car·​ry-on | \ ˈker-ē-ˌȯn How to pronounce carry-on (audio) , ˈka-rē-, -ˌän \

Definition of carry-on

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 British : carrying-on
2 : a piece of luggage suitable for being carried aboard an airplane by a passenger



Definition of carry-on (Entry 2 of 3)

: carried or suitable for being carried aboard carry-on baggage

carry on

carried on; carrying on; carries on

Definition of carry on (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

: to continue doing, pursuing, or operating carry on research carried on the business

intransitive verb

1 : to continue especially in spite of hindrance or discouragement chose to carry on despite the weather
2 : to behave or speak in a foolish, excited, or improper manner shocked at how he carries on

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Synonyms for carry-on

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

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Examples of carry-on in a Sentence

Verb a toddler crying and carrying on in the store she bravely carried on despite the loss of her husband
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Robinson started off the Valero Alamo Bowl with a 27-yard carry on the Longhorns’ third play, then scored three plays later. Marcus Krum, Dallas News, "5 takeaways from Texas’ Alamo Bowl win: RB Bijan Robinson steals show vs. Colorado," 29 Dec. 2020 With the help of veteran Matt Breida, who had 12 carries for 86 yards (7.6 ypc), the Dolphins offense totaled 250 yards rushing while averaging 6.0 yards per carry on the day. Safid Deen,, "Dolphins rookie Salvon Ahmed has standout day, propelling team’s rushing attack vs. Patriots," 20 Dec. 2020 A week after generating their best ground game in two years, MSU’s offensive line and running backs got completely smothered (2.9 yards per carry on 28 rushing attempts) by the talented Ohio State front seven. Chris Solari, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan State football: What we learned vs. Ohio State, what to watch vs. Penn State," 6 Dec. 2020 Hill is averaging better than six yards per carry on his 22 quarterback power runs to the right side of the Saints' line. Luke Johnson,, "The Saints and Taysom Hill have used this old-school play to gash NFL defenses; here's how," 3 Dec. 2020 Meanwhile, Miles Sanders is averaging six yards per carry on a shade over 14 attempts per game. Dan Labbe, cleveland, "Browns offensive line vs. Eagles pass rush and 3 other things to watch on Sunday," 21 Nov. 2020 Some have begun saying that Trump’s legal team still will have to present evidence for its allegations of fraud if the president is to carry on in disputing the results. John Harney,, "Some GOP Senators Pressure Trump to Wind Down Election Disputes," 20 Nov. 2020 Reports this weekend suggest that star running back Nick Chubb could return for this Week 10 clash, and this could be a defining factor against a Texans defense that allowed the most yards per carry on the ground heading into Week 9. Jeremy Cluff, The Arizona Republic, "Houston Texans vs. Cleveland Browns picks, predictions: Who wins Week 10 NFL game?," 10 Nov. 2020 Indianapolis hasn’t averaged more than four yards per carry on the ground since the season opener and ranks dead-last in the NFL in yards per carry, but rookie Jonathan Taylor is averaging 4.5 yards per attempt over the past four games. Joel A. Erickson, The Indianapolis Star, "Insider: 27 things to watch as Colts take on Lions," 31 Oct. 2020

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


1890, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1967, in the meaning defined above


1600, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

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Time Traveler for carry-on

Time Traveler

The first known use of carry-on was in 1600

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Statistics for carry-on

Cite this Entry

“Carry-on.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Jan. 2021.

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How to pronounce carry on (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of carry-on

 (Entry 1 of 2)

US : a small piece of luggage that a passenger can carry onto an airplane
British, informal : a moment of excitement or silly behavior



English Language Learners Definition of carry-on (Entry 2 of 2)

: small enough to be carried onto an airplane by a passenger

More from Merriam-Webster on carry-on

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for carry-on

Britannica English: Translation of carry-on for Arabic Speakers

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