Pronunciation: (sfēr), [key]
— n., v., sphered, spher•ing.
- a solid geometric figure generated by the revolution of a semicircle about its diameter; a round body whose surface is at all points equidistant from the center. Equation:x2 + y2 + z2 = r2.
- the surface of such a figure; a spherical surface.
- any rounded body approximately of this form; a globular mass, shell, etc.
- a planet or star; heavenly body.
- Seecelestial sphere.
- any of the transparent, concentric, spherical shells, or layers, in which, according to ancient belief, the planets, stars, and other heavenly bodies were set.
- the place or environment within which a person or thing exists; a field of activity or operation: to be out of one's professional sphere.
- a particular social world, stratum of society, or walk of life: His social sphere is small.
- a field of something specified: a sphere of knowledge.
- to enclose in or as if in a sphere.
- to form into a sphere.
- to place among the heavenly spheres.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.
- a combining form of(planisphere); having a special use in the names of the layers of gases and the like surrounding the earth and other celestial bodies (ionosphere).