medium

[mee-dee-uhm]
noun, plural media [mee-dee-uh] , for 1–9, 11, mediums for 1–11, 14.
1.
a middle state or condition; mean.
2.
something intermediate in nature or degree.
3.
an intervening substance, as air, through which a force acts or an effect is produced.
4.
the element that is the natural habitat of an organism.
5.
surrounding objects, conditions, or influences; environment.
6.
an intervening agency, means, or instrument by which something is conveyed or accomplished: Words are a medium of expression.
7.
one of the means or channels of general communication, information, or entertainment in society, as newspapers, radio, or television.
8.
Biology. the substance in which specimens are displayed or preserved.
9.
Also called culture medium. Bacteriology. a liquid or solidified nutrient material suitable for the cultivation of microorganisms.
10.
a person through whom the spirits of the dead are alleged to be able to contact the living.
11.
Fine Arts.
a.
Painting. a liquid with which pigments are mixed.
b.
the material or technique with which an artist works: the medium of watercolor.
12.
a size of printing paper, 18½ × 23½ inches (47 × 60 cm) in England, 18 × 23 to 19 × 25 inches (46 × 58 to 48 × 64 cm) in America.
13.
Chiefly British. a size of drawing or writing paper, 17½ × 22 inches (44 × 56 cm).
14.
Also called medium strip. Midland U.S. median strip.
15.
in medium, Movies, Television. with the principal actors in the middle distance: The scene was shot in medium.
adjective
16.
about halfway between extremes, as of degree, amount, quality, position, or size: Cook over medium heat. He is of medium height.

Origin:
1575–85; < Latin: the middle, noun use of neuter of medius middle. See mid1

media, median, medium, mediums (see usage note at media).


16. average, mean, middling.


7. See media1.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
medium (ˈmiːdɪəm)
 
adj
1.  midway between extremes; average: a medium size
2.  light Compare dark (of a colour) reflecting or transmitting a moderate amount of light: a medium red
 
n , -dia, -diums
3.  an intermediate or middle state, degree, or condition; mean: the happy medium
4.  an intervening substance or agency for transmitting or producing an effect; vehicle: air is a medium for sound
5.  a means or agency for communicating or diffusing information, news, etc, to the public: television is a powerful medium
6.  a person supposedly used as a spiritual intermediary between the dead and the living
7.  the substance in which specimens of animals and plants are preserved or displayed
8.  biology short for culture medium
9.  the substance or surroundings in which an organism naturally lives or grows
10.  art
 a.  the category of a work of art, as determined by its materials and methods of production: the medium of wood engraving
 b.  the materials used in a work of art
11.  any solvent in which pigments are mixed and thinned
12.  any one of various sizes of writing or printing paper, esp 18½ by 23½ inches or 17½ by 22 inches (small medium)
 

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

medium
1584, "a middle ground, quality, or degree," from L. medium, from neut. of adj. medius (see medial). Meaning "intermediate agency, channel of communication" is from 1605. That of "person who conveys spiritual messages" first recorded 1853, from notion of "substance through
which something is conveyed." Artistic sense (oil, watercolors, etc.) is from 1854. The adj. is 1670, from the noun; as a designation of cooked meat, it is attested from 1939. Happy medium is the "golden mean," Horace's aurea mediocritas.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

medium me·di·um (mē'dē-əm)
n. pl. me·di·ums or me·di·a (-dē-ə)

  1. Something, such as an intermediate course of action, that occupies a position or represents a condition midway between extremes.

  2. An intervening substance through which something else is transmitted or carried on.

  3. An agency by which something is accomplished, conveyed, or transferred.

  4. The substance, often nutritive, in which a specific organism lives and thrives.

  5. A culture medium.

  6. A filtering substance, such as filter paper.

adj.
Occurring or being between two degrees, amounts, or quantities; intermediate.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
medium   (mē'dē-əm)  Pronunciation Key 
Plural media
  1. A substance, such as agar, in which bacteria or other microorganisms are grown for scientific purposes.

  2. A substance that makes possible the transfer of energy from one location to another, especially through waves. For example, matter of sufficient density can be a medium for sound waves, which transfer mechanical energy. See more at wave.


The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

medium

see happy medium.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Example sentences
There has never been any valid way of making esthetic connections by medium
  alone.
Select easy, medium or difficult.
Light is a wonderful medium for carrying information.
The medium has matured, surely.
Idioms & Phrases
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