press

1 of 4

noun (1)

1
a
: a crowd or crowded condition : throng
b
: a thronging or crowding forward or together
2
a
: an apparatus or machine by which a substance is cut or shaped, an impression of a body is taken, a material is compressed, pressure is applied to a body, liquid is expressed, or a cutting tool is fed into the work by pressure
b
: a building containing presses or a business using presses
3
4
a
: an action of pressing or pushing : pressure
b
: an aggressive pressuring defense employed in basketball often over the entire court area
5
: the properly smoothed and creased condition of a freshly pressed garment
out of press
6
b
: the act or the process of printing
c
: a printing or publishing establishment
7
a
: the gathering and publishing or broadcasting of news : journalism
b
: newspapers, periodicals, and often radio and television news broadcasting
c
: news reporters, publishers, and broadcasters
d
: comment or notice in newspapers and periodicals
is getting a good press
8
: any of various pressure devices (such as one for keeping sporting gear from warping when not in use)
9
: a lift in weight lifting in which the weight is raised to shoulder height and then smoothly extended overhead without assist from the legs compare clean and jerk, snatch

press

2 of 4

verb (1)

pressed; pressing; presses

transitive verb

1
: to act upon through steady pushing or thrusting force exerted in contact : squeeze
2
3
a
: to squeeze out the juice or contents of
b
: to squeeze with apparatus or instruments to a desired density, smoothness, or shape
press [=iron] a shirt
… the drained curds are generally pressed together into solid blocks of cheese.Caroline Campion
4
a
: to exert influence on : constrain
b
: to try hard to persuade : beseech, entreat
5
: to move by means of pressure
6
a
: to lay stress or emphasis on
b
: to insist on or request urgently
7
: to follow through (a course of action)
8
: to clasp in affection or courtesy
9
: to make (a phonograph record) from a matrix (see matrix sense 2d)
also : to make (another kind of disk, such as a CD) by a similar process

intransitive verb

1
: to crowd closely : mass
2
: to force or push one's way
3
: to seek urgently : contend
4
: to require haste or speed in action
5
: to exert pressure
6
: to take or hold a press
7
: to employ a press in basketball

press

3 of 4

verb (2)

pressed; pressing; presses

transitive verb

1
: to force into service especially in an army or navy : impress
2
a
: to take by authority especially for public use : commandeer
b
: to take and force into any usually emergency service

intransitive verb

: to impress men as soldiers or sailors

press

4 of 4

noun (2)

1
: impressment into service especially in a navy
2
obsolete : a warrant for impressing recruits
Phrases
press the flesh
: to greet and shake hands with people especially while campaigning for political office

Examples of press in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
The news was announced Wednesday during Peacock’s time at the Television Critics Association’s winter press tour, where the streamer held panels for Apples Never Fall and The Traitors, among others. Lesley Goldberg, The Hollywood Reporter, 14 Feb. 2024 The series order was announced at the Television Critics Association winter press tour in Pasadena on Wednesday. Joe Otterson, Variety, 14 Feb. 2024 Capshaw’s return was announced at ABC’s Television Critics Association's winter 2024 press tour on Saturday. Stephanie Wenger, Peoplemag, 13 Feb. 2024 Landgraf, now the chairman of FX Networks, which became a Disney subsidiary at the height of the streaming wars in 2019, revealed the data on Friday during the Television Critics Association press tour. Marco Quiroz-Gutierrez, Fortune, 12 Feb. 2024 National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby clarified in a Jan. 4 press briefing that the U.S. does not believe Iran has delivered such missiles. Paul Iddon, Forbes, 11 Feb. 2024 Iran’s hope is that enough bad press will lead to an Israel–U.S. rupture, and the U.S. will withdraw from the Middle East in the face of persistent harassment. Seth Cropsey, National Review, 10 Feb. 2024 No publisher had been charged under the Espionage Act until Assange, and many press freedom groups have said his prosecution sets a dangerous precedent intended to criminalize journalism. Landon Mion, Fox News, 10 Feb. 2024 Now that you’re done with your latest music tour and the Mean Girls press tour whirlwind, what does your daily routine look like now? Danielle Directo-Meston, The Hollywood Reporter, 31 Jan. 2024
Verb
The news reports infuriated a group representing relatives of the Israeli hostages, the Hostage and Missing Families Forum, which has been pressing Mr. Netanyahu to do more to secure the release of the captives. Michael Levenson, New York Times, 14 Feb. 2024 Both Obama and his predecessor, President George W. Bush, repeatedly pressed other NATO members to spend more on defense, though their public language was less confrontational than Trump’s. Cnn.com Wire Service, The Mercury News, 13 Feb. 2024 The way to navigate any doubt is to ask what would be most helpful to them — and then don’t press it. Carolyn Hax, Washington Post, 13 Feb. 2024 Ronald Daniels, the president of John Hopkins — America’s first research university — similarly pressed his peers to consider What Universities Owe Democracy. Paul O. Carrese, National Review, 13 Feb. 2024 Once temperatures dip and the grapes have frozen on the vine, the fruit is picked and pressed. Nicole Kliest, Vogue, 13 Feb. 2024 While some brands are making commendable progress towards inclusivity and authentic storytelling, there remains a pressing need for deeper commitment and tangible action. Kalina Bryant, Forbes, 12 Feb. 2024 The store also offers an enviable selection of records that are no longer being pressed. Rachel Cormack, Robb Report, 12 Feb. 2024 For the uninitiated, that means dipping the floor-hinged clutch pedal, shifting to neutral, releasing the clutch, and then pressing it again to select the next ratio up or down the ’box. Tim Pitt, Robb Report, 2 Feb. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'press.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Noun (1)

Middle English presse, from Anglo-French, from presser to press

Verb (1)

Middle English, from Anglo-French presser, from Latin pressare, frequentative of premere to press; probably akin to Russian naperet' to press

Verb (2)

alteration of obsolete prest to enlist by giving pay in advance

First Known Use

Noun (1)

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb (1)

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

Verb (2)

1578, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun (2)

1599, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of press was in the 13th century

Dictionary Entries Near press

Cite this Entry

“Press.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/press. Accessed 21 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition

press

1 of 3 noun
1
2
: a machine or device that uses pressure to shape, flatten, squeeze, or stamp
a cookie press
a cider press
3
4
a
: an act of pressing : pressure
b
: an aggressive defense in basketball
5
: the smoothed and creased condition of a freshly pressed garment
6
b
: a printing or publishing business
7
a
: the gathering and publishing or broadcasting of news
b
: the newspapers and magazines of a country
c
: news reporters and broadcasters

press

2 of 3 verb
1
: to bear down upon : push steadily against
2
: to squeeze so as to force out the juice or contents of
press apples to make cider
3
: to flatten out or smooth by bearing down upon (as with an iron)
press clothes
4
a
: to put pressure on : force, compel
pressed by business to return
b
: to ask or urge strongly
pressed us to go with them
5
a
: to insist on
didn't press the issue
b
: to make a demand
pressing for higher wages
6
a
: to crowd closely
reporters pressed around the celebrity
b
: to force or push one's way
pressed deeper into the jungle
presser noun

press

3 of 3 verb
: to force into emergency service

More from Merriam-Webster on press

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