\ ˈlōf How to pronounce loaf (audio) \
plural loaves\ ˈlōvz How to pronounce loaf (audio) \

Definition of loaf

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a shaped or molded mass of bread
2 : a shaped or molded often symmetrical mass of food
3 British slang : head, mind


loafed; loafing; loafs

Definition of loaf (Entry 2 of 2)

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: Noun Their standard offerings include an all-wheat French Country loaf, French Country with olives, walnut raisin, German rye, tourte de seigle, German pumpernickel, multigrain sandwich bread, and six packs of woodfired Bavarian pretzels. Blaine Callahan, Hartford Courant, 8 Sep. 2022 Use a bread knife to slice 1-inch pieces accordion-style—leaving about ¾ inches connected at the bottom of the loaf. Karla Walsh, Better Homes & Gardens, 24 Aug. 2022 Simply set your loaf pan within a 9x13 pan and bring a kettle of water to a boil. Bon Appétit, 12 Apr. 2022 Simply stack ingredients onto one big loaf, slice and enjoy! Becca Miller, Good Housekeeping, 31 Aug. 2022 Or for an even more fitting base, seek out a long, thin loaf of Cuban bread to slice into small ½-inch thick slabs. Karla Walsh, Better Homes & Gardens, 24 Aug. 2022 Make sure to use crusty bread with a rustic, sturdy crumb; a soft, yielding loaf will lead to a soggy, dense pudding. BostonGlobe.com, 24 Mar. 2021 Bakalov's Bee is foreign in more ways than one, an anxious interloper who works at a GameHut and naively presents a loaf of homemade zucchini bread to the host. Leah Greenblatt, EW.com, 5 Aug. 2022 Swing by the café, get lunch, then go to the bakery next door and get a loaf of bread to bring home. Blaine Callahan, Hartford Courant, 3 Aug. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Place on the table with a nice warm country loaf to rip into and let the good times begin. Morgan Hines, USA TODAY, 28 Sep. 2022 Using two spatulas, transfer loaf to a serving platter; cut into eight slices. Bhg Test Kitchen, Better Homes & Gardens, 1 Sep. 2022 There obviously are other motives for Fox’s bakers, the Murdochs, to knead more yeast into the Brady loaf. Nick Canepacolumnist, San Diego Union-Tribune, 14 May 2022 The mixture of Dungeness and Jonah crabmeat was unseasoned and seemed scant compared to the engorged sourdough loaf the mixture was swiped onto. Soleil Ho, San Francisco Chronicle, 18 May 2022 What to order: The country loaf (their version of traditional sourdough), apple cheddar scones, chocolate croissants and the addictive sablé shortbread cookies. San Diego Union-Tribune, 14 Jan. 2022 My dinner choice was a constant of shrimp and grits served with a freshly baked crusty bread loaf with drawn garlic butter to drizzle. Dalton Ross, EW.com, 15 Dec. 2021 Scoring sourdough directs the expansion and shape of your final bread loaf by creating intentional weak spots. Sheena Chihak, Better Homes & Gardens, 2 Sep. 2021 For many years remote work had something of a stigma associated with it, as managers believed that being out of sight would mean people would loaf off and productivity would fall. Adi Gaskell, Forbes, 31 May 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'loaf.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of loaf


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


1835, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for loaf


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


probably back-formation from loafer

Learn More About loaf

Time Traveler for loaf

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near loaf

load water plane


loaf cake

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for loaf

Last Updated

30 Sep 2022

Cite this Entry

“Loaf.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/loaf. Accessed 7 Oct. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for loaf


\ ˈlōf How to pronounce loaf (audio) \
plural loaves\ ˈlōvz \

Kids Definition of loaf

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a usually oblong mass of bread
2 : a dish (as of meat) baked in an oblong form


loafed; loafing

Kids Definition of loaf (Entry 2 of 2)

: to spend time idly or lazily During vacation I will loaf on the beach.

Other Words from loaf

loafer noun

More from Merriam-Webster on loaf

Nglish: Translation of loaf for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of loaf for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about loaf


Test Your Vocabulary

Words Named After People

  • name tags
  • Namesake of the leotard, Jules Léotard had what profession?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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