adjective or adverb

left·​ward ˈleft-wərd How to pronounce leftward (audio)
: being at, toward, or to the left

Examples of leftward in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web These parties have not, however, paired their leftward economic shift with a commitment to political liberalism. Sheri Berman, Foreign Affairs, 23 Apr. 2024 In the last five years, as social movements have shifted the Democrats’ message on criminal justice and public safety leftward, the figure whose career seems to speak the most to that conversation has refused to lead it. Astead W. Herndon, New York Times, 10 Oct. 2023 For most of the nation, California is an afterthought in the race for the Republican presidential nomination due to its overwhelmingly leftward leanings, but the state is critical to Trump’s effort to return to the White House. Seema Mehta, Los Angeles Times, 29 Sep. 2023 Unsurprisingly, then, that capacity for decisive impact has not gone unnoticed by Democrats hoping to lock in a key demographic, nor by Republicans worried by the bloc's broadly leftward lean. Rafi Schwartz, The Week, 23 Apr. 2023 Ackman doubled down in a Dec. 3 post on X, adding that the university’s hiring practices has promoted a leftward bias and urged Gay to commission a third-party firm to do an anonymous survey of the Harvard faculty. Janet Lorin, Fortune, 4 Dec. 2023 On the other side of the Bronx River, Mr. Torres, 35, who is gay and Afro-Latino, has staked out a strikingly different project to the right of many of his peers, offering himself as a counterweight to his party’s leftward lurch. Nicholas Fandos, New York Times, 11 Nov. 2023 But with the Academy’s diversity rules considered so easy to meet, combined with Hollywood’s leftward lean, the inclusion standards for best-picture consideration appear to be safe for now. Scott Feinberg, The Hollywood Reporter, 20 July 2023 California, which in the 1990s adopted several anti-immigration measures, is now the most pro-immigration state in the country because of its growing Latino population, grassroots organizing, and the general leftward shift among California Democrats. Richard Feinberg, Foreign Affairs, 22 Feb. 2022

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

Word History

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of leftward was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near leftward

Cite this Entry

“Leftward.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/leftward. Accessed 27 May. 2024.

Kids Definition


adverb or adjective
left·​ward ˈlef-twərd How to pronounce leftward (audio)
: toward or on the left
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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