po·​si·​tion | \ pə-ˈzi-shən How to pronounce position (audio) \

Definition of position

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an act of placing or arranging: such as
a : the laying down of a proposition or thesis
b : an arranging in order
2 : a point of view adopted and held to made my position on the issue clear
3a : the point or area occupied by a physical object : location took her position at the head of the line
b : a certain arrangement of bodily parts rose to a standing position
4 : a market commitment in securities or commodities also : the inventory of a market trader
5a : relative place, situation, or standing is now in a position to make decisions on his own
b : social or official rank or status
c : an employment for which one has been hired : job a position with a brokerage firm
d : a situation that confers advantage or preference


positioned; positioning\ pə-​ˈzi-​sh(ə-​)niŋ How to pronounce position (audio) \

Definition of position (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to put in a certain position positioned the chairs around the room positioned the company in the global market

Examples of position in a Sentence

Noun From this position, you can see all of New York City's skyline. Actors, please assume your positions. The show is about to begin. The child fell asleep in a sitting position. I was in an uncomfortable position and had to move. I was uncomfortable, so I shifted position. Return your seat to an upright position for landing. Verb He positioned the chairs around the table. The company is positioning itself to take advantage of a new market. The shortstop was positioned well to make the play. She positioned herself by the door. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun However, investigators found Ross expressed several times during the season his belief that draft position should take priority over won-loss record. Rob Maaddi, ajc, 2 Aug. 2022 Knowles slowly integrated the Jack — the stand-up, mobile pass rush position on the defensive front — over the course of the spring. Nathan Baird, cleveland, 2 Aug. 2022 But during that time, Djamali was offered a position as the chair of medicine at Maine Medical Center, an opportunity too good to pass up. ABC News, 2 Aug. 2022 The sanctions would have been far tougher had the NFL found that Ross tried to get Flores to intentionally lose games in 2019 to help the team’s draft position. Ben Volin, BostonGlobe.com, 2 Aug. 2022 An earlier version of this newsletter misconstrued the Campaign for Sustainable Rx Pricing’s position on the bill. Rachel Cohrs, STAT, 2 Aug. 2022 The Facebook groups were just the beginning of an online journey that took some parents from more mainstream views of reopening schools toward a single-issue position. New York Times, 1 Aug. 2022 While Sadr has for years positioned himself against both Iran and the United States, the popular cleric has not always held a consistent position toward Tehran. Nadeen Ebrahim, CNN, 1 Aug. 2022 The lack of an apparent decision will provide at least one outright position competition during fall camp. Alexis Cubit, The Courier-Journal, 1 Aug. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The leaning effect could be a result of phototropism, where plants naturally position themselves toward sunlight. Samantha Chery, Washington Post, 2 Aug. 2022 Grant spoke toward the assumption that nightlife and dance music were tools of avoidance in stating that Above & Beyond aims to position people to work through their feelings. Alex Wagner, SPIN, 29 July 2022 Now, as startups and tech giants alike are increasingly using AR, Snap wants to position itself as the company best suited to bring it to concerts. Lyndsey Havens, Billboard, 28 July 2022 Those who don’t wish Japan to position itself too closely to either the U.S. or China prefer that the country mount an autonomous defense. Richard J. Samuels, WSJ, 28 July 2022 Our analysts recommend lifting the topper to re-position it rather than sliding it into place in order to prevent accidentally damaging your mattress. Grace Wu, Good Housekeeping, 22 July 2022 The prevailing sentiment is that the Big 12 did not need a merger to position itself at the third major conference in college football. Kevin Reynolds, The Salt Lake Tribune, 19 July 2022 Subscriber estimates in Korea tend to vary, but the most reliable assessments position Netflix at the head of the pack. Patrick Brzeski, The Hollywood Reporter, 18 July 2022 There’s also a solid carrying handle that can help to position the jack underneath the vehicle. Talon Homer, Popular Mechanics, 14 July 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of position


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1817, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for position


Middle English posycion, from Anglo-French posicioun, from Latin position-, positio, from ponere to lay down, put, place, from Old Latin *posinere, from po- away (akin to Old Church Slavonic po-, perfective prefix, Greek apo away) + Latin sinere to leave — more at of

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

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Last Updated

4 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Position.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/position. Accessed 10 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for position


po·​si·​tion | \ pə-ˈzi-shən How to pronounce position (audio) \

Kids Definition of position

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the way in which something or someone is placed or arranged The seat is in the upright position.
2 : a way of looking at or considering things What's your position on the issue?
3 : the place where a person or thing is or should be They took their positions on stage.
4 : the situation that someone or something is in Your request puts me in an awkward position.
5 : the rank or role a person has in an organization or in society She rose to a position of leadership.


positioned; positioning

Kids Definition of position (Entry 2 of 2)

: to put in a particular place or arrangement He positioned the helmet on his head.


po·​si·​tion | \ pə-ˈzish-ən How to pronounce position (audio) \

Medical Definition of position

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a particular arrangement or location specifically : an arrangement of the parts of the body considered particularly desirable for some medical or surgical procedure knee-chest position the prone position

Other Words from position

positional \ pə-​ˈzish-​ᵊn-​əl How to pronounce position (audio) \ adjective


transitive verb

Medical Definition of position (Entry 2 of 2)

: to put in proper position

More from Merriam-Webster on position

Nglish: Translation of position for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of position for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about position


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