cup

noun
\ ˈkəp How to pronounce cup (audio) \

Definition of cup

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an open usually bowl-shaped drinking vessel
2a : a drinking vessel and its contents
b : the consecrated wine of the Communion
3 : something that falls to one's lot
4 : an ornamental cup offered as a prize (as in a championship)
5 : something resembling a cup: such as
a : a cup-shaped plant organ
b : an athletic supporter reinforced usually with plastic to provide extra protection to the wearer
c : either of two parts of a brassiere that are shaped like and fit over the breasts
d : the metal case inside a hole in golf also : the hole itself
6 : a usually iced beverage resembling punch but served from a pitcher rather than a bowl
7 : a half pint : eight fluid ounces
8 : a food served in a cup-shaped usually footed vessel a fruit cup
9 : the symbol ∪ indicating the union of two sets — compare cap sense 7
in one's cups

cup

verb
cupped; cupping

Definition of cup (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to treat by cupping
2a : to curve into the shape of a cup cupped his hands around his mouth
b : to place in or as if in a cup

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Other Words from cup

Noun

cuplike \ ˈkəp-​ˌlīk How to pronounce cup (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for cup

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of cup in a Sentence

Noun Would you like another cup of tea? The winner will take home the cup. Verb He cupped his hands around his mouth and shouted at us. I had to cup my hand to my ear in order to hear him. He cupped his mouth with his hands and shouted at us. I sat with my chin cupped in my hand.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Spice mixes such LEM Backwoods jerky seasonings call for ½ cup of water per pound of game and that usually ends up about right. Jack Hennessy, Outdoor Life, "The Ultimate DIY Guide to Making Wild Game Jerky and Snack Sticks," 4 Jan. 2021 The 24-ounce bottle, which is available in 13 colors, can fit into most exercise bikes’ water bottle holders, as well as into your car's cup holder and baby stroller. Nicole Saunders, NBC News, "5 best spin bike accessories for indoor cycling enthusiasts," 8 Dec. 2020 Add a cup holder, multifunctional bracket, foot rest, or one of several optional parts to customize your chair. Brittany Vincent, CNN Underscored, "Top gaming chairs to keep you comfortable, according to experts," 3 Dec. 2020 Users drop the self-dissolving tablet into a cup of water or small watering can, and pour it into the plant. San Diego Union-Tribune, "San Diego partners simplify houseplant care with new easy-feed tablets," 28 Nov. 2020 If your family can’t travel to be with you this holiday, invite your neighbors to your backyard for a socially distant cup of hot chocolate, or leave a plate of cookies and a holiday card on their stoop. Jenny Mccoy, Glamour, "How to Prevent Holiday Depression This Year," 25 Nov. 2020 In Nashville, a team from Vanderbilt University descends every 2 weeks on a school, where children as young as age 4 spit into a cup and hand over their sample. Gretchen Vogel, Science | AAAS, "As COVID-19 soars in many communities, schools attempt to find ways through the crisis," 18 Nov. 2020 The device has handlebars for balance, acceleration and braking, a cup holder, a phone fastener and a rear attachment for golf clubs. Teddy Greenstein, chicagotribune.com, "Want to zip down fairways at 24 mph in an electric bike? Go to The Glen Club and ask for Wheels for Golf.," 17 Oct. 2020 As the stand-up comic Gary Gulman remarked, calling a smartphone a phone is like calling a Lexus convertible a cup holder. Eoin O'carroll, The Christian Science Monitor, "Why this sci-tech journalist ditched his smartphone," 14 Oct. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Strike your match and immediately cup it in your hands to protect it from rain and wind. Jim Baird, Field & Stream, "How to Start a Survival Fire in the Rain," 1 Oct. 2020 Rodgers won't need to cup his hands over his helmet in order to hear play calls from the sideline. Star Tribune, "Silence won't be golden in NFL stadiums this fall," 7 Sep. 2020 As birds cup their wings and put their feet down, make excited clucks. Joe Genzel, Outdoor Life, "5 Tips for Hunting Early-Season Resident Canada Geese," 11 Aug. 2020 Great pizzerias must nail the classics and this one came loaded with a mountain of delectable slices on top of the pie, that true to its name, cupped those spicy meat juices. Chuck Blount, ExpressNews.com, "52 Weeks of Pizza: Dough Pizzeria Napoletana restaurant delivers pepperoni pie worth a drive," 15 May 2020 The attention to detail here is remarkable, from the aforementioned orange stitching to the subtle carbon-fiber trim around the instrument display to the graceful dash lines that seamlessly cups the tablet screen. cleveland, "Affordable Nissan Sentra makes your pulse accelerate, until you hit the gas pedal (review)," 9 May 2020 Cook's note: To make Maple-Orange Glaze, in a small saucepan combine ¾ cup maple syrup, ½ cup orange marmalade, 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard, 1 teaspoon pepper and 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon. Susan Selasky, Detroit Free Press, "Everything you need to know about buying, preparing, baking Easter ham," 8 Apr. 2020 First, if the step is cupped and is curving upward, back out its screws, remove it and place it so the cup faces down. Roy Berendsohn, Popular Mechanics, "10 Easy Projects for When You’re Stuck at Home," 28 Apr. 2020 In one of his most popular TikToks, Cody Hanish cups the skull of a patient lying face-up on an adjustment table. Mirel Zaman, refinery29.com, "These Addictive Back Crack TikToks Are The New Dr. Pimple Popper Videos," 6 Apr. 2020

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

Noun

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

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for cup

Noun

Middle English cuppe, from Old English, from Late Latin cuppa cup, alteration of Latin cupa tub — more at hive

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Time Traveler for cup

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for cup

Last Updated

17 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Cup.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/cup. Accessed 20 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for cup

cup

noun
How to pronounce cup (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of cup

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a small round container that often has a handle and that is used for drinking liquids (such as tea and coffee)
: the liquid that is contained in a cup
US : a unit of measurement that is used when you are cooking

cup

verb

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

: to curve (your hand) into the shape of a cup
: to put your hand in a curved shape around (something)

cup

noun
\ ˈkəp How to pronounce cup (audio) \

Kids Definition of cup

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a container to drink out of in the shape of a small bowl usually with a handle
2 : the contents of a small drinking container : cupful I drank a cup of tea.
3 : a unit of measure that equals half a pint or eight fluid ounces
4 : a trophy in the shape of a cup with two handles
5 : something like a small bowl in shape or use I picked her up in the cup of my hands …— Jean Craighead George, My Side of the Mountain

cup

verb
cupped; cupping

Kids Definition of cup (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to curve the hand or hands into the shape of a small bowl
2 : to put the hands in a curved shape around She cupped my face.

cup

noun
\ ˈkəp How to pronounce cup (audio) \

Medical Definition of cup

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a usually open bowl-shaped drinking vessel often having a handle and a stem and base and sometimes a lid
2 : a drinking vessel and its contents : the beverage or food contained in a cup a second cup of coffee
3 : something resembling a cup invagination of the blastula to form a multilayered cellular cup : as
a(1) : an athletic supporter reinforced for providing extra protection to the wearer in certain strenuous sports (as boxing, hockey, or football)
(2) : either of the two parts of a brassiere that are shaped like and fit over the breasts
b : a small bell-shaped glass formerly used in cupping
c : a cap of metal or plastic shaped like the femoral head and used in plastic reconstruction of the hip joint

cup

verb
cupped; cupping

Medical Definition of cup (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to treat by cupping

intransitive verb

: to undergo or perform cupping

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Comments on cup

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