\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

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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.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

That’s a higher frame rate than Nintendo Switch and Android players will get on their devices, which run Fortnite at just 30 fps. Julia Alexander, The Verge, "Fortnite runs at 60 fps on Apple’s newest iPhones," 27 Nov. 2018 One thing experts do know (and are studying more) is that firefighters experience various types of cancer at higher rates, according to the CDC. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, "The Dangerous Health Risks That Could Follow the California Wildfires," 16 Nov. 2018 Until now, the quest for effective Alzheimer’s treatments has been marked by costly and high-profile failures. Linda Marsa, Discover Magazine, "A New Treatment for Alzheimer's? It Starts With Lifestyle," 16 Nov. 2018 The Acer at Newegg, by comparison, is curved for a more immersive viewing experience and has a much higher 144Hz refresh rate. Ian Paul, PCWorld, "Upgrade to a 27-inch, 1080p FreeSync monitor for $200 or less," 14 Nov. 2018 But the Duchess of Sussex isn't his only high-profile client. Sophia Panych, Allure, "Makeup Artist Daniel Martin Launches a Genius Travel Makeup Bag With Cuyana," 1 Nov. 2018 While civilian and military men commit suicide at higher rates than their female counterparts, according to a 2016 VA report, in 2014, the difference between soldiers and civilians was greater for women in all age groups. Jim Rendon, Marie Claire, "When Female Veterans Return Home," 29 Oct. 2018 Budd is assigned to guard high-profile politician Julia Montague (Keeley Hawes), and together, the pair navigate a political landscape rife with malfeasance. Chloe Foussianes, Town & Country, "Hit U.K. Show Bodyguard Is Now on Netflix," 26 Oct. 2018 Because the stakes were so high and the world was so dangerous and people were dying left, right, and center. Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, "8 Questions That Need To Be Answered In 'Legacies' Season 1," 26 Oct. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb

At the head of a conference table, in a room perched high above Rockefeller Plaza, sit two old men who look like twinkly grandpas. WSJ, "The Amazing Madoff Clawback," 30 Nov. 2018 But that still means the average summer high from today, 103.5°F, will rise by 4.9°F by 2050. Umair Irfan, Vox, "Watch how the climate could change in these US cities by 2050," 30 Nov. 2018 Conversely, some people with slower gut transit may find that diets very high in roughage leave them feeling totally backed up, able only to pass hard, dried out stools that come out in incomplete pebbles. SELF, "Why This Registered Dietitian Tells (Some of) Her Patients to Avoid Kale Salads," 30 Nov. 2018 Last year in Washington, only about half of all graduating high-school seniors filled out the federal paperwork that is the key to unlocking financial aid for college. Katherine Long, The Seattle Times, "Seattle high schoolers are applying for FAFSA more than anywhere else in Washington," 28 Nov. 2018 The resulting high-resolution data shows the shape of the ice sheet’s surface, some of its internal layering, and even the bedrock below. Scott K. Johnson, Ars Technica, "Huge, previously unknown impact crater found beneath Greenland’s ice," 18 Nov. 2018 For many older retirees with resources and home equity, living in Altis—a collection of homes boasting high-end design, indoor-outdoor living, and flexible floorplans—or places like them represent a great opportunity. Patrick Sisson, Curbed, "Senior housing: Older Americans face affordability, accessibility challenges," 14 Nov. 2018 The style of the gown, which featured spaghetti straps, layered pieces of fabric, and a cut that hit high above her knees, put her unshaven legs and armpits on full display. Zoë Weiner, Teen Vogue, "Lourdes Leon Showed Off Leg and Armpit Hair at the 2018 CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Anniversary Event," 7 Nov. 2018 The ionosphere is where high-energy cosmic rays collide with our atmosphere and the Northern Lights appear. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "A Group of Scientists Want to Launch a Satellite to Make an Artificial Aurora," 29 Oct. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Goff passed for career highs of 465 yards and five touchdowns, winning a scintillating duel with his Minnesota counterpart and leading the unbeaten Los Angeles Rams to a 38-31 victory over the Vikings on Thursday night. Greg Beacham, Fox News, "Rams top Vikings, 38-31, as Goff throws for 465 yards, 5 TDs," 28 Sep. 2018 Entering this night, McDermott’s career-high is 44. Gregg Doyel, Indianapolis Star, "Why Gregg Doyel kept a box score from a game involving Doug McDermott," 10 July 2018 Halep arrived in Wimbledon on a career-high after winning her first Grand Slam title at the French Open in June, defeating reigning U.S. Open champion Sloane Stephens. Sandra Harwitt, USA TODAY, "World No. 1 Simona Halep upset in third round at Wimbledon after blowing final set," 7 July 2018 Roy Williams reflects on Johnson's incredible game that saw him post career highs in points and rebounds. Rick Bonnell, charlotteobserver, "Charlotte Hornets' summer roster includes Monk, Bacon, and a former Tar Heel surprise," 29 June 2018 Keller was the centerpiece of it, recording career-highs with seven innings, six strikeouts and 109 pitches. Sam Mcdowell, kansascity, "Brad Keller's best outing of rookie year provides Royals a respite from brutal June," 25 June 2018 The price of Litecoin and Bitcoin Cash, like other cryptocurrencies, are well off their highs from last December when the overall market went into a frenzy. Jeff John Roberts, Fortune, "Robinhood Adds Bitcoin Cash and Litecoin in Push to Expand Crypto," 12 July 2018 On Sunday, the highs will be in the upper 70s to lower 80s, with comfortable humidity. Martin Finucane, BostonGlobe.com, "Here’s how this heat wave will end — with a cold front and thunderstorms," 5 July 2018 The Philippine benchmark equity index joined Vietnam’s into a bear market, and gauges of Malaysia, Hong Kong, Thailand and Indonesia are down more than 10 percent from their highs. Cecile Vannucci, Bloomberg.com, "Asia Stocks Bear the Brunt of a Brutal $2.1 Trillion Selloff," 22 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.

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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

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Learn More about high

Statistics for high

Last Updated

3 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for high

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

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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)

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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).


the figure or shape of a crescent moon

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