\ ˈfēld How to pronounce field (audio) \

Definition of field

 (Entry 1 of 6)

1a(1) : an open land area free of woods and buildings
(2) : an area of land marked by the presence of particular objects or features dune fields
b(1) : an area of cleared enclosed land used for cultivation or pasture a field of wheat
(2) : land containing a natural resource oil fields
(3) : airfield
c : the place where a battle is fought also : battle
d : a large unbroken expanse (as of ice)
2a : an area or division of an activity, subject, or profession the field of microbiology
b : the sphere of practical operation outside a base (such as a laboratory, office, or factory) geologists working in the field
c : an area for military exercises or maneuvers
d(1) : an area constructed, equipped, or marked for sports a football field
(2) : the portion of an indoor or outdoor sports area enclosed by the running track and on which field events are conducted
(3) : any of the three sections of a baseball outfield hits to all fields
3 : a space on which something is drawn or projected: such as
a : the space on the surface of a coin, medal, or seal that does not contain the design
b : the ground of each division in a flag
c : the whole surface of an escutcheon (see escutcheon sense 1)
4 : the individuals that make up all or part of the participants in a contest The election attracted a large field of candidates. especially : all participants with the exception of the favorite or the winner in a contest where more than two are entered
5 : the area visible through the lens of an optical instrument
6a : a region or space in which a given effect (such as magnetism) exists a magnetic field a gravitational field
b : a region of embryonic tissue capable of a particular type of differentiation (see differentiation sense 3) a morphogenetic field
7 : a set of mathematical elements that is subject to two binary operations the second of which is distributive (see distributive sense 3) relative to the first and that constitutes a commutative (see commutative sense 2) group under the first operation and also under the second if the zero or unit element under the first is omitted
8 : a complex of forces that serve as causative agents in human behavior
9 : a series of drain tiles and an absorption area for septic-tank outflow
10 : a particular area (as of a record in a database) in which the same type of information is regularly recorded
from the field
: in field goals as opposed to free throws made 40 percent of his shots from the field



Definition of field (Entry 2 of 6)

: of or relating to a field: such as
a : growing in or inhabiting the fields or open country
b : made, conducted, or used in the field
c : operating or active in the field


fielded; fielding; fields

Definition of field (Entry 3 of 6)

transitive verb

1a : to catch or pick up (something, such as a batted ball) and usually throw to a teammate Practice fielding ground balls as much as you can. Work on keeping the ball in front of you.— Michael Goldman
b : to take care of or respond to (something, such as a telephone call or a request) She has been fielding offers from potential buyers.
c : to give an impromptu answer or solution to the senator fielded the reporters' questions
2 : to put into the field field an army field a team also : to enter in competition

intransitive verb

: to play as a defensive player stationed in the field


biographical name (1)
\ ˈfēld How to pronounce Field (audio) \

Definition of Field (Entry 4 of 6)

Cyrus West 1819–1892 American financier


biographical name (2)

Definition of Field (Entry 5 of 6)

Eugene 1850–1895 American poet and journalist


biographical name (3)

Definition of Field (Entry 6 of 6)

Marshall 1834–1906 American merchant

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Examples of field in a Sentence


He gazed out across the fields. She hopes to find work in the health field. She is a pioneer in the field of genetic research. a lawyer who is eminent in his field working in his chosen field a fascinating field of endeavor


The shortstop fielded the ground ball. a shortstop who fields his position flawlessly Last week she fielded two offers on her house. His secretary will field requests for more information. The senator fielded the reporters' questions. They expect to field a strong team this year. the greatest fighting force that any nation has ever fielded
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Dantonio's early years produced some on-field improvement, including, in 2008, the Spartans’ first nine-win season in nine years. Chris Solari, Detroit Free Press, "On cusp of history, Mark Dantonio still thirsts for greatness at Michigan State," 14 Sep. 2019 The likes of Raheem Sterling know they can be found in almost any area of the field, which stretches the opposition and allows more room for the midfield., "Why Aymeric Laporte's Injury Makes Liverpool Favourites for the Premier League Title," 14 Sep. 2019 And there’s also the question—which applies not just to Buttigieg but to Kamala Harris, Beto O’Rourke, Booker, and several other figures in the field—of whether the broader Democratic electorate really wants an option between moderate and lefty. Eric Lach, The New Yorker, "Where Was Mayor Pete Buttigieg at the Democratic Debate?," 13 Sep. 2019 Short fields, turnovers and flubs in the fundamentals equal a soupy mix for a forgettable night for any high school football team. Robert Avery, Houston Chronicle, "Sam Rayburn opens 22-6A action with 66-0 loss to Humble," 13 Sep. 2019 Friess worked as the school’s associate athletic director, head cross-country coach, head track and field coach and strength and conditioning coach. Beth Bragg, Anchorage Daily News, "Michael Friess is back as head coach of the UAA cross-country team," 12 Sep. 2019 Biden holds a significant lead over the crowded field, despite signs of soft support, a weak organization and repeated missteps. Steve Peoples,, "7 questions heading into tonight’s 10-candidate Democratic presidential debate," 12 Sep. 2019 Extracurricular and club activities will also have use as well as eventual track and field competitions. Scott Springer,, "CPS: Stargel Stadium will be ready for football Friday for Taft vs. Withrow," 11 Sep. 2019 Someone the other day said track and field is not a sport. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Column: With gambling as driving force, the NFL remains alive and well," 7 Sep. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The sagging Milwaukee Brewers fielded a lineup Saturday afternoon badly thinned by injuries. Tom Haudricourt, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Brewers 2, Cubs 0: With injury-thinned lineup, Brewers make two first-inning runs stand up," 31 Aug. 2019 With an average age of 24 years and 208 days, Lampard fielded the youngest lineup the club has put out in the past quarter of a century. Si Wire,, "Chelsea vs. Sheffield United Live Stream, TV Channel: Watch Premier League Online," 31 Aug. 2019 Schofield will field a young team, but one that should push Reservoir and Glenelg for the county title. Mike Frainie,, "2019 Baltimore-area girls volleyball preseason Top 15 poll," 31 Aug. 2019 Montgomery has already fielded more than 20 applications from job candidates with an associate degree or less, a spokesman said, and is kicking off an effort to spark broader interest. Washington Post, "With substitute teachers in high demand, Montgomery County eases requirements," 30 Aug. 2019 In the first inning, Rodriguez fielded a comebacker, and Dubon turned an easy double play. John Shea,, "Giants’ Mauricio Dubon gets first big-league hit in loss to Padres," 29 Aug. 2019 Orlando fielded a rookie, a midfielder and one of the league’s best right backs playing out of position as a center back linking up against Chicago’s Sam Kerr, the league’s most dangerous goal scorer. Julia Poe, Pro Soccer USA, "Orlando Pride relies on versatility as backline copes with loss of top defenders," 23 Aug. 2019 Daniel Hand High has fielded arguably the state’s most dominant football program in the past two seasons. Shawn Mcfarland,, "High school football: Two-time defending state champion Hand looks to avoid complacency in quest for three-peat," 20 Aug. 2019 But Diaz couldn't field a grounder cleanly in the bottom of the inning, helping the Rockies tie it against Ryne Stanek. Michael Kelly,, "Yamamoto gets career-high nine strikeouts but Rockies rally to get walk-off win, sweep of Marlins," 19 Aug. 2019

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


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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above


1798, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for field

Noun, Adjective, and Verb

Middle English, from Old English feld; akin to Old High German feld field, Old English flōr floor — more at floor

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Statistics for field

Last Updated

17 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for field

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

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More Definitions for field



English Language Learners Definition of field

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an open area of land without trees or buildings
: an area of land that has a special use
: an area of work, study, etc.



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

baseball or cricket : to catch or stop and throw a ball also : to play (a position) on a baseball team
: to deal with or respond to (something, such as a telephone call or a request)
: to give an answer to (a question)


\ ˈfēld How to pronounce field (audio) \

Kids Definition of field

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a piece of open, cleared, or cultivated land
2 : a piece of land put to a special use or giving a special product a ball field an oil field
3 : an area of activity or influence the field of science
4 : a background on which something is drawn, painted, or mounted The United States flag has white stars on a blue field.



Kids Definition of field (Entry 2 of 3)

: relating to a field field work


fielded; fielding

Kids Definition of field (Entry 3 of 3)

: to catch or stop and throw a ball


\ ˈfē(ə)ld How to pronounce field (audio) \

Medical Definition of field

1 : an area or division of an activity a doctor eminent in her field
2 : a complex of forces that serve as causative agents in human behavior
3a : a region of embryonic tissue potentially capable of a particular type of differentiation a morphogenetic field
b : a region or space in which a given effect (as magnetism) exists
4a : an area that is perceived or under observation especially : the area visible through the lens of an optical instrument — see visual field
b : the site of a surgical operation

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More from Merriam-Webster on field

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with field

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for field

Spanish Central: Translation of field

Nglish: Translation of field for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of field for Arabic Speakers

Comments on field

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


to make a temporary encampment

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