verb (1)
\ ˈpōz How to pronounce pose (audio) \
posed; posing

Definition of pose

 (Entry 1 of 3)

transitive verb

1a : to set forth or offer for attention or consideration let me pose a question
b : to come to attention as : present smoking poses a health risk
2a : to put or set in place
b : to place (somone, such as a model) in a studied attitude

intransitive verb

1 : to assume a posture or attitude usually for artistic purposes
2 : to affect an attitude or character usually to deceive or impress posed as a doctor to gain access to the ward



Definition of pose (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : a sustained posture especially : one assumed for artistic effect
2 : an attitude, role, or characteristic assumed for effect


verb (2)
posed; posing

Definition of pose (Entry 3 of 3)

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Choose the Right Synonym for pose


pose, air, airs, affectation, mannerism mean an adopted way of speaking or behaving. pose implies an attitude deliberately assumed in order to impress others. her shyness was just a pose air may suggest natural acquirement through environment or way of life. a traveler's sophisticated air airs always implies artificiality and pretentiousness. snobbish airs affectation applies to a trick of speech or behavior that strikes the observer as insincere. the posh accent is an affectation mannerism applies to an acquired eccentricity that has become a habit. gesturing with a cigarette was her most noticeable mannerism

Examples of pose in a Sentence


The photographs show the models in both clothed and nude poses. Hold that pose. It will make a great photograph. His disapproval of the war looks good to voters, but I bet it's just a pose.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

In addition to showing off the products in a perfectly posed flat lay photo on Instagram, Kylie walked her followers through each of the items on her IG story (while Stormi ate cheerios in the background). De Elizabeth, Teen Vogue, "Everything We Know About Kylie Jenner's Skincare Line," 12 May 2019 Since the royal birth occurred in private, Meghan did not pose with her baby outside of the Lindo Wing like Kate Middleton did with her three children. Marina Liao, Marie Claire, "Meghan Markle Steps Out in a Trench Dress for the First Time Since Giving Birth," 8 May 2019 The night started off with, Lady Gaga, whose posing was relatable af. Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, "These 20 Met Gala Memes Hilariously Roast Fashion's Biggest Night," 6 May 2019 People reports that the pair exchanged ring pops for wedding bands before posing on the Chapel’s famed pink Cadillac for wedding photos in Elvis glasses. Nicole Briese, Allure, "Sophie Turner and Joe Jonas Had a Quickie Vegas Wedding After the Billboard Music Awards," 2 May 2019 Advertising Oppenheimer says unlicensed operators often pose much greater risk to the health and safety of children. Hayley Harding, The Seattle Times, "Looking for the perfect child care? Join the waiting list.," 13 Apr. 2019 That tweet included photos of Shaymaa, a 24-year-old who works with children on the autism spectrum in schools, posing and smiling in front of a group of protestors with signs attacking Islam and the prophet Muhammad. Lucy Diavolo, Teen Vogue, "Meet Shaymaa Ismaa'eel, the Muslim Girl Who Posed for Pics in front of Islamophobic Protestors," 24 Apr. 2019 Sabrina figured out which poses felt good by trial and error. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, "8 Ways People With Endometriosis Deal With the Pain," 24 Apr. 2019 The problem is that maternity wear and maternity bodies are a specialty in the fashion world, and understanding the dynamics of a changing figure, and how each bump sits differently, can pose tailoring problems. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "Why Meghan Markle Rarely Wears True Maternity Clothes," 24 Mar. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

After striking a pose for the cameras on the red carpet at the Cannes Film Festival Monday, Kristen Stewart made a sudden rebellious move: The actress ditched her black Christian Louboutin pumps and climbed the staircase barefoot. Casey Quackenbush, Time, "Kristen Stewart Protested Cannes' 'No Flats' Policy by Walking the Red Carpet Barefoot," 15 May 2018 But the work of adopting a pose of nonchalance eventually felt more exhausting than anything else. Daniel Ortberg, Vox, "The best $6,250 I ever spent: top surgery," 18 Dec. 2018 This dramatic pose is perfect for commemorating your achievement. 5. Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, "30 Senior Picture Ideas to Capture Graduation Perfectly," 12 Apr. 2019 While rocking his classic one-leg-up-on-the-chair pose, Adam sported a long sleeve black top and orange sweats. Blair Donovan, Country Living, "'The Voice' Coach Adam Levine Divided Fans With His Bold Battle Rounds Outfit," 31 Mar. 2019 After a few rotations through other strange poses, we were directed to grab a giant rubber band and lie in the fetal position on the floor. Crystal Paul, The Seattle Times, "Barre class looks easy? Think again," 28 Nov. 2018 After a month of doing the pose every day, my muscles were definitely less tight and the initial stretch didn’t feel as deep. Rebecca Straus, Good Housekeeping, "4 Things That Happened When I Did 'Legs Up the Wall' Pose at Work Every Day," 13 Aug. 2018 The creative process included bringing in actors to help them find the perfect pose. Ann Zaniewski, Detroit Free Press, "Edsel Ford II shares train station memories at sculpture unveiling," 13 June 2018 Today’s birds use the same pose to camouflage their eggs or protect them from the elements. Kohei Tanaka, National Geographic, "How Giant Dinosaurs Sat on Their Eggs Without Crushing Them," 15 May 2018

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

Verb (1)

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


1818, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb (2)

1593, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for pose

Verb (1)

Middle English, from Anglo-French poser, from Vulgar Latin *pausare, from Late Latin, to stop, rest, pause, from Latin pausa pause

Verb (2)

short for earlier appose, from Middle English apposen, alteration of opposen to oppose

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Statistics for pose

Last Updated

16 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for pose

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

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More Definitions for pose



English Language Learners Definition of pose

: the position in which someone stands, sits, lies down, etc., especially as a model for a photograph, painting, etc.
disapproving : a kind of behavior that is intended to impress other people and that is not sincere


\ ˈpōz How to pronounce pose (audio) \
posed; posing

Kids Definition of pose

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to hold or cause to hold a special position of the body Everyone posed for the photo.
2 : to be or create The game poses a risk of injury.
3 : to ask (a question)
4 : to pretend to be someone or something else The impostor posed as royalty.



Kids Definition of pose (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a position of the body held for a special purpose He was photographed in different poses.
2 : a pretended attitude Her friendliness is just a pose.

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More from Merriam-Webster on pose

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with pose

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for pose

Spanish Central: Translation of pose

Nglish: Translation of pose for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pose for Arabic Speakers

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