what the point at issue was

or concern

with them the whole thing is a point of conscience

: matter

is a point of controversy

a point of interest

(2) : something (as a vital idea, an essential detail) that is important enough to require serious discussion or consideration

told him that he had a point in what he said

(3) : pointer 8



(1) : a particular narrowly limited part of a surface or of space that is singled out as occupying a usually precisely indicated spot and that has usually minimum extension or no relevant extension : a specific narrowly localized place having no relevant size or shape : a definite precisely indicated placement or position of something

fire broke out at several points in the city

walked to a point 50 yards north of the building

struck the target at a point just left of center

a satellite that was 200 miles from earth at its farthest point

(2) : a narrowly localized abstract spot used as a place of reference

conceived of a line drawn from a point into infinity

the shortest distance between any two points is a straight line

(3) : a particular place (as a city, town, or region) : locality

asked them what points they intended to visit

stopped at a number of points along the way

have come from distant points


(1) : a particular narrowly limited often critical interval of time singled out as occurring at a precisely indicated moment and having usually minimum duration or no relevant duration : exact moment : precise instant : juncture

at this point he was interrupted

(2) : a time interval or set of circumstances occurring immediately or nearly immediately before something indicated : verge

was on the point of refusing

is at the very point of death

found her on the point of hysterics


(1) : a particular narrowly limited step, stage, or degree in the condition or development of something that is typically singled out as critical or decisive or as otherwise highly significant or important

had reached the point where nothing seemed to matter anymore

arrived at the point of perfection

a high point of civilization

(2) : a definite measurable position in some kind of scale

the point at which water begins to boil

stock prices at their highest points


(1) : one of the undefined elements of a geometric system and especially of a Euclidean geometric system ; also : an element of an aggregate determined by an ordered set equal in number to the number of dimensions of the aggregate

(2) : a real or complex number that is represented by a geometric point

5. obsolete

a. : conclusion , termination

b. : decision , resolution


a. : the extreme terminal usually sharp or narrowly rounded part of something (as a sword, arrow, awl, pin, hook, indicator) that is usually formed by the gradual or abrupt decrease in width or thickness of the body which it terminates and that is typically used for piercing, pricking, indicating, or for some similar function : a usually sharp, tapering, or otherwise narrowly converging end : tip

the sharp point of a needle

forced the government on the people at the point of the sword

both points of an anchor

the point of a fishhook

a weather vane with its point turned toward the north

b. : something with such a point: as

(1) obsolete : a weapon used for stabbing or piercing

(2) : an instrument used in etching and engraving

(3) : a tool used in trimming and smoothing rough stone surfaces

(4) : an instrument used to test the hardness of a mineral or gem


(1) : a piece of stone typically having a triangular shape and used chiefly by some prehistoric peoples as a tool or sometimes as a weapon

(2) : an arrowhead without cutting edges : pile

(3) : glazier's point


(1) : a short steel pin placed in a printing press to perforate a sheet and so position it for register the next time it is run through the press — called also press point

(2) : a piece of steel placed in the furniture of a printing form to mark a sheet at a certain place as a guide for folding

(3) : a short sharp piece of serrated steel fastened to the furniture or a metal base in a printing form for slitting a sheet so that it can be registered on corresponding slits of a folding machine

(4) : pin 2 d


(1) : a device with a tapered point that controls the increase or decrease of stitches (as in machine-knitted fabrics)

(2) : one of a series of needles in a lace machine used for controlling the size of the mesh

f. : a drivepipe through which steam or water is introduced into frozen gravel to thaw it for mining or dredging


(1) : the contact or discharge extremity of an electric device (as a spark plug, contact break, lightning rod)

(2) chiefly Britain : an electric outlet : socket

7. : a projecting usually tapering part of something: as

a. : a piece of land (as a promontory, cape) projecting into a body of water

b. : a sharp prominence

beyond a point of rock

: apex , peak

the towering points of a mountain range

c. : the shaped end of one of the pieces of a leaf spring


(1) : the tip of the chin

(2) : the tip of the foot

(3) : the tip of the tongue

(4) : a tine of an antler

(5) points plural : the extremities of an animal ; especially : the legs, mane, and tail of a horse


(1) : point rail

(2) : a railroad switch

(3) : the tip of the angle between two rails in a railroad frog

f. : the head of the bow of a stringed instrument

8. : a short musical phrase:

a. archaic : a short phrase sounded as a signal (as in hunting, battle)


(1) : a phrase (as a fugue subject) in contrapuntal music

(2) : the entry of such a phrase at one or the other part of a contrapuntal composition



(1) : a very small mark (as a dot, speck) on a surface : a tiny spot

a blue background that was touched up with little points of gold

(2) : something that in general size and appearance is suggestive of such a mark

points of light shone through the perforated paper

the pupil of the eye was contracted to a minute point

b. : a small mark used in writing or printing: as

(1) : punctuation mark ; especially : period

(2) : a simple or compound mark used as a supplementary mark (as for indicating vowels, differentiating letters similar in form, marking stress accent) in Semitic alphabets

(3) : dot I 2 e

(4) : decimal point

(5) : one of the small raised impressions used in braille

c. : a note in medieval music : punctus


a. : a lace like a shoelace having aglet ends for tying parts of a garment or costume together and used especially in the 16th and 17th centuries

sleeves were joined to a bodice with points

hose was tied to the doublet with points

b. : reef point

c. : a short length of material (as silkworm gut, nylon) used in angling to attach an artificial fly to a leader

d. : a small piece of material (as gutta-percha, gold) used in dentistry as a temporary filling for teeth


a. : one of nine particular divisions of a heraldic shield or escutcheon that determine the position of a charge ; especially : a horizontal segment located at the base of the field and bounded by two straight or concaved slanting lines that meet at or below the fess point

b. : one of the pendants of the label of a heraldic shield or escutcheon



(1) : one of the 32 precisely marked equidistant spots about the circumference of a compass card that indicate the direction in which the various parts of the horizon lie

(2) : the difference of 11 1/4 degrees between two such successive points

b. : a part of the horizon indicated precisely or approximately by one of the points of a compass card

13. : a small detachment probing ahead of and scouting for an advance guard or following behind and protecting a rear guard


a. : lace: as

(1) : needlepoint 1

(2) : bobbin lace

b. obsolete : a piece of needlepoint used as a woman's head covering


(1) : a stitch used in the making of lace or in producing canvas work or sometimes in producing other similar work

(2) : a line of fancy stitching on the back of a glove

d. : one of the stripes woven in the edge of a Hudson's Bay blanket to indicate the weight of the blanket

15. : one of 12 spaces marked off on each side of a backgammon board

16. : a unit of measurement (as of excellence, value, proficiency, extent): as


(1) : a unit of counting in the scoring of a game, contest, or other competition or match

(2) : a unit used in evaluating the worth or strength of a hand in some card games (as bridge)


(1) : a unit of academic credit used in many educational institutions and granted in larger or smaller multiples according to the grade achieved in a course

(2) : a unit of credit counting toward an individual's return from overseas military service or toward his release from military service and granted in larger or smaller multiples according to the length of service already done, the number of combat decorations awarded, or other qualifications

c. : a unit used in quoting prices of stocks, shares, and various commodities that is equivalent in the stock exchange of the United States to one dollar a share

d. : a unit that is used in Australia to measure the extent of rainfall and that is equivalent to 1/100 inch

e. : a unit that is used to measure the thickness of paper and paperboard and that is equivalent to 1/1000 inch

f. : a unit that is used to measure the size of type used in printing and that is 0.013837 or approximately 1/72 inch — see type illustration

g. : a unit used to measure the weight of diamonds that is equivalent to 1/100 carat

h. : a unit of value of coupons allotted for purchase of commodities in a rationing system

17. : the action of pointing: as

a. : the action of a hunting dog that scents or sees game and stiffens into an intently rigid attitude with head and gaze directed toward the game

b. : the action (as in some dance positions or movements) of extending one leg so that it supports no body weight and so that only the tips of the toes of the extended foot touch the floor

c. : a thrust or lunge made while fencing


a. : a particular position of a player in some games: as

(1) : an off-side fielding position in cricket near the batsman and about in line with the popping crease — see cricket illustration

(2) : the position to the right of the goal in lacrosse

b. : the player of a particular position in some games


a. : a run (as a cross-country run) made straight from one place to another

b. : the terminal place to which such a run is made

20. : one of the numbers 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10 that if thrown on the come-out in the game of craps gives the shooter the right to continue throwing until he wins by throwing the same number or loses by throwing a 7

- at point

- in point

- in point of

- to point

- to the point

II. verb

( -ed/-ing/-s )

Etymology: Middle English pointen, from Middle French pointer, partly from pointe point (sharp end), partly from point prick, small spot, dot — more at point I

transitive verb


a. : to cause to have a sharp point : sharpen

pointing a pencil with a knife

b. : to give added force, emphasis, or piquancy to : give more point to

occasionally pointed his remarks by slyly wagging his forefinger — G.B.Shaw

— often used with up

pointed up his narrative with effective use of dialect



(1) : to finish (as a wall) by filling the joints with cement, mortar, or other material

(2) : to scratch out the old mortar from the joints of (as a wall) and fill in with new material — often used with up

pointed up the brickwork

b. : to trim and smooth the surface of (stone) with a sharp tool — often used with down

pointing down the block of granite



(1) : to mark the pauses or grammatical divisions in (something written or printed) : punctuate

pointing the text of a speech

(2) : to separate (a numerical figure) into groups by inserting a dot ; especially : to separate (a decimal fraction) from a whole number by inserting a decimal point — usually used with off

pointed off the last two figures of 125

b. : to mark (as Hebrew words or words of other Semitic languages) with vowel points or other differentiating points



(1) : to indicate the position or direction of especially by extending a finger toward the thing so indicated — usually used with out

pointed out the house where he used to live

pointing out places of interest as they drove along

(2) : to direct someone's attention to : call to someone's notice

pointed out that several mistakes had been made

pointing out the necessity of such a step

let me point out that I knew nothing about the matter

b. of a hunting dog : to indicate the presence and place of (game) by stiffening into an intently rigid attitude with head and gaze directed toward the place so indicated

a setter that points pheasant extraordinarily well


a. : to cause to be turned in a particular direction or toward a particular thing : direct ; specifically : to cause the tip of (as a finger, stick, weapon, vehicle) to be extended, aimed, or turned in a particular direction or toward a particular thing

pointing the gun at the target

pointed the boat upstream

b. : to extend (a leg) in executing a point in dancing


a. : to taper and finish off the end of (a cable or rope) by interweaving the nettles

b. : to insert reef points through the eyelet holes of (a sail)

c. : to brace up sharp (the yards of a ship)

7. : to insert white hairs into (furs) to improve the appearance

red fox dyed and pointed to imitate silver fox

8. : to locate especially in marble essential or selected points of (a piece of statuary) by drilling a hole to the proper depth at each point

pointing a block of marble before beginning to cut a statue

intransitive verb


a. : to be of such a kind as to show or tend to show fairly convincingly the fact or probability of something specified : give or tend to give a fairly good indication of something specified — used with to or sometimes toward or at

everything points to a bright future for them

such symptoms point to a serious disorder

b. : to indicate the position or direction of something especially by extending a finger toward the thing so indicated

kept pointing through the window

— used with at, to, or toward before a specified object

pointed at the map on the wall

pointed to her brother and said he was the one

c. : to point game

a dog that points well


a. : to lie extended, aimed, or turned in a particular direction or toward a particular thing

a directional arrow that pointed to the north

the boat was pointing upstream

an indicator that pointed toward an even number

b. : to execute a point in dancing

3. of an abscess : to come to a head

4. of a ship : to sail close to the wind — often used with up

would point up better on the port tack — Nelson Hayes

5. of a horse : to rest a forefoot on the toe or hold a forefoot forward to remove the weight of the body from it

6. : to make special intensive preparations for meeting a particular sports opponent — used with for

the team was pointing for the game with the neighboring college

III. noun


a. : a percentage point of the face value of a loan often added as a placement fee or service charge

b. points plural : a share of the profits of a business venture

2. : credit accruing from creating a good impression — usually used in plural

he gets points for courage — Sally Quinn

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