—adj., v., -mat•ed, -mat•ing.
1. near or approaching a certain state, condition, goal, or standard.
2. nearly exact; not perfectly accurate or correct: The approximate time was 10 o'clock.
3. near; close together.
4. very similar; nearly identical.
1. to come near to; approach closely to: to approximate an ideal.
2. to estimate: We approximated the distance at three miles.
3. to simulate; imitate closely: The motions of the stars can be approximated in a planetarium.
4. to bring near.
to come near in position, character, amount, etc.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.