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1each of four equal or corresponding parts into which something is or can be divided:she cut each apple into quarters a page and a quarter a quarter of a mile a period of three months regarded as one fourth of a year, used especially in reference to financial transactions such as the payment of bills or a company’s earnings:the payment for each quarter’s electricity is made in the next quarter a period of fifteen minutes or a point of time marking the transition from one fifteen-minute period to the next:the baby was born at a quarter past nine a coin representing 25 cents, one fourth of a US or Canadian dollar. each of the four parts into which an animal’s or bird’s carcass may be divided, each including a leg or wing.
) the haunches or hindquarters of a horse.
one fourth of a lunar month. (in various sports) each of four equal periods into which a game is divided.
chiefly US one of four terms into which a school or college year may be divided.
2one fourth of a measure of weight, in particular. one fourth of a pound (avoirdupois, equal to 4 ounces). one fourth of a hundredweight (US 25 lb or British 28 lb). British a grain measure equivalent to 8 bushels. 3 [usually with adjective or noun] a part of a town or city having a specific character or use:it is a beautiful port city with a fascinating medieval quarter 4the direction of one of the points of the compass, especially as a direction from which the wind blows. a particular but unspecified person, group of people, or area:we have just had help from an unexpected quarter either side of a ship aft of the beam:he trained his glasses over the starboard quarter 5
) rooms or lodgings, especially those allocated to servicemen or to staff in domestic service:the servants' quarters
6 [usually with negative] pity or mercy shown toward an enemy or opponent who is in one’s power:the riot squad gave no quarter 7 Heraldry each of four or more roughly equal divisions of a shield separated by vertical and horizontal lines. a square charge which covers the top left (dexter chief) quarter of the field.
verb [with object]
1divide into four equal or corresponding parts:peel and quarter the bananas historical cut (the body of an executed person) into four parts:the plotters were hanged, drawn, and quartered cut (a log) into quarters, and these into planks so as to show the grain well. 2
) be stationed or lodged in a specified place:many were quartered in tents
3range over or traverse (an area) in every direction:we watched a pair of kingfishers quartering the river looking for minnows [no object] move at an angle; go in a diagonal or zigzag direction:his young dog quartered back and forth in quick turns 4 Heraldry display (different coats of arms) in quarters of a shield, especially to show arms inherited from heiresses who have married into the bearer’s family:Edward III quartered the French royal arms with his own divide (a shield) into four or more parts by vertical and horizontal lines.