\ˈfu̇t \
plural feet\ˈfēt \ also foot

Definition of foot 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the terminal part of the vertebrate (see vertebrate entry 1) leg upon which an individual stands

2 : an invertebrate organ of locomotion or attachment especially : a ventral (see ventral entry 1 sense 1b) muscular surface or process of a mollusk

3 : any of various units of length based on the length of the human foot especially : a unit equal to ¹/₃ yard and comprising 12 inches plural foot used between a number and a noun a 10-foot pole plural feet or foot used between a number and an adjective 6 feet tall — see Weights and Measures Table

4 : the basic unit of verse meter consisting of any of various fixed combinations or groups of stressed and unstressed or long and short syllables Each line of the poem contains five feet.

5a : motion or power of walking or running : step fleet of foot

b : speed, swiftness showed early foot

6 : something resembling a foot in position or use: such as

a : the lower end of the leg of a chair or table

b(1) : the basal portion of the sporophyte in mosses

(2) : a specialized outgrowth by which the embryonic sporophyte especially of many bryophytes absorbs nourishment from the gametophyte

c : a piece on a sewing machine that presses the cloth against the feed

7 foot plural, chiefly British : infantry

8 : the lower edge (as of a sail)

9 : the lowest part : bottom the foot of the hill

10a : the end that is lower or opposite the head the foot of the bed

b : the part (as of a stocking) that covers the foot

11 foots plural in form but singular or plural in construction : material deposited especially in aging or refining : dregs

12 foots plural : footlights

at one's feet

: under one's spell or influence The champion loved the feeling that the world was at his feet.

foot in the door

: the initial step toward a goal He took a job as a secretary to get his foot in the door.

off one's feet

: in a sitting or lying position The doctor advised her to stay off her feet.

on foot

: by walking or running tour the campus on foot

on one's feet

1 : in a standing position He works on his feet all day.

2 : in an established position or state The business is finally back on its feet.

3 : in a recovered condition (as from illness) back on my feet

4 : in an extemporaneous (see extemporaneous sense 1a) manner : while in action good debaters can think on their feet

to one's feet

: to a standing position brought the crowd to its feet


footed; footing; foots

Definition of foot (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : dance

2 : to go on foot

3 of a sailboat : to make speed : move

transitive verb

1a : to perform the movements of (a dance)

b : to walk, run, or dance on, over, or through

2 archaic

a : kick

b : reject

3 archaic : establish

4a : to add up

b : to pay or stand credit for foot the bill

5 : to make or renew the foot of foot a stocking

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Synonyms & Antonyms for foot

Synonyms: Noun

base, basement, bottom, nadir, rock bottom

Synonyms: Verb

ante (up), balance, clear, discharge, liquidate, meet, pay, pay off, pay up, pony up, quit, recompense, settle, spring (for), stand

Antonyms: Noun

head, top, vertex

Antonyms: Verb


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Examples of foot in a Sentence


He was wearing boots on his feet. tracks made by the feet of a bird The people in the crowd began to stamp their feet. They camped at the foot of the mountain. at the foot of the stairs the foot of the table


I'll foot the bill for dinner.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Privacy - Terms The man fled on foot into a nearby apartment complex, down a field and into a creek bed, officials said. Benjy Egel, sacbee, "K-9 drags car thief out of bush after chase in Arden Arcade, deputies say," 12 July 2018 After the shooting stopped, the Camry crashed into a fence behind the 4700 block of Baring Avenue while the suspects fled on foot, according to the Fife. Becky Jacobs, Post-Tribune, "Man fatally shot in East Chicago alley, police say," 11 July 2018 If Alex Ferguson had never set foot into Old Trafford, he probably could have been confused for a bank manager. Andrew Beaton, WSJ, "England’s Hottest Fashion Item: Gareth Southgate’s Waistcoat," 9 July 2018 Officer Kyle Mikowski found the Durango, but followed Norris and a woman who left the vehicle and fled on foot. Cynthia Sewell, idahostatesman, "He said he was on a path to 'positive change.' Then came prison time, & the shootout," 5 July 2018 However, this year, tourists won’t get to set foot on one of the most revered sites here, the USS Arizona Memorial, which has been closed since May 6 over safety concerns. Heidi Chang,, "USS Arizona Memorial, watery grave of Pearl Harbor sailors, remains closed as officials mull repairs," 3 July 2018 Coll, who was groomed for college and a stable white-collar career, might have easily lived his entire life in Hartford without setting foot in the predominantly African-American North End, where Lester grew up. Amy Crawford, Smithsonian, "Racism Kept Connecticut’s Beaches White Up Through the 1970s," 2 July 2018 The newest world Bailey has set foot in is that of a solo artist. Trevor Fraser,, "Thompson Twins' Tom Bailey goes around the world and beyond," 1 July 2018 Previously, state residents could set foot into Phantom and other big-name companies’ showrooms to shop for nonexplosive novelties. Vinny Vella,, "Fireworks sales are booming in Pennsylvania thanks to a change in the law," 30 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Peebles had the Bears on solid footing the last two years, posting 6-5 and 6-4 records after three consecutive losing seasons. Kyle Neddenriep, Indianapolis Star, "High school football: New faces in new places for 2018 season," 28 June 2018 That puts the Hornets on even footing with most franchises this summer. Rick Bonnell, charlotteobserver, "Hornets still have a hole on roster. Here are 6 free agent possibilities to fill it.," 26 June 2018 Houston will begin footing the bill for City Hall office space rendered unusable by Hurricane Harvey last fall. Mike Morris, Houston Chronicle, "Yet another Harvey cost for Houston: Skyscraper office space," 8 June 2018 For decades, the United States has been footing the bill for the safety and the security of the European continent and all while many of our allies across the Atlantic failed to live up to their commitments. Fox News, "Steve Bannon on NATO: Trump is saying 'no more games'," 12 July 2018 Previous agreements going back to 1992 had no cap and the state would foot the entire transportation cost regardless of the amount. Erin Hegarty, Naperville Sun, "EPA agreement to pay for Naperville hazardous waste hauling a done deal, for now," 22 June 2018 The media’s footing on the high ground is not so stable here. Callum Borchers,, "How a reporter's romance with her source muddies the FBI's seizure of her records," 8 June 2018 His left-footed, spin-less shot from the edge of the penalty area sailed through the air so suddenly that Croatia’s goalkeeper barely moved. Joshua Robinson, WSJ, "Russia Is Out of the Russian World Cup," 7 July 2018 The shift caught companies accustomed to controlling the narrative flat-footed. Nitasha Tiku, WIRED, "Why Tech Worker Dissent Is Going Viral," 29 June 2018

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


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


15th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for foot


Middle English fot, from Old English fōt; akin to Old High German fuot foot, Latin ped-, pes, Greek pod-, pous


see foot entry 1

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Statistics for foot

Last Updated

8 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for foot

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

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More Definitions for foot



English Language Learners Definition of foot

: the part of the leg on which an animal or person stands and moves : the part of the leg below the ankle

: a unit of measurement equal to 1/3 yard (0.3048 meter) or 12 inches

: the lowest part of something


\ˈfu̇t \
plural feet\ˈfēt \

Kids Definition of foot

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the end part of the leg of an animal or person : the part of an animal on which it stands or moves

2 : a unit of length equal to twelve inches (about .3 meter)

3 : the lowest or end part of something foot of a hill foot of the bed

on foot

: by walking They traveled on foot.


footed; footing

Kids Definition of foot (Entry 2 of 2)

2 : pay entry 1 sense 2 I'll foot the bill.


\ˈfu̇t \
plural feet\ˈfēt \ also foot

Medical Definition of foot 

1 : the terminal part of the vertebrate leg upon which an individual stands

2 : any of various units of length based on the length of the human foot especially : a unit equal to ¹/₃ yard or 12 inches or 30.48 centimeters plural foot used between a number and a noun a 10-foot pole plural feet or foot used between a number and an adjective 6 feet tall

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More from Merriam-Webster on foot

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for foot

Spanish Central: Translation of foot

Nglish: Translation of foot for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of foot for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about foot

Comments on foot

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lying above or upon

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