Definition of circular in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈsərkyələr/
(abbreviation cir. or circ.)


1Having the form of a circle: the building features a circular atrium
More example sentences
  • Recent donations include the purchase of picnic tables, a circular seat round the willow tree by the lake, and benches in the park.
  • Surrounding the circle will be a circular grass mound, carpeted in bluebells.
  • The most striking design element of the atrium is the circular stair that turns 180 degrees between floors.
1.1(Of a movement or journey) starting and finishing at the same place and often following roughly the circumference of an imaginary circle: a circular walk
More example sentences
  • She followed the perpetually circular movement of the revolving doors, stepping out onto Kyanka Street.
  • We explored the mountains on a circular tour, walking every other day to a new camp.
  • For him, the journey of his young adulthood was a futile circular movement.
2 Logic (Of an argument) already containing an assumption of what is to be proved, and therefore fallacious.
Example sentences
  • This is a classic circular argument, in which the conclusion is already present in the premise.
  • These estimates can be highly biased and produce a circular argument.
  • Such a circular argument, which relies on its own suppositions as proof, can be used to justify anything.
3 [attributive] (Of a letter or advertisement) for distribution to a large number of people.
Example sentences
  • He sent a circular letter to numerous legal practices in Scotland, asking various questions about the firms' knowledge of him.
  • A circular letter was then sent by post to all past and present serving members.
  • He put the circular letter in the rubbish bin.


A letter or advertisement that is distributed to a large number of people.
Example sentences
  • Anyone who knows me well will know how much I loathe email circulars and chain letters.
  • The city health authority distributed circulars to hospitals to prepare for a possible dengue fever outbreak.
  • His strategy was to mobilize church members by distributing circulars at mass.



Pronunciation: /ˌsərkyəˈlerədē/
Example sentences
  • Does all of this mean that there is a kind of fatal circularity in neuroscience - that the brain necessarily uses itself to study itself?
  • The conversation was taking on the kind of circularity I've experienced in arguments with religious zealots.
  • Hawa's own life is a series of funny and fantastic escapades, with a marked quality of circularity.


Example sentences
  • The new materials emit nearly perfect circularly polarized light - the kind necessary to create 3D displays and striking color images.
  • Block concludes that consciousness cannot be defined other than circularly, via rough synonyms (‘awareness,’ etc.) or ostensively, through examples.
  • Post-structuralism usually allows no appeal to a reality outside language; it sees every discourse as circularly self-confirming.


Late Middle English: from Old French circulier, from late Latin circularis, from Latin circulus 'small ring' (see circle).

Words that rhyme with circular

semicircular, tubercular
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