\ 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
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

Noun 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 Schools say the isolated timeouts are a necessary tool to dealing with students who pose a safety threat to themselves or others, but many of the students put in these rooms have disabilities and receive no therapeutic value from being locked away. Longreads, "The Top 5 Longreads of the Week," 23 Nov. 2019 Israeli society is polarized, which poses a serious challenge to the gatekeepers and systems of Israeli democracy. David A. Frank, The Conversation, "A major democracy fights to maintain the rule of law – this time, it’s Israel," 22 Nov. 2019 Dak Prescott and the Cowboys are anything but, ranking fourth in the league with an average of 28.6 points per game and have the requisite run-pass balance to pose a serious challenge. Ken Pomponio, USA TODAY Sportsbook Wire, "NFL Best Bets: Three underdog locks for Week 12," 20 Nov. 2019 This poses a significant challenge for combating climate change. Marcello Rossi, Quartz, "Scientists are taking concrete steps towards reducing cement’s massive carbon footprint," 15 Nov. 2019 In the photo, Jordyn posed alongside her younger sister Jodie, and yes, the two look identical. Lauren Rearick, Teen Vogue, "Jordyn Woods Shared a Selfie With Sister Jodie," 15 Nov. 2019 Downward-Facing Dog to Upward-Facing Dog) and doing other yoga poses like Child's Pose and Cobra Pose, along with variations on free-weight lifts. Leah Groth, Health.com, "Britney Spears' Abs Are on Full Display In Her Newest Workout Video," 5 Nov. 2019 There was the threat posed to them by rival Big Men. Jonathan Fisher, Quartz Africa, "How colonial rule committed Africa to fragile authoritarianism," 2 Nov. 2019 Photos from one gala posted on its website show Hassan and Duggan sitting at a table together and posing for a photo with comedian Louie Anderson, the headlining entertainment act. Freep.com, "Duggan administration admonished for preferential treatment of Make Your Date program," 21 Oct. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Their pose and the vibe echoes the poster, which suggests that Palpatine might be watching this fight as well. Eliana Dockterman, Time, "Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker," 26 Aug. 2019 Do whatever feels good to you: complete this as a routine, mix and match your favorite poses, or use a couple to warm up or cool down. Hayden Carpenter, Outside Online, "12 Yoga Poses for Climbers to Do Daily," 9 Aug. 2019 Kylie Jenner called out beauty influencer Amanda Ensing after the YouTube star accused Jenner of copying her Instagram pose. Kaitlyn Frey, PEOPLE.com, "Kylie Jenner Claps Back at Influencer Amanda Ensing Who Accuses the Star of Copying Her Instagram," 15 July 2019 Of everyone pictured alive, his pose best denotes survival, the one who witnessed others die. Emmanuel Iduma, The New York Review of Books, "‘Gone Like a Meteor’: Epitaph for the Lost Youth of the Biafran War," 30 May 2019 Nothing disrupts the calm, meditative benefits of yoga like the thought of practicing your poses on an icky mat. Carolyn Forte, Good Housekeeping, "Here's Exactly How to Clean Your Yoga Mat," 6 Mar. 2019 Imitating his poses, whipping up his fans, carrying his belt. Washington Post, "Jim Jordan used to torment GOP leadership. Now he’s leading them in defending Trump.," 21 Nov. 2019 Her pose was a crumpled one, with the glorious ruffles of her gown—medieval in shape, but more Lil Nas X–like with its bandana-print pattern—splayed about her. Spencer Kornhaber, The Atlantic, "FKA Twigs Deconstructs the Private Show," 8 Nov. 2019 Rivera could only stand still for a second before breaking his pose, laughing. Austen Erblat, sun-sentinel.com, "Holy spirit! Priest busts a few moves during homecoming rally," 29 Oct. 2019

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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Time Traveler for pose

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for pose

Last Updated

28 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Pose.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pose?pronunciation&lang=en_us&dir=p&file=pose0001. Accessed 10 December 2019.

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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

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for pose

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with pose

Spanish Central: Translation of pose

Nglish: Translation of pose for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pose for Arabic Speakers

Comments on pose

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


to state or do over again or repeatedly

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