button

1 of 2

noun

but·​ton ˈbə-tᵊn How to pronounce button (audio)
often attributive
1
a
: 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
3
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
buttonless adjective

button

2 of 2

verb

buttoned; buttoning ˈbət-niŋ How to pronounce button (audio)
ˈbə-tᵊn-iŋ

transitive verb

1
: to furnish or decorate with buttons
2
a
: to pass (a button) through a buttonhole or loop
b
: to close or fasten with buttons
often used with up
button up your overcoat
3
a
: 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
buttoner
ˈbət-nər How to pronounce button (audio)
ˈbə-tᵊn-ər
noun
Phrases
on the button
: exactly
arrived at noon on the button
also : exactly on target : on the nose
the estimate was right on the button

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.
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
Hold the button for two seconds to select the light choice. Kiana Murden, Vogue, 2 July 2024 The white buttons and washed denim were just exquisite on her. Kerane Marcellus, Essence, 1 July 2024
Verb
Readers today would be surprised by ads for the Skipper, in which a model wears the shirt with a necktie and appears to be buttoning the cuffs of his long sleeves. Gabe Bullard, Smithsonian Magazine, 1 July 2024 The president’s tie was bright blue and his suit jacket was neatly buttoned. Robin Givhan, Washington Post, 28 June 2024 See all Example Sentences for button 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'button.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Noun

Middle English boton, from Anglo-French butun rose hip, stud, from buter to thrust — more at butt entry 3

First Known Use

Noun

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

Verb

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

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

Dictionary Entries Near button

Cite this Entry

“Button.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/button. Accessed 14 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

button

1 of 2 noun
but·​ton ˈbət-ᵊn How to pronounce button (audio)
1
a
: a small knob or disk used for holding parts of a garment together or as an ornament
b
: a usually round badge bearing a design or slogan
a campaign button
2
: something (as a small or young mushroom) that resembles a button
3
: push button
also : a computer image that resembles a push button in appearance and function

button

2 of 2 verb
buttoned; buttoning ˈbət-niŋ How to pronounce button (audio)
-ᵊn-iŋ
: to close or fasten with buttons
buttoner
-nər How to pronounce button (audio)
-ᵊn-ər
noun

Medical Definition

button

noun
but·​ton ˈbət-ᵊn How to pronounce button (audio)
: something that resembles a small knob or disk: such as
b
: the terminal segment of a rattlesnake's rattle
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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