• Full


    • enPR: fo͝ol, IPA: /fʊl/
      • also US IPA: /fl̩/
    • Rhymes: -ʊl

    Origin 1

    From Middle English full, from Old English full ("full"), from Proto-Germanic *fullaz ("full"), from Proto-Indo-European *pl̥h₁nós ("full").

    Germanic cognates include West Frisian fol, Low German vull, Dutch vol, German voll,

    Danish fuld, and Swedish and Norwegian full (the latter three via Old Norse). Proto-Indo-European cognates include English plenty (via Latin, cf. plenus), Welsh llawn, Russian полный, Lithuanian pilnas, Persian پر, Sanskrit पूर्ण. See also fele.

    Full definition of full



    1. Containing the maximum possible amount of that which can fit in the space available.
      • 1913, Joseph C. Lincoln, Mr. Pratt's Patients Chapter 1, 'Twas early June, the new grass was flourishing everywheres, the posies in the yard—peonies and such—in full bloom, the sun was shining, and the water of the bay was blue, with light green streaks where the shoal showed.
    2. The jugs were full to the point of overflowing.
    3. Complete; with nothing omitted.
      • 2013, Catherine Clabby, Focus on Everything, Not long ago, it was difficult to produce photographs of tiny creatures with every part in focus....A photo processing technique called focus stacking has changed that. Developed as a tool to electronically combine the sharpest bits of multiple digital images, focus stacking is a boon to biologists seeking full focus on a micron scale.
    4. Our book gives full treatment to the subject of angling.
    5. Total, entire.
      She had tattoos the full length of her arms.   He was prosecuted to the full extent of the law.
    6. (informal) Having eaten to satisfaction, having a "full" stomach; replete.
      "I'm full," he said, pushing back from the table.
    7. Of a garment, of a size that is ample, wide, or having ample folds or pleats to be comfortable.
      a full pleated skirt;   She needed her full clothing during her pregnancy.
    8. Having depth and body; rich.a full singing voice
    9. (obsolete) Having the mind filled with ideas; stocked with knowledge; stored with information.
      • Francis BaconReading maketh a full man.
    10. Having the attention, thoughts, etc., absorbed in any matter, and the feelings more or less excited by it.She's full of her latest project.
      • John LockeEveryone is full of the miracles done by cold baths on decayed and weak constitutions.
    11. Filled with emotions.
      • LowellThe heart is so full that a drop overfills it.
    12. (obsolete) Impregnated; made pregnant.
      • DrydenIlia, the fair, ... full of Mars.


    Sort these into the above lists, as appropriate:abundant, adequate, awash, big, bounteous, brimming, burdened, competent, complete, crammed, crowded, entire, extravagant, imbued, impregnated, intact, lavish, padded, plenteous, plentiful, plethoric, profuse, replete, saturated, stocked, sufficient, suffused, surfeited, teeming


    Related terms

    terms related to full (adjective)



    1. (archaic) Quite; thoroughly; completely; exactly; entirely.
      • William Shakespeare (1564-1616)master of a full poor cell
      • Joseph Addison (1672-1719)full in the centre of the sacred wood
      • 1819, John Keats, Otho the Great, Act IV, Scene I, verse 112You know full well what makes me look so pale.
      • unknown date Dante Gabriel Rosetti, William Blake, lines 9-12This cupboard.../ this other one,
        His true wife's charge, full oft to their abode
        Yielded for daily bread the martyr's stone,
      • 1874, James Thomson (B.V.), , IXIt is full strange to him who hears and feels,
        When wandering there in some deserted street,
        The booming and the jar of ponderous wheels, ...
      • 1910, Emerson Hough, The Purchase Price Chapter 1, Serene, smiling, enigmatic, she faced him with no fear whatever showing in her dark eyes....She put back a truant curl from her forehead where it had sought egress to the world, and looked him full in the face now,....

    Derived terms

    Origin 2

    From Middle English fulle, fylle, fille, from Old English fyllu, fyllo ("fullness, fill, plenty"), from Proto-Germanic *fullį̄, *fulnō ("fullness, filling, overflow"), from Proto-Indo-European *plūno-, *plno- ("full"), from Proto-Indo-European *pelǝ-, *plē- ("to fill; full"). Cognate with German Fülle ("fullness, fill"), Icelandic fylli ("fulness, fill"). More at fill.



    (plural fulls)
    1. Utmost measure or extent; highest state or degree; the state, position, or moment of fullness; fill.
      • ShakespeareThe swan's-down feather,
        That stands upon the swell at full of tide.
      • DrydenSicilian tortures and the brazen bull,
        Are emblems, rather than express the full
        Of what he feels.
    2. I was fed to the full.
      • 1911, Berthold Auerbach, Bayard Taylor, The villa on the Rhine:... he had tasted their food, and found it so palatable that he had eaten his full before he knew it.
      • 2008, Jay Cassell, The Gigantic Book Of Hunting Stories:Early next morning we were over at the elk carcass, and, as we expected, found that the bear had eaten his full at it during the night.
      • 2010, C. E. Morgan, All the Living: A Novel:When he had eaten his full, they set to work again.
    3. (of the moon) The phase of the moon when it is entire face is illuminated, full moon.
      • 1765, Francis Bacon, The works of Francis Bacon:It is like, that the brain of man waxeth moister and fuller upon the full of the moon: ...
      • 1808, Joseph Hall (bishop), (editor), Works, Volume VII: Practical Works, Revised edition, page 219,This earthly moon, the Church, hath her fulls and wanings, and sometimes her eclipses, while the shadow of this sinful mass hides her beauty from the world.
    4. (freestyle skiing) an aerialist maneuver consisting of a backflip in conjunction and simultaneous with a complete twist


    1. (of the moon) To become full or wholly illuminated.
      • 1888 September 20, "The Harvest Moon," New York Times (retrieved 10 April 2013)The September moon fulls on the 20th at 24 minutes past midnight, and is called the harvest moon.
      • 1905, Annie Fellows Johnston, The Little Colonel's Christmas Vacation, ch. 4:"By the black cave of Atropos, when the moon fulls, keep thy tryst!"
      • 1918, Kate Douglas Wiggin, The Story Of Waitstill Baxter, ch. 29:"The moon fulls to-night, don't it?"

    Origin 3

    From Middle English fullen, fulwen, from Old English fullian, fulwian ("to baptise"), from Proto-Germanic *fullawīhōną ("to fully consecrate"), from Proto-Germanic *fulla- ("full-") + Proto-Germanic *wīhōną ("to hallow, consecrate, make holy"). Compare Old English fulluht, fulwiht ("baptism").


    1. (transitive) To baptise.

    Derived terms

    Origin 4

    Middle English, from Old French fuller, fouler ("to tread, to stamp, to full"), from Medieval Latin fullare, from Latin fullo ("a fuller")


    1. To make cloth denser and firmer by soaking, beating and pressing, to waulk, walk


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