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category

[kat-i-gawr-ee, -gohr-ee] /ˈkæt ɪˌgɔr i, -ˌgoʊr i/
noun, plural categories.
1.
any general or comprehensive division; a class.
2.
a classificatory division in any field of knowledge, as a phylum or any of its subdivisions in biology.
3.
Metaphysics.
  1. (in Aristotelian philosophy) any of the fundamental modes of existence, such as substance, quality, and quantity, as determined by analysis of the different possible kinds of predication.
  2. (in Kantian philosophy) any of the fundamental principles of the understanding, as the principle of causation.
  3. any classification of terms that is ultimate and not susceptible to further analysis.
4.
categories, Also called Guggenheim. (used with a singular verb) a game in which a key word and a list of categories, as dogs, automobiles, or rivers, are selected, and in which each player writes down a word in each category that begins with each of the letters of the key word, the player writing down the most words within a time limit being declared the winner.
5.
Mathematics. a type of mathematical object, as a set, group, or metric space, together with a set of mappings from such an object to other objects of the same type.
6.
Grammar, part of speech.
Origin
1580-1590
1580-90; < Late Latin catēgoria < Greek katēgoría accusation (also, kind of predication), equivalent to katḗgor(os) accuser, affirmer (katēgor(eîn) to accuse, affirm, literally, speak publicly against, equivalent to kata- cata- + -agoreîn to speak before the agora + -os noun suffix) + -ia -y3
Synonyms
1. group, grouping, type.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for categories
  • Linguistic categories make up a system of surviving dogma-dogma of the unconscious.
  • Being a study of character which is incidentally historical, it does not stand apart from the accepted dramatic categories.
  • The two alternations belong, then, to entirely different psychological categories.
  • Send us your photos in any of the six categories for your chance to win.
  • And some of the colleges don't report in all categories.
  • Some believe in clear sets of categories, but shy away from bright lines.
  • Try to keep your posts diverse across the different categories in a given time period.
  • Contest categories also included illustrations, informational graphics, videos and even interactive video games.
  • Ornamental species and forms can be divided into two categories: evergreen and deciduous.
  • Or pick one of their categories, such as natives or edibles.
British Dictionary definitions for categories

category

/ˈkætɪɡərɪ/
noun (pl) -ries
1.
a class or group of things, people, etc, possessing some quality or qualities in common; a division in a system of classification
2.
(metaphysics) any one of the most basic classes into which objects and concepts can be analysed
3.
  1. (in the philosophy of Aristotle) any one of ten most fundamental modes of being, such as quantity, quality, and substance
  2. (in the philosophy of Kant) one of twelve concepts required by human beings to interpret the empirical world
  3. any set of objects, concepts, or expressions distinguished from others within some logical or linguistic theory by the intelligibility of a specific set of statements concerning them See also category mistake
Word Origin
C15: from Late Latin catēgoria, from Greek katēgoria, from kategorein to accuse, assert
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for categories

category

n.

1580s, from Middle French catégorie, from Late Latin categoria, from Greek kategoria "accusation, prediction, category," verbal noun from kategorein "to speak against; to accuse, assert, predicate," from kata "down to" (or perhaps "against;" see cata-) + agoreuein "to harangue, to declaim (in the assembly)," from agora "public assembly" (see agora). Original sense of "accuse" weakened to "assert, name" by the time Aristotle applied kategoria to his 10 classes of things that can be named.

category should be used by no-one who is not prepared to state (1) that he does not mean class, & (2) that he knows the difference between the two .... [Fowler]

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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