adjective or adverb

: slightly open
left the door ajar

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Smith said he was concerned because the family did not use the front door, which was ajar. Dallas News, 6 Dec. 2022 According to police, the vehicle owner found the door ajar but did not report whether it had been locked or not. Alex Hulvalchick, Chicago Tribune, 9 Feb. 2023 Officers responded to an apartment complex in the 1000 block of Eagle Drive about 10:15 p.m., according to police, and found a unit with a door slightly ajar. Dallas News, 12 Jan. 2023 That left the door just ajar for the Bengals, and Burrow smashed the door down with four touchdown passes in the second half. Charlie Goldsmith, The Enquirer, 19 Dec. 2022 Hollywood’s door is ajar; who in their right mind doesn’t walk through it? Raven Smith, Vogue, 21 Dec. 2022 Her dressing room door was always ajar, inviting salutations and chats. Simon Callow, The New York Review of Books, 1 Dec. 2022 Cook on medium heat, with lid slightly ajar, until yams can be pierced easily with a fork. USA TODAY, 19 Nov. 2022 The exterior door to her home was damaged and the interior door was ajar. Hank Beckman, Chicago Tribune, 30 Sep. 2022 See More

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

Word History


earlier on char, from Middle English, from on + char turn — more at chare

First Known Use

1559, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of ajar was in 1559

Dictionary Entries Near ajar

Cite this Entry

“Ajar.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ajar. Accessed 20 Mar. 2023.

Kids Definition


adverb or adjective
: slightly open
left the door ajar

More from Merriam-Webster on ajar

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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