button

noun, often attributive
but·​ton | \ ˈbə-tᵊn How to pronounce button (audio) \

Definition of button

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a small knob or disk secured to an article (as of clothing) and used as a fastener by passing it through a buttonhole or loop
b : a usually circular metal or plastic badge bearing a stamped design or printed slogan campaign button
2 : something that resembles a button: such as
a : any of various parts or growths of a plant or of an animal: such as
(1) : bud
(2) : an immature whole mushroom especially : button mushroom
(3) : the terminal segment of a rattlesnake's rattle
b : a small globule of metal remaining after fusion (as in assaying)
c : a guard on the tip of a fencing foil
b : something (such as a push button) that has the real or symbolic capability of initiating a catastrophe (such as a nuclear attack) has his finger on the button
c : a hidden sensitivity that can be manipulated to produce a desired response knows how to push my buttons
d : a usually box-shaped computer icon that initiates a specific software function
4 : the point of the chin especially as a target for a knockout blow
on the button
: exactly arrived at noon on the button also : exactly on target : on the nose the estimate was right on the button

button

verb
buttoned; buttoning\ ˈbət-​niŋ How to pronounce buttoning (audio) , ˈbə-​tᵊn-​iŋ \

Definition of button (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to furnish or decorate with buttons
2a : to pass (a button) through a buttonhole or loop
b : to close or fasten with buttons often used with up button up your overcoat
3a : to close (the lips) to prevent speech button your lip
b : to close or seal tightly usually used with up button up the house for winter

intransitive verb

: to have buttons for fastening this dress buttons at the back

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Other Words from button

Noun

buttonless \ ˈbə-​tᵊn-​ləs How to pronounce buttonless (audio) \ adjective

Verb

buttoner \ ˈbət-​nər How to pronounce buttoner (audio) , ˈbə-​tᵊn-​ər \ noun

Examples of button in a Sentence

Noun

a dress with buttons down the back I lost a button on my jacket. He took off his tie and undid the top button of his shirt. Will you please push the ‘play’ button on the CD player? With a fax machine, you can send a document across the country with the touch of a button. If the information on the registration form is correct, click the ‘OK’ button.

Verb

He rarely buttons the top button on his shirt. Will you button the baby's jacket for her? The skirt buttons on the side.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

He and Hilary have a child together: Six-month-old Banks, who's cute as a button. Katherine J. Igoe, Marie Claire, "Who Is Matthew Koma, Hilary Duff's Fiancé?," 9 May 2019 Meghan wore a sleeveless white Grace Wales Bonner dress with button details and a belt at the waist. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Meghan Markle Wears a White Dress for First Photos with the Royal Baby," 8 May 2019 Meghan stuns in a double-breasted button up dress, while Harry opted for a gray suit. Chloe Foussianes, Town & Country, "See the First Photos of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's New Royal Baby!," 8 May 2019 Looking fresh in a crisp white A Bathing Ape button down and some more cartoonish pants (there’s a scary looking face dyed into them), every moment of Uzi’s appointment was prime Instagram fodder. Rachel Hahn, Vogue, "Lil Uzi Vert Even Gets Dressed Up to Go to the Dentist," 8 May 2019 For one thing, anxious users who hammer the Update Now button in their Windows Update settings menu will receive the May 2019 Update first, as well as commercial customers and any devices nearing the end of their support phase. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "Microsoft will ship the Windows 10 May 2019 Update in late May, giving you power over updates," 4 Apr. 2019 However, Leica’s model differs with its smooth, rounded design and rectangular control buttons. Paige Szmodis, Popular Mechanics, "The 10 Best Compact Digital Cameras for Capturing Your Adventures," 17 Apr. 2019 So it’s time for Facebook to build a new feature: A reset button. Kurt Wagner, Recode, "Facebook needs a ‘reset’ button for your friend list," 27 Dec. 2018 The Duchess of Sussex went retro chic with a brown vintage Dior coat with oversized buttons, paired with a navy beret by Stephen Jones and a box bag by Victoria Beckham. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Attend the Christening for Zara Tindall's Daughter," 18 Mar. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

And so the Apple Card charges into the financial world in which cheery, millennial-baiting websites and apps try to displace the gloomy, buttoned-up mortgage lenders and bankers of old with smile and that Silicon Valley sheen. Andrew Moseman, Popular Mechanics, "Apple Is a Credit Card Company Now," 25 Mar. 2019 In 1967, the Big Five was buttoned-down basketball. Frank Fitzpatrick, Philly.com, "Temple's Drew Nolan, the Owl without an off-switch | Frank's Place," 8 June 2018 Zuckerberg stood up and buttoned his suit jacket and walked away. Martin Finucane, BostonGlobe.com, "Forget what you thought about rooftop solar and consider these seven things instead," 10 Apr. 2018 Here are 16 fresh takes to button up with everything in your closet from now till October. Yang-yi Goh, GQ, "Meet the Only Button-Down You Can Wear Every Day of the Week," 5 July 2018 This floral blazer works as both a coat over jeans and a T-shirt, or buttoned up as a dress with heels. Harper's BAZAAR, "5 Fall Looks That Will Instantly Improve Your Wardrobe," 19 Sep. 2018 The movie’s title design — and, even more so, the chapter titles that appear throughout the film — is at once buttoned-up and off-kilter. Eliza Brooke, Vox, "Sorry to Bother You," 12 Nov. 2018 For a tournament that prides itself—rightfully so—on being so buttoned up, this is especially surprising. Jon Wertheim, SI.com, "Mailbag: Surprises and Shambles After Three Days at the 2018 Australian Open," 17 Jan. 2018 With its dark paneled walls, taxidermy, and endless supply of plaid, the candlelit dinner began somewhat buttoned up before loosening up into an all-out dance party under a glittering disco ball. Zachary Weiss, Vogue, "Inside the Rollicking Aspen Trip That Was All Over Your Instagram," 11 Feb. 2019

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for button

Noun

Middle English boton, from Anglo-French butun rose hip, stud, from buter to thrust — more at butt

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Learn More about button

Statistics for button

Last Updated

13 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for button

The first known use of button was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for button

button

noun

English Language Learners Definition of button

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a small, usually round piece of plastic, glass, metal, etc., that is sewn to a piece of clothing and is pushed through a loop or hole to fasten one part of the clothing to another part
US : a small, usually round sign that has a picture or words on the front and a pin on the back
: a small part of a machine that you push to make the machine work

button

verb

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

: to attach (a button) by passing it through a hole
: to close or fasten (something) with buttons
: to have buttons for fastening

button

noun
but·​ton | \ ˈbə-tᵊn How to pronounce button (audio) \

Kids Definition of button

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a small ball or disk used for holding parts of a garment together or as an ornament
2 : a small often round part of a machine that makes the machine do something when pushed

button

verb
buttoned; buttoning

Kids Definition of button (Entry 2 of 2)

: to close or fasten with buttons

button

noun
but·​ton | \ ˈbət-ᵊn How to pronounce button (audio) \

Medical Definition of button

: something that resembles a small knob or disk: as
a : the terminal segment of a rattlesnake's rattle

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More from Merriam-Webster on button

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with button

Spanish Central: Translation of button

Nglish: Translation of button for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of button for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about button

Comments on button

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