\ ˈfist How to pronounce fist (audio) \

Definition of fist

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the hand clenched with the fingers doubled into the palm and the thumb doubled inward across the fingers
2 : the hand closed as in grasping : clutch


fisted; fisting; fists

Definition of fist (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to grip with the fist : handle
2 : to clench into a fist

Examples of fist in a Sentence

Noun He pounded his fist on the table in anger. She pounded on the door with both fists. He defiantly shook his fist at the policeman.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun One of the many infamous images to come from January 6, 2021, is of Hawley raising a fist to the crowd that would soon storm the Capitol. Alex Shephard, The New Republic, 26 July 2022 Place dough in prepared pan and use fist to spread and push dough out into edges of pan, and almost into corners; some of dough will spring back during the second rise. Kim Sunée, Anchorage Daily News, 22 July 2022 One was the juxtaposition of Sen. Josh Hawley making his infamous fist-raising to the mob that would soon attack the Capitol with footage of him later running to get away once the rioters had breached the building. Bill Goodykoontz, USA TODAY, 22 July 2022 Hawley has continued to make political hay - and money - out of the fist-pump picture. Jonathan Edwards,, 22 July 2022 Hawley has continued to make political hay — and money — out of the fist-pump picture. Jonathan Edwards, Washington Post, 22 July 2022 The Missouri senator tweeted a link Friday to a coffee mug available for purchase with a silhouette of his fist-pump photo. Gabe Ferris, ABC News, 22 July 2022 During his recent Middle East trip, the president was seen fist-bumping, handshaking and even occasionally hugging. Carla K. Johnson, ajc, 21 July 2022 The snails can produce 1,200 eggs in a year and grow up to about the size of a human fist. Margaret Osborne, Smithsonian Magazine, 21 July 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Then, once on the court, players are outlawed from high-fives, relegated instead to fist or elbow bumps. Scott Kushner,, 13 Jan. 2021 Players must limit interactions to fist and elbow bumps. Rod Walker,, 12 Jan. 2021 The government’s economic stimulus measures have been similarly ham-fisted. The Economist, 23 May 2020 Not even if your girlfriend is getting fisted on the regular or impaled by a dozen swarthy men brandishing wine bottles. Anna Pulley,, 14 Oct. 2019 The shah, Washington’s closest ally in the Persian Gulf, had fled Tehran in January 1979 in the face of a burgeoning uprising against his 38 years of iron-fisted rule. David D. Kirkpatrick, New York Times, 29 Dec. 2019 But the film is too clumsy and ham-fisted by half to bring much authenticity or wit to the measure of these women's experiences. Isaac Feldberg, Fortune, 13 Dec. 2019 Predictably, the script’s attempts to nail down these characterizations are almost uniformly ham-fisted, a flaw that appears to have occurred to no one who participated in its composition or filming. Graham Hillard, National Review, 7 Dec. 2019 Then, the man in the red shirt and another man begin to fist fight. Elisha Fieldstadt, NBC News, 8 July 2019 See More

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

First Known Use of fist


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


1607, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for fist


Middle English, from Old English fȳst; akin to Old High German fūst fist, Polish pięść, and probably to Old English fīf five

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Time Traveler for fist

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

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Dictionary Entries Near fist



fist bump

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Last Updated

29 Jul 2022

Cite this Entry

“Fist.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for fist


\ ˈfist How to pronounce fist (audio) \

Kids Definition of fist

: the hand with the fingers bent tight into the palm


\ ˈfist How to pronounce fist (audio) \

Medical Definition of fist

: the hand clenched with the fingers doubled into the palm and the thumb doubled inward across the fingers

More from Merriam-Webster on fist

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for fist

Nglish: Translation of fist for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of fist for Arabic Speakers


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