What part of speech is “mean”

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as a noun, 'mean' refers to the average of a set of numbers.

The mean of 2, 4, and 6 is 4.

Students' test scores varied, but the class mean was 85.

The mean temperature for the week was 72 degrees.

the 'mean' is just one measure of central tendency, with others being the median and mode.


as an adjective, 'mean' describes someone who is unkind, spiteful, or stingy.

He was mean to his little brother, always taking away his toys.

Don't be so mean; share your candy with your friends.

She has a mean temper when she's angry.

'mean' as an adjective is not to be confused with its other forms or with the word 'meant' (past tense of the verb 'mean').


as a verb, 'mean' indicates intention, purpose, or the significance of something.

What do you mean by that statement?

I didn't mean to hurt your feelings.

The red light means you must stop.

'mean' has various nuances depending on context. For instance, 'What do you mean?' is asking for clarification, while 'I mean it' emphasizes sincerity. Be cautious with the tense. 'Meant' is the past tense of 'mean'.

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