left

adjective
\ ˈleft \

Definition of left 

(Entry 1 of 3)

1a : of, relating to, situated on, or being the side of the body in which the heart is mostly located her left leg

b : done with the left hand a left hook to the jaw

c : located nearer to the left hand than to the right a man's left chest

d(1) : located on the left of an observer facing in the same direction as the object specified stage left the left arm of a chair

(2) : located on the left when facing downstream the left bank of a river

2 often capitalized : of, adhering to, or constituted by the left especially in politics this left government with a cabinet of moderate liberals —F. A. Magruder

left

noun

Definition of left (Entry 2 of 3)

1a : the left hand

b : the location or direction of the left side

c : the part on the left side

d : a turn to the left take a left at the intersection

2a : left field

b : a blow struck with the left fist

3 often capitalized

a : the part of a legislative chamber located to the left of the presiding officer

b : the members of a continental European legislative body occupying the left as a result of holding more radical political views than other members

4 often capitalized

a : those professing views usually characterized by desire to reform or overthrow the established order especially in politics and usually advocating change in the name of the greater freedom or well-being of the common man

b : a radical as distinguished from a conservative position

left

Definition of left (Entry 3 of 3)

past tense and past participle of leave

Keep scrolling for more

Other words from left

Adjective

left adverb

Noun

leftmost \ˈleft-ˌmōst \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for left

Synonyms: Noun

leftism, liberalism

Antonyms: Noun

conservatism, right

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of left in a Sentence

Adjective

He felt a pain in his left side. He hit him with a left hook to the jaw. the left side of the street

Noun

We read from left to right. You'll take two lefts and then a right. He hit him with two quick lefts to the stomach followed by a right to the jaw.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

When Melvin Townes looks in the mirror, his eyes jump to the small scar just below his left eye. Talia Richman, baltimoresun.com, "'I only ever wanted justice,' says 18-year-old allegedly assaulted by Baltimore officer," 14 July 2018 Postproduction involves combining the two video feeds into a single file that includes a left-eye and a right-eye perspective; when viewed through a VR headset, the images combine and appear to be a single 3-D picture. David M. Ewalt, WSJ, "The First Real Boom in Virtual Reality? It’s Pornography.," 11 July 2018 And Bryan Fenkart's Pomatter demonstrates a Chaplinesque physicality that's entertaining if out-of-left-field strange. Tony Adler, Chicago Reader, "In the world of Waitress, almost all sins can be forgiven with a song," 11 July 2018 Instead of shutting down catcher Bobby Wilson, who entered the game with a .141 batting average, Sparkman watched as Wilson roped a double into the left-field corner and drove in his second run of the afternoon. Maria Torres, kansascity, "Unable to keep early lead vs. Twins, Royals drop another series," 11 July 2018 Toles responded with a rocket off the left-field wall. Andy Mccullough, latimes.com, "Kershaw continues to make progress on the mound in Dodgers' 8-2 win over the Padres," 10 July 2018 Gallo said his left eye, which was hit by Delino DeShields' glove during batting practice, was much better. Stefan Stevenson, star-telegram, "Rangers Reaction: Extra-bases and nifty defense signal more progress for Odor," 7 July 2018 One foul ball landed a couple of feet from the left-field line. Bobby Nightengale, Cincinnati.com, "Cincinnati Reds bullpen blows 5-run lead in loss to Chicago Cubs," 7 July 2018 Miami scored an unearned run in the first, and capped a six-run second on Martin Prado's three-run homer off the left-field foul pole. Sun-Sentinel.com, "Marlins melt down as Nats rally from down 9-0, win 14-12 behind Trea Turner's 8 RBI," 5 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

On the left: 138 pounds, complimented all day and propositioned by men and on the cover of a tabloid about diets that work. Blake Bakkila, Health.com, "Lena Dunham Gained 24 Pounds—and Is Happier Than Ever," 10 July 2018 Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s landslide victory in Mexico’s presidential race Sunday night was not just a triumph for the left. Patrick J. Mcdonnell, latimes.com, "In Mexico, a victory at long last for the left and a two-time loser," 2 July 2018 On the eastern edge of Bushwick, the train burst out of the ground, into daylight, and lumbered down a stretch that looked semirural, with cemeteries on the left. William Finnegan, The New Yorker, "Can Andy Byford Save the Subways?," 2 July 2018 The Republican Governors Association has reserved $5 million in ad time in the weeks before the Nov. 6 election and groups on the left are expected to jump in the race too. Patrick Marley, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Scott Walker spends heavily on TV as Democrats scramble to raise cash," 29 June 2018 When people talk about supporting unions as a policy goal for the left, their objectives are often curbing inequality and boosting wages. Livia Gershon, Longreads, "Nurses, Unite!," 28 June 2018 Here’s a look at the origin of what could be a new litmus test for the left, and the arguments for and against Democrats staking out a more extreme position on immigration. Margaret Hartmann, Daily Intelligencer, "‘Abolish ICE’: The Roots of the Left’s New Immigration Rallying Cry," 26 June 2018 For the left, Joel Payne, a Democratic strategist and a black man. Avi Selk, BostonGlobe.com, "‘You’re out of your cotton-picking mind’: A Fox News guest explains hate speech to a black man," 24 June 2018 Trump's refusal to condemn white nationalist violence in Charlottesville was born, in large part, out of his distaste for the political left. Chris Cillizza, CNN, "ABC just took a moral stand on Roseanne. Spoiler alert: Donald Trump won't.," 29 May 2018

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

Adjective

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1b

History and Etymology for left

Adjective

Middle English, from Old English, weak; akin to Middle Low German lucht left; from the left hand's being the weaker in most individuals

Noun

see left entry 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about left

Statistics for left

Last Updated

8 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for left

The first known use of left was in the 13th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for left

left

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of left

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: located on the same side of your body as your heart

: done with your left hand

: located nearer to the left side of your body than to the right

left

noun

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

: a location closer to the left side of your body than to the right : the left side

: a turn or movement toward the left

: a punch made with the left hand

left

adjective
\ ˈleft \

Kids Definition of left

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : located on the same side of the body as the heart the left leg

2 : located nearer to the left side of the body than to the right the left side of the road

Other words from left

left adverb Take one step left.

left

noun

Kids Definition of left (Entry 2 of 3)

: the left side : a part or location on or toward the left side Read from left to right.

left

Kids Definition of left (Entry 3 of 3)

past tense and past participle of leave

left

adjective
\ ˈleft \

Medical Definition of left 

: of, relating to, or being the side of the body in which the heart is mostly located also : located nearer to this side than to the right

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on left

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to make amends

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Musical Words Quiz

  • gramophone
  • Which word describes a musical performance marked by the absence of instrumental accompaniment?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!