\ ˈjəst How to pronounce just (audio) \

Definition of just

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : having a basis in or conforming to fact or reason : reasonable had just reason to believe he was in danger
b : conforming to a standard of correctness : proper just proportions
c archaic : faithful to an original
2a(1) : acting or being in conformity with what is morally upright or good : righteous a just war
(2) : being what is merited : deserved a just punishment
b : legally correct : lawful just title to an estate


\ ˈjəst How to pronounce just (audio) , ˈjist, ˈjest also without t \

Definition of just (Entry 2 of 3)

1a : exactly, precisely just right
b : very recently the bell just rang
2a : by a very small margin : barely just too late
b : immediately, directly just west of here
3a : only, simply just last year just be yourself
b : quite, very just wonderful
4 : perhaps, possibly it just might work
just about
: almost the work is just about done


\ ˈjəst How to pronounce just (audio) , ˈjüst How to pronounce just (audio) \

Definition of just (Entry 3 of 3)

archaic variant of

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Other Words from just


justly adverb
justness \ ˈjəs(t)-​nəs How to pronounce just (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for just

Synonyms: Adjective

Synonyms: Adverb

Antonyms: Adjective

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Choose the Right Synonym for just


fair, just, equitable, impartial, unbiased, dispassionate, objective mean free from favor toward either or any side. fair implies a proper balance of conflicting interests. a fair decision just implies an exact following of a standard of what is right and proper. a just settlement of territorial claims equitable implies a less rigorous standard than just and usually suggests equal treatment of all concerned. the equitable distribution of the property impartial stresses an absence of favor or prejudice. an impartial third party unbiased implies even more strongly an absence of all prejudice. your unbiased opinion dispassionate suggests freedom from the influence of strong feeling and often implies cool or even cold judgment. a dispassionate summation of the facts objective stresses a tendency to view events or persons as apart from oneself and one's own interest or feelings. I can't be objective about my own child

upright, honest, just, conscientious, scrupulous, honorable mean having or showing a strict regard for what is morally right. upright implies a strict adherence to moral principles. a stern and upright minister honest stresses adherence to such virtues as truthfulness, candor, or fairness. known for being honest in business dealings just stresses conscious choice and regular practice of what is right or equitable. workers given just compensation conscientious and scrupulous imply an active moral sense governing all one's actions and painstaking efforts to follow one's conscience. conscientious in the completion of her assignments scrupulous in carrying out the terms of the will honorable suggests a firm holding to codes of right behavior and the guidance of a high sense of honor and duty. a difficult but honorable decision

Examples of just in a Sentence

Adjective a just cause for war The college treated the allegation with just seriousness. They got their just punishment for the crime. Adverb The store has just the tool you need. That's just what I expected. You have to accept me just as I am. This shirt fits just right. She called him a liar and told him he was just like all the other men she'd met. He was just here a minute ago. She had just returned when he entered. I was just going to telephone you! She's just finishing a letter, and she'll be with you shortly. I arrived just in time to see him win.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The pandemic, its economic impacts, and the social and racial awakening that marked this year have driven corporate leaders to seek a more just form of capitalism. Brian Stafford, Fortune, "The challenges of 2020 are making corporate boards stronger and better," 29 Dec. 2020 Instead, when other kids talk about Santa, my 6-year-old just smiles and nods politely, or occasionally plays along. Jessica Mccrory Calarco, The Atlantic, "The Real Problem With the ‘Naughty List’," 24 Dec. 2020 The Bulldogs canceled their showdown with Baylor on Dec. 5 just hours before tipoff because a player and a staffer tested positive for COVID-19. John Marshall, chicagotribune.com, "College basketball rankings: Gonzaga strengthens its grip on No. 1 spot, while Michigan State drops 8 spots after loss to Northwestern," 21 Dec. 2020 Not since Muhammad Ali has the country seen an athlete sacrifice so much for a just cause. Lorenzo Reyes, USA TODAY, "LeBron James, Naomi Osaka and Dak Prescott: 20 sports figures who made the world a better place in 2020," 18 Dec. 2020 In a just world, all of this official malpractice, particularly on the immigration front, would be assiduously investigated and its perpetrators dragged before some tribunal. Felipe De La Hoz, The New Republic, "Trump’s Most Vicious Cultists Aren’t Done With America," 18 Dec. 2020 This iconic unisex fleece hoodie is a staple of athleisure, but it was designed with more than just style in mind. Lindsay Tigar, CNN Underscored, "Health and fitness gift ideas for anyone obsessed with working out," 17 Dec. 2020 There can be a balance there based on just experience levels. Ben Goessling, Star Tribune, "Vikings defensive backs coach Daronte Jones charts his own course," 12 Dec. 2020 This is an easy way to create height and visual variance with just books. oregonlive, "Zooming with the family over the holidays? Style your room with impressive books, plants, collectibles on sale," 12 Dec. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb Someday, perhaps decades from now, a player will be on the verge of passing Curry on the 3-pointers list — just as Curry is about to do to Miller and Allen. Connor Letourneau, SFChronicle.com, "Steph Curry will shatter the NBA record for 3-pointers. Can anyone top him?," 11 Jan. 2021 California’s policy moves are just one example of states in recent months weighing or issuing stricter policies to curb emissions. Abby Smith, Washington Examiner, "Liberal states are Biden’s best partner as he looks to slash emissions quickly," 10 Jan. 2021 Arguably even more sullied are the reputations of Gary Player and Annika Sorenstam, who attended the White House to receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom from the man who just one day earlier had incited the mob that killed a police officer. Eamon Lynch, Detroit Free Press, "Donald Trump is a scar on the game of golf: Opinion," 10 Jan. 2021 During the quarantine, players will be allowed to practice for only two hours each day, initially with just one practice partner and then with two more in the second week. New York Times, "Tennis Players Mull Competition or Rest at Start of New Season," 10 Jan. 2021 The Voice debuted at No. 46 on the chart dated Jan. 2, following just one day of activity, as the album was released on Thursday, Dec. 24 (the final day of the Jan. 2 chart’s tracking week). Keith Caulfield, Billboard, "Taylor Swift's 'Evermore' Back at No. 1 for Third Week on Billboard 200 Chart," 10 Jan. 2021 The Cowboys are trying to replace Mike Nolan, who was fired on Friday after just one season on the job. Calvin Watkins, Dallas News, "Cowboys conduct pair of interviews for vacant defensive coordinator position, source says," 10 Jan. 2021 The video goes on to show Trebek with his kids on set, flying airplanes, goofing off, and just generally being one of the best hosts in television history. Laura Furr Mericas, Chron, "This 'Jeopardy!' memorial to Alex Trebek hurts my heart," 9 Jan. 2021 Between Anchorage and Fairbanks, there’s just one flight each day at 2:30 p.m. Scott Mcmurren, Anchorage Daily News, "As vaccine rollout offers hope for a return to normal, bargain airfares beckon to willing travelers," 9 Jan. 2021

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


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

History and Etymology for just

Adjective and Adverb

Middle English, from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French juste, from Latin justus, from jus right, law; akin to Sanskrit yos welfare

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Time Traveler for just

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for just

Last Updated

16 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Just.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/just. Accessed 22 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for just

How to pronounce just (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of just

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: agreeing with what is considered morally right or good
: treating people in a way that is considered morally right
: reasonable or proper


How to pronounce just (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of just (Entry 2 of 2)

: to an exact degree or in an exact manner
: very recently
: at this or that exact moment or time
\ ˈjəst How to pronounce just (audio) \

Kids Definition of just

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : being what is deserved a just punishment
2 : having a foundation in fact or reason : reasonable a just decision
3 : agreeing with a standard of correctness a just price
4 : morally right or good a just cause a just man

Other Words from just

justly adverb



Kids Definition of just (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to an exact degree or in an exact manner The shirt fits just right. You look just like your father.
2 : very recently She just got here.
3 : by a very small amount : with nothing to spare We just managed to fit in his car.
4 : by a very short distance My best friend lives just east of here.
5 : nothing other than He's just a child.
6 : very entry 1 sense 2 My new job is just wonderful.

Legal Definition of just

: conforming to law or to the underlying principles of law: as
a : conforming to reason or a standard of correctness just sanctions cannot be excessive in relation to the offense
b : conforming with what is deemed fair or good the award of attorney's fees was just the application of this rule retroactively is not just

Other Words from just

justly adverb
justness noun

History and Etymology for just

Latin justus lawful, merited, from jus right, law

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