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

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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.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun This position is much less offense-oriented and emphasizes distribution to the rest of the attack. Julia Poe, orlandosentinel.com, 6 Sep. 2021 The dwindling but still sizable minority of Americans who are refusing to take the shot may take an even more unfavorable position toward government scientific advice without strong, clear messages. Stephen Collinson, CNN, 6 Sep. 2021 The implication is the position doesn’t matter as much as with a right-handed quarterback. Dave Hyde, sun-sentinel.com, 6 Sep. 2021 This position provided leadership and administration to about 250 personnel deployed from 26 career stations and volunteers deployed from 30 fire rescue stations. Madison Bateman, baltimoresun.com/maryland/carroll, 3 Sep. 2021 This position feels perfectly judged by Aston’s engineers, presenting a car that can do the luxury SUV stuff, but also demonstrate clear family ties to its sportier siblings. Alistair Charlton, Forbes, 31 Aug. 2021 Neither landlords nor tenants should be in this precarious position. Joel Zinberg, National Review, 31 Aug. 2021 The Denver Broncos have a ton of depth at this position, just saying. Brad Biggs, chicagotribune.com, 29 Aug. 2021 And when a team invests a draft pick (even a seventh-rounder) at this position, the writing is usually on the wall for the incumbent ... Nate Davis, USA TODAY, 26 Aug. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb For instance, Uber Eats, which began offering flower delivery in the US this week, is trying to position itself as delivering everything in a short amount of time. Michelle Cheng, Quartz, 29 July 2021 To test if users feel your solution addresses their needs, and if so, how to position it effectively to optimize adoption. Kyle Zimmer, Forbes, 4 June 2021 The infrastructure work will take about two years and by then the shape of the economic recovery from the pandemic should be clearer, with a better sense of housing trends and how to position the office and residential buildings. J.k. Dineen, San Francisco Chronicle, 27 May 2021 Beckerman said Mastroeni played multiple positions throughout his career — right back, center back, defensive midfielder — and used to constantly bark out instructions about where his teammates should position themselves. Alex Vejar, The Salt Lake Tribune, 21 May 2021 And how does this position ND for a possible top 5 class? Eric Hansen, The Indianapolis Star, 16 Apr. 2021 Many employers would rather position economic incentives as a financial perk or discount for vaccinated workers than call it a surcharge for the unvaccinated. Washington Post, 26 Aug. 2021 Eventually these aspirations were bound to bump up against those of its powerful neighbor, Saudi Arabia, as both countries try to position themselves for changes in energy production and other areas of their economies in the coming years. New York Times, 6 July 2021 Two teams have already overcome 2-3 series deficits during this year’s postseason and Atlanta will try to position itself to become the third with a victory this evening. Alex Kay, Forbes, 3 July 2021

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.

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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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Time Traveler for position

Time Traveler

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

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Last Updated

9 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Position.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/position. Accessed 20 Sep. 2021.

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More Definitions for position



English Language Learners Definition of position

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the place where someone or something is in relation to other people or things
: the place where someone or something should be
: the way someone stands, sits, or lies down



English Language Learners Definition of position (Entry 2 of 2)

: to put (something or someone) in a particular 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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