foot·​ing | \ˈfu̇-tiŋ \

Definition of footing 

1 : a stable position or placing of the feet

2 : a surface or its condition with respect to one walking or running on it especially : the condition of a racetrack

3 : the act of moving on foot : step, tread

4a : a place or position providing a base of operations : foothold

b : established position : status especially : position or rank in relation to others they all started off on an equal footing

5 : basis

6 : terms of social intercourse

7 : an enlargement at the lower end of a foundation wall, pier, or column to distribute the load

8 : the sum of a column of figures

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Examples of footing in a Sentence

He lost his footing and fell down the slope. Be careful. The footing is slippery there.

Recent Examples on the Web

Unless something really changes, the Fed is going to keep raising rates, and stocks will have to find their footing on their own. Justin Lahart, WSJ, "Strong Economy Means No Rescue for Falling Stocks," 26 Oct. 2018 But the windy weather, combined with all the attention, led Givenchy to lose his footing and trip. Megan Friedman, Harper's BAZAAR, "Princess Charlotte and a Pageboy Fell Heading to the Chapel for Princess Eugenie’s Wedding," 12 Oct. 2018 Coffman warns it’s only going to get harder for Republicans trying to regain a footing in the House when Trump is actually on the ballot in two years. Tara Golshan, Vox, "Ousted House Republican: Trump will make it almost impossible to win back the House," 15 Nov. 2018 Currently, there are two pending cases over previous San Francisco ballot measures that could either strengthen or weaken Prop C’s legal footing. Shirin Ghaffary, Recode, "San Francisco’s Prop C homelessness tax was a big win for Marc Benioff, but legal challenges may be coming," 8 Nov. 2018 The victory in Michigan establishes a strong footing for adult use legalization by expanding beyond the Western and Northeastern states. Angela Chen, The Verge, "Three states vote in favor of marijuana," 7 Nov. 2018 Over the past few months, she's started to find her footing as a royal, taking on responsibilities, researching future patronages to champion, and revolutionizing a staid, centuries old institution simply by being part of it. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "Inside Meghan Markle's First 100 Days in the Royal Family," 27 Aug. 2018 But Trump may stand on sturdier political footing in the next stage of debate over how to deal with families accused of crossing the border illegally, according to a Washington Post-Schar School poll released last week. Scott Clement, Washington Post, "The public rejected Trump’s child-separation policy, but a majority supports his push to detain families until court hearings," 13 July 2018 Clearly, something must be done to put the system on better long-term footing. Joel Naroff,, "The looming retirement crisis for public and private employees," 12 July 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for footing

Last Updated

7 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for footing

The first known use of footing was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for footing



English Language Learners Definition of footing

: the ability of your feet to stay where you put them as you walk, run, etc.

: the condition of the ground that makes it easy or hard for your feet to stay where you put them as you walk or run

: the base or foundation on which something is established


foot·​ing | \ˈfu̇-tiŋ \

Kids Definition of footing

1 : a firm position or placing of the feet I lost my footing and slipped.

2 : foothold

3 : position as compared to others We all started on the same footing.

4 : social relationship We're on a good footing with our neighbors.

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More from Merriam-Webster on footing

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for footing

Spanish Central: Translation of footing

Nglish: Translation of footing for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about footing

Comments on footing

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


living or existing for a long time

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