adjective Etymology: Middle English, from Latin determinatus, past participle of determinare Date: 14th century 1. having defined limits <
a determinate period of time
2. definitely settled <
a determinate order of precedence
3. conclusively determined ; definitive <
a determinate answer
4. characterized by sequential flowering from the central or uppermost bud to the lateral or basal buds; also characterized by growth in which the main stem ends in an inflorescence and stops growing with only branches from the main stem having further and similarly restricted growth <
determinate tomato plants
compare indeterminate 4 5. relating to, being, or undergoing egg cleavage in which each division irreversibly separates portions of the zygote with specific potencies for further developmentdeterminately adverbdeterminateness noun

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.


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  • Determinate — De*ter mi*nate, a. [L. determinatus, p. p. of determinare. See {Determine}.] 1. Having defined limits; not uncertain or arbitrary; fixed; established; definite. [1913 Webster] Quantity of words and a determinate number of feet. Dryden. [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Determinate — De*ter mi*nate, v. t. To bring to an end; to determine. See {Determine}. [Obs.] [1913 Webster] The sly, slow hours shall not determinate The dateless limit of thy dear exile. Shak. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • determinate — index absolute (conclusive), actual, axiomatic, certain (fixed), certain (specific), concrete …   Law dictionary

  • determinate — late 14c., from L. determinatus, pp. of determinare (see DETERMINE (Cf. determine)) …   Etymology dictionary

  • determinate — [dē tʉr′mi nit, ditʉr′mi nit] adj. [ME < L determinatus, pp. of determinare: see DETERMINE] 1. having exact limits; definite; distinct; fixed 2. settled or decided; conclusive 3. Bot. having a flower at the end of the primary axis and of each… …   English World dictionary

  • determinate — de·ter·mi·nate di tərm (ə )nət adj relating to, being, or undergoing determinate cleavage <a determinate egg> …   Medical dictionary

  • determinate — [[t]dɪtɜ͟ː(r)mɪneɪt[/t]] ADJ: usu ADJ n Determinate means fixed and definite. [FORMAL] ...a contract for the exclusive possession of land for some determinate period. Ant: indeterminate …   English dictionary

  • determinate — 1. adjective a) Limited, defined, resolved, decided. b) Of plants in which growth of the axis is terminated by the generation of reproductive structures. Ant: indeterminate, non determinate …   Wiktionary

  • determinate — de|ter|mi|nate [dıˈtə:mınıt US ə:r ] adj formal definite or with an exact limit ≠ ↑indeterminate ▪ a determinate prison sentence of five years …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • determinate — adjective formal strictly controlled or limited: A firm will act in a determinate way to maximize its profits …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English