Definition of quality in English:


Line breaks: qual|ity
Pronunciation: /ˈkwɒlɪti

noun (plural qualities)

  • 1 [mass noun] The standard of something as measured against other things of a similar kind; the degree of excellence of something: an improvement in product quality [count noun]: people today enjoy a better quality of life
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    • As no standard accepted instrument measures sleep quality, we used effect sizes of the change in scores.
    • Since degree results are now a measure of teaching quality, there's an incentive to give better scores.
    • A number of questions about the clinical utility of quality of life measures remain unanswered.
    standard, grade, class, classification, calibre, status, condition, character, nature, constitution, make-up, form, rank, worth, value, level; sort, type, kind, variety
  • 1.1General excellence of standard or level: a masterpiece for connoisseurs of quality
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    • The design community should push the boundaries and bring the standard of quality to a higher level.
    • Poor general quality and finishing are the usual indicators of fake toys and parents are advised to buy from recognised retailers.
    • Most significant is the fact that Shanghai Automobile Industrial Company gained this level of quality through co-operation.
    excellence, superiority, merit, worth, value, virtue, calibre, eminence, pre-eminence, supremacy, transcendence, distinction, refinement, incomparability, account; talent, skill, skilfulness, virtuosity, expertise, brilliance, craftsmanship, flair, finish, mastery
  • 1.2 (usually qualities) British short for quality paper.
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    • The middle grouping make up the majority readership of these scandal sheets, but they are also much less likely to read the qualities.
    • A few of my favourite things - sweet peas, long walks, and tea in bed reading the qualities on a Sunday.
    • The ‘qualities’ usually have in-depth news items, backed up by articles written by staff writers or outsiders interpreting the news.
  • 1.3 archaic High social standing: commanding the admiration of people of quality
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    • Thus, we find descriptions of the professional nurses as “women of quality, sensible, kindly, home-makers, endowed with sympathy, brains, and tact.”
    • Tague shows how this rhetoric, although often seen as representing the rise of middle class ideology, was in fact adopted and exploited by wealthy, fashionable ‘women of quality’.
    • Women were starting to make their voices heard and one of them, Mary Cowper De Grey, recounts the story of a group of ladies of quality who are determined to make Shakespeare fashionable.
  • 1.4 [treated as plural] archaic People of high social standing: he’s dazed at being called on to speak before quality
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    • "But he does want it all the same, very bad - don't you, Jem? - only, you see, he's dazed at being called on to speak before quality."
    • ‘Aren't you ashamed to expose yourself before quality in that way?” said his wife, in an angry tone.
  • 2A distinctive attribute or characteristic possessed by someone or something: he shows strong leadership qualities the plant’s aphrodisiac qualities
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    • Lack of charisma, timidity and humility seem to be the criteria that negate strong leadership qualities.
    • Reputed to have aphrodisiac qualities, the plant resembles fennel, and used to be collected for sale at London markets.
    • It's a triangular route, taking in the raised ground at the join of two valleys, and each side has distinctive qualities.
  • 2.1 Phonetics The distinguishing characteristic or characteristics of a speech sound.
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    • The writing system doesn't separate the quality of the vowel from its nasalization.
    • Coco has alliterative and assonantal qualities that also make it memorable from an aural standpoint.
    • The categorical versus the gradient quality of nasalization in Sundanese versus English indicated that nasalization is indeed phonological in Sundanese and phonetic in English.
  • 2.2 Astrology Any of three properties (cardinal, fixed, or mutable), representing types of movement, that a zodiacal sign can possess.
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    • In vedic astrology, Virgo has some qualities of air, because mercury is considered an airy planet for them.
    • Each and every sign of the zodiac is associated with both an element and a quality.
    • Those influenced by a mutable quality in their horoscope also enjoy learning, play fair and are diplomatic and well-liked by others.


informal Back to top  
  • Of good quality; excellent: he’s a quality player
    More example sentences
    • But all three sides have excellent managers, quality players and this time around they know what they are up against.
    • It's wonderful to work with real quality players but it's just as satisfying to see the younger players develop and learn.
    • We have all seen that Clarke is a wonderful player of quality spin bowling.


Middle English (in the senses 'character, disposition' and 'particular property or feature'): from Old French qualite, from Latin qualitas (translating Greek poiotēs), from qualis 'of what kind, of such a kind'.

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