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

Some of these ingredients could pose health risks (phthalates, formaldehyde), while others are potentially irritating to some people (certain sulfates). Allure, "Best of Clean Beauty: The 27 Best Natural and Organic Beauty Products of 2019," 16 Sep. 2019 But some of these relics, like missiles, mines, and bombs, can pose a threat. Meghan Overdeep, Southern Living, "Outer Banks Officials Warn of Items Buried in the Sand by Hurricane Dorian," 13 Sep. 2019 Even a few celebs casually posed outside for photos in between shows. Nandi Howard, Essence, "NYFW: The Fashion Insiders Who Hit The Streets," 13 Sep. 2019 The lots are intended to replace parking along state Route 67 that currently pose hazards to hikers and drivers. Julie Gallant, Ramona Sentinel, "County unveils plans for Mt. Woodson parking lots," 6 Sep. 2019 For scientists, this posed a major quandary: How could identical bacteria have such radically different behaviors? Quanta Magazine, "Bacterial Clones Show Surprising Individuality," 4 Sep. 2019 But from the casual user’s perspective, an app like ZAO poses the same privacy problems that have ensnared us before. Andrew Daniels, Popular Mechanics, "Giving Your Selfie to This Chinese App Is a Really Bad Idea," 3 Sep. 2019 Before his arrest, Okeke had posed a successful entrepreneur and was featured on a Forbes 30-under-30 list as well a BBC Focus on Africa program. Yomi Kazeem, Quartz Africa, "The FBI’s Nigerian email scam ring bust shows how the billion-dollar global fraud has evolved," 23 Aug. 2019 Others have posed that the royals are not typically allowed to fly commercial due to security restriction. Laura Hanrahan, Woman's Day, "Prince William and Kate Middleton Flew On Budget Airline After Blowback Over Harry and Megan's Private Jet Use," 23 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Posters for the Wong Tai Sin protest planned for Saturday show a Taoist deity sitting in a lotus pose, wearing a full-face respirator to protect against tear gas, a reference to the famed temple. Washington Post, "In a once-quiet Hong Kong’s neighborhood, lives upended as protests find new ground," 5 Aug. 2019 Mary Gordon does not seem to feel the essential smugness of this pose. Garry Wills, Harper's magazine, "Shallow Calls to Shallow," 10 Apr. 2019 One response to the 21st century is to crank up vintage synthesizers, put on outrageous patterns, and strike a pose of neon defiance, figuring that a loud good time is better than many of the other options. courant.com, "Strike a pose of neon defiance: See Crunk Witch at Cafe Nine," 5 Aug. 2019 Largely cloaked in the anonymity of fake identities, the needlers tend to strike a pose of indignant anger in texts and other messages. Phil Rosenthal, chicagotribune.com, "WSCR-AM’s Julie DiCaro is still standing up to online bullies: ‘It feels good to let off a little steam’," 22 July 2019 And Rapinoe struck a victorious pose in a 2-1 quarterfinal victory over France on Friday night in Paris. Anne M. Peterson, Twin Cities, "U.S. edges England, 2-1, to make third straight World Cup final," 2 July 2019 Another airport poster had graphics reminiscent of the Socialist Realism style in vogue during the Cultural Revolution itself—with a group of people emerging from the vast Chinese lands, striking a defiant pose under a red flag. Ilaria Maria Sala, Quartz, "Chairman Mao is making an appearance at the Hong Kong protests," 28 Aug. 2019 Throughout the afternoon, young designers, D.J.s, makeup students and entrepreneurs alike strutted down the runway and struck several poses. Arit John, New York Times, "Where Did North West Learn to Sew? At Camp, of Course," 21 Aug. 2019 First, Gigi struck the perfect pose in a skimpy bright orange thong bikini by Danielle Guizio. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "Gigi and Bella Hadid Embrace the Heat Wave in the Tiniest Swimwear Imaginable," 28 July 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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Last Updated

17 Oct 2019

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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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