adverb or adjective

: outside the prescribed or conventional boundaries or limits
If the Frisbee hits the ground or soars out-of-bounds, it changes hands.John Bowermaster
Only a few yards over the green are out-of-bounds markers.Jeff Gerth
Our slate is going to have edgier films that aren't exactly out-of-bounds for children, but that are really made for more sophisticated audiences.David Hochman

Examples of out-of-bounds in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Where needed, pruning can be performed at this time to remove out-of-bounds shoots and reduce plant height and width. Tom MacCubbin, Orlando Sentinel, 6 July 2024 The lighttpd flaw is what’s known as a heap out-of-bounds read vulnerability that's caused by bugs in HTTP request parsing logic. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, 11 Apr. 2024 Before a Spurs baseline out-of-bounds play, the two got tangled up and Wembanyama fell. Bennett Durando, The Denver Post, 14 Apr. 2024 Kickoffs short of the landing zone are treated the same as out-of-bounds kickoffs, and they’re spotted at the 40. Sam Farmer, Los Angeles Times, 26 Mar. 2024 There are multiple ways to access the backcountry, such as snowmobiles, helicopters, or even lifts that provide access to out-of-bounds terrain, but many people choose the human-powered route, hiking uphill with their skis or snowboards before skiing or riding back down to their starting point. Josh Laskin, Condé Nast Traveler, 20 Mar. 2024 But Dallas scored on sideline out-of-bounds plays after using Jason Kidd’s last two timeouts, and Murray missed a jumper from the elbow with 2.8 seconds left that set up Irving’s finale. Bennett Durando, The Denver Post, 17 Mar. 2024 Los Angeles stopped the clock initially by challenging an out-of-bounds call, ultimately winning the challenge because both Andrew Wiggins and Jaxson Hayes simultaneously tapped the ball out of play. Danny Emerman, The Mercury News, 17 Mar. 2024 After a timeout, Charlotte’s Igor Milicic Jr. calmly sank a 3-pointer off an out-of-bounds play to tie the game. Langston Wertz Jr., Charlotte Observer, 24 Feb. 2024

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

Word History

First Known Use

1798, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of out-of-bounds was in 1798

Dictionary Entries Near out-of-bounds

Cite this Entry

“Out-of-bounds.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/out-of-bounds. Accessed 18 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition


adverb or adjective
: outside the limits of the playing area
the pass went out-of-bounds
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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