Definition of half-length in English:



  • 1Of approximately half the normal length.

    • ‘After a half-length defeat in a Turfway Park allowance race, Sarava moved to McPeek's barn to prepare for a run at the classics.’
    • ‘David offers to massage her tense day away and Anna tries to move her hair to the side - and she could were she not wearing a half-length cut over her actual hair.’
    • ‘She changed into loose-fitting trousers, made from real cotton grown in one of the neighbouring villages, and a cotton top with half-length sleeves.’
    • ‘Three-quarter or half-length sleeves enhance the summer appeal of skirts and pants in fashion prints.’
    • ‘By the first 500-metre mark Germany had taken a half-length lead over the new United States line-up and Slovenia.’
    1. 1.1(of a painting or sculpture) showing a person down to the waist.
      • ‘Caravaggio returns to the half-length format of his early genre scenes, but all naturalistic bravura and illusionistic detail are gone.’
      • ‘Most of his 60 or so known paintings, mainly half-length portraits, date from 1642-6 after he had moved with Charles I's Civil War court to Oxford.’
      • ‘Other highlights from the collection include a half-length cast bronze bust of George Bernard Shaw by Prince Paul Troubetskoy, signed and dated 1908.’
      • ‘Sari-clad women move behind, like a frieze, one with her back turned, just below a painted half-length figure.’
      • ‘The most visually startling images were two half-length portraits from her ‘Bodybuilders’ series.’


  • A painting or sculpture of a person down to the waist.

    • ‘Anne Villiers herself was painted by van Dyck in a solo half-length.’
    • ‘Was young Gooch's half-length what the miniaturist copied?’
    • ‘These works are not compatible with the bulk of the corpus of Caravaggesque half-lengths that the English art historian Benedict Nicolson had associated first with an unnamed ‘Candlelight Master’ and then with Bigot.’
    • ‘A life-size portrait, even if it is only a head or a half-length, always takes up more room than its intrinsic interest demands.’
    • ‘The presence, in the Gallery's reconstruction, of half-lengths of St Paul and, questionably, of St Andrew is hard to explain.’