be·​low | \bi-ˈlō \

Definition of below 

(Entry 1 of 4)

1 : in or to a lower place gazed at the water below voices from the apartment below

2a : on earth improvements in conditions here belowTimes Literary Supplement

b : in or to Hades or hell

3 : on or to a lower floor or deck ordered the crew below

4a : in, to, at, or by a lower rank or number suitable for children age 10 and below

b : below zero the temperature was 20 below

5 : lower on the same page or on a following page See the graph below.

6 : under the surface of the water thirty fathoms below



Definition of below (Entry 2 of 4)

1a : lower in place, rank, or value than : under Our apartment is below theirs. Her skirt reached below her knees. The sun dipped below the horizon.

b : down river from moored a mile below town

c : south of located 20 miles below the nation's capital

2 : inferior to (as in rank) A lieutenant is below a captain.

3 : not suitable to the rank of : beneath considers such work below him



Definition of below (Entry 3 of 4)

: something that is below



Definition of below (Entry 4 of 4)

: written or discussed lower on the same page or on a following page the below list

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Synonyms & Antonyms for below

Synonyms: Adverb

down, downward (or downwards), over

Synonyms: Preposition

after, après, behind, following, next to, past

Antonyms: Adverb

up, upward (or upwards), upwardly

Antonyms: Preposition

afore [chiefly dialect], ahead of, before, ere, of, previous to, prior to, to

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Examples of below in a Sentence


The pencil rolled off the desk and fell to the floor below. The pilot looked down at the sea far below. We heard the elevator stop at the floor below. They secured the goods on deck and went below. All personnel, captain and below, were ordered to report for duty.


Our apartment is below theirs. We could see only clouds below us. The diver descended below 25 meters. The sun disappeared below the horizon. a spot directly below us the valley far below us Temperatures were below average all week. She worked for wage rates below those of other workers. He ranks far below his superior.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb

To avoid creating the perfect environment for those little mites, experts recommend keeping the humidity in your home below 50 percent, says Dr. Al-Shaikhly. Colleen Stinchcombe, SELF, "13 Ways to Triumph Over Fall Allergies," 13 Nov. 2018 Additionally, many people organized impromptu protests on Sunday and Monday, including a particularly large gathering at New York City's Washington Square Park on Sunday evening, as seen in the photos below. Andrea Park, Teen Vogue, "Donald Trump Is Still Selling a LGBTQ Pride Shirt Despite Anti-Transgender Policy," 22 Oct. 2018 The slow, high-flying aircraft flew for up to nine hours at a time, with a single pilot guiding the plane, taking pictures of the ground below, and occasionally dodging surface-to-air missiles. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "The CIA Gave U-2 Pilots a Special Diet So They Wouldn't Have To Poop," 18 Oct. 2018 See the full look in the video and photos below: The Duchess accessorized her dress with a subtle nod to her husband's mother, Princess Diana. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "Meghan Markle Just Stepped Out in a White Shift Dress After Announcing Her Pregnancy," 15 Oct. 2018 The airline did respond to's request to comment below. Tricia Powell As Told To Nicole Blades, Good Housekeeping, "When an Airline Served Nuts on My Flight, I Almost Died in Front of My Kids," 26 Sep. 2018 Click through the photos below to see inside, pre-renovation. Taysha Murtaugh, Country Living, "See Inside Tarek El Moussa's Bachelor Pad Home Following Divorce From Christina," 2 Aug. 2018 Please feel free to get angry and judgmental in my comments below! Julyssa Lopez, Glamour, "Now Chrissy Teigen Is Straight-Up Inviting Mommy-Shamers to Comment on Her Posts," 1 Aug. 2018 Gig workers currently make up anywhere from 4 percent to nearly 40 percent of the U.S. workforce, depending on individual study definitions (more on that below). Rani Molla, Recode, "The U.S. government doesn’t know how big the gig economy is," 24 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Preposition

Fair organizers have provided The Bee with a list of new and unique edibles for this year's event and some are shown below (vendor in parentheses). Daniel Wilson, sacbee, "What’s new at the California State Fair? Here’s everything you need to know," 13 July 2018 Check them out below and get one step closer to expert status on your own. Kaleigh Fasanella, Allure, "6 Common Curling Iron Mistakes Everyone Makes, According to Hairstylists," 12 July 2018 That’s especially true in years when April tax revenues roll in below expectations, causing bean counters to scramble to realign priorities. Joshua Miller And Matt Stout,, "Mass. Legislature could strengthen Charlie Baker’s hand with budget delay," 12 July 2018 See the nominations list below as well as analysis and interviews from The Times tied to this year’s nominations. Erin Ben-moche,, "2018 Emmy Nominations: 'Game of Thrones' leads with 22 nominations; Netflix tops HBO for the first time," 12 July 2018 Edited excerpts from an interview with Mr. Quiñones appear below. Brett Sokol, New York Times, "Lee Quiñones Brings Street Art to His Living Room," 10 July 2018 Live updates of President Trump's Supreme Court pick appear below: Brett Kavanaugh accepts nomination Kavanaugh thanked the president. CBS News, "Judge Brett Kavanaugh named Trump's second Supreme Court justice - live updates," 9 July 2018 The full list from can be seen below. Peter Dawson, star-telegram, "Are the new-look Mavericks playoff contenders? Here's what latest odds say," 3 July 2018 Friday 7/27- After 7, Fantasia, Boyz II Men, Xscap3, and Charlie Wilson Saturday 7/28- Bootsy Collins House Party, The O'Jays, Kieth Sweat, Common, The Roots, Jill Scott Members, log in below to access your exclusive promo code for $10 off tickets., "Save on Cincinnati Music Festival Tickets," 2 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The standoff ended when Dunn did a backflip off the sign down to an inflatable below. Greg Norman, Fox News, "California man's bizarre 'rap video' antics snarl traffic in Los Angeles for miles," 28 June 2018 Cars passing on the other side of the freeway at times honked at the man and one even shouted to police: ‘‘Shoot him!’’ The standoff ended when the man eventually did a backflip off the freeway sign down to an inflatable below., "Freeway sign climber snarls downtown Los Angeles traffic, does a backflip at end of his protest," 27 June 2018 When the doors opened, the desolate Chicago neighborhood below fell away. Katie Bain, Billboard, "Gay Black Men Helped Create EDM. Why Do Straight White Men Dominate It?," 14 June 2018 Best-case scenario: When a moisturizer contains ceramides and niacinamide (like the one below). Maddie Aberman, Cosmopolitan, "3 Ways to Make Sure You're Cleaning Your Face Correctly," 30 May 2017 Research has come full circle in some areas, and many habits that were once considered unhealthy or unproductive aren't so bad for you after all, like these five below. Tori Rodriguez, Woman's Day, "5 "Bad" Habits That Are Actually Good for You," 3 Aug. 2016 Enter to win by logging-in below and completing the entry form. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Attend an Advance Screening of TAG," 30 May 2018 The below is a reality check, comparing how our perception of the threat of snakebite stacks up to the actual risk. Wes Siler, Outside Online, "Let's Talk About Snakebites," 9 May 2018 The below table shows how New Orleans' racial demographics have changed over the last 300 years. Jennifer Larino,, "See 300 years of population, racial changes in New Orleans," 13 Apr. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Members, sign in below and click through to redeem this offer. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Special Janet Jackson Ticket Offer," 18 Sep. 2017 Stereo Honey have also shared a first look at the song's music video, which will be released in mid-July, with the below photograph. Rebecca Schiller, Billboard, "Stereo Honey Premiere Emotional New Song 'Don't Speak': Exclusive," 28 June 2018 The spa was dark and below ground and didn't rank nationally or even locally. Dawn Gilbertson, azcentral, "Check out the Phoenician resort's fresh look: New spa, golf course, lobby," 11 July 2018 The cocktails are pictured (and detailed) in the below gallery: Trick Dog: 3010 20th St.; Open daily 3 p.m. - 2 a.m.; Justin Philips is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer. Justin Phillips,, "Trick Dog’s new menu is a love letter to San Francisco restaurants," 6 July 2018 Counties with a below average rate of opioids, which include drugs such as OxyContin and Vicodin, saw about 39 percent of people vote for Trump. Adam K. Raymond, Daily Intelligencer, "Places With High Opioid Use Favored Trump in 2016, Study Says," 22 June 2018 The below extracts have been edited for length and clarity. Time, "Exclusive: Thailand PM Prayuth Chan-ocha on Turning to China Over the U.S.," 21 June 2018 See the below pictures for even more reason not to miss your legs. Melissa Minton, Allure, "These Viral Photos Show the Weird Sunburns People Got While Wearing Ripped Jeans," 18 May 2018 The woman at right in the below picture is giving off effortlessly chic Parisian vibes. Sam Dangremond, Town & Country, "French President Emmanuel Macron Has the Hottest Security in Global Politics," 25 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'below.' 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 below


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


circa 1565, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1828, in the meaning defined above


1870, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for below


Middle English bilooghe, from bi by + looghe low, adjective


derivative of below entry 1


noun derivative of below entry 1


adjective derivative of below entry 1

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Statistics for below

Last Updated

19 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for below

The first known use of below was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for below



English Language Learners Definition of below

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: in or to a lower place

: on or to a lower deck on a ship or boat

: in or to a lower rank or number



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

: in or to a lower place than (something)

: lower in number, amount, or size than (something) : less than (something)

: less important or powerful than (someone) : having a lower rank than (someone)


be·​low | \bə-ˈlō \

Kids Definition of below

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : in or to a lower place The pencil rolled off the desk and fell on the floor below.

2 : below zero The temperature was ten below.



Kids Definition of below (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : in or to a lower place than : beneath The sun sank below the horizon. Vines grew below the window.

2 : at the bottom of : directly underneath a caption below the picture

3 : lower in number, size, or amount temperatures below average



Legal Definition of below 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : in a lower court the presumption that the decisions below…are correct— W. J. Brennan, Jr.

2 : lower on the same page or on a following page the paragraph below



Legal Definition of below (Entry 2 of 2)

: lower in place, rank, or value than

below the line

: in calculations that yield taxable income deductions taken below the line

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Comments on below

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


by force of circumstances

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