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1an even distribution of weight enabling someone or something to remain upright and steady:slipping in the mud but keeping their balance she lost her balance before falling stability of one’s mind or feelings:the way to some kind of peace and personal balance Sailing the ability of a boat to stay on course without adjustment of the rudder. 2a condition in which different elements are equal or in the correct proportions:overseas investments can add balance to an investment portfolio [in singular]:try to keep a balance between work and relaxation Art harmony of design and proportion. [in singular] the relative volume of various sources of sound:the balance of the voices is good
3an apparatus for weighing, especially one with a central pivot, beam, and a pair of scales. (the Balance) the zodiacal sign or constellation Libra. 4a counteracting weight or force. (also balance wheel) the regulating device in a mechanical clock or watch. 5a predominating weight or amount; the majority:the balance of opinion was that work was more important than leisure 6a figure representing the difference between credits and debits in an account; the amount of money held in an account:he accumulated a healthy balance with the savings bank the difference between an amount due and an amount paid:unpaid credit-card balances [in singular] an amount left over.
verb [with object]
1keep or put (something) in a steady position so that it does not fall:a mug that she balanced on her knee [no object] remain in a steady position without falling:Richard balanced on the ball of one foot 2offset or compare the value of (one thing) with another:the cost of obtaining such information needs to be balanced against its benefits counteract, equal, or neutralize the weight or importance of:he balanced his radical remarks with more familiar declarations establish equal or appropriate proportions of elements in:balancing work and family life 3compare debits and credits in (an account), typically to ensure that they are equal:the law requires the council to balance its books each year [no object] (of an account) have credits and debits equal.
1a situation in which nations of the world have roughly equal power. 2the power held by a small group when larger groups are of equal strength.