1 of 2


plural loaves ˈlōvz How to pronounce loaf (audio)
: a shaped or molded mass of bread
: a shaped or molded often symmetrical mass of food
British slang : head, mind


2 of 2


loafed; loafing; loafs

intransitive verb

: to spend time in idleness
Choose the Right Synonym for loaf

idle, loaf, lounge, loll, laze mean to spend time doing nothing.

idle may be used in reference to persons that move lazily or without purpose.

idled the day away

loaf suggests either resting or wandering about as though there were nothing to do.

she does her work and then loafs the rest of the day

lounge, though occasionally used as equal to idle or loaf, typically conveys an additional implication of resting or reclining against a support or of physical comfort and ease in relaxation.

he lounged against the wall

loll also carries an implication of a posture similar to that of lounge, but places greater stress upon an indolent or relaxed attitude.

lolling on the couch

laze usually implies the relaxation of a busy person enjoying a vacation or moments of leisure.

lazed about between appointments

Examples of loaf in a Sentence

Noun slicing a loaf of bread Verb I spent most of the weekend just loafing around the house. the kind of sultry August afternoon that makes you just want to loaf
Recent Examples on the Web
In testing, this curve gave a bit of extra leverage when dealing with tough patches of crust on the bottom of a loaf of bread. Tiffany Hopkins, Bon Appétit, 16 July 2024 So, a loaf of bread in Honolulu will set you back $5.34, compared to $3.66 in Fayetteville, Arkansas. Scott Cohn, CNBC, 12 July 2024
Matthes, an ecologist who works with Friends of the Koala, grew up naming the koalas that loafed around in her backyard. Katherine J. Wu, The Atlantic, 17 June 2024 Days here can start with a character breakfast and a five-minute motor coach ride to the Magic Kingdom and Epcot; or can just as easily be filled loafing around the resort’s own 18-hole golf course, spa, and five-acre water park with slides, a splash zone, lazy river, and an adults-only pool. Nina Kokotas Hahn, Condé Nast Traveler, 18 May 2023 See all Example Sentences for loaf 

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

Word History



Middle English lof, from Old English hlāf; akin to Old High German hleib loaf


probably back-formation from loafer

First Known Use


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


1835, in the meaning defined above

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

Dictionary Entries Near loaf

Cite this Entry

“Loaf.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/loaf. Accessed 23 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition


1 of 2 noun
plural loaves ˈlōvz How to pronounce loaf (audio)
: a usually oblong mass of bread
: a dish (as of meat) baked in the form of a loaf


2 of 2 verb
: to spend time idly or lazily


Old English hlāf "loaf of bread" — related to lady, lord see Word Histories at lady, lord

More from Merriam-Webster on loaf

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