\ˈhī \

Definition of high 

(Entry 1 of 3)

1a : rising or extending upward a great distance : taller than average, usual, or expected a high wall a high fly ball

b : having a specified height or elevation : tall six feet high often used in combinations sky-highwaist-high

c : situated or passing above the normal level, surface, base of measurement, or elevation the high desert

2a(1) : advanced toward the acme or culmination high summer

(2) : advanced toward the most active or culminating period on the Riviera during high season

(3) : constituting the late, most fully developed, or most creative stage or period high Gothic

(4) : advanced in complexity, development, or elaboration the higher primates including humans higher mathematics

b : verging on lateness usually used in the phrase high time It's high time he won an award.

c : long past : remote high antiquity

3 : elevated in pitch (see pitch entry 4 sense 4b(1)) a high note

4 : relatively far from the equator high latitude

5 : rich in quality : luxurious high living

6 : slightly tainted or spoiled high game meat also : malodorous smelled rather high

7 : exalted or elevated in character : noble high purposes

8 : of greater degree, amount, cost, value, or content than average, usual, or expected high prices high temperatures high blood pressure traveling at a high rate of speed unemployment was high

9 : of relatively great importance: such as

a : foremost in rank, dignity, or standing high officials

b : serious, grave high crimes

c : observed with the utmost solemnity high religious observances

d : critical, climactic the high point of the novel

e : intellectually or artistically of the first order or best quality high culture

f : marked by sublime, heroic, or stirring events or subject matter high tragedy a tale of high adventure

10 : forcible, strong high winds

11 : stressing matters of doctrine and ceremony specifically : high church

12a : filled with or expressing great joy or excitement high spirits

b : intoxicated by or as if by a drug or alcohol high on cocaine

13 : articulated or pronounced with some part of the tongue close to the palate a high vowel

high on

: enthusiastically in approval or support of party leaders high on a new candidate



Definition of high (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : at or to a high place, altitude, level, or degree climbed higher passions ran high

2 : well, luxuriously often used in the phrases high off the hog and high on the hog



Definition of high (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : an elevated place or region: such as

a : hill, knoll

b : the space overhead : sky usually used with on birds wheeling on high

c : heaven usually used with on wisdom from on high

2 : a region where the pressure of the atmosphere is greater than normal : a region of high barometric pressure a high moving out to the east

called also anticyclone

3a : a point or level of greater amount, number, or degree than average or expected : a high point or level sales reached a new high mostly sunny with highs in the 80s the highs and lows of her career

b : the transmission gear of a vehicle (such as an automobile) giving the greatest speed of travel put it into high

4a : an excited, euphoric, or stupefied state produced by or as if by a drug produces a high that lasts several hours coming down from the high of their wedding day

b : a state of elation or high spirits the high of victory

Keep scrolling for more

Choose the Right Synonym for high


high, tall, lofty mean above the average in height. high implies marked extension upward and is applied chiefly to things which rise from a base or foundation or are placed at a conspicuous height above a lower level. a high hill a high ceiling tall applies to what grows or rises high by comparison with others of its kind and usually implies relative narrowness. a tall thin man lofty suggests great or imposing altitude. lofty mountain peaks


high, tall, and lofty mean above the usual level in height. high is used of height that is measured from the ground or some other standard. A high fence surrounds the yard. tall is used of something that is considered high when compared to others of the same kind. He's tall for his age. lofty is used of something that rises to a grand or impressive height. They soared over lofty mountains.

Examples of high in a Sentence


The apartment has high ceilings. The airplane was high above the clouds. The bush is six feet high. a building 100 stories high They have a home in the high country. The houses are built on high ground. They reached speeds as high as 100 mph. He's being treated for high blood pressure. She earns a high salary. His books are in high demand.


The painter climbed high on the ladder. The hawks were circling high in the air. The letters were stacked high on the table. buy low and sell high


Oil prices reached a new high last winter. The forecast is for showers with highs in the 70s. The high only lasted a few minutes.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

But Nvidia also is dealing with sky-high expectations for its business supplying graphics chips for data centers. Dan Gallagher, WSJ, "Nvidia’s Game Isn’t Over," 15 Nov. 2018 World Record is composed of 80 mattresses, half of which are laid upon a giant black platform, the other half suspended from the ceiling, forming a narrow space about three feet high lined with mattresses. Chloe Schama, Vogue, "Paola Pivi’s Transporting Exhibition Is a Whimsical Comment on Dark Realities," 15 Nov. 2018 The aircraft performed bombing missions in Vietnam and other military campaigns, and a variant that later became the WB-57 was designed with longer wings that could fly even higher, up to 62,000 feet. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, "Three high-flying birds soar together for the first time since the 1970s," 11 Nov. 2018 That number is more than $100 million below the projection Vice offered private-equity firm TPG in the summer of 2017, when the investor gave Vice a $5.7 billion valuation, the highest of any new-media company. Recode Staff, Recode, "Recode Daily: Google and Amazon respond to their employees’ concerns," 9 Nov. 2018 But this year, 54 million people—a whopping 2.5 million more people than last year—are hitting the road and the skies for Thanksgiving, the highest its been since 2005, AAA reports. Meredith Carey, Condé Nast Traveler, "The Number of Thanksgiving Travelers Is Way Up This Year," 8 Nov. 2018 The higher the grade, the less the tumor has in common with normal tissue. Korin Miller, SELF, "The Three Types of Ovarian Cancer You Should Know," 1 Nov. 2018 According to a new report released by Forbes, Harmon is the fifth highest paid actor on television. Megan Stein, Country Living, "'NCIS' Star Mark Harmon Is Officially One of the Highest Paid Actors on TV," 30 Oct. 2018 Heat remaining 2 tsp oil in a large skillet on medium-high. Joy Bauer, Ms, Woman's Day, "Mediterranean Zucchini Boats with Kefir-Mint Topping," 25 Oct. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb

The transactions, some of which were disclosed in June, sparked criticism because Mr. Ross, as a high-ranking government official, could have access to inside information that would inform his trades. Dave Michaels, WSJ, "Wilbur Ross Sale to Cover Holdings Worth Potentially Tens of Millions," 13 July 2018 In June, the village hired as its top cop Luis Cabrera, a former high-ranking Miami police officer. Charles Rabin, Jay Weaver And David Ovalle, miamiherald, "The chief wanted perfect stats, so cops were told to pin crimes on blacks, probe found," 12 July 2018 The Los Angeles Dodgers, Brewers and Arizona Diamondbacks are the leading candidates to acquire Machado, a high-ranking Orioles executive said, with the New York Yankees’ interest overblown. Bob Nightengale, USA TODAY, "The Cubs aren't getting Manny Machado - and they're not worried if the Brewers do," 10 July 2018 The book follows a Canadian businessman named Barry Simcoe, who has survived by sweet-talking high-ranking Venezuelan military officials and robots. Shannon Liao, The Verge, "In The Robots of Gotham, AI has taken over the world — and become exactly like us," 7 July 2018 The file includes letters from high-ranking university officials congratulating the doctor for various appointments and tenure. CBS News, "Ohio State doctor who killed himself accused of decades-long sexual misconduct," 6 July 2018 The file includes letters from high-ranking university officials congratulating the doctor for various appointments and tenure. Kantele Franko, Adnrew Welsh-huggins, John Seewer, Cincinnati.com, "Ex-athletes say Ohio State doc groped, ogled men for years," 6 July 2018 Two high-ranking Colombian officials who spoke on condition of anonymity to avoid antagonizing Trump confirmed the report. Joshua Goodman, Fox News, "US official: Trump pressed aides about Venezuela invasion," 4 July 2018 Two high-ranking Colombian officials who spoke on condition of anonymity to avoid antagonizing Trump confirmed the report. NBC News, "Trump pressed aides about Venezuela invasion, official tells AP," 4 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Toyota rolled out the Prius C in 2012 just as gasoline prices were hitting three-year highs. G. Chambers Williams Iii, Houston Chronicle, "COMPACT," 13 July 2018 Peggy Frank was found dead in Woodland Hills on Friday, the same day temperatures in the Los Angeles neighborhood hit a high of 115 degrees. Alejandra Reyes-velarde, latimes.com, "Death of postal carrier found in her truck during heat wave in Woodland Hills is under investigation," 10 July 2018 Twitter had been enjoying one its best runs as a public company, with its stock recently touching a three-year high. Alyssa Newcomb /, NBC News, "Twitter is purging millions of fake accounts — and investors are spooked," 9 July 2018 The price of an oil barrel reached a multi-year high of over $78 on Wednesday, and retail gasoline prices rose to as much as $2.96 a gallon at the start of the summer driving season, according to the Energy Information Administration . Jonathan Sperling, Fortune, "Iran Says Trump's Tweets Are Responsible for Rising Oil Prices," 5 July 2018 In the time period Under Armour has operated in Center City, the company’s stock hit a high of $38.76 per share in August 2016 and a low of $10.59 in October 2017. Katherine Nails, Philly.com, "Under Armour store on Walnut Street closes," 27 June 2018 That boosted prices by making imports and energy more expensive for consumers and companies — the rate of inflation hit a high of 3 percent late last year. Washington Post, "2 years on, Brexit vote has taken a toll on UK economy," 23 June 2018 Under the junta’s watch, GDP growth has risen to 4%, exports are at a seven-year high and a record 35 million tourists thronged Thailand’s beaches and temples in 2017. Time, "Thailand’s Leader Promised to Restore Democracy. Instead He's Tightening His Grip," 21 June 2018 Saturday hit a high of 85 degrees in Boston and Father’s Day is expected to be much the same, according to weather service meteorologist Alan Dunham. Lucas Phillips, BostonGlobe.com, "Today and Sunday will see high temperatures in the low 80s — and Monday will be a scorcher," 16 June 2018

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


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


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


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

History and Etymology for high


Middle English, from Old English hēah; akin to Old High German hōh high, Lithuanian kaukaras hill


see high entry 1


see high entry 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about high

Statistics for high

Last Updated

19 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for high

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for high



English Language Learners Definition of high

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: rising or extending upward a great distance

: extending or reaching upward more than other things of the same kind

: located far above the ground or another surface



English Language Learners Definition of high (Entry 2 of 3)

: at or to a high place or level

: at a high rate

: at a high price



English Language Learners Definition of high (Entry 3 of 3)

: a high point or level

: a gear that is used for faster speeds of travel in a vehicle

: a state of intoxication produced by a drug


\ˈhī \
higher; highest

Kids Definition of high

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : extending to a great distance above the ground high mountains

2 : having a specified elevation : tall The building is 50 stories high.

3 : of greater degree, size, amount, or cost than average high temperatures high speed

4 : having great force high winds

5 : pitched or sounding above some other sound a high note a high voice

6 : very serious high crimes

7 : of the best quality high art

8 : rich in quality high living


higher; highest

Kids Definition of high (Entry 2 of 3)

: at or to a high place or degree She jumped higher than the others.



Kids Definition of high (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : a high point or level Prices reached a new high.

2 : a region of high barometric pressure A strong high brought clear skies.

3 : the arrangement of gears in an automobile giving the highest speed of travel

on high

: in the sky : up above clouds on high


\ˈhī \

Medical Definition of high 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : having a complex organization : greatly differentiated or developed phylogenetically usually used in the comparative degree of advanced types of plants and animals the higher algaethe higher apes — compare low

2a : exhibiting elation or euphoric excitement a high patient

b : being intoxicated also : excited or stupefied by or as if by a drug (as marijuana or heroin)



Medical Definition of high (Entry 2 of 2)

: an excited, euphoric, or stupefied state especially : one produced by or as if by a drug (as heroin)

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on high

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for high

Spanish Central: Translation of high

Nglish: Translation of high for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of high for Arabic Speakers

Comments on high

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


a trusted follower

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Vocab Quiz

  • the-education-of-achilles-eugne-delacroix
  • Which is a synonym of discomfit?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?


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!