The Alternative English Dictionary: arm

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Entry definition

arm {{wikipedia}} {{picdic}} pronunciation
  • (UK) /ɑːm/
  • {{rhymes}}
  • (US) /ɑɹm/
  • {{audio}}
etymology 1 From Middle English arm, from Old English earm, from Proto-Germanic *armaz, from Proto-Indo-European *h₂(e)rmos 〈*h₂(e)rmos〉, a suffixed form of *h₂er- 〈*h₂er-〉. {{rel-top}} Akin to Dutch arm, German Arm, Yiddish אָרעם 〈ʼárʻm〉, Swedish arm. Indo-European cognates include Latin armus, Armenian արմունկ 〈armunk〉, Greek.1 ἁρμός 〈harmós〉, Greek.2 ἅρμα 〈hárma〉, Avestan 𐬀𐬭𐬨𐬀 〈𐬀𐬭𐬨𐬀〉, Old Persian trarma. {{rel-bottom}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. The portion of the upper human appendage, from the shoulder to the wrist and sometimes including the hand.
    • 1963, Margery Allingham, The China Governess , 19, , “When Timothy and Julia hurried up the staircase to the bedroom floor, where a considerable commotion was taking place, Tim took Barry Leach with him. He had him gripped firmly by the arm, since he felt it was not safe to let him loose, and he had no immediate idea what to do with him.”
    exampleShe stood with her right arm extended and her palm forward to indicate “Stop!”
  2. (anatomy) The extended portion of the upper limb, from the shoulder to the elbow. exampleThe arm and forearm are parts of the upper limb in the human body.
  3. A limb, or locomotive or prehensile organ, of an invertebrate animal. the arms of an octopus
  4. A long, narrow, more or less rigid part of an object extend from the main part or centre of the object, such as the arm of an armchair, a crane, a pair of spectacles or a pair of compasses. exampleThe robot arm reached out and placed the part on the assembly line.
  5. A bay or inlet off a main body of water. exampleShelburne Bay is an arm of Lake Champlain.
  6. A branch of an organization. examplethe cavalry arm of the military service
  7. (figurative) Power; might; strength; support. the arm of the law the secular arm
    • Bible, Isa. lii. 1 To whom is the arm of the Lord revealed?
  8. (baseball, slang) A pitcher
    • The team needs to sign another arm in the offseason.
  9. (genetics) One of the two parts of a chromosome
  10. A group of patients in a medical trial.
verb: {{en-verb}} {{term-context}}
  1. To take by the arm; to take up in one's arms.
    • Shakespeare And make him with our pikes and partisans / A grave: come, arm him.
    • Two N. Kins Arm your prize; / I know you will not lose him.
  2. To supply with arms or limbs.
    • Beaumont and Fletcher His shoulders broad and strong, / Armed long and round.
etymology 2 From Middle English arm, from Old English earm, from Proto-Germanic *armaz, from Proto-Indo-European *erm-. {{rel-top}} Akin to Dutch arm, German arm, Yiddish אָרעם 〈ʼárʻm〉, Swedish arm. {{rel-bottom}}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (UK dialectal, chiefly, Scotland) Poor; lacking in riches or wealth.
  2. (UK dialectal, chiefly, Scotland) To be pitied; pitiful; wretched.
etymology 3 Middle English, from Old French arme, from Latin arma, from Proto-Indo-European *ar-mo-, a suffixed form of *h₂er- 〈*h₂er-〉, hence ultimately cognate with etymology 1.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (usually used in the plural) A weapon.
  2. (in the plural) heraldic bearing or insignia
Synonyms: See also
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. To supply with armour or (later especially) weapon.
  2. To prepare a tool or a weapon for action; to activate. Remember to arm an alarm system.
  3. To cover or furnish with a plate, or with whatever will add strength, force, security, or efficiency. to arm the hit of a sword; to arm a hook in angling
  4. (figurative) To furnish with means of defence; to prepare for resistance; to fortify, in a moral sense.
    • Bible, 1 Peter iv. 1 Arm yourselves … with the same mind.
  5. To fit (a magnet) with an armature.
  • {{rank}}
  • mar, Mar, Mar., MAR
  • MRA
  • ram, Ram, RAM
  • RMA

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