Definition of machine in English:

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Pronunciation: /məˈʃiːn/


1An apparatus using mechanical power and having several parts, each with a definite function and together performing a particular task: a fax machine
More example sentences
  • Waves over 25 ft high destroyed homes along the Florida coast and a nursing home lost all power meaning desperately-needed oxygen machines could not function.
  • I find that he cannot now perform the machine programming functions which mainly occupied him during his twenty-two years with his former employer.
  • If you hear the hard disk working furiously and the green light on the front of the computer is very busy, then the machine is performing a task.
apparatus, appliance, instrument, tool, utensil, device, unit, contraption, contrivance, gadget, mechanism, engine, motor, lever, pulley
informal gizmo
1.1 [with modifier] A coin-operated dispenser: a cigarette machine
More example sentences
  • If candy machine builders get too gloomy, they may stop building machines.
  • So how do we apply for a grant to get a nicotine patch dispenser machine fitted in the bus shelter?
  • To use the electric shock machine cost one penny, but friends would join hands so that a number of people could all experience the shock for the same penny.
1.2 technical Any device that transmits a force or directs its application.
Example sentences
  • The application of useful machines and tools was thus equated with not just material progress but cultural development.
  • It seems these little solar powered machines have applications that reach far beyond the motor car.
  • The Enigma machine is an electro-mechanical device for scrambling plain text invented by the Germans in 1918.
1.3An efficient and well-organized group of powerful people: the party’s fund-raising is helping it to build a formidable political machine
More example sentences
  • An alliance of the most powerful and violent military machines in the world will never bring peace.
  • Local government was controlled by one of the most powerful political machines in the nation, and that machine was largely the province of one man.
  • For all the claims of ‘control freakery’, the evidence seems to reveal a government machine influenced by a powerful sense of things being out of control.
organization, system, structure, arrangement, agency, machinery
informal set-up


[with object]
Make or operate on with a machine: (as adjective machined) a decoratively machined brass rod
More example sentences
  • The bottom-water sampler was a slender, reinforced rod with finely machined discs of brass at either end.
  • Made of brass, it was machined specifically to each caliber chambered in the 99 so that feeding cartridges was smooth, flawless and in a straight line.
  • Kalyani's Bharat Forge - which supplies high value added products like machined crankshafts and connecting rods - already has a niche in the Chinese market.


Mid 16th century (originally denoting a structure): from French, via Latin from Doric Greek makhana (Greek mēkhanē, from mēkhos 'contrivance').

  • mechanical from Late Middle English:

    Both mechanical and machine (mid 16th century) go back to Greek mēkhanikē ‘machine’. Originally mechanical and mechanic (Late Middle English) were more or less interchangeable, but nowadays the first primarily means ‘operated by or relating to a machine’ or ‘done without thought, automatic’, and the second refers to a skilled worker. An old meaning of both is ‘a manual labourer or artisan’, as in ‘A crew of patches, rude mechanicals, / That work for bread, upon Athenian stalls’ from Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream (rude here meaning ‘unsophisticated’).

Words that rhyme with machine

Aberdeen, Amin, aquamarine, baleen, bean, been, beguine, Benin, between, canteen, careen, Claudine, clean, contravene, convene, cuisine, dean, Dene, e'en, eighteen, fascine, fedayeen, fifteen, figurine, foreseen, fourteen, Francine, gean, gene, glean, gombeen, green, Greene, Halloween, intervene, Janine, Jean, Jeannine, Jolene, Kean, keen, Keene, Ladin, langoustine, latrine, lean, limousine, Maclean, magazine, Malines, margarine, marine, Mascarene, Massine, Maxine, mean, Medellín, mesne, mien, Moline, moreen, mujahedin, Nadine, nankeen, Nazarene, Nene, nineteen, nougatine, obscene, palanquin, peen, poteen, preen, quean, Rabin, Racine, ramin, ravine, routine, Sabine, saltine, sardine, sarin, sateen, scene, screen, seen, serene, seventeen, shagreen, shebeen, sheen, sixteen, spleen, spring-clean, squireen, Steen, submarine, supervene, tambourine, tangerine, teen, terrine, thirteen, transmarine, treen, tureen, Tyrrhene, ultramarine, umpteen, velveteen, wean, ween, Wheen, yean

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: ma|chine

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