I. transitive verb Etymology: Middle English, from Anglo-French cumpasser to measure, from Vulgar Latin *compassare to pace off, from Latin com- + passus pace Date: 14th century 1. to devise or contrive often with craft or skill ; plot <
persons…who have compassed my destruction — Charles Dickens
2. encompass 3. a. bring about, achieve b. to get into one's possession or power ; obtain 4. comprehendcompassable adjective II. noun Date: 14th century 1. a. boundary, circumference <
within the compass of the city walls
b. a circumscribed space <
within the narrow compass of 21 pages — V. L. Parrington
c. range, scope <
the compass of my voice
2. a curved or roundabout course <
a compass of seven days' journey — 2 Kings 3:9(Authorized Version)
3. a. a device for determining directions by means of a magnetic needle or group of needles turning freely on a pivot and pointing to the magnetic north b. any of various nonmagnetic devices that indicate direction c. an instrument for describing circles or transferring measurements that consists of two pointed branches joined at the top by a pivot — usually used in plural; called also pair of compasses 4. direction 6c <
his moral compass
Synonyms: see range III. adjective Date: 1523 forming a curve ; curved <
a compass timber

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Compass — Com pass (k[u^]m pas), n. [F. compas, fr. LL. compassus circle, prop., a stepping together; com + passus pace, step. See {Pace}, {Pass}.] 1. A passing round; circuit; circuitous course. [1913 Webster] They fetched a compass of seven day s journey …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • COMPASS — is an acronym for COMP rehensive ASS embler. COMPASS is a macro assembly language on Control Data Corporation s 3000 series, and on the 60 bit CDC 6000 series, 7600 and Cyber 70 and 170 series mainframe computers.There are two flavors of COMPASS… …   Wikipedia

  • Compass — steht für Compass (Satellitennavigation) der Name des chinesischen Satellitennavigationssystems Compass Group ein britisches Nahrungsmittelunternehmen COMPASS Experiment ein Detektor am Teilchenbeschleuniger SPS COMPASS 1 ein von Studenten… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Compass — Com pass (k[u^]m pas), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Compassed} (k[u^]m past); p. pr. & vb. n. {Compassing}.] [F. compasser, LL. compassare.] 1. To go about or entirely round; to make the circuit of. [1913 Webster] Ye shall compass the city seven times.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • COMPASS — steht für Compass (Satellitennavigation) der Name des chinesischen Satellitennavigationssystems COMPASS Experiment ein Detektor am Teilchenbeschleuniger SPS COMPASS 1 ein von Studenten entwickelter Kleinsatellit Kinder und Jugend… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • compass — [n] boundary, periphery ambit, area, bound, circle, circuit, circumference, circumscription, confines, domain, enclosure, environs, expanse, extent, field, limit, limitation, orbit, perimeter, precinct, purlieus, purview, radius, range, reach,… …   New thesaurus

  • compass — vb 1 *surround, environ, encircle, circle, encompass, hem, gird, girdle, ring Analogous words: *enclose, envelop: confine, circumscribe, restrict (see LIMIT) 2 gain, attain, achieve, *reach Analogous words: effect, fulfill, accomplish, * …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • compass — [kum′pəs; ] also [ käm′pəs] vt. [ME compassen < OFr compasser, to go around < VL * compassare < L com , together + passus, a step: see PACE1] 1. Archaic to go around; make a circuit of 2. ENCOMPASS (sense 1) 3. to grasp mentally;… …   English World dictionary

  • compass — index blockade (enclosure), boundary, caliber (measurement), capacity (maximum), circumscribe (surround by boundary) …   Law dictionary

  • compass — ► NOUN 1) an instrument containing a magnetized pointer which shows the direction of magnetic north and bearings from it. 2) (also compasses) an instrument for drawing circles and arcs and measuring distances between points, consisting of two… …   English terms dictionary

  • Compass — This article is about the direction finding instrument used in navigation. For other uses, see Compass (disambiguation). A simple dry magnetic pocket compass …   Wikipedia

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