Definition of range in English:

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Pronunciation: /rānj/


1The area of variation between upper and lower limits on a particular scale: the cost is thought to be in the range of $1-5 million a day it’s outside my price range
More example sentences
  • Acceptable settlements may fall within a broad range of upper and lower limits.
  • There is a general decrease in rainfall and an increase in the range of temperatures experienced as one moves away from the coast.
  • Accordingly, there is wide variation in the range of sentences for this offence.
span, scope, compass, sweep, extent, area, field, orbit, ambit, horizon, latitude;
limits, bounds, confines, parameters
1.1The scope of a person’s knowledge or abilities: he gave some indication of his range
More example sentences
  • Few scientists can match the range, depth and scope of his biodiversity knowledge.
  • Since then, she has gained a vast range of knowledge in all things equine.
  • The play shows her range and ability as a serious actor.
1.2The compass of a person’s voice or of a musical instrument: she was gifted with an incredible vocal range
More example sentences
  • The source of this parallel intoning of liturgical melody may be traced to the natural range of the human voice.
  • For the most part, the vocal ranges are narrow and would be suitable for all voice parts.
  • He has what is possibly one of the best male voices and ranges in the pop music world at the moment.
1.3The extent of time covered by something such as a forecast.
Example sentences
  • The economy had reached a turning point, and during the forecast's range, it would end up in an economic recovery phase.
  • The accuracy of the method varies within reasonable limits depending on the time range of the forecast for different conditions.
1.4The area or extent covered by or included in something: an introductory guide to the range of debate this issue has generated
More example sentences
  • The range of discourse and debate in news media, though woefully constricted, is still meaningful.
  • He takes pains to limit the range and reach of his case against censorship.
  • Between them, these two stories give an indication of the range in which his creative genius worked.
1.5 Mathematics The set of values that a given function can take as its argument varies.
Example sentences
  • The graph window automatically sizes itself to fit the ranges of values of x and f that occur.
  • The following commands are useful in understanding the ranges of values of p for which a given strategy is best.
  • You also have to assign the core terms numerical values or ranges.
2A set of different things of the same general type: the area offers a wide range of activities for the tourist
More example sentences
  • The centre has a wide range of classes and activities to choose from for both adults and children.
  • The new savings schemes will offer a range of different investment options.
  • The bank can offer a full range of products, including trade finance, securities trading and foreign exchange.
assortment, variety, diversity, mixture, collection, array, selection, choice
3The distance within which something can be reached or perceived: something lurked just beyond her range of vision
More example sentences
  • The selected respondent should not have been within hearing range of any previous respondents.
  • Play this album and everybody within hearing range is guaranteed to gasp at some point " ooh, I love this one".
  • Helen looked around us, making sure no one was following us or within hearing range of what she was about to say.
3.1The distance that can be covered by a vehicle or aircraft without refueling: the vans have a range of 125 miles
More example sentences
  • They warned that by 1948 increased enemy aircraft ranges would permit the extension of these attacks.
  • The vehicle has a range of 214 miles with a maximum speed of 40mph.
  • The truck's range is great, with the fuel light coming on at around 360 miles.
3.2The maximum distance at which a radio transmission can be effectively received: planets within radio range of Earth
More example sentences
  • Look for us calling in once we get back into radio range in a few days.
  • Often truck convoys and support units were out of range of each other's radios.
  • He was almost in radio range, but he decided to take a break at the Hangman's Pit.
3.3The maximum distance to which a gun will shoot or over which a missile will travel: these rockets have a range of 30 to 40 miles a duck came within range
More example sentences
  • The maximum range of those rockets was just over five miles.
  • Correspondents say this is a substantial addition to the previously announced range of the country's missiles.
  • The minimum and maximum ranges of the missile are 5km and 130 km.
3.4The distance between a camera and the subject to be photographed.
Example sentences
  • Matters are not helped by the fact that the cameras have a range of only 20 yards.
  • Its cameras tend to have the highest optical zoom ranges.
  • Don't go past the camera's optical zoom range, or you'll be sorry!
3.5 Surveying The horizontal direction and length of a survey line determined by at least two fixed points.
Example sentences
  • If his direction should lie between any two of the above points, as for example, between the north and the west, he may call the range of the line north-west.
  • Then measure GD and HD, observing, in measuring HD, to have the range of the line carefully defined.
4A line or series of mountains or hills: the coastal ranges of the northwest
More example sentences
  • Eastwards the ridge opened out in a series of bumps, dips and peaks, more like a small range of mountains than one single hill.
  • By midafternoon they had reached the summit of the first range of mountains, and stopped to rest the horses.
  • Ministers face legal action by a local authority for excluding a range of mountains from the Cairngorms National Park.
row, chain, sierra, ridge, massif;
line, string, series
4.1US A series of townships extending north and south parallel to the principal meridian of a survey.
Example sentences
  • There is a new map site online that shows the townships, ranges and meridians for Saskatchewan in the early 1900s.
  • Constructing a map and identifying the location of a tract in the township-range system is much easier than in the metes-bounds system used in many of the older states.
  • Ranges numbers extend from 42 West at the Colorado border all the way to 19 East at the Missouri River.
4.2 Nautical A line defined by landmarks or beacons, used to locate something offshore, especially a navigable channel or a hazard.
Example sentences
  • The center of the navigable channel under each span will be marked by a range of two green lights.
  • The appropriate nautical chart must be consulted when using ranges to determine whether the range marks the centerline of the navigable channel.
5A large area of open land for grazing or hunting.
Example sentences
  • Ranchers have to be careful not to put too many cattle on these ranges because overgrazing can lead to erosion.
  • Russian knapweed is a problem in ranges and pastures in the western United States, where it grows up to 4 feet tall and takes over otherwise productive land.
  • The owner of the range sold out, but he bought new land to open a replacement range.
pasture, pasturage, pastureland, prairie, grass, grassland, grazing land, veld
literary greensward
5.1An area of land or sea used as a testing ground for military equipment.
Example sentences
  • A Tory MP has demanded an urgent inquiry after a leaked document revealed radioactive materials were tested at Shoebury's military ranges in the 1940s and 1950s.
  • All the U.S. military services use the range at one time or another for a variety of training needs.
  • The U.S. military left firing ranges in the Panama Canal Zone littered with thousands of unexploded rounds.
5.2An open or enclosed area with targets for shooting practice.
Example sentences
  • I want to buy a shotgun and start going to the range.
  • This person has the title of ‘Field Captain’ and controls the shooting on the range.
  • The gun club has some of the best target ranges in the world but has been forced to use a wartime prefab as an office and clubhouse.
5.3The area over which a thing, especially a plant or animal, is distributed.
Example sentences
  • The pine barrens of New Jersey is the northernmost range of 109 southern plant species.
  • Another option is to look at creating corridors between protected lands as a way of expanding the animals' ranges.
  • These routes used by migratory birds for passage between wintering and breeding ranges are called flyways.
6An electric or gas stove with several burners and one or more ovens.
Example sentences
  • The kitchen has an Aga range, wooden shelves and storage spaces throughout.
  • They've installed oil-fired ranges and stoves.
  • I remember clearly my mother's kitchen with a coal range and the hot water cylinder alongside with a tap on it for hot water.
stove, oven
7 Building A course of masonry extending from end to end at one height.
7.1A row of buildings.
Example sentences
  • When Pawson first visited the site five years ago, it comprised a derelict Baroque manor house with ranges of agricultural buildings that framed a large courtyard.
  • To the rear of the house are two ranges of traditional farm buildings, characterised by attractive arches.
  • It has a delightful old stone bridge, and a fine range of quayside buildings.
8 archaic The direction or position in which something lies: the range of the hills and valleys is nearly from north to south
More example sentences
  • There are in these strata many faults or irregularities, by which the due range of the strata is thrown out of course.
  • Direct all the other Stakes according to the Range of the first.


1 [no object] Vary or extend between specified limits: patients whose ages ranged from 13 to 25 years
More example sentences
  • The 115 residential units vary in size and in price level, ranging from about $750 to $1750 a month.
  • Prices ranged from £25 for a proof of age card to £240 for a set of fake exam qualifications.
  • Sample sizes of individual studies varied, ranging from 39 to 220, but tended to be larger than those used in previous work.
2 [with object] (usually be ranged) Place or arrange in a row or rows or in a specified order or manner: a table with half a dozen chairs ranged around it
More example sentences
  • After she'd gone he had drawn up a scorecard, ranging her qualities on one side - her intellectual gifts and vivid, racy conversation - and on the other all the vicious things she'd said.
  • The percussionists are ranged round the auditorium, the seats within being arranged to face several different ways.
  • We ranged ourselves decoratively across the stairs.
2.1 [no object] Run or extend in a line in a particular direction: he regularly came to the benches that ranged along the path
More example sentences
  • The lines of people ranged all the way down the long hallway.
  • Mellow lights appeared in the old white villas ranged along the beach.
  • A curvy center corridor links the public rooms that range along Apollon Deck.
3 [no object] (Of a person or animal) travel or wander over a wide area: patrols ranged thousands of miles deep into enemy territory [with object]: nomadic tribesmen who ranged the windswept lands of the steppe
More example sentences
  • Mosquitoes breed in static water and the emerging adults can range up to two miles.
  • This species once ranged over an enormous area.
  • He knew that the cat had once ranged throughout the Southwest.
roam, rove, traverse, travel, journey, wander, drift, ramble, meander, stroll, traipse, walk, hike, trek
3.1(Of a person’s eyes) pass from one person or thing to another: his eyes ranged over them
More example sentences
  • She noticed his eyes ranging over her body.
  • He let his eyes range freely up and down her body, lingering particularly on her legs.
  • My eyes range over the familiar faces and I receive nods and smiles from every direction.
3.2(Of something written or spoken) cover or embrace a wide number of different topics: tutorials ranged over a variety of subjects
More example sentences
  • After the meal, they had sat in the front room and the conversation had ranged over a wide variety of topics.
  • The discussions ranged over a wide variety of subjects, but it was the philosophy of medicine that attracted the largest numbers.
  • Our discussion ranged over a huge array of topics.
4 [no object] Obtain the range of a target by adjustment after firing past it or short of it, or by the use of radar or laser equipment: radar-type transmissions which appeared to be ranging on our convoys
More example sentences
  • The time between laser ranging the target and firing is approximately two seconds.
  • Since artillery is not being used much, do the fire support teams still have the ground-laser teams used for ranging and target identification?
  • Flash-to-bang time, laser ranging, and map estimation cannot be used.
4.1 [with adverbial] (Of a projectile) cover a specified distance.
Example sentences
  • Prithvi II is the air force version and Prithvi III the naval version of the missile ranging up to 250 and 750 km respectively.
  • The missiles are capable of ranging over 8000 meters.
4.2 [with adverbial] (Of a gun) send a projectile over a specified distance.
Example sentences
  • A 12" gun can range past 30000 yards.
  • The gun can range to about 23km.


at a range of

With a specified distance between one person or thing and another: a bat can detect a moth at a range of less than 8 feet
More example sentences
  • Marines still have to learn how to accurately shoot an rifle at a range of 500 yards.
  • The missiles can theoretically hit a target up to a height of 10,000 ft and at a range of up to five miles.
  • The ray, which proved effective at a range of 160 feet in testing in early July, projects from an antenna that can be mounted on the roof of police cruisers.


Middle English (in the sense 'line of people or animals'): from Old French range 'row, rank', from rangier 'put in order', from rang 'rank'. Early usage also included the notion of 'movement over an area'.

Words that rhyme with range

arrange, change, counterchange, estrange, exchange, grange, interchange, Lagrange, mange, part-exchange, short-change, strange

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: range

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