\ ˈkrȯs How to pronounce cross (audio) \

Definition of cross

 (Entry 1 of 7)

1a : a structure consisting of an upright with a transverse beam used especially by the ancient Romans for execution
b often capitalized : the cross on which Jesus was crucified
b : an affliction that tries one's virtue, steadfastness, or patience We all have our crosses to bear.
3 : a cruciform sign made to invoke the blessing of Christ especially by touching the forehead, breast, and shoulders
4a : a device composed of an upright bar traversed (see traverse entry 1 sense transitive 3) by a horizontal one specifically : one used as a Christian symbol
b capitalized : the Christian religion
5 : a structure (such as a monument) shaped like or surmounted by a cross a cross over a grave
6 : a figure or mark formed by two intersecting lines crossing at their midpoints The crosses at the end of the letter indicate kisses. specifically : such a mark used as a signature
7 : a cruciform badge, emblem, or decoration
8 : the intersection of two ways or lines : crossing
9 : annoyance, thwarting a cross in love
10a : an act of crossing (see cross entry 2 sense 8) dissimilar individuals
b : a crossbred individual or kind The dog is a cross of a hunting dog and a sheepdog.
c : one that combines characteristics of two different types or individuals A zedonk is a cross between a zebra and a donkey.
11a : a fraudulent or dishonest contest "I never fought a cross or struck a foul blow in my life … "— George Bernard Shaw
b : dishonest or illegal practices used especially in the phrase on the cross
12 : a movement from one part of a theater stage to another
13a : a punch thrown over the opponent's lead in boxing hit him with a right cross
b : an attacking pass in soccer played across the field from one side to the other or to the middle
14 : a security transaction in which a broker acts for both buyer and seller (as in the placing of a large lot of common stock)

called also cross-trade


crossed; crossing; crosses

Definition of cross (Entry 2 of 7)

transitive verb

1a : to lie or be situated across
b : intersect
2 : to make the sign of the cross upon or over
3 : to cancel by marking a cross on or drawing a line through : strike out cross names off a list
4 : to place or fold crosswise one over the other cross the arms
5a(1) : to run counter to : oppose
(2) : to deny the validity of : contradict
b : to confront in a troublesome manner : obstruct
c(1) : to spoil completely : disrupt used with up His failure to appear crossed up the whole program.
(2) : to turn against : betray crossed me up on the deal
6a : to extend across or over : traverse a highway crossing the entire state
b : reach, attain Only two crossed the finish line.
c : to go from one side of to the other cross a street crosses racial barriers
7a : to draw a line across
b : to mark or figure with lines : streak
8 : to cause (an animal or plant) to interbreed with one of a different kind : hybridize
9 : to meet and pass on the way Our letters must have crossed each other.
10 : to occur to It never crossed my mind.
11 : to carry or take across something crossed the children at the intersection
12 : to turn (the eyes) inward toward the nose The boy made a funny face and crossed his eyes.

intransitive verb

1a : to move, pass, or extend across something crossed through France crossed over to the other side of the river
b : to move or pass from one character, condition, or allegiance to another used with over crossing over to vote for another party's candidate
2 : to lie or be athwart each other
3 : to meet in passing especially from opposite directions
cross one's fingers or keep one's fingers crossed
: to hope for a particular or stated outcome Owners are crossing their fingers that relief might be on the way.— Mike Freeman Keep your fingers crossed that something will be worked out.— Marge Crumbaker
cross paths
: to meet especially by chance crossed paths with an old friend on a business trip
cross swords
: to engage in a dispute



Definition of cross (Entry 3 of 7)

1a : lying across or athwart
b : moving across cross traffic
2a : running counter : opposite
b : mutually opposed cross purposes
3 : involving mutual interchange : reciprocal
4 : marked by typically transitory bad temper
5 : extending over or treating several groups, conditions, or classes a cross sample from 25 colleges



Definition of cross (Entry 4 of 7)

: across



Definition of cross (Entry 5 of 7)

: not parallel : crisscross, crosswise


biographical name
\ ˈkrȯs How to pronounce Cross (audio) \

Definition of Cross (Entry 6 of 7)

Wilbur Lucius 1862–1948 American educator and politician


geographical name
\ ˈkrȯs How to pronounce Cross (audio) \

Definition of Cross (Entry 7 of 7)

river 300 miles (483 kilometers) long in western Cameroon and southeastern Nigeria flowing west and south into the Gulf of Guinea

Illustration of cross

Illustration of cross


cross 4a: 1 Latin, 2 Calvary, 3 patriarchal or cross of Lorraine, 4 papal, 5 cross of Lorraine, 6 Greek, 7 Celtic, 8 Maltese, 9 Saint Andrew's, 10 tau, 11 pommée, 12 botonée, 13 fleury, 14 avellan, 15 moline, 16 formée, 17 fourchée, 18 crosslet, 19 quadrate, 20 potent

In the meaning defined above

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Other Words from cross


crosser noun


crossly adverb
crossness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for cross

Synonyms: Noun

crucible, fire, gauntlet (also gantlet), ordeal, trial

Synonyms: Verb

backstab, betray, double-cross, sell (out), two-time

Synonyms: Adjective

cold-blooded (or coldblood), crossbred, hybrid, mixed, mongrel

Antonyms: Verb

stand by

Antonyms: Adjective

blooded, full-blood, full-blooded, purebred, thoroughbred

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Examples of cross in a Sentence


a necklace with a gold cross The teacher marked the absent students on her list with crosses. Those who could not write signed their names with a cross.


We crossed the state border hours ago. The dog crossed the street. The highway crosses the entire state. He was the first runner to cross the finish line. The train crosses through France. Put a nail where the boards cross. One line crossed the other.


I didn't mean to make you cross. I was cross with her for being so careless.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

For seventeen months, Bolton carried on, working, often at cross purposes, for a President whose views on most subjects were diametrically opposed to his own. Dexter Filkins, The New Yorker, "How John Bolton Got the Better of President Trump," 10 Sep. 2019 The company cited several factors, including losses of more than $37 million since taking over, increasing facility improvement needs and the lack of a potential partner or buyer, including a cross-town hospital. Washington Post, "Hospital closings hit hard on the edge of the Rust Belt," 8 Sep. 2019 After Orlando City peppered several dangerous crosses — giving Santiago Patiño a point-blank shot that ricocheted off the right post — LAFC finally countered in the 78th minute. Julia Poe, Pro Soccer USA, "Orlando City battle for a 2-2 home draw against LAFC," 8 Sep. 2019 In Week 1, the Eagles defeated cross-town rival Legacy, 34-13, to keep the Mayor’s Cup at Broomfield High for the foreseeable future. Brad Cochi, The Denver Post, "Football: Broomfield makes a statement against young Loveland," 6 Sep. 2019 This is the first meeting of the year between the two cross-division opponents. Esten Mclaren, USA TODAY Sportsbook Wire, "BC Lions at Montreal Alouettes odds, predictions, picks and best bets," 6 Sep. 2019 Austin Westlake defeated Cypress Ranch in a 35-7 win in another high-profile cross-state meeting Friday. Adam Coleman, Houston Chronicle, "Friday night highlights: Allen dispatches Dickinson," 6 Sep. 2019 Debra Meyer With one or more of the male ancestors in my maternal lineage being Khoi-San, the cross-over sharing of chromosomal DNA between parents explains the Khoi-San phenotype—that is, observable, physical characteristics – in my family. Debra Meyer, Quartz Africa, "How an African scientist used mitochondrial DNA to discover she had ancestral South Asian roots," 6 Sep. 2019 Moving forward Real remains unbeaten after three league games but, with just one victory and two draws, finds itself in fifth position, four points behind cross-town rival Atletico, which has a perfect record after three fixtures. Daniel Gallan, CNN, "Could Gareth Bale be Real Madrid's unlikely hero this season?," 2 Sep. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The incident occurred on Monday, a little after 10 p.m., when a woman driving northbound on the 14000 block of South Main street struck two men who were attempting to cross the road, police said. Michelle Iracheta, Houston Chronicle, "Hit-and-run driver kills 1, injures another in southwest Houston, police say," 10 Sep. 2019 The district is using a variety of strategies to promote integration, including prioritizing low-income students at certain schools and giving out more bus passes to high school students who need to cross town, Cordova said. Meg Wingerter, The Denver Post, "More than half of Denver’s public schools are segregated, 25 years after busing ended," 8 Sep. 2019 Other large cats have met their end trying to cross the 405. Colleen Shalby, Los Angeles Times, "The mountain lion known as P-61 is struck and killed on 405 Freeway," 7 Sep. 2019 This exodus is the main reason why in the past year officers at the United States’ southern border have detained more people trying to cross than in any 12-month period since 2009. The Economist, "Nearly a third of Latin Americans want to emigrate," 7 Sep. 2019 Jackson-Olin managed two scores off Minor fubmles but failed to cross the goal-line until less than two minutes remained. Evan Dudley, al, "Minor 20, Jackson-Olin 8: Tenacious Tigers earn 1st win," 5 Sep. 2019 This decision appears to have crossed a line for Jo Johnson. Julia Webster, Time, "U.K. Prime Minister's Brother Resigns From Government: 'Torn Between Family Loyalty and the National Interest'," 5 Sep. 2019 Officers said the victims were attempting to cross against the light on the west side of the intersection when they were hit. Gabriella Khalaj, azcentral, "Phoenix police identify pedestrian killed after being struck by car," 4 Sep. 2019 To address that, Accenture's apprenticeship recruiters focus on finding bright people from diverse backgrounds who want to cross the Digital Divide but can't necessarily afford a four-year degree. Anne Fisher, Fortune, "Can Apprenticeships Help Close U.S. Skills Gaps?," 3 Sep. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Outlook: The Eagles will have a new coach this season, along with a number of new athletes who have not run cross country before. Megan Woodward,, "Fall Sports Previews: 2019 Boys Cross Country Preview Capsules," 2 Sep. 2019 In last year’s state cross country championships, Niednagel finished fourth overall. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Prep cross country: runners to watch, season storylines, major meets," 26 Aug. 2019 Though the program is distinctly Indian, the absence of dialogue and universal themes such as Bheem’s loving bond with his mother lend it broad cross-cultural appeal. Wendy Lee, Los Angeles Times, "Why Netflix is looking to India and a curious baby called Bheem to expand its user numbers abroad," 26 Aug. 2019 And other forms of cycling – cyclocross, which is cross country bike racing, and gravel bike races, on dirt roads and trails, are becoming more and more popular. Lori Riley,, "This Bolton man almost got hit by a car while biking from work but that’s not going to keep him off the roads," 25 Aug. 2019 Liberty’s boys cross country team won its fourth consecutive Class 2A state title, and the Lions’ field hockey squad won a second championship in three seasons. Megan Woodward,, "High School Sports: Spirits, expectations high as Carroll athletes begin fall practice," 15 Aug. 2019 Under his coffin lid, Ballantoni and his colleagues found the strange skull and cross bones arrangement., "A ‘vampire’s’ remains were found about 30 years ago. Now DNA is giving him new life.," 31 July 2019 For him, jazz will always mean cross-pollination, adventurism and faith in what’s ahead. Giovanni Russonello, New York Times, "Herbie Hancock Is Still Breaking Rules," 29 July 2019 The two of them won a championship together less than one month before, and now will be cross-town rivals. Tania Ganguli,, "Lakers’ Danny Green waited impatiently for Kawhi Leonard’s decision," 11 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb

At the pageant, children sat cross-legged in the dirt, crowded close to the spindly stage where the contestants spun and danced in red feather headdresses, gold brocade and clouds of tulle. Aurora Almendral, New York Times, "A Transgender Paradox, and Platform, in the Philippines," 29 Apr. 2018 In a corner of their studio, a small white robot sits cross-legged, surrounded by coils of sweet-smelling incense. The Economist, "Prophets and profitsIn South Korea fortune-telling will soon be a $3.7bn business," 24 Feb. 2018 The company projects that the merger will result in more than $1 billion in cost savings and eventually generate additional revenue from cross-selling products and services to its customers. Guy Boulton, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Molinaroli left his mark on Johnson Controls in his brief, tumultuous tenure as CEO," 2 Sep. 2017 Both assertions were rejected in January by a federal appeals court in Richmond, Va., which found that the jury instructions were valid and that the witness already had been cross-examined once, and a second cross would yield nothing materially new. Michael Hiltzik,, "A convicted coal executive is still trying to dodge blame for the deaths of 29 miners," 24 May 2017

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


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


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


1551, in the meaning defined above


1577, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for cross

Noun, Verb, Adjective, Preposition, and Adverb

Middle English, from Old English, from Old Norse or Old Irish; Old Norse kross, from Old Irish cros, from Latin cruc-, crux

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Statistics for cross

Last Updated

13 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for cross

The first known use of cross was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for cross



English Language Learners Definition of cross

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: a long piece of wood with a shorter piece across it near the top that people were once fastened to and left to die on as a form of punishment
: the cross on which Jesus Christ died
: an object or image in the shape of a cross that is used as a symbol of Christianity



English Language Learners Definition of cross (Entry 2 of 3)

: to go from one side of (something) to the other : to go across (something)
: to go or pass across each other
: to place one arm, leg, etc., over the other



English Language Learners Definition of cross (Entry 3 of 3)

: annoyed or angry


\ ˈkrȯs How to pronounce cross (audio) \

Kids Definition of cross

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a structure, object, or mark formed by two lines that cross each other
2 often capitalized : the structure on which Jesus Christ was crucified used as a symbol of Christianity
3 : a mixture of two different things, types, or qualities The game is a cross of luck and skill.
cross to bear
: a hardship that someone endures for a long time We all have our crosses to bear.


crossed; crossing

Kids Definition of cross (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : to move, pass, or extend across or past Look both ways before you cross the street.
2 : to place one over the other Cross your fingers!
3 : to lie or be situated across A path crosses the front yard.
4 : to go across : intersect
5 : to turn (the eyes) toward the nose
6 : to draw a line across Remember to cross your t's.
7 : to act against : oppose She's tough, and I wouldn't dare to cross her.
8 : to cause (an animal or plant) to breed with one of another kind : produce hybrids
9 : to pass going in opposite directions Their letters crossed in the mail.
cross off
: to draw a line through (something) You can cross my name off the list.
cross out
: to draw a line through (something) to show that it is wrong I crossed out the misspelled word.
cross someone's mind
: to be thought of by someone Losing never crossed her mind.
cross yourself
: to touch the forehead, chest, and shoulders as an expression of Christian faith (as in prayer)


crosser; crossest

Kids Definition of cross (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : hard to get along with : irritable
2 : lying, falling, or passing across a cross street

Other Words from cross

crossly adverb


\ ˈkrȯs How to pronounce cross (audio) \

Medical Definition of cross

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a device composed of an upright bar traversed by a horizontal one
2a : an act of crossing dissimilar individuals
b : a crossbred individual or kind

Medical Definition of cross (Entry 2 of 3)

: to cause (an animal or plant) to interbreed with one of a different kind : hybridize the crossing of two cattle breeds



Medical Definition of cross (Entry 3 of 3)

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More from Merriam-Webster on cross

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with cross

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for cross

Spanish Central: Translation of cross

Nglish: Translation of cross for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of cross for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about cross

Comments on cross

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


to spread over or through

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