\ 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

Chris Smith will take the field with his team on Monday, less than one week after his girlfriend’s sudden death in a car accident. Lindsay Kimble,, "Chris Smith Will Play with the Cleveland Browns on Monday, Nearly 1 Week After Girlfriend's Death," 16 Sep. 2019 Andre Smith went down with a groin injury in the first half and was replaced by John Jerry, and rookie guard Michael Jordan was carted off the field with a left knee injury. Adam Baum,, "Cincinnati Bengals offensive line issues amplified with injuries in lopsided loss to 49ers," 16 Sep. 2019 Learn about the use of GPS and Google Earth to track leopards and cheetahs, and head into the field with local researchers on game counts, collar-tracking exercises, or to set up camera traps at watering holes. National Geographic, "Namibia Expedition: Desert Safari and Big Cat Conservation," 15 Sep. 2019 Edge: Bears When the Broncos pass Quarterback Joe Flacco didn’t turn the ball over in his Broncos debut and stretched the field with six completions of 20-plus yards. Kyle Fredrickson, The Denver Post, "Broncos Scouting Report: How Denver matches against the Bears and predictions," 15 Sep. 2019 INJURY REPORT Falcons rookie Kaleb McGary missed a good portion of the game after being helped off the field with a left knee injury. oregonlive, "Atlanta Falcons outlast the Philadelphia Eagles: Recap, score, stats and more," 15 Sep. 2019 While Staley was later able to walk gingerly off the field with trainers at his side, a cart came to the 49ers bench area to take him back to the locker room with San Francisco leading 34-10. Jon Becker, The Mercury News, "49ers’ Joe Staley injured, taken off field on a cart against Bengals," 15 Sep. 2019 Brian Jenks, a North Dakota State University weed scientist, says this summer’s weed discoveries were in fields with millet. USA TODAY, "Disney surprise, foreign feral hogs, porous pavement: News from around our 50 states," 13 Sep. 2019 Air raid, air raid New Mexico State likes to flood the field with four and five receivers in an uptempo offense. San Diego Union-Tribune, "5 Things to Watch: Aztecs at New Mexico State," 13 Sep. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

For the first time since exiting Friday night's game with a left hamstring injury, Yuli Gurriel ran and fielded ground balls prior to Monday's series opener against the A's. Chandler Rome, Houston Chronicle, "Astros injury report: Updates for Yuli Gurriel, Carlos Correa," 9 Sep. 2019 First baseman Austin Slater left his post to field the ball. Kerry Crowley, The Mercury News, "Tony Watson lays out ‘like a 34-year-old dad,’ updates status after X-Ray," 5 Sep. 2019 Kiermaier hit a fifth-inning grounder about 45 feet up the first-base line and ran into Neil Walker right after the first baseman fielded the ball. Mark Didtler,, "Eric Sogard hits two of Rays’ four home runs in win over Marlins," 4 Aug. 2019 Feliz could have kept his team’s chances alive by simply fielding the ball and holding Valera to a double. Dan Gartland,, "Outfielder’s Epic Brain Fart Turns Game-Tying Double Into Walk-Off Homer," 20 June 2019 Mookie Betts fields a ground ball during batting practice. Jared Diamond, WSJ, "Dodgers vs. Red Sox: What to Watch for in the World Series," 23 Oct. 2018 Fisher ran into the wall while fielding a double Saturday. ... Washington Post, "Verlander pitches 3rd career no-hitter, Astros beat Jays 2-0," 2 Sep. 2019 Austin Meadows got a one-out double down the left field line when Jake Bauers stumbled and fell on the bullpen mound while fielding the ball. Mark Didtler,, "Indians pitcher Carrasco returns from leukemia but Rays sweep weekend to take over No. 1 wild-card spot," 1 Sep. 2019 Fountain Valley senior wideout Blake Anderson had eight receptions for 126 yards, while Glenn Atkins fielded a 14-yard scoring pass that cut Elsinore’s lead to 14 points late in the game. Barry Faulkner, Daily Pilot, "Fountain Valley football loses at Elsinore in Chris Anderson’s head-coaching debut," 23 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

15 Oct 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

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