dress

verb
\ ˈdres How to pronounce dress (audio) \
dressed; dressing; dresses

Definition of dress

 (Entry 1 of 3)

transitive verb

1a : to make or set straight
b : to arrange (troops, equipment, etc.) in a straight line and at proper intervals
2 : to prepare for use or service specifically : to prepare for cooking or for the table dress a salad
3 : to add decorative details or accessories to : embellish
4a : to put clothes on dress a child
b : to provide with clothing feed and dress a growing family
5 archaic : dress down
6a : to apply dressings or medicaments to dress a wound
b(1) : to arrange (the hair) by combing, brushing, or curling
(2) : to groom and curry (an animal)
c : to kill and prepare for market or for consumption often used with out
d : cultivate, tend especially : to apply manure or fertilizer to dress a field
e : to put through a finishing process especially : to trim and smooth the surface of (a material, such as lumber or stone)

intransitive verb

1a : to put on clothing
b : to put on or wear formal, elaborate, or fancy clothes dress for dinner
2 of a food animal : to weigh after being dressed often used with out
3 : to align oneself with the next soldier in a line to make the line straight
dress ship
: to ornament a ship for a celebration by hoisting national ensigns at the mastheads and running a line of signal flags and pennants from bow to stern

dress

noun

Definition of dress (Entry 2 of 3)

2 : an outer garment (as for a woman or girl) usually consisting of a one-piece bodice and skirt
3 : covering, adornment, or appearance appropriate or peculiar to a particular time
4 : a particular form of presentation : guise

dress

adjective

Definition of dress (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : suitable for a formal occasion dress clothes dress shoes
2 : requiring or permitting formal dress a dress affair
3 : relating to or used for a dress dress material

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Synonyms & Antonyms for dress

Synonyms: Verb

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of dress in a Sentence

Verb They dressed themselves in a hurry. He dressed the child in a snowsuit. She showered, dressed, and ate breakfast. She dressed warmly for skiing. She is dressing for the opera. They always dress for dinner. The nurse dressed the cut on my knee. Noun She wore dresses only on special occasions. She wore a short black dress to the party. Her wedding dress was decorated with lace. The guests were clothed in traditional Indian dress. It is wise to wear conservative dress to an interview. Adjective I wore dress pants and a nice sweater. the naval commander wore his dress uniform to the ball
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Gather your friends and make everyone dress as one of the ranchers on the show. Amanda Garrity, Good Housekeeping, 15 July 2021 And a statement a Hervé Léger bandage dress most assuredly makes. Eliza Huber, refinery29.com, 13 July 2021 In the caption on Instagram, Hilaria pointed out the fashion milestone for her eldest boy after years of Rafael preferring only to dress in PJs. Benjamin Vanhoose, PEOPLE.com, 8 July 2021 In the subsequent weeks, Keohane implored prison officials to let her dress as a woman. Aviva Stahl, Wired, 8 July 2021 Sunnyvale’s garish mansions are cartoonishly gargantuan compared to the rundown Shadyside shacks, but the teens from each school all look and act and dress the same. Erik Kain, Forbes, 4 July 2021 Thankfully, the day's photographer Grant Daniels and videographer Aaron Tharpe were able to help Drummond remove her heel and dress from the vent cover and proceed with the festivities as planned. Perri Ormont Blumberg, Southern Living, 2 July 2021 Biden, who posed for the pictures this spring at the White House, wears a navy, floral Oscar de la Renta dress for the cover shot, leaning on the balcony overlooking the South Lawn. Kate Bennett, CNN, 29 June 2021 Setting expectations that Nerf wars will commence every Saturday at 2 p.m. or the dress-up closet will open for a half-hour twice weekly gives kids the security of knowing that family playtime will happen. Washington Post, 29 June 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Americans are returning to work and finding that sensibilities and dress codes have changed. Washington Post, 15 July 2021 Historically, office dress codes once played a pivotal role in the work environment, particularly for women. Frances Solá-santiago, refinery29.com, 12 July 2021 And the new edition still seems to be having fun with uptown dress codes, as well. Jill Kargman, Town & Country, 7 July 2021 While formal dress codes have been explicitly stated on invitations, no mention of heeled footwear has ever been codified. Christian Allair, Vogue, 7 July 2021 Golf’s cultural revolution can be seen in every facet of the game, perhaps most noticeably in the relaxing of dress codes. New York Times, 1 July 2021 More lenient dress codes and casual dining times means guests can enjoy a more relaxed atmosphere. Geoff Whitmore, Forbes, 29 June 2021 And with bridal parties and guests resurfacing, emerging sartorial trends reveal how the pandemic may have a lingering influence on wedding dress codes. Leah Dolan, CNN, 24 June 2021 Add restaurant dress codes to the list of the many things scrambled by the global health crisis. Jacob Gallagher, WSJ, 21 June 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective That's the case even if the job does not require dress clothes. Daniel B. Kline, USA TODAY, 31 Aug. 2017 Dress code controversies are nothing new, especially in the era of social media. Rafael Guerrero, chicagotribune.com, 29 Aug. 2017 Factor in alterations: Dress alterations can be costly, so talk to your salon about their policy in advance. Emily Valla, idahostatesman, 21 July 2017 Dress-code-busting aside, these are some excellent, just-DGAF-enough outfits. Megan Gustashaw, GQ, 13 July 2017 Dress code double standards not only can make summer unbearable but also serve to police people's gender expression. Suzannah Weiss, Glamour, 23 June 2017 Dress Meets Body collection, which is set in a large funnel-like space with a video of Merce Cunningham’s dancers performing in the clothing by viewers’ feet. Steff Yotka, Vogue, 1 May 2017 Dress rehearsals are over and the Sky open their season Sunday on the road against the second-ranked Minnesota Lynx. Phil Thompson, chicagotribune.com, 12 May 2017 Dress blues and elegant gowns were the order of the day, at the Windsor High School annual Air Force Junior ROTC Ball, on April 22. Dennis Hohenberger, Courant Community, 5 May 2017

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

Verb

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

Noun

1586, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1745, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for dress

Verb

Middle English, from Anglo-French drescer, dresser to direct, put right, from Vulgar Latin *directiare, from Latin directus direct, past participle of dirigere to direct, from dis- + regere to lead straight — more at right

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Learn More About dress

Time Traveler for dress

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for dress

Last Updated

18 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Dress.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dress. Accessed 25 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for dress

dress

verb

English Language Learners Definition of dress

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: to put clothes on (yourself or someone else)
: to put clothes on yourself
: to put on or wear a particular type or style of clothes

dress

noun

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

: a piece of clothing for a woman or a girl that has a top part that covers the upper body and a skirt that hangs down to cover the legs
: a particular type of clothing

dress

adjective

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

: suitable or required for a formal event

dress

verb
\ ˈdres How to pronounce dress (audio) \
dressed; dressing

Kids Definition of dress

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : to put clothes on
2 : to put on clothes in a particular way Be sure to dress warmly.
3 : to wear formal or fancy clothes Do I have to dress for dinner?
4 : to apply medicine or bandages to dress a wound
5 : to trim or decorate for display dress a store window
6 : to prepare for cooking or eating dress a chicken dress the salad
dress up
1 : to put on formal or fancy clothes
2 : to put on a costume I'm dressing up as a skeleton.

dress

noun

Kids Definition of dress (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : a piece of clothing for a woman or girl that has a top part that covers the upper body and that is connected to a skirt covering the lower body
2 : clothing He wore traditional dress.

dress

adjective

Kids Definition of dress (Entry 3 of 3)

: proper for a formal event dress clothes

dress

verb
\ ˈdres How to pronounce dress (audio) \

Medical Definition of dress

: to apply dressings or medicaments to

More from Merriam-Webster on dress

Nglish: Translation of dress for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of dress for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about dress

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