lo·co·mo·tion | \ˌlō-kə-ˈmō-shən \

Definition of locomotion 

1 : an act or the power of moving from place to place

2 : travel interest in free locomotion and choice of occupation— Zechariah Chafee Jr.

Examples of locomotion in a Sentence

Walking is one form of locomotion.

Recent Examples on the Web

The team created colonies with specific mutations—like varied size and locomotion—and compared them to a control group of bacteria. Meilan Solly, Smithsonian, "This Vibrant Bacteria Could Be Used to “Grow” Iridescent Paint in Any Color," 22 Feb. 2018 Here is a process of locomotion that is absolutely at her command. Aaron Gilbreath, Longreads, "The Wheel, the Woman, and the Human Body," 6 July 2018 Such autonomous decision about locomotion according to the environment is very interesting research. Dani Deahl, The Verge, "This flying ‘dragon’ drone can change shape in midair," 28 June 2018 Also a combination of planticular locomotion, hind feet that can swivel, and extremely creepy/dextrous little fingers. Michael Andor Brodeur, BostonGlobe.com, "From a flipping pancake house to an overstuffed bot," 15 June 2018 Ashley Hammond, an expert on the evolution of locomotion in great apes and early humans, will take up the post on June 1. Michael Balter, Scientific American, "Leading Science Museum Turns the Page on a Prominent #MeToo Case," 21 May 2018 Murphy found more versatile robots with lizard- or snake-like locomotion did best navigating the sand. John Wenz, Popular Mechanics, "Sorry, But R2-D2 and BB-8 Wouldn't Be Too Useful In Real Life," 21 Feb. 2018 To move within and between places does not always involve physical locomotion. Alisha Acquaye, GQ, "How Janelle Monáe (and Black Panther) Travel Through Time and Space," 2 May 2018 Sandals decked with gold-leaf ornaments underscore a fundamental rule of royal locomotion: The king’s foot must never touch the ground or famine will strike, so a spare pair is always at hand. Susan Delson, WSJ, "In Dallas, the Golden Legacy of Ghana," 12 Apr. 2018

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

1646, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for locomotion

Latin locus + English motion

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Statistics for locomotion

Last Updated

4 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for locomotion

The first known use of locomotion was in 1646

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More Definitions for locomotion



English Language Learners Definition of locomotion

: the act or power of moving from place to place


lo·co·mo·tion | \ˌlō-kə-ˈmō-shən \

Kids Definition of locomotion

: the act or power of moving from place to place


lo·co·mo·tion | \ˌlō-kə-ˈmō-shən \

Medical Definition of locomotion 

: an act or the power of moving from place to place : progressive movement (as of an animal body)

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Comments on locomotion

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


a state of commotion or excitement

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