what is intended to be, or actually is, expressed or indicated; signification; import: the three meanings of a word.
the end, purpose, or significance of something: What is the meaning of life? What is the meaning of this intrusion?
the nonlinguistic cultural correlate, reference, or denotation of a linguistic form; expression.
linguistic content (opposed to expression ).
intentioned (usually used in combination): She's a well-meaning person.
full of significance; expressive: a meaning look.

1250–1300; Middle English (noun); see mean1, -ing1, -ing2

meaningly, adverb
meaningness, noun
submeaning, noun
undermeaning, noun

1. tenor, gist, drift, trend. Meaning, purport, sense, significance denote that which is expressed or indicated by something. Meaning is the general word denoting that which is intended to be or actually is expressed or indicated: the meaning of a word or glance. Sense may be used to denote a particular meaning (among others) of a word or phrase: The word is frequently used in this sense. Sense may also be used loosely to refer to intelligible meaning: There's no sense in what he says. Significance refers particularly to a meaning that is implied rather than expressed: the significance of her glance; or to a meaning the importance of which may not be easy to perceive immediately: The real significance of his words was not grasped at the time. Purport is mainly limited to the meaning of a formal document, speech, important conversation, etc., and refers to the gist of something fairly complicated: the purport of your letter to the editor.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
meaning (ˈmiːnɪŋ)
1.  the sense or significance of a word, sentence, symbol, etc; import; semantic or lexical content
2.  the purpose underlying or intended by speech, action, etc
3.  the inner, symbolic, or true interpretation, value, or message: the meaning of a dream
4.  valid content; efficacy: a law with little or no meaning
5.  philosophy
 a.  the sense of an expression; its connotation
 b.  See also sense the reference of an expression; its denotation. In recent philosophical writings meaning can be used in both the above senses
6.  expressive of some sense, intention, criticism, etc: a meaning look

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

c.1300, from mean (v.).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

mean (mēn)

  1. Something having a position, quality, or condition midway between extremes; a medium.

  2. A number that typifies a set of numbers, such as a geometric mean or an arithmetic mean.

  3. The average value of a set of numbers.

  1. Occupying a middle or intermediate position between two extremes.

  2. Intermediate in size, extent, quality, time, or degree; medium.

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
mean   (mēn)  Pronunciation Key 
  1. A number or quantity having a value that is intermediate between other numbers or quantities, especially an arithmetic mean or average. See more at arithmetic mean.

  2. Either the second or third term of a proportion of four terms. In the proportion 2/3 = 4/6 , the means are 3 and 4. Compare extreme.

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

mean definition

An average in statistics. (See under “Physical Sciences and Mathematics.”)

mean definition

In statistics, an average of a group of numbers or data points. With a group of numbers, the mean is obtained by adding them and dividing by the number of numbers in the group. Thus the mean of five, seven, and twelve is eight (twenty-four divided by three). (Compare median and mode.)

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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