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noun \ˈlift\

Definition of lift

chiefly Scottish

  1. :  heavens, sky

Origin of lift

Middle English, from Old English lyft

First Known Use: before 12th century

Rhymes with lift




Simple Definition of lift

  • : to move (something or someone) to a higher position

  • : to rise up from the ground or some other surface

  • : to move (someone or something) to a higher condition or position

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of lift

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 a :  to raise from a lower to a higher position :  elevate b :  to raise in rank or condition c :  to raise in rate or amount

  3. 2 :  to put an end to (a blockade or siege) by withdrawing or causing the withdrawal of investing forces

  4. 3 :  revoke, rescind <lift an embargo>

  5. 4 a :  steal <had her purse lifted> b :  plagiarize c :  to take out of normal setting <lift a word out of context>

  6. 5 :  to take up (as a root crop or transplants) from the ground

  7. 6 :  to pay off (an obligation) <lift a mortgage>

  8. 7 :  to move from one place to another (as by aircraft) :  transport

  9. 8 :  to take up (a fingerprint) from a surface

  10. intransitive verb
  11. 1 a :  ascend, rise <the rocket lifted off> b :  to appear elevated (as above surrounding objects)

  12. 2 of inclement weather :  to dissipate and clear

liftable play \ˈlif-tə-bəl\ adjective
lifter noun

Examples of lift in a sentence

  1. The paramedics lifted the stretcher into the ambulance.

  2. lift a bucket of water

  3. He lifted his foot from the gas pedal.

  4. He lifted his pen from the paper.

  5. She lifted her hands to the sky.

  6. The story lifted him to national recognition.

Origin of lift

Middle English, from Old Norse lypta; akin to Old English lyft air — more at loft

First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of lift

lift, raise, rear, elevate, hoist, heave, boost mean to move from a lower to a higher place or position. lift usually implies exerting effort to overcome resistance of weight <lift the chair while I vacuum>. raise carries a stronger implication of bringing up to the vertical or to a high position <scouts raising a flagpole>. rear may add an element of suddenness to raise <suddenly reared itself up on its hind legs>. elevate may replace lift or raise especially when exalting or enhancing is implied <elevated the taste of the public>. hoist implies lifting something heavy especially by mechanical means <hoisted the cargo on board>. heave implies lifting and throwing with great effort or strain <heaved the heavy crate inside>. boost suggests assisting to climb or advance by a push <boosted his brother over the fence>.




Definition of lift

  1. 1 :  the amount that may be lifted at one time :  load

  2. 2 a :  the action or an instance of lifting b :  the action or an instance of rising c :  elevated carriage (as of a body part) d :  the lifting up (as of a dancer) usually by a partner

  3. 3 :  a device (as a handle or latch) for lifting

  4. 4 :  an act of stealing :  theft

  5. 5 a :  assistance, help b :  a ride especially along one's way

  6. 6 :  a layer in the heel of a shoe

  7. 7 :  a rise or advance in position or condition

  8. 8 :  a slight rise or elevation

  9. 9 :  the distance or extent to which something rises

  10. 10 :  an apparatus or machine used for hoisting: as a :  a set of pumps used in a mine b chiefly British :  elevator 1b c :  an apparatus for raising an automobile (as for repair) d :  ski lift

  11. 11 a :  an elevating influence b :  an elevation of the spirit

  12. 12 a :  the component of the total aerodynamic force acting on an airplane or airfoil that is perpendicular to the relative wind and that for an airplane constitutes the upward force that opposes the pull of gravity b :  an updraft that can be used to increase altitude (as of a sailplane)

  13. 13 :  an organized movement of people, equipment, or supplies by some form of transportation; especially :  airlift

  14. 14 :  plastic surgery on a part of the body typically to improve a drooping or sagging appearance especially by reducing excess skin and fat <a neck lift>

14th Century

First Known Use of lift

14th century

LIFT Defined for Kids



verb \ˈlift\

Definition of lift for Students


  1. 1 :  to raise from a lower to a higher position, rate, or amount

  2. 2 :  to rise from the ground <The balloon lifted into the sky.>

  3. 3 :  to move upward and disappear or become scattered <The haze lifted.>




Definition of lift for Students

  1. 1 :  the action or an instance of picking up and raising <He showed his surprise with a lift of his eyebrows.>

  2. 2 :  an improved mood or condition <The good test grade gave her a lift.>

  3. 3 :  a ride in a vehicle <She gave me a lift to school.>

  4. 4 chiefly British :  elevator 1

  5. 5 :  an upward force (as on an airplane wing) that opposes the pull of gravity

Medical Dictionary


noun \ˈlift\

Medical Definition of lift

  1. :  plastic surgery on a part of the body typically to improve a drooping or sagging appearance especially by reducing excess skin and fat <… many plastic surgeons claim that doing a brow lift or a neck lift at an earlier age can help postpone more invasive face-lifts later on …—Liz Welch, Glamour, April 2001>

lift transitive verb

Law Dictionary


transitive verb

Legal Definition of lift

  1. :  to put an end to :  make no longer effective <lift the stay>

Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up lift? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


expressing little or no emotion

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