open

adjective
\ ˈō-pən How to pronounce open (audio) , -pᵊm \
opener\ ˈōp-​nər How to pronounce open (audio) , ˈō-​pə-​ \; openest\ ˈōp-​nəst How to pronounce open (audio) , ˈō-​pə-​ \

Definition of open

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : having no enclosing or confining barrier : accessible on all or nearly all sides cattle grazing on an open range
2a(1) : being in a position or adjustment to permit passage : not shut or locked an open door
(2) : having a barrier (such as a door) so adjusted as to allow passage the house was open
b : having the lips parted stood there with his mouth wide open
c : not buttoned or zipped an open shirt
3a : completely free from concealment : exposed to general view or knowledge their hostilities eventually erupted with open war
b : exposed or vulnerable to attack or question : subject open to doubt
c : being an operation or surgical procedure in which an incision is made such that the tissues are fully exposed
4a : not covered with a top, roof, or lid an open car her eyes were open
b : having no protective covering open wiring
5a : having the skin cracked, cut, or broken so that underlying tissue is exposed abrasions, lacerations, and other open wounds — see also open fracture
b of a head injury : marked by fracture or penetration of the skull
6 : not restricted to a particular group or category of participants open to the public open housing : such as
a : enterable by both amateur (see amateur sense 1) and professional (see professional entry 1 sense 2a) contestants an open tournament
b : enterable by a registered voter regardless of political affiliation an open primary
7a : presenting no obstacle to passage or view : : not enclosed, obstructed, or filled with objects the open road open country — see also open water
b of large bodies of water : away from the coastal regions : pelagic fish of the open ocean In open seas, the smaller the ship, the more motion you can expect.— Matt Hannafin et al.
8 : having the parts or surfaces laid out in an expanded position : spread out : unfolded an open book
9a(1) : low sense 15 an open vowel
(2) : formed with the tongue in a lower position Italian has an open and a close e
b(1) : having clarity and resonance unimpaired by undue tension or constriction of the throat an open vocal tone
(2) of a tone : produced by an open string or on a wind instrument by the lip without the use of slides, valves, or keys
10a : available to follow or make use of the only course open to us
b : not taken up with duties or engagements keep an hour open on Friday
c : not finally decided : subject to further consideration the salary is open an open question
d : available for a qualified applicant : vacant the job is still open
e : remaining available for use or filling until canceled an open order for more items
f : available for future purchase these items are in open stock
g : available for breeding : not now pregnant an open heifer
h computers : not proprietary : available to third party developers But while IBM pushes Notes, a proprietary technology created in the 1980s, a raft of new and much smaller rivals is plying the "open" technology of the 1990s: software on the World Wide Web, the fastest growing part of the Internet.— Bart Ziegler — compare open-source
11a : characterized by ready accessibility and usually generous attitude: such as
(1) : generous in giving
(2) : willing to hear and consider or to accept and deal with : responsive open to an offer open to suggestion
(3) : free from reserve or pretense : frank was open about his personal life
(4) of a relationship : not restricted to one partner at a time by mutual agreement — see also open marriage
b : accessible to the influx of new factors (such as foreign goods) an open market
12a : having openings, interruptions, or spaces open mesh : such as
(1) : being porous (see porous sense 2a) and friable open soil
(2) : sparsely distributed : scattered open population
(3) of a compound : having components (see component entry 1 sense 1) separated by a space in writing or printing (such as opaque projector)
b : not made up of a continuous closed circuit (see circuit entry 1 sense 2a) of channels the insect circulatory system is open
13a of an organ pipe : not stopped at the top
b of a string on a musical instrument : not stopped by the finger
14 : being in operation an open microphone especially : ready for business, patronage, or use the store is open from 9 to 5 the new highway will be open next week
15a(1) : characterized by lack of effective regulation of various commercial enterprises (see enterprise sense 2) an open town
(2) : not repressed (see repress sense 1) by legal controls open gambling
b : free from checking or hampering restraints an open economy
c : relatively unguarded by opponents passed to an open teammate
16 : having been opened by a first ante, bet, or bid the bidding is open
17 of punctuation : characterized by sparing use especially of the comma when possible without causing misinterpretation
18 mathematics
a : containing none of its endpoints an open interval
b : being a set or composed of sets each point of which has a neighborhood all of whose points are contained in the set the interior of a sphere is an open set
19a : being an incomplete electrical circuit
b : not allowing the flow of electricity an open switch
20 of a universe : having insufficient mass (see mass entry 2 sense 1c) to halt expansion gravitationally

open

verb
opened\ ˈō-​pənd How to pronounce open (audio) , ˈō-​pᵊmd \; opening\ ˈōp-​niŋ How to pronounce open (audio) , ˈō-​pə-​ \

Definition of open (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1a : to move (something, such as a door) from a closed position
b : to make available for entry or passage by turning back (something, such as a barrier) or removing (something, such as a cover or an obstruction)
2a : to make available for or active in a regular function open a new store
b : to make accessible for a particular purpose opened new land for settlement
c : to initiate access to (a computer file) prior to use
3a : to disclose or expose to view : reveal
b : to make more discerning or responsive : enlighten must open our minds to the problems
c : to bring into view or come in sight of by changing position
4a : to make an opening in opened the boil
b : to loosen and make less compact open the soil
5 : to spread out : unfold opened the book
6a : to enter upon : begin opened the meeting
b : to commence action in a card game by making (a first bid), putting a first bet in (the pot), or playing (a card or suit) as first lead
7 : to restore or recall (something, such as an order) from a finally determined state to a state in which the parties are free to prosecute or oppose

intransitive verb

1 : to become open the office opened early
2a : to spread out : expand the wound opened under the strain
b : to become disclosed a beautiful vista opened before us
3 : to become enlightened or responsive
4 : to give access the rooms open onto a hall
5 : speak out sense 2 finally he opened freely on the subject
6a : to begin a course or activity
b : to make a bet, bid, or lead in commencing a round or hand of a card game
7 : to provide the opening performance of a show before the main event

open

noun

Definition of open (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : opening
2 : open and unobstructed space: such as
a : open air
b : open water
3 : an open contest, competition, or tournament
4 : a public or unconcealed state or position

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from open

Adjective

open adverb
openly \ ˈō-​pən-​lē How to pronounce open (audio) \ adverb
openness \ ˈō-​pə(n)-​nəs How to pronounce open (audio) \ noun

Verb

openability \ ˌōp-​nə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce open (audio) , ˌō-​pə-​ \ noun
openable \ ˈōp-​nə-​bəl How to pronounce open (audio) , ˈō-​pə-​ \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for open

Synonyms: Adjective

Synonyms: Verb

Synonyms: Noun

Antonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Verb

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Choose the Right Synonym for open

Adjective

frank, candid, open, plain mean showing willingness to tell what one feels or thinks. frank stresses lack of shyness or secretiveness or of evasiveness from considerations of tact or expedience. frank discussions candid suggests expression marked by sincerity and honesty especially in offering unwelcome criticism or opinion. a candid appraisal open implies frankness but suggests more indiscretion than frank and less earnestness than candid. open in saying what they think plain suggests outspokenness and freedom from affectation or subtlety in expression. plain talk

liable, open, exposed, subject, prone, susceptible, sensitive mean being by nature or through circumstances likely to experience something adverse. liable implies a possibility or probability of incurring something because of position, nature, or particular situation. liable to get lost open stresses a lack of barriers preventing incurrence. a claim open to question exposed suggests lack of protection or powers of resistance against something actually present or threatening. exposed to infection subject implies an openness for any reason to something that must be suffered or undergone. all reports are subject to review prone stresses natural tendency or propensity to incur something. prone to delay susceptible implies conditions existing in one's nature or individual constitution that make incurrence probable. very susceptible to flattery sensitive implies a readiness to respond to or be influenced by forces or stimuli. unduly sensitive to criticism

Examples of open in a Sentence

Adjective The door suddenly swung open. You left the blinds wide open. The meat was roasted over an open fire. I was so tired that I couldn't keep my eyes open. Don't chew with your mouth open. staring with her eyes wide open There's already an open jar of pickles in the refrigerator. They kept the road open throughout the winter. Verb This door is hard to open. Open the door!” shouted the police officer. Would you mind if I opened a window? The car door opened and a beautiful woman stepped out. The door opened and closed so quietly that I didn't notice he had come in the room. This drawer is stuck. It just won't open! She comes home, turns on the TV, and starts opening her mail. She opened her eyes and smiled at me. I opened my umbrella and stepped out into the rain. Open your mouth wide for me,” said the dentist. Noun a daguerreotype of a cowboy whose face is roughened from a hard life in the open
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The market will be open through the weekend, Friday-Sunday, Sept. 17-19, at WestWorld of Scottsdale. Kimi Robinson, The Arizona Republic, 11 Sep. 2021 Some restaurants are open earlier than regular hours on game day and some may take reservations. Sue Selasky, Detroit Free Press, 11 Sep. 2021 The real estate development firm says the center should be open in the fall of 2022. William Thornton | Wthornton@al.com, al, 10 Sep. 2021 Attention to the slow pace of school reopenings has become a less prominent issue in the final stretch of the recall campaign, in part, because schools are now open again. Dustin Gardiner, San Francisco Chronicle, 10 Sep. 2021 The 174-room Hoxton is already open, built in a 10-story Renaissance Revival-style former office building erected in the 1920s that was once the headquarters of the Los Angeles Railway streetcar line. Roger Vincent Staff Writer, Los Angeles Times, 10 Sep. 2021 Guantanamo Bay is still open and there are still people there. Bilge Ebiri, Vulture, 10 Sep. 2021 The limited duration of the shop being open creates a sense of interest and urgency that drives shoppers to show up or run the risk of missing out entirely. Expert Panel, Forbes, 10 Sep. 2021 The governor’s education policy adviser said last week that applications for 454 children had been completed and another 2,255 started in the first 13 days the application window was open, with 69 approved. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, 10 Sep. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb With Deshaun Watson out, Tyrod Taylor’s steady play and veteran leadership helped the Houston Texans open the season with a surprising lopsided victory. cleveland, 13 Sep. 2021 That said, the change at offensive coordinator, from Smith to Todd Downing, and some question marks along the offensive line should open the door for another contender to emerge. C.j. Doon, baltimoresun.com, 12 Sep. 2021 Sunday will also bring reminders of an old era, as the Lions open their 30th season since the franchise’s last playoff victory, a 38-6 win over the Dallas Cowboys at the Pontiac Silverdome on Jan. 5, 1992, in the NFC divisional round. Ryan Ford, Detroit Free Press, 12 Sep. 2021 Remember last week, when Auburn’s offense was firing on all cylinders, scoring touchdowns on five consecutive drives to open the game and putting points on the board on each of its first eight possessions against Akron? Tom Green | Tgreen@al.com, al, 11 Sep. 2021 On the other side of the doors, which open automatically upon the driver’s approach, the interior is dressed in white and dark blue with rose-gold accents. Viju Mathew, Robb Report, 10 Sep. 2021 But as brick-and-mortar businesses open back up and pandemic restrictions ease or disappear altogether, these businesses are once again looking to draw in more customers. Expert Panel, Forbes, 10 Sep. 2021 Currently, most are controlled by muscle function — amputees have the ability to open and close a hand, for example, but can't actually feel anything. Stephanie Emma Pfeffer, PEOPLE.com, 10 Sep. 2021 Tuesday, Concord-Carlisle at Westford (girls), 4:15 p.m. — The 2019 D1 state champion Patriots open their season and look to defend the title after a one-year postseason hiatus. BostonGlobe.com, 10 Sep. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun With two outs and first base open, Mets manager Luis Rojas made the questionable decision to let Díaz face De La Cruz, who raised his batting average to .342, rather than walk him and pitch instead to lefty-swinging Lewin Díaz, a .108 hitter. sun-sentinel.com, 9 Sep. 2021 Michaels’ longtime friend Paul Simon also performed in the cold open. Andy Greene, Rolling Stone, 8 Sep. 2021 Pena walks up to a black SUV with its trunk open and greets the volunteers. Leila Saidane, Dallas News, 8 July 2021 The Dow Jones industrial average shed 1.3 percent, trading above 34,200, shortly after the open. Washington Post, 8 July 2021 The man said his black open framed trailer was missing. cleveland, 27 Aug. 2021 With first base open, Taylor North elected to face Keanu and won; Thorning recorded his third consecutive strikeout to end the inning. Brett Crossley, Detroit Free Press, 26 Aug. 2021 The vehicle was found several days later running on the side of the road with the sunroof open. Evan Casey, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 9 Aug. 2021 The midfielder’s second goal of the season came on the end of a tidy one-two exchange with winger Santi Moar that sliced RGV’s defense open. Theo Mackie, The Arizona Republic, 31 July 2021

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

See More

First Known Use of open

Adjective

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

Verb

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

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for open

Adjective, Verb, and Noun

Middle English, from Old English; akin to Old High German offan open, Old English ūp up

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About open

Time Traveler for open

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near open

opelu

open

open a can of worms

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for open

Last Updated

13 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Open.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/open. Accessed 19 Sep. 2021.

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

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for open

open

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of open

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: not covering an opening
: having an opening that is not covered
: not sealed or locked

open

verb

English Language Learners Definition of open (Entry 2 of 3)

: to move (a door, window, etc.) so that an opening is no longer covered
: to move and no longer cover an opening
: to cause (something) to no longer be covered, sealed, or blocked

open

noun

English Language Learners Definition of open (Entry 3 of 3)

: a competition (such as a major golf tournament or tennis tournament) that allows both professionals and amateurs to participate
: an area or place without walls, barriers, etc. : an area or place that is not covered or enclosed
: a situation in which something (such as a feeling) is no longer hidden or kept secret

open

adjective
\ ˈō-pən How to pronounce open (audio) \

Kids Definition of open

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : not shut or blocked : not closed an open window open books
2 : not sealed, locked, or fastened an open zipper There's an open bottle of ketchup in the refrigerator.
3 : easy to enter, get through, or see open country
4 : ready to consider appeals or ideas an open mind
5 : not drawn together : spread out an open flower open umbrellas
6 : not enclosed or covered an open boat an open fire
7 : not secret : public They have an open dislike for one another.
8 : to be used, entered, or taken part in by all an open meeting It was an open race—any number of dogs could be entered.— John Reynolds Gardiner, Stone Fox
9 : not decided or settled an open question

Other Words from open

openly adverb
openness noun

open

verb
opened; opening

Kids Definition of open (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : to change or move from a shut condition Sit down and open a book. The door opened. She opened her eyes.
2 : to clear by or as if by removing something in the way Workers were sent to open a road blocked with snow.
3 : to make or become ready for use They plan to open a store. The office opens at eight.
4 : to give access The rooms open onto a hall.
5 : begin sense 1, start Police have opened an investigation. They opened fire on the enemy.

Other Words from open

opener \ ˈō-​pə-​nər , ˈōp-​nər \ noun

open

noun

Kids Definition of open (Entry 3 of 3)

: space that is not enclosed or covered : outdoors Some slept in a cabin while others slept in the open.

open

adjective
\ ˈō-pən How to pronounce open (audio) \

Medical Definition of open

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a(1) : having the skin cracked, cut, or broken so that underlying tissue is exposed abrasions, lacerations, and other open wounds — see also open fracture
(2) of a head injury : marked by fracture or penetration of the skull
b : not involving or encouraging a covering (as by bandages or overgrowth of tissue) or enclosure open treatment of burns
c : being an operation or surgical procedure in which an incision is made such that the tissues and organs are fully exposed — compare open-heart
2 : shedding the infectious agent to the exterior open tuberculosis — compare closed sense 3
3a : unobstructed by congestion or occlusion open sinuses
b : not constipated open bowels
4 : using a minimum of physical restrictions and custodial restraints on the freedom of movement of the patients or inmates an open psychiatric ward

open

verb
opened; opening

Medical Definition of open (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to make available for entry or passage by removing (as a cover) or clearing away (as an obstruction)
b : to free (a body passage) of congestion or occlusion an inhalator for opening congested nasal passages open clogged arteries
2 : to make one or more openings in opened the boil

intransitive verb

: to spread out the wound opened

Keep scrolling for more

open

adjective

Legal Definition of open

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : exposed to general view or knowledge : free from concealment an open, notorious, continuous, and adverse use of the property an open and obvious danger

Note: When a defect, hazard, or condition is open such that a reasonable person under the circumstances should have recognized the danger posed by it, a defendant is usually relieved of liability for failure to warn.

2 : not restricted to a particular group or category of participants specifically : enterable by a registered voter regardless of political affiliation an open primary
3a : being in effect or operation an open mine a bench warrant still open
b : available for use an open toll road
c : not finally determined, decided, or settled : subject to further consideration an open question
d : remaining effective or available for use until canceled an open insurance contract
4 : not repressed or regulated by legal controls a state with open gambling

open

verb
opened; opening

Legal Definition of open (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to begin the process of open the succession
2a : to make the statement by which the trial of (a case) is begun and put before the court
b : to be the first to speak in summing up or arguing (a case)
3 : to restore or recall (as an order, rule, or judgment) from a finally determined state to a state in which the parties are free to prosecute or oppose by further proceedings

intransitive verb

1 : to begin action : commence on some course or activity the stock opened at par
2 : to begin the trial of a case defendant…has the option of presenting an opening statement immediately after plaintiff opens— J. H. Friedenthal et al.

More from Merriam-Webster on open

Nglish: Translation of open for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of open for Arabic Speakers

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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