Definition of sample in English:

sample

Syllabification: sam·ple
Pronunciation: /ˈsampəl
 
/

noun

  • 1A small part or quantity intended to show what the whole is like: investigations involved analyzing samples of handwriting
    More example sentences
    • I think of leading him up to the scene after the battle, with his sample swatches of alternative flag materials, and pointing to the flag.
    • The company is now producing the Manitoba chip in sample quantities.
    • Many silage pits have been sampled, with the samples analysed to establish silage quality.
    Synonyms
    representative, illustrative, selected, specimen, test, trial, typical
  • 1.1A specimen taken for scientific testing or analysis: a urine sample
    More example sentences
    • If your doctor thinks you have a bladder infection, he or she will test a sample of your urine to find out if there are bacteria in it.
    • Laboratory workers unaware of the disease status of the participants analysed blood samples for C pneumoniae using whole organism antigen and time resolved fluorimetry.
    • The cross sections of the samples are analyzed, and the pigments are identified under a polarizing or scanning electron microscope.
    Synonyms
    specimen, example, bit, snippet, swatch, representative piece, exemplification; prototype, test piece, dummy, pilot, trial, taste, taster, tester
  • 1.2 Statistics A portion drawn from a population, the study of which is intended to lead to statistical estimates of the attributes of the whole population.
    More example sentences
    • To study a distribution, take random samples from a population and analyze them.
    • Fifteen studies examined total populations or random samples of such populations.
    • Five trials either did not report a clear calculation of sample size or failed to achieve the intended sample size.
    Synonyms
    cross section, variety, sampling, test
  • 1.3A small amount of a food or other commodity, especially one given to a prospective customer.
    More example sentences
    • These representatives of companies travelled round the country displaying samples to prospective customers and taking orders.
    • In a now-famous experiment, recounted in Schwartz's book, researchers set up a table at a specialty food store, offering samples of jam.
    • A battle is raging for the hearts and wallets of new mothers as two companies compete to distribute free samples of baby products in the country's biggest hospitals.
  • 1.4A sound created by sampling.
    More example sentences
    • Bringing together and shaping a disparate collection of vocal and musical samples he creates a rich cultural portrait that succeeds both conceptually and aesthetically.
    • Their debut, Vegas, emulated the ‘big beat’ sound by pasting hip hop samples and rock riffs atop break beats.
    • The Prefuse recipe calls for chunky breakbeats generously peppered with piano, vocals, video game samples and other left-field sounds.

verb

[with object] Back to top  
  • 1Take a sample or samples of (something) for analysis: bone marrow cells were sampled (as adjective, with submodifier sampled) a survey of two hundred randomly sampled households
    More example sentences
    • Households with telephones were sampled randomly, with a probability proportional to the size of the HSA in which they resided.
    • The randomly sampled subcohort also allows for unbiased analysis of other outcomes, e.g., sensitization, by comparing affected and nonaffected children in the subcohort.
    • There was quite clearly a situation where the urine was sampled and analysed in the first instance.
  • 1.1Try the qualities of (food or drink) by tasting it.
    More example sentences
    • The Food Fight offers a chance to sample food and drink prepared by more than 45 restaurants and beverage suppliers.
    • If you have room left over for dessert, you can sample the Honey Cake, which comes with fresh strawberries.
    • Of course we found an Irish pub before leaving and we sampled the food and drink on our last night after a hard week's work.
    Synonyms
    try (out), taste, test, put to the test, experiment with; appraise, evaluate, test drive
    informal check out
  • 1.2Get a representative experience of: sample the pleasures of Saint Maarten
    More example sentences
    • Today, about 10,000 people a year visit from around the world to sample the Esalen Experience.
    • It seems like you're already sampling the simpler pleasures of our island life.
    • Marbella, with its magnificent boutiques, extraordinary yachts and flashy patrons is best sampled by night.
  • 1.3 Electronics Ascertain the momentary value of (an analog signal) many times a second so as to convert the signal to digital form.
    More example sentences
    • All signals were sampled at 200 Hz, except for the electrocardiograph signal, which was sampled at 1,000 Hz.
    • Coronary flow velocity signals were sampled at a preselected fixed distance of 5.2 mm from the device tip to minimize turbulence caused by the presence of the measuring device.
    • The pressure signal was sampled at 100 Hz from a battery-run pressure transducer and passed through an electronic filter before being recorded by computer.
  • 1.4Record or extract a small piece of music or sound digitally for reuse as part of a composition or song.
    More example sentences
    • In this latest version of the SFO, twelve women played electric guitars and five sampled the sound of the guitars and transformed it on laptops.
    • Throughout the nine variations of ‘Guero’ here, his pieces are cut-up, sampled and spliced into downtempo minimalist techno.
    • As a teen he became even more inquisitive, sampling everything from Jimi Hendrix's psychedelic blues to grunge gods Nirvana and even early punk via Iggy and the Stooges.

Origin

Middle English (as a noun): from an Anglo-Norman French variant of Old French essample 'example'. Current senses of the verb date from the mid 18th century.

More definitions of sample

Definition of sample in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day skosh
Pronunciation: skəʊʃ
noun
a small amount; a little