1

behind

adverb or adjective be·hind \ bi-ˈhīnd , bē- \
Updated on: 13 Dec 2017

Definition of behind

1 a : in the place or situation that is being or has been departed from
  • stay behind
b : in, to, or toward the back
  • look behind
  • came from behind
c : later in time
  • can spring be far behind
2 a : in a secondary or inferior position
b : in arrears
  • behind in the rent
c : slow
3 archaic : still to come

Recent Examples of behind from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of behind

Middle English behinde, from Old English behindan, from be- + hindan from behind; akin to Old English hinder behind — more at hind


2

behind

preposition

Definition of behind

1 a : in or to a place or situation in back of or to the rear of
  • look behind you
  • put behind bars
b used as a function word to indicate something that screens an observer
  • the sun went behind a cloud
c : following in order
  • marched behind the band
2 used as a function word to indicate backwardness, delay, or deficiency
  • behind the times
  • behind schedule
  • lagged behind last year's sales
3 a : in the background of
  • the conditions behind the strike
b : out of the mind or consideration of
  • put our troubles behind us
c : beyond in depth or time
  • the story behind the story
  • go back behind St. Augustine
4 a : in support of : on the side of
  • solidly behind the candidate
b : with the support of
  • won 1–0 behind brilliant pitching

Examples of behind in a Sentence

  1. The older students entered the room first with the younger students following behind them.

  2. The cat hid behind the couch.

  3. The sun went behind a cloud.

  4. They were ahead of us by 5 points earlier in the game, but now they're behind us by 7.

  5. The polls show that he is behind the other candidates.

  6. The company is now behind the competition.

  7. He was behind the other students in his studies.

Origin and Etymology of behind

Middle English behinde, behinden, from behinde, behinden, 1behind

behind Synonyms

Synonyms
abaft, back of, in back of
Antonyms
before
Related Words
since
Near Antonyms
ahead of

3

behind

noun be·hind \ ˈbē-ˌhīnd ; bi-ˈhīnd , bē- \

Definition of behind

: buttocks often used as a euphemism for ass in idiomatic expressions
  • get your behind over here

Examples of behind in a Sentence

  1. kicked him in the behind

Recent Examples of behind from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of behind

noun derivative of 1behind

behind Synonyms

Synonyms
backside, buttocks, booty (also bootie) [slang], bottom, breech, bum, buns, butt, caboose, can, cheeks, derriere (or derrière), duff, fanny, fundament, hams, haunches, heinie [slang], hunkers, keister (also keester) [slang], nates, posterior, rear, rear end, rump, seat, tail, tail end, tush [slang]
Related Words
beam, stern; moon [slang]

BEHIND Defined for English Language Learners

behind

adverb

Definition of behind for English Language Learners

  • : in or toward the back

  • : in the place that someone is going away from

  • : later in time


behind

preposition

Definition of behind for English Language Learners

  • : in or to a place at the back of or to the rear of (someone or something)

  • : losing to (someone or something) in a race or competition

  • : in a less advanced position than (someone or something) : not happening or proceeding as quickly as (someone or something)


behind

noun

Definition of behind for English Language Learners

  • : the part of the body above the legs that is used for sitting


BEHIND Defined for Kids

1

behind

adverb be·hind \ bi-ˈhīnd \

Definition of behind for Students

1 : in a place that is being or has been left
  • You can leave your books behind.
2 : in, to, or toward the back
  • look behind
  • fall behind
3 : not up to the general level
  • behind in math
4 : not keeping up to a schedule
  • behind in his payments

2

behind

preposition

Definition of behind for Students

1 : at or to the back of
  • behind the door
2 : not up to the level of
  • Sales are behind those of last year.
3 : out of the thoughts of
  • Let's put our troubles behind us.
4 : responsible for
  • Who's behind these pranks?
5 : in support of
  • We're behind you all the way!


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