AskDefine | Define span

Dictionary Definition

span

Noun

1 the complete duration of something; "the job was finished in the span of an hour"
2 the distance or interval between two points
3 two items of the same kind [syn: couple, pair, twosome, twain, brace, yoke, couplet, distich, duo, duet, dyad, duad]
4 a unit of length based on the width of the expanded human hand (usually taken as 9 inches)
5 a structure that allows people or vehicles to cross an obstacle such as a river or canal or railway etc. [syn: bridge]
6 the act of sitting or standing astride [syn: straddle] v : to cover or extend over an area or time period; "Rivers traverse the valley floor", "The parking lot spans 3 acres"; "The novel spans three centuries" [syn: cross, traverse, sweep] [also: spanning, spanned]

User Contributed Dictionary

see Span

English

Etymology 1

spann

Pronunciation

Noun

  1. The space from the thumb to the end of the little finger when extended; nine inches; eighth of a fathom.
  2. Hence, a small space or a brief portion of time.
    • 2007. Zerzan, John. Silence.
      The unsilent present is a time of evaporating attention spans,
  3. The spread or extent of an arch or between its abutments, or of a beam, girder, truss, roof, bridge, or the like, between supports.
  4. The length of a cable, wire, rope, chain between two consective supports.
  5. A rope having its ends made fast so that a purchase can be hooked to the bight; also, a rope made fast in the center so that both ends can be used.
  6. A pair of horses or other animals driven together; usually, such a pair of horses when similar in color, form, and action.
  7. the space of all linear combinations of something
Translations
the space from the thumb to the end of the little finger when extended
  • Finnish: vaaksa
  • Italian: spanna
  • Kurdish:
hence, a small space or a brief portion of time
  • Finnish: aikaväli
  • Italian: periodo
  • Portuguese: período
the spread or extent of an arch or between its abutments, or of a beam, girder, truss, roof, bridge, or the like, between supports
the length of a cable, wire, rope, chain between two consective supports
nautical: A rope having its ends made fast so that a purchase can be hooked to the bight
a pair of horses or other animals driven together
mathematics: the space of all linear combinations of something

Etymology 2

Old English spannan

Pronunciation

Verb

  1. To traverse the distance between.
    The suspension bridge spanned the canyon as tenuously as one could imagine.
  2. To cover or extend over an area or time period.
    The parking lot spans 3 acres.
    The novel spans three centuries.
    Terry Fox fame spans globe.
    World record! 5GHz WiFi connection spans 189 miles. http://www.engadget.com/2007/08/27/world-record-5ghz-wifi-connection-spans-189-miles/
  1. Two horses of the same color drawing a carriage, moving in perfect unison.
  2. to generate an entire space by means of linear combinations
Translations
to traverse the distance between
  • Finnish: kulkea
to cover or extend over an area or time period
two horses of the same color drawing a carriage, moving in perfect unison
mathematics: to generate an entire space by means of linear combinations

Etymology 3

inflected form of spin

Pronunciation

Verb

span
  1. simple past of spin
    1890: So they went in to where Gudruda sat spinning in the hall, singing as she span. — H. Rider Haggard, Eric Brighteyes http://www.gutenberg.org/etext/2721

Anagrams

Extensive Definition

Span may refer to:

Computing

span in German: Spannweite
span in Italian: Span
span in Dutch: Span
span in Simple English: Span

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

Bifrost, a breath, accouple, accumulate, ace, aesthetic distance, agglutinate, amass, amplitude, appraise, appreciate, apse, arcade, arcature, arch, arch over, arched roof, archway, articulate, assay, assemble, assess, associate, band, bascule bridge, bateau bridge, beam, bestraddle, bestride, bit, bond, both, bowshot, brace, bracket, breadth, bridge, bridge over, brief span, broadness, calculate, calibrate, caliper, camber, cantilever bridge, carry, catwalk, ceilinged roof, cement, chain, check a parameter, clap together, clearance, close quarters, close range, collect, combine, compass, comprise, compute, concameration, concatenate, concha, conglobulate, conjoin, conjugate, connect, copulate, couple, couple up, couplet, course, cove, cover, crack, cross, cupola, day, deep space, depths of space, dial, distance, distance across, distich, divergence, divide, dome, double harness, double-harness, double-team, doublet, drawbridge, duad, duet, duo, duration, dyad, earreach, earshot, embrace, encompass, environ, equipage, estimate, evaluate, expanse, extend, extend over, extension, extent, farness, fateful moment, fathom, floating bridge, flyover, footbridge, four-in-hand, fullness, gangboard, gangplank, gangway, gather, gauge, geodesic dome, glue, go, go out, go over, graduate, gunshot, hair, hair space, hairbreadth, hairsbreadth, hang over, hold, hour, igloo, imbricate, inch, include, infinity, instant, interval, join, juncture, jut, kairos, keystone, knot, lap, lap over, latitude, lay together, league, leeway, length, lengthiness, lie, lie over, lift bridge, light-years, linear measures, link, little, little bit, little ways, little while, long time, longitude, longness, lump together, margin, marry, marshal, mass, match, mate, mates, measure, mensurate, merge, mete, meter, mileage, minute, mobilize, moment, moment of truth, no time, ogive, overall length, overarch, overbridge, overcrossing, overhang, overlap, overlie, overpass, override, pace, pair, pair of winks, pair off, parsecs, period, perpetuity, perspective, piece, piece together, pistol shot, plumb, point, pontoon bridge, pregnant moment, prize, probe, psychological moment, put together, quantify, quantize, randem, range, rate, reach, reach out, remoteness, rig, roll into one, rope bridge, run, season, separation, set of two, shingle, short distance, short piece, short spell, short time, short way, size, size up, skewback, small space, solder, sound, space, spell, spike, spike team, spitting distance, splice, spread, spurt, stage, step, stepping-stone, stepstone, stick together, straddle, stretch, stretch out, stride, surround, survey, suspension bridge, sweep, swing bridge, take a reading, take in, tandem, tape, team, team up, term, the two, three-up, thrust out, tie, time, time lag, toll bridge, triangulate, turnout, twain, two, two shakes, twosome, unicorn, unify, unite, valuate, value, vault, vaulting, viaduct, voussoir, way, ways, weigh, weld, while, wideness, width, yardage, yoke
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