About means relating to something.(adjective)
An example of a book about maps would be an atlas.
About is defined as something close or approximate.(preposition)
An example of the time being about noon would be 11:59 am.
The definition of about is being in a certain area.(preposition)
Moving around your yard is an example of being about the yard.
An example of a job that is about finished would be a job that is almost completed.
See about in Webster's New World College Dictionary
Origin: ME aboute(n) < OE onbūtan, around < on, on + be, by + ūtan, outside < ūt, out: all senses develop from the sense of “around”
See about in American Heritage Dictionary 4
Origin: Middle English
Origin: , from Old English onbūtan
Origin: : on, in; see on
Origin: + būtan, outside; see ud- in Indo-European roots. Usage Note: The construction not about to is often used to express determination: We are not about to negotiate with terrorists. A majority of the Usage Panel considers this usage acceptable in speech but not in formal writing. • About is traditionally used to refer to the relation between a narrative and its subject: a book about Cézanne; a movie about the Boston Massacre. This use has lately been extended to refer to the relation between various nonlinguistic entities and the things they make manifest, as in The party was mostly about showing off their new offices or His designs are about the use of rough-textured materials. This practice probably originates with the expression That's what it's all about, but it remains controversial. Fifty-nine percent of the Usage Panel rejected this use in the example A designer teapot isn't about making tea; it is about letting people know that you have a hundred dollars to spend on a teapot.
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