1 [test]
the means by which the presence, quality, or genuineness of anything is determined; a means of trial.
the trial of the quality of something: to put to the test.
a particular process or method for trying or assessing.
a set of questions, problems, or the like, used as a means of evaluating the abilities, aptitudes, skills, or performance of an individual or group; examination.
Psychology. a set of standardized questions, problems, or tasks designed to elicit responses for use in measuring the traits, capacities, or achievements of an individual.
the process of identifying or detecting the presence of a constituent of a substance, or of determining the nature of a substance, commonly by the addition of a reagent.
the reagent used.
an indication or evidence of the presence of a constituent, or of the nature of a substance, obtained by such means.
an oath or other confirmation of one's loyalty, religious beliefs, etc.
British. a cupel for refining or assaying metals.
verb (used with object)
to subject to a test of any kind; try.
Chemistry. to subject to a chemical test.
Metallurgy. to assay or refine in a cupel.
verb (used without object)
to undergo a test or trial; try out.
to perform on a test: People test better in a relaxed environment.
to conduct a test: to test for diabetes.

1350–1400; Middle English: cupel < Middle French < Latin testū, testum earthen pot; akin to test2

testable, adjective
testability, noun
testingly, adverb
nontestable, adjective
nontesting, adjective
self-testing, adjective
untestable, adjective
untested, adjective
well-tested, adjective

1. proof, assay. See trial. 9. assay, prove, examine.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
test1 (tɛst)
1.  to ascertain (the worth, capability, or endurance) of (a person or thing) by subjection to certain examinations; try
2.  (often foll by for) to carry out an examination on (a substance, material, or system) by applying some chemical or physical procedure designed to indicate the presence of a substance or the possession of a property: to test food for arsenic; to test for magnetization
3.  (intr) to achieve a specified result in a test: a quarter of the patients at the clinic tested positive for the AIDS virus
4.  (tr) to put under severe strain: the long delay tested my patience
5.  test the water to make an exploratory or initial approach; sound out
6.  a method, practice, or examination designed to test a person or thing
7.  a series of questions or problems designed to test a specific skill or knowledge: an intelligence test
8.  a standard of judgment; criterion
9.  a.  a chemical reaction or physical procedure for testing a substance, material, etc
 b.  a chemical reagent used in such a procedure: litmus is a test for acids
 c.  the result of the procedure or the evidence gained from it: the test for alcohol was positive
10.  sport See test match
11.  archaic a declaration or confirmation of truth, loyalty, etc; oath
12.  (modifier) performed as a test: test drive; test flight
[C14 (in the sense: vessel used in treating metals): from Latin testum earthen vessel]

test2 (tɛst)
1.  the hard or tough outer covering of certain invertebrates and tunicates
2.  a variant of testa
[C19: from Latin testa shell]

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

late 14c., "small vessel used in assaying precious metals," from O.Fr. test, from L. testum "earthen pot," related to testa "piece of burned clay, earthen pot, shell" (cf. L. testudo "tortoise") and texere "to weave" (cf. Lith. tistas "vessel made of willow twigs;" see
texture). Sense of "trial or examination to determine the correctness of something" is recorded from 1590s. The verb in this sense is from 1748. The connecting notion is "ascertaining the quality of a metal by melting it in a pot." Test-tube is from 1846; test-tube baby is recorded from 1935. Test Act was the name given to various laws in English history meant to exclude Catholics and Nonconformists from office, especially that of 1673, repealed 1828. Test drive (v.) is first recorded 1954.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

test (těst)

  1. A procedure for critical evaluation; a means of determining the presence, quality, or truth of something; an examination, or experiment.

  2. A physical or chemical change by which a substance may be detected or its properties ascertained.

  3. A reagent used to cause or promote such a change.

v. test·ed, test·ing, tests
  1. To subject to a test; try.

  2. To determine the presence or properties of a substance.

  3. To administer a test.

  4. To exhibit a given characteristic when subjected to a test.

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
Abbreviations & Acronyms
Telemedicine and Education Support Team
The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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