Things that have symmetry are balanced, with each side reflecting the other. A human body has such complex symmetry, from eyes, ears, and nostrils to arms, legs, and feet, that even a minor injury can make a body look unbalanced.

Snowflakes and butterflies often have a remarkable natural symmetry, with patterns on one side matched by those on the other. Objects that have identical or very similar parts lying at equal distances from a central point or line or plane — that is, objects that have symmetry — often work better. Symmetry helps boats stay upright in water. In design, symmetry is a balancing of objects, as when two candlesticks on a fireplace mantel are at equal distances from the center of the mantel. A lack of symmetry — i.e., asymmetry — might mean putting both candlesticks together at one end of the mantel.

Definitions of symmetry
  1. noun
    balance among the parts of something
    synonyms: proportion
    see moresee less
    lack of proportion; imbalance among the parts of something
    type of:
    balance, counterbalance, equilibrium, equipoise
    equality of distribution
  2. noun
    (mathematics) an attribute of a shape or relation; exact reflection of form on opposite sides of a dividing line or plane
    synonyms: balance, correspondence, symmetricalness
    see moresee less
    asymmetry, dissymmetry, imbalance
    (mathematics) a lack of symmetry
    geometrical regularity, regularity
    a property of polygons: the property of having equal sides and equal angles
    bilateral symmetry, bilateralism, bilaterality
    the property of being symmetrical about a vertical plane
    radial symmetry
    the property of symmetry about an axis
    type of:
    spatial property, spatiality
    any property relating to or occupying space
  3. noun
    (physics) the property of being isotropic; having the same value when measured in different directions
    synonyms: isotropy
    see moresee less
    the property of being anisotropic; having a different value when measured in different directions
    type of:
    a basic or essential attribute shared by all members of a class
Word Family

Test prep from the experts

Boost your test score with programs developed by’s experts.

  • Proven methods: Learn faster, remember longer with our scientific approach.
  • Personalized plan: We customize your experience to maximize your learning.
  • Strategic studying: Focus on the words that are most crucial for success.


  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 8 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week


  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 10 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week


  • Number of words: 700+
  • Duration: 10 weeks
  • Time: 1 hour / week