motion

noun
mo·​tion | \ ˈmō-shən How to pronounce motion (audio) \

Definition of motion

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : an act, process, or instance of changing place : movement a pendulum in motion
b : an active or functioning state or condition set the divorce proceedings in motion
2 : an impulse or inclination of the mind or will the fundamental motions of humanity to good or evil— T. S. Eliot
3a : a proposal for action especially : a formal proposal made in a deliberative assembly made a motion that the meeting be adjourned
b : an application made to a court or judge to obtain an order, ruling, or direction His motion for a new trial was denied.

4 obsolete

a : a puppet show
b : puppet
5 : mechanism
6a : an act or instance of moving the body or its parts : gesture signaled with a motion of his arm
b motions plural : activities, movements taking advantage of the night to conceal his motions
7 : melodic change of pitch
in motion
American Football, of an offensive player : running parallel to the line of scrimmage before the snap

motion

verb
motioned; motioning\ ˈmō-​sh(ə-​)niŋ How to pronounce motioning (audio) \

Definition of motion (Entry 2 of 3)

intransitive verb

: to signal by a movement or gesture the pitcher motioned to the catcher

transitive verb

: to direct by a motion motioned me to the seat

Motion

biographical name
Mo·​tion | \ ˈmō-shən How to pronounce Motion (audio) \

Definition of Motion (Entry 3 of 3)

Sir Andrew 1952–     British poet; poet laureate (1999–2009)

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Other Words from motion

Noun

motional \ ˈmō-​shnəl How to pronounce motional (audio) , -​shə-​nᵊl \ adjective
motionless \ ˈmō-​shən-​ləs How to pronounce motionless (audio) \ adjective
motionlessly adverb
motionlessness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for motion

Synonyms: Noun

move, movement, shift, shifting, stir, stirring

Synonyms: Verb

beckon, flag, gesture, signal, wave

Antonyms: Noun

motionlessness

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Examples of motion in a Sentence

Noun

She has a simple golf swing with no wasted motion. the rhythmic motions of the waves He caught the ball and flipped it back to me in one fluid motion. The wax should be applied using a circular motion. He made hand motions to get our attention. She made a motion calling for the repeal of the law. Her motion was voted on. His lawyer filed a motion for a mistrial. The judge denied a motion to delay the hearing.

Verb

The guard motioned us through the gate. She motioned to her assistant. She motioned at the empty chair beside her and told me to sit down.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

In a motion filed Friday, lawyers for Huffman asked for one year of probation, 250 hours of community service, and a $20,000 fine. Shelley Murphy, BostonGlobe.com, "Prosecutors seek a 1-month jail sentence for Felicity Huffman," 6 Sep. 2019 Also Wednesday, Leinenweber set a hearing for Sept. 18 for a motion filed by Kelly’s team asking him to reconsider bond for the singer. Jason Meisner, chicagotribune.com, "Chicago trial for R. Kelly on federal sex abuse-related charges tentatively set for next April," 3 Sep. 2019 The court denied the motion for a mistrial and dismissed the juror who received the text message from a friend. Lauren Castle, azcentral, "Man gets new trial after local blogger posts video of jury online," 29 Aug. 2019 His lawyer, Mark Conan of Orlando, asked Circuit Judge G. Richard Singeltary to relax the pre-trial restrictions in a court motion filed earlier this month. Stephen Hudak, orlandosentinel.com, "Facing child porn charges, retired FBI agent wants contact with grandkids," 27 Aug. 2019 Kala Kachmar, @NewsQuip The judge presiding over an Indiana trial involving a man accused of raping, murdering and eating parts of his ex-girlfriend's body decided Thursday to grant the defense's motion for a mistrial. Kala Kachmar, The Courier-Journal, "Judge grants mistrial in case of accused cannibal Joseph Oberhansley," 21 Aug. 2019 Sports, a motion filed in federal court by Michael Avenatti alleged that Nike was willing to direct $20,000 to Langford and $35,000 to former Duke star Zion Williamson, potentially to bring both players into Nike’s grassroots program. Zach Osterman, Indianapolis Star, "Indiana has 'no concerns' about Romeo Langford eligibility amid latest Nike allegations," 15 Aug. 2019 The district court ruled that Moore failed to prove his case and granted the city’s motion for summary judgment in its favor. Sarah Horner, Twin Cities, "State appeals court finds New Brighton police officer may have been subject to retaliation by city," 29 July 2019 Dispute over cellphone evidence Dane County Circuit Judge William Hanrahan denied a motion for a forensic analysis of the women's phones. Bruce Vielmetti, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Credibility and consent at issue in sexual assault trial of former Badger Quintez Cephus," 29 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Scarpa’s attorney motioned for the court to lessen the charge against Scarpa to gross vehicular manslaughter. Julia Sclafani, Daily Pilot, "Man charged with murder in death of Costa Mesa fire captain had 7 substances in his blood, expert testifies," 22 Aug. 2019 Imagine a player like that motioned into the backfield before the snap and then running a wheel route up the seam. Dieter Kurtenbach, The Mercury News, "Kurtenbach: Two rookies might take the 49ers’ offense to the next level in 2019," 11 Aug. 2019 While sitting on the court, a number of Raptors fans could be seen and heard applauding and cheering, which infuriated Durant’s teammates and even had the Raptors’ players motioning to the crowd to stop. Michael Lerseth, SFChronicle.com, "Kevin Durant injury fallout: Raptors fan’s GoFundMe page benefits KD charity," 12 June 2019 The man pulled up his shirt and motioned to his waistline at what Beltran assumed was a weapon. Los Angeles Times, "Two hours of terror in Orange County, with no easy answers," 9 Aug. 2019 If he can be motioned out of the backfield and win match-ups downfield, he will be targeted. Ryan O'halloran, The Denver Post, "Broncos Position Preview: Committee approach appears to be plan at running back," 11 July 2019 First, the Tigers' coach motioned for the media to gather around him as quickly as possible. Joseph Goodman, AL.com, "Bruce Pearl and Auburn are finally back in the NCAA Tournament but storm clouds linger," 14 Mar. 2018 When Bautista Agut's shot hit the net tape, popped in the air and slid over for a winner that tied their semifinal at a set apiece, Djokovic motioned to the roaring fans, sarcastically encouraging folks to get louder. Howard Fendrich, baltimoresun.com, "Eleven years after epic, Roger Federer tops Rafael Nadal in Wimbledon semis," 12 July 2019 When Bautista Agut’s shot hit the net tape, popped in the air and slid over for a winner that tied their semifinal at a set apiece, Djokovic motioned to the roaring fans, sarcastically encouraging folks to get louder. Howard Fendrich, BostonGlobe.com, "Roger Federer outlasts Rafael Nadal, advances to Wimbledon men’s final," 12 July 2019

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1747, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for motion

Noun and Verb

Middle English mocioun, from Anglo-French motion, from Latin motion-, motio movement, from movēre to move

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Statistics for motion

Last Updated

9 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for motion

The first known use of motion was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for motion

motion

noun

English Language Learners Definition of motion

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an act or process of moving
: a movement of your body or of a part of your body
: a formal suggestion or proposal that is made at a meeting for something to be done

motion

verb

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

: to make a movement of your hand, head, etc., that tells someone to move or act in a certain way

motion

noun
mo·​tion | \ ˈmō-shən How to pronounce motion (audio) \

Kids Definition of motion

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an act or process of changing place or position : movement We felt the swaying motion of the train.
2 : a movement of the body or its parts … the motion of his arms was not unlike the flapping of a pair of wings.— Washington Irving, “Sleepy Hollow”
3 : a formal plan or suggestion for action offered according to the rules of a meeting She made a motion to adjourn.

Other Words from motion

motionless \ -​ləs \ adjective She stood motionless.

motion

verb
motioned; motioning

Kids Definition of motion (Entry 2 of 2)

: to direct or signal by a movement or sign Instantly she set the bird down and motioned everyone away …— Carolyn Keene, The Double Jinx Mystery

motion

noun
mo·​tion | \ ˈmō-shən How to pronounce motion (audio) \

Medical Definition of motion

1 : an act, process, or instance of changing place : movement
2a : an evacuation of the bowels
b : the matter evacuated often used in plural blood in the motionsLancet

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motion

noun
mo·​tion

Legal Definition of motion

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a proposal for action especially : a formal proposal made in a legislative assembly made a motion to refer the bill to committee
2a : an application made to a court or judge to obtain an order, ruling, or direction a motion to arrest judgment also : a document containing such an application
b : the initiative of a court to issue an order, ruling, or direction the court is given discretion to order a pretrial conference either on its own motion or at the request of a party— J. H. Friedenthal et al.
motion for a more definite statement
: a motion that is filed before an answer and that requests the court to order the plaintiff to clarify allegations in the complaint because the claims are so vague or ambiguous that an answer cannot reasonably be framed
motion for judgment on the pleadings
: a motion made after pleadings have been entered that requests the court to issue a judgment at that point — compare summary judgment at judgment sense 1a

Note: Under Rule 12(d) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, if matters outside of the pleadings are presented to the court when a motion for judgment on the pleadings is made, the motion will be treated as a motion for summary judgment.

motion in limine \ -​in-​ˈli-​mə-​nē \
: a usually pretrial motion that requests the court to issue an interlocutory order which prevents an opposing party from introducing or referring to potentially irrelevant, prejudicial, or otherwise generally inadmissible evidence until the court has finally ruled on its admissibility
motion to strike
1 : a motion in a civil trial to remove from a pleading an insufficient defense or any redundant, immaterial, impertinent, or scandalous matter
2 : a motion in a criminal trial to exclude evidence from the record
motion to suppress
: a pretrial motion requesting the court to exclude evidence that was obtained illegally and especially in violation of Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth Amendment protections
omnibus motion \ ˈäm-​ni-​bəs-​ \
: a motion that makes multiple requests filing an omnibus motion to dismiss and for a more definite statementDepartment of Ins. of Florida v. Coopers & Lybrand, 570 So. 2d 369 (1990)

motion

verb

Legal Definition of motion (Entry 2 of 2)

: move motioned for a summary judgment

History and Etymology for motion

Noun

Anglo-French, from Latin motion-, motio movement, from movēre to move

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More from Merriam-Webster on motion

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with motion

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for motion

Spanish Central: Translation of motion

Nglish: Translation of motion for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of motion for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about motion

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