Definition of medium in US English:


nounPlural media, Plural mediums

  • 1An agency or means of doing something.

    ‘using the latest technology as a medium for job creation’
    ‘their primitive valuables acted as a medium of exchange’
    • ‘Others do not, saying that they are not bookmakers, but a medium for bets between consenting adults.’
    • ‘Which means, theatre is not just a medium for entertainment, but a reaction to the intense and complex realities around us.’
    • ‘Chatrooms have always been popular on the internet as they provide a medium for people with similar interests to meet and discuss their opinions.’
    • ‘It was a medium for collaboration and interaction between individuals without regard of geographic location, she said.’
    • ‘No asset since gold in the 19th century enjoys such broad acceptance as both a medium of exchange and a store of value as the dollar.’
    • ‘Mostly, it was a medium for the well-off to talk among themselves.’
    • ‘Later, increasing numbers of literati acknowledged the folding fan as a medium for showing off their expertise in writing and painting.’
    • ‘A common answer is ‘anything that can be used as a medium of exchange’.’
    • ‘He then shifts to the use of gold in Greece, Rome, and Byzantium, initially as adornment but later as a medium of exchange.’
    • ‘Accordingly, money is brought forth into society to be used as a medium of exchange to facilitate the trade of goods of all kinds.’
    • ‘To use TV as a medium of education will yield rich dividends.’
    • ‘The meetings provide a medium for local councillors to raise the issues of their electorate on a more intimate basis with Council officials.’
    • ‘The internet ‘should be a medium for unbridled self-expression’, not an amplifier of fears.’
    • ‘The idea of using newspapers as a medium of education goes back to the 18th century.’
    • ‘As we built it, the library became a medium for us to design our own structure of how subjects and ideas flow.’
    • ‘We are simply providing a medium for people to tell us their experiences in confidence and presenting them to the public who can then make up their own minds.’
    • ‘Given a medium of exchange, people can trade even if their wants and needs don't directly coincide.’
    • ‘We could get more things done, since television would not be a medium of entertainment but rather of information alone.’
    • ‘The company began as a medium for senior dancers to perform.’
    means of communication, means of expression, mode of expression, means, method, way, form, agency, channel, forum
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    1. 1.1 A means by which something is communicated or expressed.
      ‘here the Welsh language is the medium of instruction’
      • ‘The problem, though, is not with the words, but with the medium of communication, with situation and circumstance.’
      • ‘Secondly, the Commission recommends Mother Tongue as the medium of instruction for elementary education.’
      • ‘I shall use the same medium of communication as I believe that the information I give will reach the wider public.’
      • ‘It provides education for children using the Maori language as the medium of instruction.’
      • ‘In Malaysia, on the other hand, Malay is the national and the official language and the main medium of instruction.’
      • ‘English is the administrative language and the medium of instruction in schools.’
      • ‘English is the official language and the main medium of instruction from preschool to tertiary levels of education.’
      • ‘The Internet has become a global medium for instant communication and quick access to information.’
      • ‘Our newest medium of camp marketing communications probably sports the most flagrant offenses.’
      • ‘Today, it seems that through the various medium of communications every heartbeat is shared by the world.’
      • ‘It is a powerful communicative medium; a language which uses the mind and body to relate varied experiences.’
      • ‘Since music is a mysterious international language, it can be the medium of communication in its special way with patients.’
      • ‘Languages were flawless and they were just mediums of interaction and communication, he added.’
      • ‘Thai is the national language and the medium for education and mass communication.’
      • ‘The mediums of communications have themselves changed.’
      • ‘Simply put, mobile communications is the new medium for the future.’
      • ‘True communication can only occur between people with equal access to the medium in which the communication is taking place.’
      • ‘Blogs are just a new medium for communication and the three rules apply.’
      • ‘It seems mobile phone is the medium of choice for communication for modern Japanese.’
      • ‘Blogging is the medium that lets us communicate with like-minded people.’
      means of communication, means of expression, mode of expression, means, method, way, form, agency, channel, forum
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  • 2The intervening substance through which impressions are conveyed to the senses or a force acts on objects at a distance.

    ‘radio communication needs no physical medium between the two stations’
    ‘the medium between the cylinders is a vacuum’
    • ‘Moving in a fluid is complicated by the fact that forces applied to the medium cause it to move.’
    • ‘Second, the gene provides the physical medium for sharing genetic information from generation to generation.’
    • ‘There was no medium or physical means to push and pull the planets and other objects around.’
    • ‘Air, the lubricating medium, is forced into a reservoir surrounding the bearing.’
    1. 2.1 The substance in which an organism lives or is cultured.
      ‘grow bacteria in a nutrient-rich medium’
      • ‘The culture medium covering the cells was purged with pure nitrogen gas for 4 h.’
      • ‘The culture medium was changed after 24 h and from then on three times a day.’
      • ‘Cells were separated from the culture medium by centrifugation at 100 g for 1 min at 4°C.’
      • ‘Organic matter plays an important complementary role, especially on very sandy soils where it is practically the only medium for nutrient and water storage.’
      • ‘In plant cell culture, the addition of exogenous sugar to the culture medium is an absolute necessity for nearly all tissues.’
      • ‘Pollen was sprinkled on the media by gently tapping a set of three flowers directly above the surface of the medium in each Petri dish.’
      • ‘Addition of Chinese medicines into the culture medium will significantly affect bone cell metabolism.’
      • ‘Uptake activity depends on the growth phase of the cultured cells whereas the culture medium had no effect on uptake.’
      • ‘In doing so, this mucus becomes a culture medium for further bacterial growth, aggravating the state of recurrent infections.’
      • ‘The basal cut surface was left in the nutrient medium.’
      • ‘Typically, by the end of batch culture nutrients in the medium would be considerably depleted.’
      • ‘Eggs were collected during 8 h periods in cultured bottles containing standard medium.’
      • ‘Serial dilutions of the test solutions with culture medium were prepared before in vitro assay.’
      • ‘The world ocean is what laboratory scientists would call a culture medium, the largest petri dish known to mankind.’
      • ‘Blood is a great medium for the bacteria that causes gonorrhea.’
      • ‘Alkaloid levels were determined both in the roots and in the culture medium after a culturing period of 28 d.’
      • ‘The objective of this study was to develop a suitable medium to improve in vitro pollen germination in pigeonpea.’
      • ‘This would also increase the sloughing off of cell wall surface polymers in the culture medium.’
      • ‘This occurs when colonic bacteria accumulate above the obstructing lesion and flourish in a nutrient medium.’
      • ‘The culture medium in the glass containers was exchanged every 2 days.’
      habitat, element, environment, surroundings, milieu, setting, conditions, circumstances, ambience, atmosphere
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    2. 2.2 A liquid (e.g., oil or water) with which pigments are mixed to make paint.
      • ‘We carry a large range of dry pigments, oils and mediums.’
      • ‘When a pigment has a high scattering power in relation to the medium, the paint will be dense and opaque in appearance.’
      habitat, element, environment, surroundings, milieu, setting, conditions, circumstances, ambience, atmosphere
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  • 3A particular form of storage for digitized information, such as magnetic tape or discs.

    ‘moving or copying backed-up data through a hierarchy of different mediums’
    • ‘Review DVD is currently hyped as the storage medium of the future.’
    • ‘They largely replaced disk drives as a transportable storage medium.’
    • ‘Disk has lagged behind tape as a long-term storage medium because of cost.’
    • ‘Despite the drawbacks stated above, tape is still a widely accepted storage medium.’
    • ‘Tape is the overwhelming computer medium of choice for archiving.’
    • ‘The encrypted object is written as an ordinary file on the medium.’
    • ‘This film has been used for over 12 years as an archival optical storage medium.’
    • ‘Copy files to and from the device as you would with any other storage medium.’
    • ‘Tape is the most effective storage medium on a price basis for large amounts of data.’
    • ‘Their capacity and low price mean that CD-Rs should be your starting point when considering a storage medium.’
    • ‘A signal from a storage medium is processed in a data channel to form digital data.’
    • ‘Things are looking up for DVD-RAM as a general-purpose storage medium.’
    • ‘In most cases, magnetic disk storage will be the medium of choice for several key reasons.’
    • ‘This would let users treat the drive as a floppy drive or hard drive, making it an easier to use storage medium.’
    • ‘As a long-term storage medium for check images, tape significantly exceeds any realistic requirements.’
    • ‘If you can justify the price and are looking for some portable storage medium then this is something you should take a look at.’
    • ‘Wired Magazine is now suggesting that discs are dead as a storage medium.’
    • ‘This means shifting data between storage mediums in an effort to provide the ideal levels of access, protection, and recovery at the lowest possible total cost.’
    • ‘Using the whole volume of a storage medium, instead of just the surface, allows us to encode much more information in a small space.’
    • ‘What's the next most common storage medium shared amongst many computers?’
  • 4The material or form used by an artist, composer, or writer.

    ‘oil paint is the most popular medium for glazing’
    • ‘The other pieces were in ceramic, the medium for which the artist is best known.’
    • ‘As an artistic medium, film is easily the most accessible art form, yet the least discussed beyond its immediate spectacle.’
    • ‘In fact, the completed windows do possess a freshness that is striking to find in the medium of monumental stained glass.’
    • ‘Krause is an artist who continues to push himself into new mediums and new subject matter.’
    • ‘The artist chooses mediums like oil, calligraphy and glass to display her talents.’
    • ‘As an artistic medium, film can have a myriad of purposes.’
    • ‘Shakespeare's work has been produced since the Renaissance in all artistic mediums from the original theater to opera, symphony, film, and ballet.’
    • ‘My favorite medium is artistic photography because it is real and has that peacefulness and beauty in it.’
    • ‘The arch soon became a focal point of Washington Square and a subject for artists working in all mediums.’
    • ‘It showcased a variety of artistic mediums ranging from large finished canvases to sketch books.’
    • ‘O'Connell sells contemporary glass sculpture, a popular medium for homes full of sun on the water.’
    • ‘She worked in a variety of mediums, including artist's books, painting, printmaking, sculpture, installation and dance.’
    • ‘Energized by necessity as well as by curiosity and competence in many mediums, the versatile artist was awesomely productive.’
    • ‘I cannot discuss all the new artistic mediums here - and if I did, my discussion would be obsolete before this book is published.’
    • ‘More than 60 artists in different mediums display their artistic experiments with unfamiliar material.’
    • ‘These are young professionals who are exploring the artistic medium of film.’
    • ‘And woodblocks have remained the dominant medium for Japanese print artists until our days.’
    • ‘Concrete is one of the artist's favorite mediums.’
    • ‘What sets him apart from the very large number of contemporary artists working in the medium is his exhilarating use of colour.’
    • ‘Prevalent artistic mediums of that period - the mural and the poster - reflected the political character of the times.’
  • 5A person claiming to be in contact with the spirits of the dead and to communicate between the dead and the living.

    • ‘As a spiritual medium, telephone readings are available at a very affordable price.’
    • ‘Did the medium really tell you that your dead father's name was William?’
    • ‘A male medium contacted the owner in 1985 and disclosed that the dead Hessian soldier had visited him in a dream.’
    • ‘Soon, half the audience is crying, convinced the medium has made contact.’
    • ‘After making an international name for himself, he spent several years exposing phony spiritualists and mediums.’
    • ‘Other religious practitioners include spirit mediums and shamans, most of whom are women.’
    • ‘Spiritualist mediums are predominantly women who hold divinations and seances in their homes; many have become successful and even wealthy.’
    • ‘If an authentic medium detects a spirit that is present, they will try and convince it to move on.’
    • ‘Such beliefs are not confined to rural areas; in the cities there is a network of spirit mediums who claim to contact the dead.’
    • ‘This work, by Professor Richard Wiseman, involved asking five mediums to contact the dead relatives of five volunteers.’
    • ‘Clients of mediums who claim to get messages from the dead are very highly motivated clients.’
    • ‘He asserts that this work supports the mediums ' claims that they are actually communicating with the dead.’
    • ‘During the winter of 1978, the owner was contacted by a professional medium.’
    • ‘Nigel's devastated parents made a number of attempts to contact their son through mediums and the spiritualist church.’
    • ‘Today's most successful mediums, however, simply claim the dead communicate through them.’
    • ‘He claims he is a medium for holy spirits who talk to him in their dreams.’
    • ‘I do not let spirits enter my body and speak through me, though some psychics and mediums work this way.’
    • ‘Just a few days ago, I sat down with a woman who is a medium, and we got to talking about spirits and ghosts.’
    • ‘Most people who go to a medium or a spiritualist church have lost someone and want to find out that this person is okay.’
    • ‘This man did not claim to be a medium but, nonetheless, believed he had talked many times with the spirit of Doyle.’
    spiritualist, clairvoyant, mind reader, fortune teller, seer, necromancer
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  • 6The middle quality or state between two extremes; a reasonable balance.

    ‘there is a medium between being modest and boastful’
    middle way, middle course, middle ground, middle, mean, median, mid point, central point, centre, average, norm, standard
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  • About halfway between two extremes of size or another quality; average.

    ‘John is six feet tall, of medium build’
    ‘medium-length hair’
    • ‘My medium length black hair was left out in bouncy curls today.’
    • ‘I smiled and ruffled her medium length light brown hair slightly.’
    • ‘The first man was white, in his late teens, 5ft 10 in tall, of medium build, with fair short hair.’
    • ‘He is described as being medium build with a fair complexion and light brown hair.’
    • ‘They seemed to be of medium length and one them had been pulled from the root, making a DNA check possible.’
    • ‘In captivity, the hawk-headed parrot has a life span comparable to most other medium size parrots.’
    • ‘There is a certain amount of research that has no clear medium term pay off that is funded by governments.’
    • ‘She looked to be in her mid-thirties and had medium length brown hair.’
    • ‘These policies will inevitably lead to an extremely painful property market shake-out in the near to medium term.’
    • ‘They are about the size of a medium collie dog, but their tail is round and bushy and is carried straight out below the level of their back.’
    • ‘She had a slim build and medium length, fashionably styled blonde hair.’
    • ‘This product is suitable for most small to medium size businesses that require full stock control and sales and purchase order processing.’
    • ‘He had medium length shaggy black hair and bright green eyes.’
    • ‘Her medium length brown hair was loose and hung over her back.’
    • ‘Her hair was medium length and brown, and she walked gracefully.’
    • ‘Many military installations are in or near small or medium size towns that can't absorb such a loss.’
    • ‘She has fair medium length straight hair and blue eyes.’
    • ‘He was described as a man in his late 30s, taller than average, of medium build with short dark hair and who spoke with no discernible accent.’
    • ‘In addition about 90% of the quota was taken up by producers in the small to medium size categories.’
    • ‘Its bill is of medium length for a shorebird, and it has short, yellow legs.’
    average, middling, medium-sized, middle-sized, moderate, fair, normal, standard, usual
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Late 16th century (originally denoting something intermediate in nature or degree): from Latin, literally ‘middle’, neuter of medius.