Definition of distance in English:

distance

Line breaks: dis|tance
Pronunciation: /ˈdɪst(ə)ns
 
/

noun

1The length of the space between two points: I cycled the short distance home you may have to walk long distances
More example sentences
  • Minimum safe distances are computed by adding the maximum pattern radius plus three circular error probable.
  • Carrying luggage, changing planes and walking long distances are hassles that most travelers must face.
  • American customers travel long distances at speed on smooth, straight highways.
Synonyms
interval, space, span, gap, separation, interspace, stretch, extent; length, width, breadth, depth; range, reach
1.1 [mass noun] The condition of being far off; remoteness: distance makes things look small
More example sentences
  • There is too much distance, a tragic remoteness in our fellowship.
  • It's hard for me to tell from this distance what condition the fields are in and the absolute best plan of attack.
  • They're some significant distance away from being able to create it on their own, even if they can create it.
Synonyms
1.2A far-off point: watching them from a distance
More example sentences
  • I only ever saw him on TV, or at a distance in the town centre.
  • Scotland, then, is a place to be viewed at a distance.
  • From a distance, the village looked like a holiday trailer park surrounded by grotesque, wind-sculptured trees.
1.3 (the distance) The more remote part of what is visible or discernible: I heard police sirens in the distance they sped off into the distance
More example sentences
  • I craned my neck to try and see into the distance but all I could see was a bunch of lights in the distance.
  • A couple of dots in the distance were visible on the ground.
  • Stretching, Jim looked around, taking note of the large land masses visible in the distance to either side of them.
Synonyms
far away, far off, afar; yonder, just in view; on the horizon, in the background
1.4An interval of time: the sort of goal which remains in the memory even at a distance of six years
More example sentences
  • For others, the distance of three years makes what happened feel both implausible and unforgivable.
  • But I cannot look upon these plans at a distance of six months, without feeling that past events ought to teach me how little I can depend on the future.
  • In my memory there is a stillness, a quietness about her that I can still feel, that is almost visible, even in the distance of many years.
2The full length of a race: he claimed the 100 m title in only his second race over the distance
More example sentences
  • Kiplagat spotted Kiptoo's potential a year and a half before her camp was officially opened and persuaded her to race longer distances.
  • It will be an Olympic distance triathlon with a 1.5km swim, a 40 km cycle ride and a 10 km run.
  • In one-loft racing all birds race the same distance and there is a single finishing point.
2.1British Horse Racing A space of more than twenty lengths between two finishers in a race: he stormed home by a distance in the Handicap Chase
More example sentences
  • The seven-year-old took full advantage of evens favourite Jair du Cochet unseating his rider at the fourth from home to win by a distance.
  • After triumphing by a distance in 1965, Arkle was a warm favourite to follow up the following year.
  • The four I've won here have all been won by a distance and every one has been as sweet as the last.
2.2 (the distance) British A length of 240 yards from the winning post on a racecourse.
2.3North American Horse Racing The distance from the winning post which a horse must have reached when the winner finishes in order to qualify for a subsequent heat.
More example sentences
  • Most of the "Kentucky horses" made the distance and were able to continue on.
2.4 (the distance) Boxing The scheduled length of a fight: he has won his first five fights inside the distance
More example sentences
  • Hersisia, 29, has won all of his 21 bouts so far with 16 stoppages inside the distance.
  • So they continued until Nijinsky had gone two lengths clear inside the distance.
  • In the same year, Larry had 12 fights, winning all bouts some inside the distance.
3 [mass noun] The avoidance of familiarity; reserve: a mix of warmth and distance makes a good neighbour
More example sentences
  • Dimbleby will be advantaged by the fact that he has never been in BBC programming management and that he has a blend of familiarity yet distance.
  • I wanted her to either slap me or show me some warmth, the emotional distance was too much to bear.
Synonyms

verb

[with object] Back to top  
1Make (someone or something) far off or remote in position or nature: her mother wished to distance her from the rough village children
More example sentences
  • The very nature of genre fiction distances the reader from these issues.
  • Mahathir has attempted to shore up his position by trying to distance the government from corruption allegations.
  • The strangely melancholy beauty of these places can't be traversed - we're hopelessly distanced from nature.
Synonyms
withdraw, detach, separate, dissociate, remove, isolate, put at a distance, keep at arm's length, set apart, place far off
1.1 (distance oneself from) Declare that one is not connected with or a supporter of (someone or something): he sought to distance himself from the proposals
More example sentences
  • But distancing ourselves seems to be the only way to lessen the struggle.
  • With The Invisible Man, he was intent on distancing himself as much as possible from the darkness of his past.
  • He turned his back towards me as if distancing himself emotionally from me.
2North American Horse Racing Beat (a horse) by a distance.
More example sentences
  • He gave way after the first half-mile and was distanced.
  • Sir Archy was distanced in the first two heats, but salvaged the final heat.

Origin

Middle English (in the sense 'discord, debate'): from Old French or from Latin distantia, from distant- 'standing apart', from the verb distare (see distant).

Phrases

distance lends enchantment to the view

proverb Things look better from further away.
More example sentences
  • Maybe distance lends enchantment to the view, but I remember him being quite good.
  • Ah, but distance lends enchantment to the view; when you see a ship five miles away, she is as beautiful as a swan.
  • There is a certain uncanny fascination about haunted houses, but it is one of which it may emphatically be said that distance lends enchantment to the view.

go the distance

Boxing Complete a fight without being knocked out: he went the distance after being floored in the first round
More example sentences
  • The former WBC champion last year went the distance with Germany's Sven Ottke in an IBF title fight.
  • Who knows what they would have scored had the fight gone the distance?
  • I'm guessing that Ellis would have won a decision if the fight had gone the distance.
(Of a boxing match) last the scheduled length: six of his fights went the distance
More example sentences
  • In other words, if a bowler didn't put his opponent away early, he was in trouble - especially if the match went the distance.
  • This time he makes no mistake and the match will go the distance.
  • Hunter drew level after the restart but the match looked destined to go the distance as neither man could take control.
Baseball Pitch for the entire length of a game: he went the distance on the mound
More example sentences
  • But it had been a little alarming that Maddux, who three times has led the N.L. in complete games, hadn't gone the distance.
  • Wells allowed one run on eight hits, while going the distance on just 100 pitches - with only 19 called balls.
  • Toney went the distance for his 10-inning no-hitter.
Last for a long time: this amplifier system should go the distance
More example sentences
  • They are prepared to go the distance on the running machine to stay in the playground of youth.
  • The fact that the series even went the distance certainly serves as a testament to the vast improvement that UW has undergone in the past two seasons.
  • When was the last time a move to amend the Constitution went the distance and actually occurred?

keep one's distance

Stay far away: keep your distance from birds feeding their young
More example sentences
  • If equipped with long range weapons they will keep their distance and try to stay away from your reach.
  • So I decided to keep my distance and stay where I was by my car door.
  • Both had done all the right things, the family said - they stayed together, avoided heavy drinking sessions, and kept their distance from local youths.
Maintain one’s reserve: you had to say nothing and keep your distance
More example sentences
  • Moses said he saw that the police kept their distance from reserve communities because of a lack of understanding of the people and their culture.
  • Should I keep my distance to maintain my authority or spend time with everyone to make sure things get done?
  • This is a break with the tradition of analysts keeping their distance from the players in the field so as to maintain their objectivity.

within —— distance

Near enough to reach by the means specified: her flat is within walking distance
More example sentences
  • Don't compare the skill, courage, or attitudes of your children with other members of the team, at least within their hearing distance.
  • As I live within a short walking distance of a river, I was happy to discover that the chance of my home flooding each year is just 1 in 1,000 or less.
  • Number 48 will appeal to those buyers who want a period property in very good condition within walking distance of their place of work.

within spitting (or US shouting) distance

Within a very short distance.
More example sentences
  • Ben was close now, within spitting distance of the Battlecruiser.
  • But I'm probably within spitting distance of 150, which for a woman who is 6'2 is well within the normal range, thank you very much.
  • As fun and interesting as the Indians have been, however, they also, at least on paper, shouldn't be within spitting distance of the Twins.

within striking distance

Near enough to hit or achieve something: we are within striking distance of our goal
More example sentences
  • The Dart is within striking distance and work is well underway on the M50 link near Loughlinstown.
  • This put the Kiwis within striking distance of Canada however not close enough to qualify.
  • Within the past few minutes, Dr. Jim Thompson says they're now within striking distance of living independent lives.

Definition of distance in:

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noun
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