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1. a round or roundish body, either solid or hollow, of a size and composition suitable for any of various games, such as football, golf, billiards, etc
2. Cricket a single delivery of the ball by the bowler to the batsman
3. Baseball a single delivery of the ball by a pitcher outside certain limits and not swung at by the batter
4. Vet science another word for bolus
5. Horticulture the hard mass of roots and earth removed with the rest of the plant during transplanting


John. died 1381, English priest: executed as one of the leaders of the Peasants' Revolt (1381)



(from French baile). (1) Conventional unit (in English, number) for measuring stages or intensity of certain phenomena (for example, in meteorology for measuring wind and cloud velocities; in seismology, the force of the vacillating crust of the earth).

(2) A numerical notation (in English, mark or grade) of evaluation of the academic progress and behavior of students. In the general-education schools of prerevolutionary Russia, both five-ball and 12-ball systems were used. In the USSR, a five-ball system was introduced into the primary, eight-year, secondary, and specialized secondary schools in 1944 and remains in effect to the present day. According to this system, 5 means excellent, 4 is good, 3 is satisfactory, 2 is poor, and 1 is very poor. In the schools of certain other countries, the highest ball may be 1 (for example, in the German Democratic Republic, which uses a five-ball system), or a different number of balls, may be used (for example, a 10 is used in the Netherlands and an 11 in Italy).

(3) Numerical measurement (in English, point) of the results of a contest in some types of sport (such as gymnastics, swimming, and figure skating).

(4) Evaluation of the quality of agricultural livestock in exhibitions.

(5) As used in balloting [to refer to the small object dropped into the box or urn in some forms of secret voting].



an item of sports equipment, usually spherical, having the property of elastic deformation. It is used primarily in team sports.

Most balls, for example, those used in soccer, volleyball, basketball, and rugby, are hollow (with a casing and a rubber bladder).

Table 1
Sport1Circumference at diameter cross section (mm)Weight (g)
1 Children’s balls for these sports are lighter in weight and smaller in circumference.
2 Handballs for women are lighter in weight and smaller in circumference
Basketball ..............750–800600–650
Water polo ..............680–710400–450
Volleyball ..............640–660260–280
Rugby ..............760–790 
 (long axis) 
 (short axis) 
Handball2 ..............580–600425–475
Soccer ..............680–700400–450
Tennis ..............200–20856.7–58.5
Table tennis ..............37.2–38.22.40–2.53

Some balls consist of a dense, compact core, made by molding various materials, and are covered with a casing of synthetic materials or leather (for example, those used in bandy and field hockey). A special group consists of hollow balls (without bladder chambers) with a constant pressure (for example, tennis balls, table-tennis balls, and balls used in artistic gymnastics).

The color of balls used in different games is strictly regulated: white for table tennis, badminton, and field hockey, and orange for bandy. Balls used in soccer, volleyball, handball, and water polo are traditionally made of 18 or 32 sections according to specified configurations. For the sizes and weights of sports balls see Table 1.

The ball used for playing badminton is a shuttlecock, which consists of a plastic or cork head, usually covered with rubber, and a cone-shaped plastic or feather stabilizer. The diameter of the head is 25–28 mm, and the greatest diameter of the stabilizer is 65 mm. The overall length of the shuttlecock measures 65–70 mm, and the weight ranges from 4.5 to 4.8 g.

In addition to sports balls, there are stuffed balls, which are used for training purposes, for example, medicine balls that weigh from 1 to 5 kg. Balls fastened to springs or pulleys and balls suspended from ropes are used in various sports training devices.


What does it mean when you dream about a ball?

Balls can indicate everything from a game or some other form of relaxation to memories from our childhood. Balls can also have metaphorical connotations, such as being “tossed around,” “the ball’s in your court,” “having a ball” (having a good time) and “having balls” (courage). Any of these may be helpful in determining the meaning of this dream. A deeper, more universal symbolism is that circles and balls represent completeness and wholeness.


A low sand ridge, underwater by high tide, which extends generally parallel with the shoreline; usually separated by an intervening trough from the beach.
A spheroidal mass of sedimentary material.
Common name for a nodule, especially of ironstone.
(mechanical engineering)
In fine grinding, one of the crushing bodies used in a ball mill.
A bullet for general use, as distinguished from bullets for special uses such as armor-piercing, incendiary, or high explosive.
A small-arms solid propellant which is oblate spheroidal in shape, generally a double-base propellant.
References in periodicals archive ?
Mr Balles was raised in Pennsylvania and grew up to also be an accomplished musician.
We found that Platinum Plus consistently helps catalyse the combustion of soot collected in the particulate trap," Balles said, "passively regenerating the system and cleaning the trap.
Onze Palestiniens ont ete blesses par des tirs de balles en caoutchouc ou reelles de l'armee d'occupation, ont indique les services de secours palestiniens.
Born to a middle class family in 1930s McKeesport, Pennsylvania, Mr Balles was an exceptional reader from a very young age in addition to being musically gifted.
Cornet, 28e mondiale, a eu les nerfs solides pour se defaire d'Ivanovic, 14e mondiale, qui menait 6-2, 5-2 avant que la Nicoise ne se revolte, sauvant cinq balles de matches avant de remporter la deuxieme manche 7-6 (10-8) puis la troisieme 6-4 au terme d'une +bataille+ longue de 2 h 31 min.
000 blesses ont ete traites rien que dans cette ville de Cisjordanie dont [beaucoup moins que] 200 touches par des balles [beaucoup plus grand que].
Leur merite revient au fait qu'ils couraient incessamment derriere toutes les balles et c'est sur une intervention collective que Pedro logea la balle dans les bois adverses.
Du cote des assaillants, "cinq terroristes ont ete tues par balles, et 11 suspects sont en detention dans le cadre de cette attaque", a-t-il indique.
Des balles ont percute le vehicule de l'ex-ministre mais ce dernier est sorti indemne de cette attaque, a souligne l'officier de police.
Balles Mathematical Olympiad Prize in recognition of their academic excellence.
Balles, 38, as Vice President/Technology and Theodore J.
Pres de Naplouse, au point de controle de Huwara, des soldats israeliens ont fait au moins 55 blesses par balles reelles alors que les jeunes manifestants palestiniens ne faisaient que jeter des pierres.