Definition of across

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : from one side to the opposite side of : over, through swam across the river
b : on the opposite side of lives across the street from us
2 : so as to intersect or pass through at an angle sawed across the grain of the wood
3 : so as to find or meet Researchers have come across important new evidence.
4a : throughout … obvious interest across the nation.— Robert Goralski
b : so as to include or take into consideration all classes or categories


\ ə-ˈkrȯs How to pronounce across (audio) , chiefly dialectal -ˈkrȯst\

Definition of across (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : in a position reaching from one side to the other : crosswise cut the potato across into thin slices
2 : to or on the opposite side The stream was small enough to jump across.
3 : so as to be understandable, acceptable, or successful trying to get an argument across



Definition of across (Entry 3 of 3)

: being in a crossed position stood with her arms across

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Synonyms for across

Synonyms: Preposition

athwart, over, through

Synonyms: Adverb

athwart, over, through

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Examples of across in a Sentence


We took a ferry across the river. We saw them walking across the street. She reached across the table to shake his hand. They traveled back and forth across the border. Airplanes flew across the sky above us. He was seated across the table from me. The accident happened just across the state line. A smile spread across her face. Looking out across the ocean, he saw land. The sun's light spread across the mountains.


The streams are small enough to jump across. They walked across to the other side of the street. They reached across and shook each other's hand. At its widest point, the pond measures 150 feet across. I saw them crossing the street and I waited until they were safely across.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Preposition

This lets people see, and talk to, each other across the table, but also notice elements as the night goes on, so that the decor is full of little surprises. Whitney Robinson, ELLE Decor, "Darcy Miller's Top Five Table-Setting Secrets," 30 Apr. 2019 The penultimate film in Phase 3 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Avengers: Endgame, premiered this weekend, and fans across the world stumbled out of their respective theaters in a daze over the stunning three-hour conclusion of the Infinity Saga. Ineye Komonibo, Marie Claire, "I Really, Really Miss Captain America's Beard," 29 Apr. 2019 Social media is an unparalleled way for physicians to reach hundreds of thousands of people across the world. Dana Corriel, SELF, "The Rise of the Social Media Doctor," 26 Apr. 2019 Living creatures, coral across the world is still recovering from the massive bleaching epidemic which lasted from 2014 through 2017. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "New Atlas Captures Conditions of Nearly One-Fourth of World's Coral," 25 Apr. 2019 Judging by the young couple's Instagram posts, Jacob and Isabel seem to be having the time of their lives together traveling across the world and planning their wedding, which is set to be on September 7, 2019. Selena Barrientos, Good Housekeeping, "What Is Jacob Roloff’s Net Worth? Here’s What the ‘Little People, Big World’ Star Does for a Living," 9 Apr. 2019 To account for this, the report’s authors looked at women’s earnings across a 15-year period, and compared those with men’s. Anna North, Vox, "You’ve heard that women make 80 cents to men’s dollar. It’s much worse than that.," 2 Apr. 2019 The series filmed in 50 countries across the world, utilizing over 600 crew members. Chloe Foussianes, Town & Country, "David Attenborough's Our Planet: What We Know About the New Netflix Show," 25 Mar. 2019 On Friday, April 19, Christians across the world will commemorate the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. Marie Milano, Country Living, "Are Banks Open on Good Friday This Year?," 11 Mar. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb

Each cross is 2 feet across and 4 feet tall, with a heavy base, and takes about an hour to make. Erin Ailworth, WSJ, "In the Carpenter’s Workshop Where Crosses for Shootings Are Made," 22 Feb. 2019 The Malloy, a historic seven-story brick building, sits across from the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture. Asia Fields, The Seattle Times, "2 women found dead in University District apartment, Seattle police say," 4 Sep. 2018 The Town of Enfield Public Works Department offers residents the option of scheduling a bulky waste collection for items too large for regular weekly refuse collection (exceeding 60 pounds in weight or greater than 5 feet across). Courant Community, "Community News For The Enfield Edition," 19 June 2018 Additionally, the 16 stadiums that will be used across all three continents all already exist and require no additional construction costs. Dave Quinn,, "U.S., Mexico and Canada Will Jointly Host the 2026 Soccer World Cup," 13 June 2018 Gifts: While members across all three levels receive a birthday gift, VIB and Rouge members will be able to choose either a gift or 250 extra points. Melanie Rud Chadwick, Allure, "Exclusive: Sephora Is Upgrading Its Beloved Beauty Insider Program This Month," 9 Aug. 2018 Not so, said comptroller Thomas Shack, whose office is now probing employee perks across all state agencies. Kay Lazar,, "Despite warning, MassDOT continued toll-free perk for workers, retirees," 8 June 2018 The finished nests are about a foot across, with a bowl for the eggs that is 1 to 6 inches deep and 6 to 9 inches across. Jane Ford-stewart, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Seven things you never knew about the sex lives of mallard ducks," 10 Apr. 2018 The 'omnibus' spending bill spreading billions across all agencies of government was supposed to be released Monday night to allow time for passage through the House and Senate before a government shutdown deadline at midnight Friday. Tory Newmyer, Washington Post, "The Finance 202: Facebook's stock faces wild ride after Cambridge Analytica outrage," 20 Mar. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

To evoke the iconic mob wife, Polko styled Teigen's hair into a loose bob with a smooth, all-across fringe with ends that Polko curled inward. Leah Prinzivalli, Allure, "Chrissy Teigen’s New Bob Is Giving Us Scarface Vibes," 18 Mar. 2019 That requires the participation of staff across departments. Nancy Harris, Recode, "A practical guide to the European Union’s GDPR for American businesses," 16 May 2018 The Italian international performed some stunning stopovers, before using Ádám Nagy as a shield to guide a vicious shot across goal and into the corner of Antonio Mirante's far post., "Bologna 1-2 AC Milan: Rossoneri Survive Late Scare From Rossoblu to End Barren Winless Run," 29 Apr. 2018 The campaign highlights fixes the bank has made, as well as its more than 165-year-old history, including its role transporting gold across American as the nation was expanding westward. Deon Roberts, charlotteobserver, "Wells Fargo knows customers are still frustrated. Here's what they're doing about it. | Charlotte Observer," 7 May 2018 First, Cuadrado fired a cross-cum-shot across goal which was cruelly deflected into his own net by Milan Skriniar in the 87th minute., "Juventus Comes Back From 2-1 Deficit to Beat 10-Man Inter," 28 Apr. 2018 Insigne then drew Donnarumma into action, after firing a shot across goal straight into the enormous frame of the prodigious 19-year-old., "AC Milan 0-0 Napoli: Rossoneri Survive Gli Azzurri Onslaught to Effectively End Serie A Title Race," 15 Apr. 2018 And, because such practices are passed across generations, any systematic harm done to a community’s ability to support children will ripple across time; in the United States, such systematic harm has been waged on people of color. Jack Schneider, The Atlantic, "What School-Funding Debates Ignore," 22 Jan. 2018 Salah completed the rout 15 minutes from the end, receiving the ball from Mane before driving a powerful effort across goal into the bottom corner. USA TODAY, "Liverpool wins at West Ham in EPL as Mane returns to action," 4 Nov. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'across.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of across


1538, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


circa 1576, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for across


derivative of across entry 2


Middle English a-croiz, a-cros "in the shape of a cross, in a crossed position, from one side to another," borrowed from Anglo-French en croiz (from en "in, on"—going back to Latin in— + croiz "cross," going back to Latin cruc-, crux) with assimilation of Anglo-French croiz to cros cross entry 1 and en to a- a- entry 1 — more at in entry 1


derivative of across entry 2

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Statistics for across

Last Updated

13 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for across

The first known use of across was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for across



English Language Learners Definition of across

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: from one side to the other side of (something)
: on the other side of (something)
: so as to reach or spread over or throughout (something)



English Language Learners Definition of across (Entry 2 of 2)

: from one side to the other
: in a measurement from one side to the other side
: on the opposite side


\ ə-ˈkrȯs How to pronounce across (audio) \

Kids Definition of across

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : from one side to the other They reached across and shook hands.
2 : a measurement from one side to another The lake is a mile across.
3 : on the opposite side Watch me till I get across.



Kids Definition of across (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to or on the opposite side of The chicken ran across the street. My grandparents live across the street.
2 : so as to pass, go over, or intersect at an angle Lay one stick across another.
3 : in every part of The story spread all across town.

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More from Merriam-Webster on across

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with across

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for across

Spanish Central: Translation of across

Nglish: Translation of across for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of across for Arabic Speakers

Comments on across

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


something valued as if it were money

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