\ ˈkōst How to pronounce coast (audio) \

Definition of coast

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the land near a shore : seashore
2 obsolete : border, frontier
3a : a hill or slope suited to coasting
b : a slide down a slope (as on a sled)
4 often capitalized : the Pacific coast of the U.S.
5 : the immediate area of view used in the phrase the coast is clear
from coast to coast
: across an entire nation or continent


coasted; coasting; coasts

Definition of coast (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 obsolete : to move along or past the side of : skirt
2 : to sail along the shore of

intransitive verb

1a archaic : to travel on land along a coast or along or past the side of something
b : to sail along the shore
2a : to slide, run, or glide downhill by the force of gravity
b : to move along without or as if without further application of propulsive power (as by momentum or gravity)
c : to proceed easily without special application of effort or concern coasted through school often used with ona company coasting on its good reputation

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Other Words from coast


coastal \ ˈkō-​stᵊl How to pronounce coastal (audio) \ adjective
coastwise \ ˈkōst-​ˌwīz How to pronounce coastwise (audio) \ adverb or adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for coast

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Verb

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Examples of coast in a Sentence

Noun He lives on the coast. He's flying out to the Coast tomorrow. Verb The car coasted to a stop. The airplane coasted down the runway. The children coasted on sleds down the snowy hill. They came coasting down the hill on bicycles. After taking a big lead, the team coasted to victory. He was accused of trying to coast through school. She decided she could coast along without a job for the next few months. The company is coasting on its good reputation.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Taiwan is a self-governing democratic island of 23.7 million people off the coast of China. James Griffiths, CNN, "The coronavirus crisis is raising questions over China's relationship with the World Health Organization," 14 Feb. 2020 That translates to desserts like the Koh Lanta tart, named for a popular island district off the coast of Thailand where the Bouguettayas would holiday while living in Shanghai. Mark Kurlyandchik,, "Chef of the Year: Warda Bouguettaya owner of a Detroit patisserie," 11 Feb. 2020 To anyone who happened to be looking up that morning, perhaps from the deck of a boat off the coast of Portsmouth, New Hampshire, the plane would have appeared to be on an extremely alarming trajectory. Nicola Twilley, Wired, "Algae Caviar, Anyone? What We'll Eat on the Journey to Mars," 11 Feb. 2020 Rail trail: Coast-to-coast rail trail will cut through Indiana. Kellie Hwang, Indianapolis Star, "This map reveals a lack of pedestrian-safe infrastructure in Central Indiana," 14 Jan. 2020 Despite the anecdotal evidence from friends and influencers who reside on the coasts and sing the praises of ditching meat, the numbers of vegans and vegetarians in the United States have barely shifted from the late ‘90s. Erika W. Smith,, "Can The Low-Carbon Diet Cure Our Climate Crisis?," 7 Jan. 2020 Her writing was transatlantic before the concept was in vogue, and her remarkably international career has involved long residences in Guadeloupe, Ghana, Guinea, and France, as well as on both coasts of the United States. Julian Lucas, Harper's magazine, "New Books," 6 Jan. 2020 In a highly controversial 2012 example, American businessman Russ George persuaded members of the Haida Nation to fund the dumping of roughly 100 tons of iron sulfate off the coast of Canada, fertilizing a 10,000-square-kilometer algae bloom. Emily Underwood, Smithsonian Magazine, "The Complicated Role of Iron in Ocean Health and Climate Change," 6 Jan. 2020 Interviews were conducted on both coasts and in Billings, Montana. Robert Faturechi, ProPublica, "Faulty Equipment, Lapsed Training, Repeated Warnings: How a Preventable Disaster Killed Six Marines," 2 Jan. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The company coasted on user trust garnered from its robust appearance. Joanne Mcneil, Harper's magazine, "Search and Destroy," 20 Jan. 2020 Last season, Barcelona coasted to the La Liga title, losing just three times and finished 11 points clear of second-place Atletico Madrid. John Sinnott, CNN, "Without Lionel Messi, Barcelona stunned by Athletic Bilbao in La Liga opener," 17 Aug. 2019 McCaffrey set a Rose Bowl record with 368 all-purpose yards (172 rushing, 105 receiving, 91 on returns) as Stanford coasted to a 45-16 win over Iowa. Ron Kroichick,, "More memorable moments: Athletics’ division title, Klay Thompson’s Game 6 outburst round out decade’s best of the rest," 30 Dec. 2019 Senior Keynaera Morgan served five straight points in the second set to break a 4-4 tie and Dasilva served five consecutive points late in the set as Boca Raton coasted to a 25-10 win. Gary Curreri,, "Deptula helps vault Boca Raton into 7A regional final," 29 Oct. 2019 That allowed the dynamic receiving duo of Stefon Diggs and Adam Thielen to get into a rhythm, and Cook followed suit running the ball as the Vikings coasted to an easy win. Dane Mizutani, Twin Cities, "Vikings’ offensive balance coming into focus and it’s resulting in wins," 13 Oct. 2019 The Magic found themselves down 21-2 in the first quarter as the Celtics coasted to a 100-75 victory at Amway Center. Roy Parry,, "Magic ready for 76ers as they look to shake off first preseason loss," 11 Oct. 2019 Lewis Hamilton coasted to a comfortable victory and led Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas to a 1-2 finish at the Russian Grand Prix in Sochi to tighten his grip on a sixth world championship., "Alabama replaces Clemson on top," 30 Sep. 2019 The following weekend, July 31 and August 1, Swift’s show switches coasts to Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Massachusetts. Variety, The Mercury News, "Taylor Swift’s 2020 tour has only two U.S. stops," 17 Sep. 2019

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


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

History and Etymology for coast


Middle English cost, from Anglo-French coste, from Latin costa rib, side; akin to Old Church Slavonic kostĭ bone

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Time Traveler for coast

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for coast

Last Updated

18 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Coast.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for coast


How to pronounce coast (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of coast

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the land along or near a sea or ocean
US, informal : the area along or near the Pacific Ocean



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

: to move forward using no power or very little power
: to move downhill by the force of gravity
: to progress or have success without special effort


\ ˈkōst How to pronounce coast (audio) \

Kids Definition of coast

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the land near a shore


coasted; coasting

Kids Definition of coast (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to move downhill by the force of gravity
2 : to sail close to shore along a coast

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Comments on coast

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