Definition of cube in English:



  • 1A symmetrical three-dimensional shape, either solid or hollow, contained by six equal squares.

    • ‘For a solid cube, multiply length by width by height to obtain the volume.’
    • ‘The seats are small, solid cubes, and the shelter is a covered, open-sided cube.’
    • ‘The fluorite tends to occur only as cubes modified by the dodecahedron, with simple cubes or octahedra uncommon or absent.’
    • ‘The 3D Objects tool lets you create modelled spheres, cubes, rectangles cones, pyramids, toroids and more effortlessly.’
    • ‘As usual I'd picked out one of the veggie meals, a bowl of salad, a cube-shaped green jello, and a crimson glossy apple.’
    • ‘Diamond is best known in octahedral crystals that can reach an amazing 6 cm; it also exhibits the cube, dodecahedron, and trisoctahedron.’
    • ‘Illusions include a woman's profile that could also be a candlestick, and an empty box that viewed another way looks like a solid cube.’
    • ‘Each set of atomic coordinates for a model was placed within a three-dimensional grid of cubes.’
    • ‘Fair dice don't have to be in the shape of regular polyhedra, such as cubes, icosahedra, and so on.’
    • ‘These are often known as the Platonic solids: the tetrahedron, cube, octahedron, dodecahedron and icosahedron.’
    • ‘Nearly all of the characters in the show have heads that are some variation on the shape of a cube.’
    • ‘His specific sculptural language can be reduced to four basic elements or motifs that appear as pure geometrical forms - the ovoid, the cube, the cylinder and the truncated pyramid.’
    • ‘He cut his circumscribed cube into 8 small equal cubes.’
    • ‘We all think of a line segment as being one-dimensional, a square two-dimensional and a cube three-dimensional, but what does this really mean?’
    • ‘The shape is a cube, made of four upright and four horizontal beams.’
    • ‘The piece consists of several hollow frame cubes as well as many solid cubes glued to the stairs.’
    • ‘Plato believed that atoms have the shapes of regular polyhedra: cubes, tetrahedrons, octahedrons, and so on.’
    • ‘Closed, the cabinet appears as a minimalist cube - a solid and restrained form that belies its complex and interactive quality.’
    • ‘To get my ice I have to make a cube shape with my hands and point to the tumbler.’
    • ‘This picture of a cube is made up entirely of black lines in two-dimensional space, but what you perceive is a three-dimensional cube.’
    hexahedron, cuboid, parallelepiped
    block, brick, lump, chunk
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    1. 1.1
      short for cubicle
      • ‘The rooms they are in are just cubes, with one door on each wall.’
      • ‘Five years ago, Philips Consumer Electronics ' engineering staff in Knoxville, Tennessee, used to have palatial cubes measuring about 10 feet by 12 feet.’
      • ‘The workplace is not just about cubes or offices.’
      • ‘One morning I was in early, and over the cube wall pops the head of one of these lawyers.’
      • ‘A small jiggle would be identified by the coins in his pocket jangling, while a titanic jiggle would set the cube wall, the floor and my desk vibrating wildly.’
      • ‘David Howell gave his sticker a place of honor in his cube.’
      • ‘When I got to work yesterday, my cube door was blocked off and the cube was brimming with balloons.’
    2. 1.2A block of something with six sides.
      ‘a sugar cube’
      • ‘The winning submission involves the arrangement of three cement cubes, each of which is deeply imprinted on one side with a felled tree that has resulted from the development of UniverCity.’
      • ‘Over the years the lustre of the mosaics has faded and dust gathered in the nooks and crannies of the brick and stone cubes which make up the designs.’
      • ‘When the concrete dust cleared, we saw a large, jagged hole in the side of the stone cube.’
      • ‘Just to get them on the feed and advertise your presence, it's also worth chopping up a few small cubes of mackerel or other fish bait now and then and letting these free fall to the seabed.’
      • ‘The liquidised plastic binds with sand and forms a solid cube.’
      • ‘The golden beaches of Longniddry are fringed by tank-busting blocks, 3m cubes of concrete designed to help foil an envisaged invasion.’
      • ‘It was most memorable for the generous amount of clams, shrimp, and cubes of fish - in fact, I kept discovering more and more seafood under the noodles.’
      • ‘When the cubes are solid, transfer them to a plastic freezer bag and presto, you have recipe-sized cilantro packages.’
      • ‘Rinse the fish cubes again and add them to the cooking curry.’
      • ‘If you cannot obtain these you can still make my first dish using cubes of salmon or firm white fish instead.’
      • ‘Carefully hollow out the tofu cube about half an inch deep and place in a small soup bowl.’
      • ‘She then took the overflow lard that she had displaced and added lye to create soap, which she formed into a large cube whose shape was further transformed when she bathed with it.’
      • ‘Place bread cubes and raisins in a 1 1/2-quart baking dish.’
      • ‘Thread two metal skewers with 100g steak, cut into cubes, along with chunks of yellow pepper, onion, cherry tomatoes and mushrooms.’
      • ‘The seafood linguine is laden with clams, shrimp and cubes of fish, while the risotto con funghi, infused with porcini mushrooms, walks the line between soupy and solid admirably.’
      • ‘This is not the place to wimp out and order sweet and sour monkfish, consisting of a bunch of dry fish cubes with canned pineapple and cloying vinegary sauce.’
      • ‘The other sides of the plates appear as normal single fluorite cubes, even if slightly rough-surfaced, a feature not uncommon in fluorite crystals from many localities.’
      • ‘Meanwhile, you've been putting together six garlic cloves and parsley and a couple of bouillon-concentrate cubes, a lot of fish and saffron.’
      • ‘The pasta was bulked out with more cubes of dry white fish, species unclear.’
      • ‘How big is a plutonium cube of 6 microns on a side?’
    3. 1.3Mathematics The product of a number multiplied by its square, represented by a superscript figure 3.
      ‘a body increasing in weight by the cube of its length’
      • ‘They drew up multiplication tables and tables of reciprocals, squares, cubes and exponentials, and used them to calculate compound interest and mortgage repayments.’
      • ‘The ratio of the squares of the periods of two planets is directly proportional to the ratio of the cubes of the radii of their orbits.’
      • ‘According to the precise rate, the volume of the sphere is the cube of the diameter multiplied by 11 and divided by 21.’
      • ‘Ladies and gents, it's all about the primes, the squares, the occasional cube, a few multiplication tables of primes.’
      • ‘In 1912, Aubrey J. Kempner completed a 1909 effort by A. Wieferich to establish once and for all that every integer can be expressed as a sum of nine cubes.’


  • 1Mathematics
    Raise (a number or value) to its cube.

    • ‘His experiments with rockets led him to conclude that when approaching supersonic speeds aerodynamic forces vary as the velocity cubed rather then squared, which was the operative rule at slower speeds.’
    • ‘But in any standard treatment, squaring or cubing an infinite number gives the same infinite number.’
    • ‘This must be one of the most frenzied 18 metres cubed of space to be found anywhere.’
    • ‘He has seen the link between squaring the circle and cubing the sphere, and has been able to translate progress on the first of these two problems into progress on the second.’
    • ‘Canadian lotteries also require a skill testing question to claim your prize by adding all numbers chosen for the draw, cubing the total and finding the nearest prime number.’
  • 2Cut (food) into small cubes.

    ‘I bought sirloin from the butcher and cubed it myself’
    • ‘The flesh was cubed and mixed with grains, herbs and lemon, tabbouleh style.’
    • ‘The cheese was cubed, the wine was poured, and visitors shuffled about to view a series of photographs clustered on the walls.’
    • ‘Or add chopped or cubed butternut, lightly sautéed so that it retains bite.’
    • ‘It was laden with two bowls of steaming chilli, a monstrous plate of salad, and several side dishes of onion, cheese, sour cream, and cubed bread.’
    • ‘If your bread isn't stale, pre-heat the oven to 215 degrees, cube the bread, and dry out the cubes in the oven for 10 minutes.’
    • ‘The butcher had conveniently cubed all of the meat suitable for sausages, and the addition of some back fat, salt, pepper and breadcrumbs was all that was needed.’
    • ‘Hungarian cattlemen, shepherds, and pigherders have cooked cubed meat with onion and spices for at least 300 to 500 years.’
    • ‘The beef was cubed and marinated for at least four hours in olive oil, grated fresh horseradish, grated lemon rind and a little finely chopped chilli.’
    • ‘Serve with basmati rice and raita (finely cubed cucumber, tomato and onion with a squeeze of lime juice).’
    • ‘While they cook, peel and cube the potatoes.’
    • ‘The meat was cubed, heavily salted, and cured for twelve hours.’
    • ‘They can also be cubed and added to soups and stews.’
    • ‘Add cubed potatoes, cook for a while, add chick peas, and garden peas, and some torn basil leaves.’
    • ‘This process begins as the blocks of cheese are cubed then shredded and sprinkled with a flour-like anti-caking agent to prevent them from sticking together.’
    • ‘This simple Thai sauce recipe can be served over vegetables, cubed pan fried tofu, or over rice or noodles.’
    • ‘I will be peeling and cubing potatoes for a long time tonight, arranging them in large baking pan while I think about breast cancer.’
    • ‘Mix gravy, cubed turkey and leftover vegetables into a casserole dish.’
    • ‘Place peeled and cubed sweet potatoes in a large saucepan and add enough water to cover.’
    • ‘Some shred the beetroot, some julienne it, and some cube it, while modernists whiz it in a food processor.’
    • ‘Cut any rind from the Gorgonzola and cube the cheese.’
    chop, cut up, slice, dice, cube, mince
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Mid 16th century: from Old French, or via Latin from Greek kubos.