Definition of quarter in English:



  • 1Each of four equal or corresponding parts into which something is or can be divided:

    ‘she cut each apple into quarters’
    ‘a page and a quarter’
    ‘a quarter of a mile’
    • ‘The first quarter of the novel takes place in Cuba, as Yara and her family wait for the government to process their visas to the United States.’
    • ‘Traffic in the London Road area of Devizes has increased by more than a quarter in the last four and a half years, according to a survey carried out last week by residents.’
    • ‘A quarter of adults now hold college degrees, compared with just 11 percent in 1970.’
    • ‘Membrane proteins probably represent more than a quarter of all proteins encoded in genomes.’
    • ‘The Commonwealth Bank owns four and a quarter percent of Woodside, that's $385 million worth of shares.’
    • ‘The flag has a large white cross, a symbol of salvation, that divides it into four quarters.’
    • ‘Trucks represent only a quarter of the vehicles passing through the toll plaza, but will contribute more than half of the toll revenue.’
    • ‘They have no choice but to turn in for work the week after half term knowing that a quarter of their class are still enjoying themselves on holiday somewhere around the world.’
    • ‘In the last five years the Post Office has lost a third of its Girobank transactions and a quarter of National Savings and telephone bill payments.’
    • ‘A staggering half of all secondary school children and a quarter of those at primary school say they have been bullied in the last year alone.’
    • ‘Over one quarter of the public school teachers in the United States will be retiring in the next decade.’
    • ‘When it turned out to be actually Edgar Allan Poe's first book, it was auctioned at Sotheby's for a quarter of a million dollars.’
    • ‘The idea of lush fertility is further emphasized by the density of the well-watered clover crop that fully occupies a quarter of the foreground.’
    • ‘The simple drawing represents a stage divided into four quarters.’
    • ‘With a geometric layout, commonly segmented into four quarters, the garden would be enclosed by buildings or walls.’
    • ‘The silver farthing was worth a quarter of a penny.’
    • ‘The iliac crest is divided into four quarters, and the excursion or stage of maturity is designated as the amount of progression.’
    • ‘Just as it took a quarter of a century to create the universal special education system we now have, so will it take years to find ways to realize its full potential.’
    • ‘It's a brilliant metallic green beetle, about one-half inch long and about a quarter of an inch wide, so it's pretty good-sized.’
    • ‘A quarter of Australian universities have now increased fees, most by as much as they're allowed to.’
    1. 1.1 A period of three months regarded as one fourth of a year, used especially in reference to financial transactions such as the payment of bills or a company's earnings:
      ‘the first quarter of the fiscal year’
      • ‘The NABE outlook is usually conducted late in the first month or early in the second month of a calendar quarter.’
      • ‘Productivity grew at a fast pace in the first quarter of this year; the results for the second quarter due this month will be closely watched.’
      • ‘The company says it expects production to continue to rise in the third and fourth quarters of its current financial year as additional milling equipment comes online.’
      • ‘Under the terms of the lease there is a rent-free period of three months in the second quarter of the lease.’
      • ‘It then restated its fourth quarter financial results in February, sparking a number of class action lawsuits.’
      • ‘Earnings for the comparable quarter before these transactions were 19 cents.’
      • ‘Directory assistance provider Conduit said it had made a profit after tax in its last quarter, three months ahead of expectations.’
      • ‘Woolies reveals its sales figures later this month for the fourth quarter and the financial year and annual earnings on August 23.’
      • ‘Consumer confidence sagged each month in the fourth quarter, as did auto sales.’
      • ‘These showed that, over the previous four quarters, the Scottish economy had grown by just 0.3% compared with the four quarters.’
      • ‘It started to contribute to the profits of the Irish group in the fourth quarter of the last financial year.’
      • ‘IBM, the world's biggest computer company, benefited from strong sales and a weak dollar in its latest quarter.’
      • ‘Sky said it had added a net 81,000 subscribers in the fourth quarter of its financial year, to take its total to 7.4 million.’
      • ‘She sent the company a cheque for £96.99 as payment for the second quarter up to June, but Cleanaway denies receiving it.’
      • ‘Priest urged investors to keep in mind that the restatements will not have an adverse impact on earnings in the latest quarter or on future financial results.’
      • ‘The world's largest media company, the parent of CNN is saying it earned almost a billion dollars in the first quarter.’
      • ‘Outsourcing now accounts for more than a third of the company's total revenue, just over a billion dollars in the latest quarter alone.’
      • ‘Such a strategy for building a position in a stock over several months, quarters or even years tends to reduce the risk of acquiring a full position at a price that will later be seen as an all time high for the stock.’
      • ‘Exports are set to slide further in coming months because the second quarter is the ‘slow season’ for technology goods, he said.’
      • ‘IBM added to the downbeat sentiment by reporting a 13% drop in net income for the fourth quarter of its financial year.’
    2. 1.2 A period of fifteen minutes or a point of time marking the transition from one fifteen-minute period to the next:
      ‘he sat with his pint until a quarter past nine’
      • ‘The fishing vessel ‘Winsome’ reported his find to the Coastguard at quarter past twelve this afternoon.’
      • ‘Around quarter to ten, fifteen minutes before the ball began and I was to make my grand entrance, the servants finally allowed me a glance in the mirror.’
      • ‘He agreed and we spent the next quarter of an hour shelving all his books.’
      • ‘James Gledhill was born March 28, 1829 at quarter before three in the morning.’
      • ‘He said: " I had spent a quarter of an hour speaking to the council about it.’
      • ‘You'd tell them, ‘Okay, we are on the bus at six tomorrow morning’, but we wouldn't be able to leave until a quarter to seven.’
      • ‘On the 1st of April, it will rise at forty-three minutes past nine in the evening, and pass the meridian at a quarter past two in the morning.’
      • ‘At a quarter to nine on the morning of September 11, 2001, I was driving down the West Side Highway in Manhattan in a car filled with scholarly texts about Greek tragedy.’
      • ‘As such, I expect most people to continue responding, ‘quarter after five,’ instead of ‘a quarter after five.’’
      • ‘Ms Lopez spent a quarter of an hour with the candidate and reportedly emerged a confirmed Clark fan.’
      • ‘A good time was had by all, though the show didn't get out until almost quarter to one in the morning.’
      • ‘It's a quarter past ten AM, fifteen minutes after opening, when the two men rush through the door wearing ski masks.’
    3. 1.3 A coin representing 25 cents, a quarter of a US or Canadian dollar.
      • ‘Forrest and I each dropped a Canadian quarter into the water, too.’
      • ‘The symptoms are sunken, straw-colored spots about the size of a quarter to a silver dollar.’
      • ‘Collect enough nickels and dimes and quarters and dollars, and you can make billions.’
      • ‘She began digging through her cracked plastic coin purse, slapping quarters and dimes on the counter.’
      • ‘Most likely you would receive a toonie, a loonie, a quarter and a nickel, for a total of four coins.’
      • ‘To do this, carefully pour a base of white paint in a corner, no bigger than the size of a quarter.’
      • ‘Educators can creatively and imaginatively use these quarters in lessons on the geography and history of the United States.’
      • ‘The experimenter displayed the coin, showing both sides, and informed them that the coin was a typical quarter (which it was).’
      • ‘Suddenly, the nickels, dimes, pennies, and quarters started flying.’
      • ‘Learn when it's time to start teaching your kid the value of a dollar or even a quarter.’
      • ‘The gesso process comes first, and then the placement of the broken glass pieces, each about the size of a quarter.’
      • ‘She's more fond of pennies and dimes than quarters.’
      • ‘Dimes, quarters, half-dollars, and dollar coins are all worth more per pound than the nickel.’
      • ‘He pulled a Canadian quarter out of the pocket of his black pants and tossed it from hand to hand.’
      • ‘Some artists rented theaters, charging people a quarter just to look at the paintings.’
      • ‘The orderly reached for his wallet and pulled out four quarters.’
      • ‘Discover that buses don't take bills, that it's impossible to get change, and that four dollars in quarters weighs about half a tonne.’
      • ‘When John Updike began publishing short stories a milkshake cost 10 cents and a quarter kept a kid busy for a week.’
      • ‘Play with only nickels, dimes, or quarters, no pennies.’
      • ‘He dropped sixty-one cents (two quarters, a dime, and a penny) into the cup by the one-legged Vietnam vet.’
    4. 1.4 Each of the four parts into which an animal's or bird's carcass may be divided, each including a leg or wing.
      • ‘Boxed beef - precut quarters of the animal that are sliced further into steaks by grocers - would be the company's staple.’
      • ‘Typically, a side or quarter of pork is butchered by a meat cutter cutting or otherwise removing from the side or quarter as many “high value” pork products as feasible using a knife, saw, and/or other standard meat processing equipment.’
      • ‘Bulk orders are classified as a quarter of beef, quarter of pig, or one of our select boxes of beef.’
      • ‘Grilling chicken quarters can be a challenge since dark meat takes longer to cook than light meat.’
      • ‘The discovery was made on Tuesday in four out of 236 quarters of beef being unloaded at the company ADM in Eastbourne, East Sussex.’
    5. 1.5 One fourth of a lunar month.
      • ‘About a week after new moon, the moon reaches first quarter and appears high in the southern sky at sunset.’
      • ‘The external stimulus provides the impetus to move forth from the inspirational quarter of the lunar cycle into the action quarter.’
      • ‘In the second quarter the gravitational pull is less, but the moonlight is strong, creating strong leaf growth.’
    6. 1.6 (in basketball, American football, and Australian Rules) each of four equal periods into which a game is divided:
      ‘there were four scores in the opening quarter’
      • ‘The contest itself was structured much like a basketball game, with coaches, four quarters and a halftime.’
      • ‘The Bulls almost scored two tries in the opening quarter of the game but excellent cover defence by the visitors combined with poor finishing cost the home side team dearly.’
      • ‘The 13-play march covered 73 yards, seven more than Houston managed in the game's first two quarters.’
      • ‘A fantastic footballer, he's a reserve; he comes on the ground when required, only plays for ten minutes in a quarter and he's pulled off again.’
      • ‘Probably the best thing that's happened to Australian soccer took place during the third quarter of the AFL game between Brisbane and Saint Kilda.’
      • ‘Deion Branch, in his first action since Week Two following rehab from a knee injury, made the play of the game in the third quarter.’
      • ‘Now he's back playing with another high-profile team and made it through the first quarter of the Oakland game before Belichick pulled him.’
      • ‘‘The Navy side got off to an absolute flyer by kicking two quick goals in the first minute of the quarter,’ Cpl Lowry said.’
      • ‘The Colts haven't trailed in the final period all year, and Manning has thrown an average of four passes per game in the fourth quarter.’
      • ‘If you play a football game, there are four quarters to the game.’
      • ‘Navy was struggling in the third quarter until the 17th minute when fast footwork gave the team another goal and put them only two points behind the champions.’
      • ‘It was a close, hard-fought game through two quarters with the Ravens taking a 6-3 lead into halftime.’
      • ‘Queen's doubled their lead when Elger struck again with another field goal eight minutes into the second quarter.’
      • ‘Each quarter is of seven minutes duration - for actual playing time; the clock is stopped for every incident when the ball is not in play.’
      • ‘‘We have to play four quarters of our best basketball, or it's going to be kind of ugly,’ said US coach Larry Brown.’
      • ‘A previous study showed that injuries occurred predominantly in the second and third quarters in Australian Rules football.’
      • ‘Mind you, a victory certainly looked unlikely in the opening quarter of the game.’
      • ‘Blanda's field goal in the third quarter tied the game at 13.’
      • ‘Seven of Schauffler's eight saves came in the opening quarter of the game.’
      • ‘In the first quarters of four games entering last weekend, Rose made just three of 24 shots.’
    7. 1.7US One of four terms into which a school or university year may be divided.
      • ‘This means that Palestinians who want to go and register for their next quarter at university can't.’
      • ‘The first quarter GPA should be an even better early indicator of college success in terms of retention and graduation.’
      • ‘Is it even a single course, or does it span two or more quarters or semesters?’
      • ‘The students were very angry when they discovered during the quarter that there was to be an exit test.’
      • ‘So, the last day of the quarter I asked each student to try to put their feeling about art into one sentence.’
      • ‘It was my third quarter at Ohio University, and I had finally settled on an English major with a degree in Education.’
      • ‘Talk to an academic advisor about possibly reducing your academic load or of ‘stopping out’ for a quarter, or semester.’
      • ‘In 1927, Southwestern also changed from the quarter system to semesters.’
      • ‘As the quarter progressed, students began to take responsibility for their own successes and failures.’
      • ‘During the beginning of almost any semester or quarter on any particular campus, roommates can be an especially touchy subject.’
      • ‘For the second half of the quarter, I had ambitious plans for the students.’
      • ‘Khaile said about R3,6 million had been set aside to deal with the matter in the first quarter of the school term.’
      • ‘He reached forward and crumpled up the timetable for his last quarter.’
      • ‘Although the quarter system was abandoned, it was replaced with a modified, not a regular, semester structure.’
      • ‘The agreement began with the start of Strayer University's spring 2003 quarter.’
      • ‘With all that preparation, Christine still admits to a first quarter that left her wondering if she could remain in the field of special education.’
      • ‘As the days passed though and she began the fourth week of the fall quarter, she started to settle into a basic routine.’
      • ‘The Chicago academic calendar was divided into four quarters, each meeting 12 weeks.’
      • ‘Unfortunately, most textbooks are written with semester schedules, not 10-week quarters, in mind.’
      • ‘It wasn't until the end of the spring quarter at the University of Chicago that I got up the gumption to strike out in a new direction.’
  • 2One fourth of a pound weight (avoirdupois, equal to 4 ounces).

    • ‘It can be made in different sizes to contain a fraction of an ounce to a quarter pound or more of liquid, gel, or cream.’
    • ‘In 1305 his executors made arrangements for one and a half pounds of wax to be always available to provide six candles, each weighing a quarter of a pound.’
    • ‘Forget that the burger is no where near a quarter of a pound.’
    • ‘At that time fish was often accompanied by bread, up to a whopping quarter of a pound of it.’
    • ‘The weight should be no more than a quarter pound.’
    • ‘At 7.5 pounds, it is approximately a quarter pound heavier than standard Featherweights.’
    1. 2.1 One fourth of a hundredweight (in the UK 28 lb or in the US 25lb).
      • ‘They were tiny guns by Navy standards, the least of the so-called great guns, about four and a half feet long and weighing seven and a quarter hundredweight apiece.’
      • ‘The average price of wheat had remained relatively stable during the first half of the century averaging 34s.11d per quarter-hundredweight for the period 1713-1764, but between 1765 and 1800 it rose to 55s. per quarter-hundredweight, reaching a peak of 128s. per quarter-hundredweight in 1800’
    2. 2.2British A grain measure equivalent to 8 bushels.
      • ‘When a quarter of wheat was sold for three shillings, or three shillings and four-pence, and a quarter of barley for twenty pence or twenty-four pence, and a quarter of oats for fifteen pence, brewers in cities could afford to sell two gallons of ale for a penny, and out of cities three gallons for a penny.’
      • ‘10 quarter of rye are to be paid by the occupiers of Pebworth Farm and Beech Farm to 10 poor families of Hurley.’
      • ‘Calais alone received 26000 quarters of grain and 2000 head of cattle in the fourteen years between 1347 and 1361.’
  • 3quartersThe haunches or hindquarters of a horse:

    ‘they have strong, muscular quarters’
    • ‘One of the lads began beating the horses on their quarters with a riding crop to get them into the water, despite the fact that both horses were terrified.’
    • ‘He was a dark iron gray with a broad chest and fine quarters, clean limbed with perfect feet, and hoofs as black as jet.’
    • ‘It says you can't hit a horse on the head or the flanks or any other part of his body other than the shoulders or hind quarters.’
    • ‘The heels are trimmed flat and the hoof wall at the toe and quarters is then lowered as necessary using a rasp placed at a 90° angle just in front of the white line.’
    • ‘Horses are naturally more crooked in canter, they will nearly always canter with their quarters in.’
  • 4A part of a town or city having a particular character or use:

    ‘a beautiful port city with a fascinating medieval quarter’
    • ‘A new bridge will provide a pedestrian and cycle link from the old town museum quarter and city centre shops.’
    • ‘Old City, bounded by stone walls which once formed part of a fortress, is divided into four quarters, Armenian, Christian, Jewish and Muslim.’
    • ‘The city has a medieval quarter, great pubs, and an annual opera festival of international importance.’
    • ‘Most localities, from walled cities to tiny hamlets, are still divided into traditional quarters or neighborhoods.’
    • ‘I close the shop up at lunch time - it's an old-fashioned way to do things, but the shop looks old fashioned, and sits in the old-fashioned quarter of the town.’
    • ‘Built on the River Tagus, the medieval quarters of the city are characterised by small houses and narrow streets.’
    • ‘In 1742, when the Qianlong Emperor had been on the throne for six years, he gave orders for a new palace and garden to be built in the north-east quarter of the Forbidden City.’
    • ‘Fiona feels that being around the corner from the Brewery was also a bonus when they signed up for the studios as Highgate, Abbot Hall and Kirkland are often regarded as the cultural quarter of the town.’
    • ‘Among its ambitions could be a campaign to establish a professional quarter in the city where similar firms would be encouraged to locate.’
    • ‘Swindon Council is still eyeing up the Wyvern Theatre car park for a flagship central library as well as a museum and art gallery to create a cultural quarter for the town.’
    • ‘The custom originated in the Spanish quarter of the city.’
    • ‘It lasts 30 minutes and the young guides give an informative commentary during the tour of the city's most historic quarters.’
    • ‘Explosions and light arms fire were heard in several city quarters.’
    • ‘We were standing on the roof of Mushtaq's school in Aminabad, the oldest quarter of the city and the heart of old Lucknow.’
    • ‘It was the first quarter of the city to be developed according to a systematic plan during the post-colonial period.’
    • ‘The city's original good intention was to improve local living standards by pulling down the city's old quarters and setting up new ones.’
    • ‘Two thousand metres of walls still surround the quarter, averaging four times the height of the new fence and, in some places, over three metres thick.’
    • ‘Firefighters were searching for survivors trapped under debris in the old quarter of the town of Piera, near Barcelona.’
    • ‘The splendor of Havana, rather than being confined to a small quarter of the city, extends for miles.’
    • ‘This park speaks of a great bygone age, and now that the north is fast becoming the frappuccino quarter of the city it may yet thrive again.’
    district, area, region, part, side, neighbourhood, precinct, locality, sector, section, zone, tract, belt
    View synonyms
  • 5The direction of one of the points of the compass, especially as a direction from which the wind blows.

    • ‘The weather was perfect, the course firm and the wind blowing from the quarter best suited to setting golfers the fiercest possible test on the inward nine holes.’
    • ‘It makes us think of things that happened when the sky was just so; when the wind blew from the same quarter and when the sun hit the side of the house just like now.’
    1. 5.1 A particular but unspecified person, group of people, or area:
      ‘we have just had help from an unexpected quarter’
      • ‘But criticism yesterday also came from an unexpected quarter - an established ally.’
      • ‘When Louise Rosenblatt's Literature as Exploration appeared in 1938, it drew attention from many quarters.’
      • ‘In time, they realized that this looked bad - the charter idea was popular in too many quarters.’
      • ‘There has been resistance from some quarters but I hope it everyone can see that it is a benefit to both punters and television viewers.’
      • ‘As for the United Iraqi Alliance's number of seats in parliament, they might be bolstered from an unexpected quarter.’
      • ‘She believes the police services board may have found there's a high level of support on council for the cameras - including support from some unexpected quarters.’
      • ‘You can expect support from unexpected quarters.’
      • ‘The bouquets for Ireland came from an unexpected quarter - England.’
      • ‘Commentaries, annotations, and interpretations are all posterity's views from different quarters and corners.’
      • ‘However, the season ended on a disappointing note when Kinane was criticised in some quarters for the ride he gave Rock of Gibraltar in finishing second in the Breeders' Cup Mile.’
      • ‘In some quarters this is known as cognitive dissonance.’
      • ‘The U.N. Secretary General is facing a barrage of criticism tonight from an unexpected quarter: his own staff.’
      • ‘Have you, too, been deafened by the silence from certain quarters as large tracts of this nation's land and infrastructure were hocked off to local and foreign bidders?’
      • ‘In spite of its downtrodden reputation in some quarters as a would-be city lacking in soul, Swindon still managed to attract four million day trippers last year.’
      • ‘These perceptions about the faculty have a long lineage and no doubt will persist in some quarters well into the future.’
      • ‘His resignation was greeted with joy in some quarters at the university.’
      • ‘And he has struck a chord in some unexpected quarters.’
      • ‘It is defying expectations from some quarters of falling back into the $30 to $40 range.’
      • ‘The new threats were going to be diffuse, spread out, springing up wholly formed from unexpected quarters.’
      • ‘And yet, despite the poverty staring them in the face, generosity and hospitality from the most unexpected quarters have overwhelmed them.’
      source, direction, place, point, spot, location
      View synonyms
    2. 5.2 Either side of a ship aft of the beam:
      ‘he trained his glasses over the starboard quarter’
      • ‘We beat the Navy on that in the sense that we saw cruise missile flashes from a guided missile cruiser off to our starboard quarter in the distance at night.’
      • ‘True to his promise, the eagle rays are gently flapping and wheeling in the current off the starboard quarter, frustratingly staying just too far away to photograph.’
      • ‘A number of days elapsed, and then the return journey got under way, and the La Malouine was stationed on the port quarter of the now-called convoy QP14.’
      • ‘Heinkel bombers from Crete flew to the merchant anchorages at the mouth of the Gulf of Suez and dropped a single bomb on her starboard quarter, ripping a huge vertical gash in her side.’
      • ‘Hitting one of these submerged boxes, in a storm, steaming with the wind on your port quarter, would have been the equivalent of colliding with a supermarket delivery lorry.’
      • ‘He looked round and in the moonlight saw Mr Ventouris leaning over the starboard quarter and then disappear.’
      • ‘Part of it has collapsed onto the lakebed, next to the starboard quarter.’
  • 6quartersRooms or lodgings, especially those allocated to people in military or domestic service:

    ‘they lived in RAF married quarters’
    • ‘Living quarters are usually dilapidated farmhouses, field barracks, small shacks, or impoverished shelters.’
    • ‘Some colleges even provide faculty with living quarters in the residence halls.’
    • ‘Columnar cypress tress, which were imported from Italy, line the front terrace and the grounds of 2.4 acres also house staff quarters and a garage for four cars.’
    • ‘He spent about £2m on upgrading the property, which now has staff quarters and an estate office.’
    • ‘I was visited in my quarters one night by a student who informed me that an answer key to the next day's test was being circulated.’
    • ‘Servants' quarters, meanwhile, often lack such basic amenities as running water.’
    • ‘He added a home office and a family room to the living quarters with the idea that both could easily convert to bedrooms.’
    • ‘The glass panes of some windows in the office and officers' quarters had been broken.’
    • ‘The faded grandeur of the original interiors of this country house has rich decorative schemes, grand reception rooms and private quarters reflecting the opulence of life for the landed gentry.’
    • ‘He then turned his attention to the staff quarters and ordered that one section should be done away with and a public toilet be built.’
    • ‘Stevens found the letter in his locker in the jockeys' quarters at Hollywood Park shortly after winning the seventh race there on December 17.’
    • ‘The estate boasted its own stables, lake and separate quarters for domestic staff.’
    • ‘The Yarrow family's life revolved around the bakery, which included a retail area, teashop and living quarters out the back.’
    • ‘The study, two other guest bedrooms, a TV / media room, servant's quarters and the garage occupy the lower floor.’
    • ‘The four residential buildings feature climate-controlled quarters and private showers.’
    • ‘The crew cabin contains the flight control center and living quarters for the crew.’
    • ‘When the activities are over and the athletes go back to their quarters, the security people will remain.’
    • ‘He also required large domestic quarters with gardens for himself and his family as well as administrative accommodation.’
    • ‘He said that since announcing the original policy, the university had found limited quarters where some sick students could be safely isolated.’
    • ‘Brick chimneys became a familiar feature, which signified the arrival of the kitchen and service quarters within the main house, into either a wing or a semi-basement.’
    accommodation, lodgings, rooms, chambers, place of residence, home, shelter
    View synonyms
  • 7[mass noun] Pity or mercy shown towards an enemy or opponent who is in one's power:

    ‘the riot squad gave no quarter’
    • ‘But it was by no means an easy game as Ayr gave no quarter.’
    • ‘They learned to take no prisoners in fighting a skilled and fanatical enemy who gave no quarter and expected none.’
    • ‘Both gave no quarter as each unloaded everything they had as the balance of power seesawed from Cintron to Reid.’
    • ‘We will be discerning, and when failing to discern, genuinely contrite, but we will give no quarter to our enemy.’
    • ‘Red gave no quarter: all were to be executed and villages razed.’
    • ‘Both teams gave no quarter as they strived to reach the finals.’
    • ‘No quarter, no mercy, this was going to be a fight to the finish, one that Scorpio planned to win.’
    • ‘They were expecting that they would have no choice but to use deadly force because they could expect no mercy or no quarter themselves.’
    • ‘He swatted, jumped and ran but the bees gave no quarter.’
    • ‘They gave no quarter and Robert of Artois himself and more than seven hundred French knights were killed, while the remaining French beat a prudent retreat.’
    • ‘Though respect for Brissie was great, opponents gave him no quarter.’
    • ‘The old rugby adage was proven correct against the Boks as the Scottish pack gave their opponents no quarter and precious little ball.’
    • ‘In his playing days, he was quite sharp, he was a pretty fierce Captain, he played to win and there wasn't much quarter given to the opponent or indeed sometimes his own side.’
    • ‘On occasions competition threatened to get out of hand, and both teams gave no quarter in their quest for goals and clean sheets.’
    • ‘For chivalry limits wars, gives quarter to enemies, controls aggression and brokers peace.’
    • ‘Aeron took no prisoners and gave no quarter - his enemies perished at his blade.’
    • ‘Of course, there will be those who say that the men involved were only doing their duty, that they were fighting an equally bloodthirsty enemy who neither gave quarter nor expected it to be given to them.’
    • ‘Paolo Di Canio, meanwhile, gave no quarter, tackling ferociously, harrying opponents and delivering a fierce long-range drive just over the bar.’
    • ‘To all this criticism, Judt gave no quarter; indeed, he renewed his charge.’
    • ‘It was supposed to be a tough and ruthless decision, giving the enemy no quarter: but at its heart, it was a decision based on funk.’
    mercy, leniency, clemency, lenity, compassion, pity, charity, forbearance, indulgence, kindness, sympathy, tolerance
    View synonyms
  • 8Heraldry
    Each of four or more roughly equal divisions of a shield separated by vertical and horizontal lines.

    • ‘In the first quarter is shown the crutched cross from the arms of the Knights Hospitallers of St John of Jerusalem, a religious order instituted in the beginning of the twelfth century, who owned the greater part of Islington.’
    1. 8.1 A square charge which covers the top left (dexter chief) quarter of the field.
      • ‘The Quarter, also referred to as the franc-quartier, generally occupies 1/4 of the shield and is formed by two straight lines drawn in the direction of the Fesse, and the Pale meeting at the Fesse point.’


  • 1Divide into four equal or corresponding parts:

    ‘peel and quarter the bananas’
    • ‘Stuff turkey loosely with remaining quartered onion and celery stalks.’
    • ‘To serve, quarter the large pancake and place on four warmed plates, or place an individual pancake on each plate.’
    • ‘Rendered in black augmented by a thin sienna pinstripe, each is a variation on a halved or quartered circle which floats below center in a field of pale, luminous celadon green.’
    • ‘Place 2 peeled quartered onions in 1 tbsp oil with 1 tsp butter, 1 tbsp small sage leaves and 1 tsp lemon zest.’
    • ‘I crept into the kitchen where I buttered a slice of bread, peeled and quartered a pear, and cut a wedge of decadent Irish cheese.’
    • ‘2 carrots, peeled and cut into batons ¾ red pepper, quartered, seeded and cut into batons’
    • ‘One night, at a New York dinner party in the mid-1990s, Coplans unceremoniously expelled the hostess from her own kitchen, quartered some oranges, added them to the chicken and recooked it.’
    • ‘There are platters of fruit with bright quartered oranges, slices of pink melon with glistening black seeds, and pieces of green kiwi fruit, yellow banana.’
    • ‘Use quartered & cleaned sandcrabs as a substitute.’
    • ‘A lot of times, sellers will be advised by their agent to quarter an apple, stick it in the oven, sprinkle a little cinnamon on it.’
    • ‘I remember when I played soccer in grade school, all the parents would bring quartered oranges we would devour at halftime; we're a long way from those days I suppose.’
    • ‘The prisms immediately solve the magnification problem because of the availability of long focal length lenses in which then the distance between then is effectively quartered.’
    • ‘To make turkey stock: place turkey carcass in large saucepan and add 7 cups water, 1 bay leaf, 1 stalk chopped celery and 1 onion, quartered.’
    • ‘Add the potato quartered then, gradually stir in the stock and bring to the boil.’
    • ‘In bottom of a deep roasting pan, place two quartered onions, four celery stalks, the carrots, bay leaves and white wine.’
    • ‘1 Put the lentils, chopped carrot, quartered onion and whole garlic into a large pan.’
    • ‘When he works with oil-based paints in homes, he quarters a number of onions beforehand and places them around the room being painted.’
    • ‘All fruits used in this work were quartered, frozen in liquid nitrogen, and stored at - 80°C for subsequent use.’
    • ‘His other contribution to the evening is to make some sandwiches - daintily quartered, but containing peanut butter mixed with sardines.’
    • ‘Scrub the quinces and quarter them, do not peel or core.’
    1. 1.1historical Cut (the body of an executed person) into four parts:
      ‘the plotters were hanged, drawn, and quartered’
      • ‘Edward Marcus Despard was the last person in Britain sentenced to be publicly hanged, drawn and quartered.’
      • ‘Guy Fawkes and his associates were hung, drawn and quartered in London.’
      • ‘Along with Smith O'Brien, Terence Bellew MacManus and Thomas Francis Meagher, he was found guilty and sentenced to be hanged, drawn and quartered.’
      • ‘His body was drawn and quartered and sent to all four quarters of the kingdom as a warning.’
    2. 1.2 Cut (a log) into quarters, and these into planks so as to show the grain well.
      • ‘As you are halving it, you introduce the following wedge to free up the starting wedge, which you then use to begin quartering the log while keeping the halves yet relatively intact, for stability.’
      • ‘In quartersawing, lumber is produced by first quartering the log and then sawing perpendicular to the growth rings.’
      • ‘For instance, I see before me as I write a table of oak, on which is stamped by machinery a design intended to make the buyer suppose that the table is quartered oak.’
  • 2quarter someone on[with adverbial of place] Be stationed or lodged in a specified place:

    ‘many were quartered in tents’
    • ‘My room opened upon the central gallery, and was not even on the same floor as that on which Raffles - and I think all the other men - were quartered.’
    • ‘But Mutebutsi and his forces remained quartered in camps in Bukavu, an important trading centre on the border with Rwanda.’
    • ‘Many were not officers but sergeants and were quartered separately.’
    • ‘Two companies of auxiliaries were stationed in the capital: F Company was quartered in Dublin Castle; and the Division's Depot Company was at Beggars Bush Barracks, in Ballybough.’
    • ‘We were quartered in crowded Nissan huts on the edge of the nearby city.’
    • ‘I was further shocked to find nine other boys quartered there.’
    • ‘His army was quartered in the Duchy of Friedland - land owned by Wallenstein.’
    • ‘No soldier shall, in time of peace, be quartered in any house without the consent of the owner, nor in time of war be in a manner to be prescribed by law.’
    • ‘He apparently had little support among his troops and was easily crushed, but Domitian thereafter forbade two legions to be quartered in one camp.’
    • ‘British troops were quartered upon New York against the vehement opposition of the citizens they were supposedly ‘protecting.’’
    • ‘The soldiers were quartered in city hall, three hundred militia in Fort James.’
    • ‘In the Plains Indians Wars, infantry and mounted troops were quartered in wooden and adobe forts dotting the West and Southwest.’
    • ‘You'll be quartered on the fourth floor, room 1281.’
    • ‘The crew's quarters would traditionally be in the fo'c's'le, while officers would be quartered amidships and at the stern.’
    • ‘Because Ogden was enlisted, however, he was excluded from the festivities and not allowed to be quartered with fellow crewmembers in countries where only officers were considered gentlemen.’
    • ‘The Convention also stipulates that prisoners must not be held in close confinement and ‘shall be quartered under conditions as favourable as those for the forces of the Detaining Power who are billeted in the same area’.’
    • ‘‘There's a court yard on the far side of the wing you are quartered in,’ he explained.’
    • ‘In the relief camp, the women were quartered separately.’
    • ‘Royalist troops quartered in the village of Bradford threatened to level the place with fire and sword as soon as they had orders to do so, says William Scruton in his 1889 book Pen & Pencil Pictures of Old Bradford.’
    • ‘Established in 1920, the firm is quartered in a building that dates from the early 1900s.’
    accommodate, house, board, lodge, give accommodation to, provide with accommodation, put up, take in, give a bed to, install, give a roof to, put a roof over someone's head, shelter
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1quarter someone on Impose someone on (another person) as a lodger:
      ‘you would have had her quartered on you forever’
      • ‘On the evening of his third day in London, Phelps, returning by way of Chancery Lane from Bloomsbury to the Inner Temple, where he was quartered on a friend, encountered Mr. Lane, who in the wintry twilight passed him without recognition.’
  • 3Range over or traverse (an area) in every direction:

    ‘we watched a pair of kingfishers quartering the river looking for minnows’
    • ‘As we enjoyed watching hundreds of them flying in to a stubble field to rest and doze in the midday sun, my wife spotted a ring-tail hen harrier quartering a beet field yet to be harvested.’
    • ‘The targets may be incoming, outgoing, crossing right-and-left, at different speeds, at different heights, while quartering and dropping at the same time.’
    • ‘Four companies have divided the work among them, quartering the site.’
    • ‘They were quartering the area, methodically searching the rugged terrain.’
    • ‘In the distance, a barn owl quartered a field looking for a rodent supper.’
    • ‘Whilst setting up, I noticed a Black Kite quartering the river and it was not until much later that I found out that this was a rare sighting.’
    • ‘There was no sign of any fish in its talons when it emerged again, and it flew off, continuing to quarter the river.’
    • ‘Strong walkers, they trod the boundaries of Gloucestershire, quartered the Cotswolds and the always mystic Forest of Dean, climbed the thousand-foot May Hill, and directed their steps into Worcestershire.’
    • ‘Having consolidated the line between the Catholic south and the rebellious north, he set about quartering the United Provinces by capturing strategic towns in a long succession of sieges.’
    • ‘A single unpaved avenue split the town down the middle, from north to south, the river quartering it east to west.’
    patrol, range over, tour, reconnoitre, traverse, survey, inspect, spy out, scout
    View synonyms
    1. 3.1[no object, with adverbial of direction] Move at an angle; go in a diagonal or zigzag direction:
      ‘his young dog quartered back and forth in quick turns’
      • ‘It depicts a massive Cape buffalo quartering through low scrub and staring at the viewer.’
  • 4Heraldry
    Display (different coats of arms) in quarters of a shield, especially to show arms inherited from heiresses who have married into the bearer's family:

    ‘Edward III quartered the French royal arms with his own’
    • ‘Prince Philip was granted arms by George VI, which quartered the arms of Greece, Denmark, Mountbatten and Edinburgh.’
    • ‘The royal standard remained unchanged until the union of the crowns of England and Scotland in 1603, when James I and VI quartered the English / French flag with that of Scotland and the gold harp of Ireland.’
    1. 4.1 Divide (a shield) into four or more parts by vertical and horizontal lines.
      • ‘The shield was quartered, and, since France was the senior kingdom, the French arms took precedence in the first (top left) and fourth (bottom right) quarters.’


Middle English: from Old French quartier, from Latin quartarius fourth part of a measure, from quartus fourth, from quattuor four.