Po*si"tion (?), n. [F. position,
L. positio, fr. ponere, positum, to put, place;
prob. for posino, fr. an old preposition used only in comp.
(akin to Gr. ?) + sinere to leave, let, permit, place. See
Site, and cf. Composite, Compound,
v., Depone, Deposit, Expound,
Impostor, Opposite, Propound, Pose,
v., Posit, Post,
1. The state of being posited, or placed; the
manner in which anything is placed; attitude; condition; as, a firm,
an inclined, or an upright position.
We have different prospects of the same thing,
according to our different positions to it.
2. The spot where a person or thing is placed
or takes a place; site; place; station; situation; as, the
position of man in creation; the fleet changed its
3. Hence: The ground which any one takes in an
argument or controversy; the point of view from which any one proceeds
to a discussion; also, a principle laid down as the basis of
reasoning; a proposition; a thesis; as, to define one's
position; to appear in a false position.
Let not the proof of any position depend on the
positions that follow, but always on those which go
before. I. Watts.
4. Relative place or standing; social or
official rank; as, a person of position; hence, office; post;
as, to lose one's position.
5. (Arith.) A method of solving a
problem by one or two suppositions; -- called also the rule of
trial and error.
Angle of position (Astron.), the angle
which any line (as that joining two stars) makes with another fixed
line, specifically with a circle of declination. --
Double position (Arith.), the method of
solving problems by proceeding with each of two assumed numbers,
according to the conditions of the problem, and by comparing the
difference of the results with those of the numbers, deducing the
correction to be applied to one of them to obtain the true
result. -- Guns of position (Mil.),
heavy fieldpieces, not designed for quick movements. --
Position finder (Mil.), a range finder.
See under Range. -- Position micrometer,
a micrometer applied to the tube of an astronomical telescope for
measuring angles of position in the field of view. --
Single position (Arith.), the method of
solving problems, in which the result obtained by operating with an
assumed number is to the true result as the number assumed is to the
number required. -- Strategic position
(Mil.), a position taken up by an army or a large
detachment of troops for the purpose of checking or observing an
Syn. -- Situation; station; place; condition; attitude;
posture; proposition; assertion; thesis.