\ ˈfil How to pronounce fill (audio) \
filled; filling; fills

Definition of fill

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to put into as much as can be held or conveniently contained fill a cup with water
b : to supply with a full complement the class is filled
c(1) : to cause to swell or billow wind filled the sails
(2) : to trim (a sail) to catch the wind
d : to raise the level of with fill filled land
e : to repair the cavities of (teeth)
f : to stop up : obstruct wreckage filled the channel
g : to stop up the interstices, crevices, or pores of (a material, such as cloth, wood, or leather) with a foreign substance
2a : feed, satiate fill livestock
b : satisfy, fulfill fills all requirements
c : make out, complete used with out or in fill out a formfill in the blanks
d : to draw the playing cards necessary to complete fill a straight or flush in poker
3a : to occupy the whole of smoke filled the room
b : to spread through music filled the air
c : to make full a mind filled with fantasies
4a : to possess and perform the duties of : hold fill an office
b : to place a person in fill a vacancy
5 : to supply as directed fill a prescription
6 : to cover the surface of with a layer of precious metal a gold-filled bracelet

intransitive verb

: to become full the rivers filled
fill one's shoes
: to take over one's job, position, or responsibilities No one will be able to fill his shoes after he retires.



Definition of fill (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a full supply especially : a quantity that satisfies or satiates eat your fill
2 : something that fills: such as
a : material used to fill a receptacle, cavity, passage, or low place
b : a bit of instrumental music that fills the pauses between phrases (as of a vocalist or soloist)
c : artificial light used in photography to reduce or eliminate shadows often used attributively fill flash

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms & Antonyms for fill

Synonyms: Verb

brim, charge, cram, heap, jam, jam-pack, load, pack, stuff

Synonyms: Noun

filler, filling, padding, stuffing, wadding

Antonyms: Verb

clear, empty, evacuate, vacate, void

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of fill in a Sentence


May I fill your glass for you? She filled her house with antiques. His massive body filled the doorway. He has enough books to fill a library. Two hundred people filled the room. fill a sheet of paper with writing a vase filled with flowers stadiums filled with cheering fans The rivers have filled and are close to flooding. The stadium filled more than an hour before the game.


They delivered a truckload of fill for the trench. we ripped the tag off years ago, so we have no idea what the fill in that pillow is
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

White Reaper's sets last a little over an hour, each moment filled with as much energy as the last, and riffs that welcome stage divers, crowd surfers and mosh pits every other — if not every — song. Laurel Deppen, The Courier-Journal, "How some kids from Louisville went from 'outcasts' to the 'World's Best American Band'," 10 July 2019 The appointments fill two new seats on an expanding district court bench in the county and replace Judge Steven D. Wyman, who retired last year. Luke Broadwater,, "Maryland Gov. Hogan appoints 3 judges in Baltimore County," 10 July 2019 The Celtics have already filled both of their two-way contract slots, too. Adam Himmelsbach,, "Celtics waive Guerschon Yabusele," 10 July 2019 Some simply filled their pools in, leaving more affluent residents the option of putting in backyard pools. Victoria W. Wolcott, The Conversation, "The forgotten history of segregated swimming pools and amusement parks," 9 July 2019 On Tuesday, more than 100 people crammed into the council chambers and even more people filled multiple overflow rooms. Sarah Ravani,, "Fremont roiled by debate over centers for growing homeless population," 9 July 2019 The move fills a long-time devastating hole on Phoenix’s roster with a pass-first point guard who will help everyone else fall into their natural place. Jeremy Cluff, azcentral, "NBA free agency: Phoenix Suns blasted as 'losers' for Ricky Rubio deal, questionable moves," 8 July 2019 Dozens of children, who are part of the Maasai tribe in east Africa, filled the room in front of him, seated at wooden desks and wearing new green, yellow and blue-colored school uniforms. Jenny Vrentas,, "It’s the Heart of the NFL Offseason, and Anthony Lynn Is Making the Most of It," 8 July 2019 Shop our Favorite Non-Rx Items for Reducing Anxiety 1 2 3 4 5 6 Asutra Silk Eye Pillow Zen out on the go with this flax seeds and organic lavender bud–filled mask that relieves headaches and stress and promotes meditation and sleep. Kayla Webley Adler, Marie Claire, "Feeling Anxious? So Is Everyone Else. This Guide Will Help.," 8 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The cussing-fill brawl appears to grow out of a group the included a half-dozen adults, most, if not all, family members. Alma Fausto, The Denver Post, "Family brawl breaks out in Disneyland’s Toontown," 8 July 2019 Tip: Arrive one hour before the high tide to watch the empty crater fill with gushing water. Jennifer Adler, National Geographic, "10 perfect ways to cool off in the U.S.," 27 June 2019 Instead, baggage handlers count bags on the tarmac and fill planes based on average luggage weight. Dallas News, "FAA moves three senior managers overseeing Southwest Airlines amid federal investigation," 26 June 2019 By then, perhaps everyone will have gotten their fill—and moved on to watching Netflix's latest binge-able bundle of bons mots. Angela Watercutter, WIRED, "Netflix Could Never Make Its Own Office," 26 June 2019 Melvin mentioned Daniel Mengden, Paul Blackburn and Aaron Brooks as potential fill-ins for the time being. Shayna Rubin, The Mercury News, "This A’s Wild-Card chase only gets trickier as pitching wounds mount," 24 June 2019 First, the kind of art matters: Thinner lines might not sting as much as bold designs requiring a fill-in. Samantha Sasso,, "Everything You Need To Know About Getting A Neck Tattoo," 20 June 2019 The promo growler can be filled - and refilled - for $5 per fill. Marc Bona,, "Beer calendar: Platform’s 5th anniversary party, Great Lakes dinner and release, more," 3 June 2019 Colorful cans and graphic B’s fill Bissell’s feed, popping off the screen as art pieces as much as advertisements. Gary Dzen,, "Bissell Brothers beers are beautiful on the inside and out," 5 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'fill.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of fill


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


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

History and Etymology for fill

Verb and Noun

Middle English, from Old English fyllan; akin to Old English full full

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about fill

Statistics for fill

Last Updated

13 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for fill

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for fill



English Language Learners Definition of fill

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to make (something) full
: to become full
: to spread all through (an area, the air, etc.)



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

: a full amount : all that someone wants or needs
: material that is used to fill something


\ ˈfil How to pronounce fill (audio) \
filled; filling

Kids Definition of fill

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to make or become full Please fill the tank. The pail filled slowly.
2 : to use up all the space or time in Meetings filled his schedule. Cars filled the street.
3 : to spread through Laughter filled the room.
4 : to stop up : plug The dentist filled a tooth.
5 : to do the duties of Who fills the office of class president?
6 : to hire a person for We have filled the position.
7 : to supply according to directions I need to fill a prescription.
8 : to succeed in meeting or satisfying You fill all requirements.
fill in
1 : to insert information Fill in the blanks.
2 : to provide information Fill me in on what's happening.
3 : to take another's place Can you fill in while I'm away?
fill out
1 : to increase in size and fullness The smaller plants are filling out.
2 : to complete by providing information Please fill out a form.



Kids Definition of fill (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : all that is wanted I ate my fill.
2 : material for filling something
\ ˈfil How to pronounce fill (audio) \

Medical Definition of fill

1 : to repair the cavities of (teeth)
2 : to supply as directed fill a prescription

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on fill

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with fill

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for fill

Spanish Central: Translation of fill

Nglish: Translation of fill for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of fill for Arabic Speakers

Comments on fill

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


characterized by aphorism

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!