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Wordnet 3.0

NOUN (12)

1. a state of equilibrium;

2. equality between the totals of the credit and debit sides of an account;

3. harmonious arrangement or relation of parts or elements within a whole (as in a design);
- Example: "in all perfectly beautiful objects there is found the opposition of one part to another and a reciprocal balance"- John Ruskin
[syn: proportion, proportionality, balance]

4. equality of distribution;
[syn: balance, equilibrium, equipoise, counterbalance]

5. something left after other parts have been taken away;
- Example: "there was no remainder"
- Example: "he threw away the rest"
- Example: "he took what he wanted and I got the balance"
[syn: remainder, balance, residual, residue, residuum, rest]

6. the difference between the totals of the credit and debit sides of an account;

7. (astrology) a person who is born while the sun is in Libra;
[syn: Libra, Balance]

8. the seventh sign of the zodiac; the sun is in this sign from about September 23 to October 22;
[syn: Libra, Libra the Balance, Balance, Libra the Scales]

9. (mathematics) an attribute of a shape or relation; exact reflection of form on opposite sides of a dividing line or plane;
[syn: symmetry, symmetricalness, correspondence, balance]

10. a weight that balances another weight;
[syn: counterweight, counterbalance, counterpoise, balance, equalizer, equaliser]

11. a wheel that regulates the rate of movement in a machine; especially a wheel oscillating against the hairspring of a timepiece to regulate its beat;
[syn: balance wheel, balance]

12. a scale for weighing; depends on pull of gravity;


VERB (4)

1. bring into balance or equilibrium;
- Example: "She has to balance work and her domestic duties"
- Example: "balance the two weights"
[syn: balance, equilibrate, equilibrize, equilibrise]

2. compute credits and debits of an account;

3. hold or carry in equilibrium;
[syn: poise, balance]

4. be in equilibrium;
- Example: "He was balancing on one foot"


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Balance \Bal"ance\ (b[a^]l"ans), v. t. [imp. & p. p. Balanced (b[a^]l"anst); p. pr. & vb. n. Balancing (b[a^]l"an*s[i^]ng).] [From Balance, n.: cf. F. balancer.] 1. To bring to an equipoise, as the scales of a balance by adjusting the weights; to weigh in a balance. [1913 Webster] 2. To support on a narrow base, so as to keep from falling; as, to balance a plate on the end of a cane; to balance one's self on a tight rope. [1913 Webster] 3. To equal in number, weight, force, or proportion; to counterpoise, counterbalance, counteract, or neutralize. [1913 Webster] One expression . . . must check and balance another. --Kent. [1913 Webster] 4. To compare in relative force, importance, value, etc.; to estimate. [1913 Webster] Balance the good and evil of things. --L'Estrange. [1913 Webster] 5. To settle and adjust, as an account; to make two accounts equal by paying the difference between them. [1913 Webster] I am very well satisfied that it is not in my power to balance accounts with my Maker. --Addison. [1913 Webster] 6. To make the sums of the debits and credits of an account equal; -- said of an item; as, this payment, or credit, balances the account. [1913 Webster] 7. To arrange accounts in such a way that the sum total of the debits is equal to the sum total of the credits; as, to balance a set of books. [1913 Webster] 8. (Dancing) To move toward, and then back from, reciprocally; as, to balance partners. [1913 Webster] 9. (Naut.) To contract, as a sail, into a narrower compass; as, to balance the boom mainsail. [1913 Webster] Balanced valve. See Balance valve, under Balance, n. [1913 Webster] Syn: To poise; weigh; adjust; counteract; neutralize; equalize. [1913 Webster]
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Balance wheel \Bal"ance wheel`\ 1. (Horology) (a) A wheel which regulates the beats or pulses of a watch or chronometer, answering to the pendulum of a clock; -- often called simply a balance. (b) A ratchet-shaped scape wheel, which in some watches is acted upon by the axis of the balance wheel proper (in those watches called a balance). [1913 Webster] 2. (Mach.) A wheel which imparts regularity to the movements of any engine or machine; a fly wheel. [1913 Webster]
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Balance \Bal"ance\, v. i. 1. To have equal weight on each side; to be in equipoise; as, the scales balance. [1913 Webster] 2. To fluctuate between motives which appear of equal force; to waver; to hesitate. [1913 Webster] He would not balance or err in the determination of his choice. --Locke. [1913 Webster] 3. (Dancing) To move toward a person or couple, and then back. [1913 Webster]
The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:

Balance \Bal"ance\ (b[a^]l"ans), n. [OE. balaunce, F. balance, fr. L. bilanx, bilancis, having two scales; bis twice (akin to E. two) + lanx plate, scale.] 1. An apparatus for weighing. [1913 Webster] Note: In its simplest form, a balance consists of a beam or lever supported exactly in the middle, having two scales or basins of equal weight suspended from its extremities. Another form is that of the Roman balance, our steelyard, consisting of a lever or beam, suspended near one of its extremities, on the longer arm of which a counterpoise slides. The name is also given to other forms of apparatus for weighing bodies, as to the combinations of levers making up platform scales; and even to devices for weighing by the elasticity of a spring. [1913 Webster] 2. Act of weighing mentally; comparison; estimate. [1913 Webster] A fair balance of the advantages on either side. --Atterbury. [1913 Webster] 3. Equipoise between the weights in opposite scales. [1913 Webster] 4. The state of being in equipoise; equilibrium; even adjustment; steadiness. [1913 Webster] And hung a bottle on each side To make his balance true. --Cowper. [1913 Webster] The order and balance of the country were destroyed. --Buckle. [1913 Webster] English workmen completely lose their balance. --J. S. Mill. [1913 Webster] 5. An equality between the sums total of the two sides of an account; as, to bring one's accounts to a balance; -- also, the excess on either side; as, the balance of an account. "A balance at the banker's." --Thackeray. [1913 Webster] I still think the balance of probabilities leans towards the account given in the text. --J. Peile. [1913 Webster] 6. (Horol.) A balance wheel, as of a watch, or clock. See Balance wheel (in the Vocabulary). [1913 Webster] 7. (Astron.) (a) The constellation Libra. (b) The seventh sign in the Zodiac, called Libra, which the sun enters at the equinox in September. [1913 Webster] 8. A movement in dancing. See Balance, v. t., 8. [1913 Webster] Balance electrometer, a kind of balance, with a poised beam, which indicates, by weights suspended from one arm, the mutual attraction of oppositely electrified surfaces. --Knight. Balance fish. (Zool.) See Hammerhead. Balance knife, a carving or table knife the handle of which overbalances the blade, and so keeps it from contact with the table. Balance of power (Politics), such an adjustment of power among sovereign states that no one state is in a position to interfere with the independence of the others; international equilibrium; also, the ability (of a state or a third party within a state) to control the relations between sovereign states or between dominant parties in a state. Balance sheet (Bookkeeping), a paper showing the balances of the open accounts of a business, the debit and credit balances footing up equally, if the system of accounts be complete and the balances correctly taken. Balance thermometer, a thermometer mounted as a balance so that the movement of the mercurial column changes the inclination of the tube. With the aid of electrical or mechanical devices adapted to it, it is used for the automatic regulation of the temperature of rooms warmed artificially, and as a fire alarm. Balance of torsion. See Torsion Balance. Balance of trade (Pol. Econ.), an equilibrium between the money values of the exports and imports of a country; or more commonly, the amount required on one side or the other to make such an equilibrium. Balance valve, a valve whose surfaces are so arranged that the fluid pressure tending to seat, and that tending to unseat, the valve, are nearly in equilibrium; esp., a puppet valve which is made to operate easily by the admission of steam to both sides. See Puppet valve. Hydrostatic balance. See under Hydrostatic. To lay in balance, to put up as a pledge or security. [Obs.] --Chaucer. To strike a balance, to find out the difference between the debit and credit sides of an account. [1913 Webster]
WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006):

balance n 1: a state of equilibrium [ant: imbalance, instability, unbalance] 2: equality between the totals of the credit and debit sides of an account 3: harmonious arrangement or relation of parts or elements within a whole (as in a design); "in all perfectly beautiful objects there is found the opposition of one part to another and a reciprocal balance"- John Ruskin [syn: proportion, proportionality, balance] 4: equality of distribution [syn: balance, equilibrium, equipoise, counterbalance] 5: something left after other parts have been taken away; "there was no remainder"; "he threw away the rest"; "he took what he wanted and I got the balance" [syn: remainder, balance, residual, residue, residuum, rest] 6: the difference between the totals of the credit and debit sides of an account 7: (astrology) a person who is born while the sun is in Libra [syn: Libra, Balance] 8: the seventh sign of the zodiac; the sun is in this sign from about September 23 to October 22 [syn: Libra, Libra the Balance, Balance, Libra the Scales] 9: (mathematics) an attribute of a shape or relation; exact reflection of form on opposite sides of a dividing line or plane [syn: symmetry, symmetricalness, correspondence, balance] [ant: asymmetry, dissymmetry, imbalance] 10: a weight that balances another weight [syn: counterweight, counterbalance, counterpoise, balance, equalizer, equaliser] 11: a wheel that regulates the rate of movement in a machine; especially a wheel oscillating against the hairspring of a timepiece to regulate its beat [syn: balance wheel, balance] 12: a scale for weighing; depends on pull of gravity v 1: bring into balance or equilibrium; "She has to balance work and her domestic duties"; "balance the two weights" [syn: balance, equilibrate, equilibrize, equilibrise] [ant: unbalance] 2: compute credits and debits of an account 3: hold or carry in equilibrium [syn: poise, balance] 4: be in equilibrium; "He was balancing on one foot"
Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0:

538 Moby Thesaurus words for "balance": Swiss bank account, accommodate, accord, account, account current, account rendered, account stated, adjust, afterglow, afterimage, agree, amount to, analogize, analogousness, aplomb, arrangement, assess, assets, assimilate, assimilate to, assurance, atmosphere, atone for, attune, audit, authority, available means, average, back down, balance the books, balanced personality, ballast, bank account, be heavy, beauty, bilateral symmetry, bonus, book, bottom dollar, break even, bring into analogy, bring into comparison, brushwork, budget, butt, butt end, cancel, candle ends, capital, capital goods, capitalization, capitalize, carry, carry over, carry weight, cash account, cash reserves, cast up accounts, center, chaff, charge off, check, check out, checking account, close out, close the books, coequality, coextension, collectedness, color, come to, come up to, command, command of money, commensurability, common sense, communion, community, comparability, comparableness, comparativeness, compare, compare and contrast, compare with, compensate, compensate for, composition, composure, concinnity, confidence, conformity, confront, congruity, consider, consideration, consistency, constancy, contact with reality, contrast, control, control account, cool, cool head, coolheadedness, coolness, coolth, coordinate, corelation, correlation, correlativism, correlativity, correspond, correspondence, counteract, counterbalance, counterpoise, counterpose, countervail, counterweigh, counterweight, credit, damp, debate, debit, debris, deficit, deliberate, demonstrate, demur, design, detritus, difference, discrepancy, ditto, dividend, docket, double-check, draftsmanship, draw, draw a comparison, draw a parallel, due sense of, dynamic symmetry, end, enter, epact, equability, equal, equality, equalize, equanimity, equate, equation, equilibrium, equilibrize, equipoise, equipollence, equiponderance, equiponderate, equity, equivalence, equivalency, equivalent, estimate, euphony, eurythmics, eurythmy, evaluate, even, even off, even out, even up, evenness, excess, exchequer, extra, fag end, falter, fastness, fear, filings, finances, finish, firm, firm up, firmness, fit, flatten, footing, fossil, freeze, fund, funds, generality, give-and-take, golden mean, good sense, gratuity, grist, grouping, hang back, happy medium, harmonize, harmony, have weight, healthy mind, heel, heft, hem and haw, hesitate, hold, hold the scales, holdings, holdover, homeostasis, homogenize, horse sense, hover, hum and haw, husks, identity, immobilize, imperturbability, income account, integrate, invariability, inventory, inverse proportion, inverse ratio, inverse relationship, jib, journalize, juste-milieu, justice, keep, keep books, keep pace with, keeping, kitty, knot, lagniappe, leavings, leftover, leftovers, level, level head, levelheadedness, levelness, lie heavy, life savings, liken, liken to, likeness, line, liquid assets, log, lucid interval, lucidity, make an entry, make uniform, make up, make up for, makeweight, margin, match, match up with, mean, means, measure, measure against, measure up to, measuredness, median, mediocrity, medium, mental balance, mental equilibrium, mental health, mental hygiene, mental poise, metaphorize, middle, middle course, middle ground, middle point, middle position, middle state, middle-of-the-road, midpoint, minute, moneys, multilateral symmetry, mutuality, nail down, nerve, nest egg, net, norm, normal, normalcy, normality, normalize, normalness, note, odds and ends, offscourings, offset, oppose, order, orderedness, orts, outweigh, overage, overhaul, overmeasure, overplus, overrun, overset, overstock, oversupply, painterliness, par, parallel, parallelism, parings, parity, pause, pecuniary resources, perspective, pin down, place against, plain sense, plus, pocket, poise, polarity, ponder, pool, possession, post, post up, pourboire, practical mind, practical wisdom, practicality, preponderance, presence of mind, property, proportion, proportionability, proportionality, proportionate, prove, provision account, pull back, purse, quid pro quo, rags, ratio, rationality, reach, reason, reasonableness, reciprocality, reciprocation, reciprocity, reckoning, redeem, refuse, regularity, regularize, regulate, relate, relativity, reliability, relics, remainder, remains, remnant, repose, reserves, residual, residue, residuum, resource, resources, rest, restraint, retain, retreat, revenue account, rhythm, right mind, rival, roach, rootedness, rubbish, ruins, rule, rump, run, run a comparison, run abreast, run to, running account, sales account, sameness, sanemindedness, saneness, sang-froid, sangfroid, sanity, savings, savings account, sawdust, scales, score, scourings, scraps, scruple, secureness, security, self-assurance, self-command, self-confidence, self-control, self-possession, self-restraint, selling account, sense, senses, sensibleness, set in contrast, set in opposition, set off, set off against, set over against, setoff, shading, shadow, shapeliness, shavings, shilly-shally, shy, similarity, similize, smooth, sober senses, sober-mindedness, soberness, sobriety, solidity, something extra, something of value, sound mind, soundness, soundness of mind, spare, square, square up, stabilitate, stability, stabilize, stable state, stack up with, stagnancy, stagnation, standardize, stasis, steadfastness, steadiness, steady, steady nerves, steady state, stereotype, stick, stick at, stickle, stock account, stop to consider, straddle the fence, strain at, straw, strike a balance, stubble, stump, substance, substantiality, supply, surplus, surplusage, survival, suspense account, sweepings, sweetness, symmetricalness, symmetrize, symmetry, take stock, tally, technique, think twice about, tie, tip, tip the scales, tit for tat, tone, touch, trace, transfix, treasure, treatment, trilateral symmetry, tune, undeflectability, uniformity, uniformize, unregistered bank account, unshakable nerves, unshakableness, valuation account, values, verify, vestige, via media, view together, waste, weigh, weigh against, weigh heavy, weigh in, weigh out, weight, well-regulated mind, wherewithal, wholesomeness, withdraw, yield
Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary:

Balance occurs in Lev. 19:36 and Isa. 46:6, as the rendering of the Hebrew _kanch'_, which properly means "a reed" or "a cane," then a rod or beam of a balance. This same word is translated "measuring reed" in Ezek. 40:3,5; 42:16-18. There is another Hebrew word, _mozena'yim_, i.e., "two poisers", also so rendered (Dan. 5:27). The balances as represented on the most ancient Egyptian monuments resemble those now in use. A "pair of balances" is a symbol of justice and fair dealing (Job 31:6; Ps. 62:9; Prov. 11:1). The expression denotes great want and scarcity in Rev. 6:5.
Bouvier's Law Dictionary, Revised 6th Ed (1856):

BALANCE, com. law. The amount which remains due by one of two persons, who have been dealing together, to the other, after the settlement of their accounts. 2. In the case of mutual debts, the balance only can be recovered by the assignee of an insolvent, or the executor of a deceased person. But this mutuality must have existed at the time of the assignment by the insolvent, or at the death of the testator. 3. The term general balance is sometimes used to signify the difference which is due to a party claiming a lien on goods in his hands, for work or labor done, or money expended in relation to those and other goods of the debtor. 3 B. & P. 485; 3 Esp. R. 268.