Definitions for: Float


[n] something that remains on the surface of a liquid
[n] a drink with ice cream floating in it
[n] the number of shares outstanding and available for trading by the public
[n] the time interval between the deposit of a check in a bank and its payment
[v] convert from a fixed point notation to a floating point notation; "float data"
[v] allow (currencies) to fluctuate; "The government floated the ruble for a few months"
[v] put into the water; "float a ship"
[v] move lightly, as if suspended; "The dancer floated across the stage"
[v] set afloat; "He floated the logs down the river"; "The boy floated his toy boat on the pond"
[v] be in motion due to some air or water current; "The leaves were blowing in the wind"; "the boat drifted on the lake"; "The sailboat was adrift on the open sea"; "the shipwrecked boat drifted away from the shore"
[v] be afloat; stay on a liquid surface; not sink
[v] circulate or discuss tentatively; test the waters with; "The Republicans are floating the idea of a tax reform"



Webster (1913) Definition: Float (fl[=o]t), n.[OE. flote ship, boat, fleet, AS.
flota ship, fr. fle['o]tan to float; akin to D. vloot fleet,
G. floss raft, Icel. floti float, raft, fleet, Sw. flotta.
[root] 84. See Fleet, v. i., and cf. Flotilla, Flotsam,
Plover.]
1. Anything which floats or rests on the surface of a fluid,
as to sustain weight, or to indicate the height of the
surface, or mark the place of, something. Specifically:
(a) A mass of timber or boards fastened together, and
conveyed down a stream by the current; a raft.
(b) The hollow, metallic ball of a self-acting faucet,
which floats upon the water in a cistern or boiler.
(c) The cork or quill used in angling, to support the bait
line, and indicate the bite of a fish.
(d) Anything used to buoy up whatever is liable to sink;
an inflated bag or pillow used by persons learning to
swim; a life preserver.

This reform bill . . . had been used as a float
by the conservative ministry. --J. P.
Peters.

2. A float board. See Float board (below).

3. (Tempering) A contrivance for affording a copious stream
of water to the heated surface of an object of large bulk,
as an anvil or die. --Knight.

4. The act of flowing; flux; flow. [Obs.] --Bacon.

5. A quantity of earth, eighteen feet square and one foot
deep. [Obs.] --Mortimer.

6. (Plastering) The trowel or tool with which the floated
coat of plastering is leveled and smoothed.

7. A polishing block used in marble working; a runner.
--Knight.

8. A single-cut file for smoothing; a tool used by shoemakers
for rasping off pegs inside a shoe.

9. A coal cart. [Eng.] --Simmonds.

10. The sea; a wave. See Flote, n.

Float board, one of the boards fixed radially to the rim of
an undershot water wheel or of a steamer's paddle wheel;
-- a vane.

Float case (Naut.), a caisson used for lifting a ship.

Float copper or gold (Mining), fine particles of metallic
copper or of gold suspended in water, and thus liable to
be lost.

Float ore, water-worn particles of ore; fragments of vein
material found on the surface, away from the vein outcrop.
--Raymond.

Float stone (Arch.), a siliceous stone used to rub
stonework or brickwork to a smooth surface.

Float valve, a valve or cock acted upon by a float. See
Float, 1
(b) .


Float, v. i. [imp. & p. p. Floated; p. pr. & vb. n.
Floating.] [OE. flotien, flotten, AS. flotian to float,
swim, fr. fle['o]tan. See Float, n.]
1. To rest on the surface of any fluid; to swim; to be buoyed
up.

The ark no more now floats, but seems on ground.
--Milton.

Three blustering nights, borne by the southern
blast, I floated. --Dryden.

2. To move quietly or gently on the water, as a raft; to
drift along; to move or glide without effort or impulse on
the surface of a fluid, or through the air.

They stretch their broad plumes and float upon the
wind. --Pope.

There seems a floating whisper on the hills.
--Byron.


Float, v. t.
1. To cause to float; to cause to rest or move on the surface
of a fluid; as, the tide floated the ship into the harbor.

Had floated that bell on the Inchcape rock.
--Southey.

2. To flood; to overflow; to cover with water.

Proud Pactolus floats the fruitful lands. --Dryden.

3. (Plastering) To pass over and level the surface of with a
float while the plastering is kept wet.

4. To support and sustain the credit of, as a commercial
scheme or a joint-stock company, so as to enable it to go
into, or continue in, operation.

Synonyms: ice-cream float, ice-cream soda

Antonyms: go down, go under, settle, sink

See Also: artefact, artifact, bob, bobber, bobfloat, buoy, change over, chip, convert, cork, drink, essay, examine, go, interval, launch, locomote, move, pontoon, prove, raft, refloat, ride, root beer float, stock, stream, test, tide, time interval, transport, travel, try, try out, value, waft

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