Definition of equal adjective from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//ˈiːkwəl//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈiːkwəl//
    Social justice
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  1. 1  the same in size, quantity, value, etc. as something else There is an equal number of boys and girls in the class. two pieces of wood equal in length/of equal length equal to somebody/something One unit of alcohol is equal to half a pint of beer. An area of forest equal to the size of Wales has been destroyed. You can use exactly, precisely, approximately, etc. with equal in this meaning.
  2. 2  having the same rights or being treated the same as other people, without differences such as race, religion or sex being considered equal rights/pay The company has an equal opportunities policy (= gives the same chances of employment to everyone). the desire for a more equal society (= in which everyone has the same rights and chances) You can use more with equal in this meaning. Wordfinderbias, discriminate, equal, feminism, homophobia, human right, marginalize, persecute, race, society See related entries: Social justice
  3. 3equal to something (formal) having the necessary strength, courage and ability to deal with something successfully I hope that he proves equal to the challenge.
  4. see also equally
    Word Originlate Middle English: from Latin aequalis, from aequus ‘even, level, equal’.Extra examples Fitness is important in sport, but of at least equal importance are skills. I believe everyone is born equal. I felt more than equal to the task. I felt that nothing could make me equal to the demands being made of me. One pound is roughly equal to two dollars. The EU nations together have an economy about equal in size to that of the US. The two books are more or less equal in length. Their test results were equal in every way. Three feet is roughly equal to one metre. We moved some of the better players to make the two sides equal. Cut it into four equal parts. Don’t you think that both views have equal validity? Mix the colours in equal amounts. Take two pieces of wood of equal length. The company employs men and women in roughly equal proportions. The company has an equal opportunities policy. The ideal would be an equal distribution of wealth between people of different age groups. The loan is repaid in equal annual instalments. equal rights/​pay the desire for a more equal societyIdioms
    all/other things being equal
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    if the conditions stay the same; if other conditions are the same All things being equal, we should finish the job tomorrow.
    on equal terms (with somebody)
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    having the same advantages and disadvantages as somebody else Can our industry compete on equal terms with its overseas rivals?
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: equal