high

1 of 3

adjective

1
a
: 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 combination
sky-high
waist-high
c
: situated or passing above the normal level, surface, base of measurement, or elevation
the high desert
2
a(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
12
a
: 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

2 of 3

adverb

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

high

3 of 3

noun

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

3
a
: 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
4
a
: 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
Phrases
high on
: enthusiastically in approval or support of
party leaders high on a new candidate
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

Examples of high in a Sentence

Adjective 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. Adverb 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 Noun 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.
Recent Examples on the Web
Adjective
Both structures have been heavily eroded due to rising sea levels and now only stand several feet high. Brendan Rascius, Miami Herald, 5 Apr. 2024 This is a 5% increase in daily Bitcoin production compared to the prior month, despite a 4% higher average network difficulty in March 2024. Charlotte Observer, 5 Apr. 2024 Flight forced to turn around after passenger tried to enter cockpit Gold prices are high. Megan Cerullo, CBS News, 5 Apr. 2024 The issue burst into the spotlight in October, when a Kansas City, Mo., jury found that the NAR and several major brokerages conspired to keep commissions artificially high, awarding a class of home sellers $1.8 billion in damages. Aaron Gregg, Washington Post, 5 Apr. 2024 The Eagles matched their season high by drawing 10 walks. Michael Huntley, Orange County Register, 5 Apr. 2024 Sports: Asking for input on how high to rank a player in a list of 100 athletes. Bailey Schulz, USA TODAY, 5 Apr. 2024 But the show has known that the stakes of civility are too high not to crack up from time to time. Wesley Morris Ron Butler Emma Kehlbeck Ted Blaisdell, New York Times, 5 Apr. 2024 Real estate investors already battered by high interest rates now face the prospect of significant writedowns triggered by new European regulations. Frances Schwartzkopff, Fortune Europe, 24 Mar. 2024
Adverb
Trout’s second shot — a 473-foot blast in the sixth — landed in the walkway high above the wall in left-center field. Austin Knoblauch, Los Angeles Times, 2 Apr. 2024 Eli Morgan entered for the Guardians and didn’t throw a strike to Toro, who watched a 90-mph fastball sail high to essentially end the 2 ½-hour affair. Cam Inman, The Mercury News, 31 Mar. 2024 Residing high up in the stratosphere about 30 miles above Earth's surface, the vortex is most prominent during the winter. Eric Lagatta, USA TODAY, 28 Mar. 2024 During various songs, she was lifted high above the floor in a carriage and moved from one end of the arena to the other, all the while singing and dancing 30 feet above the crowd. Stefan Stevenson, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 25 Mar. 2024 By the end of the '90s, her star was flying high with leading roles in Se7en (1995), Emma (1996), Sliding Doors (1998), and her Oscar- and Golden Globe-winning turn in Shakespeare in Love (1998). Andrew Walsh, EW.com, 24 Mar. 2024 Indeed, at two supermarkets in Bangkok, shiny walls of powdered formula boxes seven shelves high greeted shoppers on a warm day in September. Heather Vogell, ProPublica, 21 Mar. 2024 Rats infesting the New Orleans Police Department headquarters are getting high off of marijuana from the evidence room, authorities said Monday. Minnah Arshad, USA TODAY, 13 Mar. 2024 We are often told that setting the bar high is key to success. Orianna Rosa Royle, Fortune, 13 Mar. 2024
Noun
Helix’s Shon Martin smashed the fifth hurdle with his hip and any chance to coming back to win the 110 highs was lost despite lowering the section record the last two weeks to the current 13.72 seconds. Steve Brand, San Diego Union-Tribune, 7 Apr. 2024 Musk’s wealth has shrunk by $48.4 billion this year, while Zuckerberg has added $58.9 billion to his fortune as Meta Platforms Inc. climbs to fresh highs, including a new record on Friday. Vernal Galpotthawela, Fortune, 6 Apr. 2024 Black Boots Calf or thigh highs; the option is totally up to you. Kerane Marcellus, Essence, 5 Apr. 2024 The folks at the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) estimate that the travel industry will reach a record $11.1 trillion in 2024, eclipsing the prior high of $10 trillion achieved in 2019. Rachel Cormack, Robb Report, 5 Apr. 2024 Pop financial writers effusively proclaim the good news about all-time highs: personal net worth, stock, and housing prices, economic activity, air travel miles, plus 5% rates on bank deposits amid other positives reflecting continuing global prosperity. Dp Opinion, The Denver Post, 4 Apr. 2024 Even so, inflation is slowly easing after hitting a 40-year high of 9.1% in June 2022, but still remains higher than the Fed would like. Aimee Picchi, CBS News, 4 Apr. 2024 The Fed’s preferred inflation measure has fallen from a four-decade high of 7% in mid-2022. Paul Davidson, USA TODAY, 3 Apr. 2024 Temperatures will be well below normal, with highs ranging from the mid-40s in the northwest to the lower 50s in the southeast. Haadiza Ogwude, The Enquirer, 3 Apr. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'high.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Adjective, Adverb, and Noun

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

First Known Use

Adjective

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

Adverb

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

Noun

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

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

Dictionary Entries Near high

Cite this Entry

“High.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/high. Accessed 14 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition

high

1 of 3 adjective
1
a
: extending to a great distance upward : having greater height than average or usual
rooms with high ceilings
b
: having a specified elevation
six feet high
2
: advanced toward fullness
high summer
3
: shrill entry 2, sharp
high note
4
: far from the equator
high latitude
5
: noble entry 1 sense 5
a writer of high purpose
6
: of greater degree, size, amount, or content than average or ordinary
high pressure
high power of a microscope
7
: of relatively great importance: as
a
: first in rank or standing
high society
b
: serious sense 4, grave
high crimes
8
: strong sense 7
high winds
9
a
: showing joy or excitement
high spirits
b
: drunk entry 2 sense 1
also : affected or impaired by or as if by a drug
10
: advanced or complex in structure or development
higher mathematics
higher fungi

high

2 of 3 adverb
1
: at or to a high place, altitude, or degree
climbed high
2
: richly sense 1, luxuriously
living high

high

3 of 3 noun
1
b
: sky sense 1
watched the birds on high
c
: heaven sense 2
a judgment from on high
2
: a region of high barometric pressure : anticyclone
3
a
: a high point or level : height
prices reached a new high
b
: the arrangement of gears (as in an automobile) that gives the highest speed and consequently the highest speed of travel
4
: a state of good feeling, excitement, or intoxication produced by or as if by a drug

Medical Definition

high

1 of 2 adjective
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 algae
the higher apes
compare low
2
a
: 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)

high

2 of 2 noun
: an excited, euphoric, or stupefied state
especially : one produced by or as if by a drug (as heroin)

More from Merriam-Webster on high

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