pull

verb
\ ˈpu̇l also ˈpəl \
pulled; pulling; pulls

Definition of pull

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to exert force upon so as to cause or tend to cause motion toward the force
b : to stretch (cooling candy) repeatedly pull taffy
c : to strain abnormally pull a tendon
d : to hold back (a racehorse) from winning
e : to work (an oar) by drawing back strongly
2a : to draw out from the skin pull feathers from a rooster's tail
b : to pluck from a plant or by the roots pull flowers pull turnips
c : extract pull a tooth
3 : to hit (a ball) toward the left from a right-handed swing or toward the right from a left-handed swing — compare push
4 : to draw apart : rend, tear
5 : to print (something, such as a proof) by impression
6a : to remove from a place or situation pull the engine pulled the pitcher in the third inning pulled the show
b : revoke If they're caught dumping, they'll get their license pulled.— Alexandra Alger
7 : to bring (a weapon) into the open pulled a knife
8a : perform, carry out pull an all-nighter pull guard duty
b : commit, perpetrate pull a robbery pull a prank
9a : put on, assume pull a grin
b : to act or behave in the manner of pulled a Horace Greely and went west— Steve Rushin
10a : to draw the support or attention of : attract pull votes often used with in
b : obtain, secure pulled a B in the course
11 : to demand or obtain an advantage over someone by the assertion of pull rank

intransitive verb

1a : to use force in drawing, dragging, or tugging
b : to move especially through the exercise of mechanical energy the car pulled clear of the rut
c(1) : to take a drink
(2) : to draw hard in smoking pulled at a pipe
d : to strain against the bit
2 : to draw a gun
3 : to admit of being pulled
4 : to feel or express strong sympathy : root pulling for my team to win
5 of an offensive lineman in football : to move back from the line of scrimmage and toward one flank to provide blocking for a ballcarrier
pull a face
: to make a face : grimace
pull a fast one
: to perpetrate a trick or fraud
pull oneself together
: to regain one's composure
pull one's leg
: to deceive someone playfully : hoax
pull one's weight
: to do one's full share of the work
pull punches or less commonly pull a punch
: to refrain from using all the force at one's disposal
pull stakes or pull up stakes
: to move out : leave
pull strings or less commonly pull wires
: to exert hidden influence or control
pull the plug
1 : to disconnect a medical life-support system
2 : to withdraw essential and especially financial support
pull the rug from under
: to weaken or unsettle especially by removing support or assistance from
pull the string
: to throw a changeup
pull the trigger
: to make a decisive move or action
pull the wool over one's eyes
: to blind to the true situation : hoodwink
pull together
: to work in harmony : cooperate

pull

noun, often attributive

Definition of pull (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : the act or an instance of pulling
b(1) : a draft of liquid
(2) : an inhalation of smoke
c : the effort expended in moving a long pull uphill
d : force required to overcome resistance to pulling a trigger with a four pound pull
e : a competition in which a heavily weighted sled is pulled by participants usually using draft animals or machines a tractor pull the county fair's annual ox pull The truck pull may be one one of the machine age's weirdest mutations. Modified pickup trucks and dragsters are hooked to trailers or "sleds" weighed down with 30,000 to 40,000 pounds … They rev up their engines and slog their way across a 200-foot mud track.
2a : advantage
b : special influence
4 : a device for pulling something or for operating by pulling a drawer pull
5 : a force that attracts, compels, or influences : attraction
6 : an injury resulting from abnormal straining or stretching a muscle pull a groin pull

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Other Words from pull

Verb

puller noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for pull

Synonyms: Verb

drag, draw, hale, haul, lug, tow, tug

Synonyms: Noun

draw, haul, jerk, pluck, tug, wrench, yank

Antonyms: Verb

drive, propel, push

Antonyms: Noun

push

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Examples of pull in a Sentence

Verb

He pulled the door open and ran out. The cat will scratch you if you keep pulling its tail. Make a knot in the rope and pull it tight. Pull the baby's chair closer to the table. She pulled the blanket over her head. We tried pushing and pulling but couldn't get the couch to move. Grab the end of the rope and pull as hard as you can. We spent the morning in the garden pulling weeds. I accidentally pulled one of the buttons off my shirt. He pulled the plug out of the socket.

Noun

She gave the door a few hard pulls and it opened. Give the rope a pull. He has a lot of pull in local political circles.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The cost-conscious may have to pull back, but this is where IKEA shines. Jessica Dailey, Good Housekeeping, "Financing," 11 Feb. 2019 The models wore their hair pulled back into tight buns, and black lines painted on either side of their face, from their eyelids to their hairline—and the effect, well. Jenny Hollander, Marie Claire, "Can Someone Tell Me What Is Happening In This Fashion Show From Hell?," 15 Jan. 2019 Obviously Europe has been really strongly starting to pull back content and make them, force them ... Eric Johnson, Recode, "How Imgur avoids the ugliness of social media," 26 Dec. 2018 Richard Barnes Glimpsed from the edge of the path to the Twombly Gallery, that corner lassos your attention, pulling you south across the yard to the first of the building’s three courtyards. Alexandra Lange, Curbed, "A museum grows in Houston," 1 Nov. 2018 According to Timothy Hawking, Hawking's son, this new book pulls together themes Hawking has touched on throughout his career in popular science — not to mention in discussions at the dinner table. Sarah Lewin, Space.com, "Stephen Hawking's Children and Colleagues Discuss Physicist's Final Book, Legacy," 17 Oct. 2018 Although Selena did not post about the festivities to her own Insta feed, fans noticed her in the photos, where she was dressed in a red mock neck above-the-knee dress with her hair pulled back. Nicole Saunders, Harper's BAZAAR, "Selena Gomez Threw Her Best Friend a Stunning Bridal Shower," 22 Jan. 2019 Joan pulls a portable scale out of her bag and weighs and measures Raelyn. Tracy Saelinger, Woman's Day, "This Nurse Helps New Moms When They're Most Vulnerable," 8 Jan. 2019 So, who is the Gargoyle King — pulling strings and causing Betty, Archie, and the rest of the crew's lives to spin out of control? Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, "Who is the Gargoyle King? 6 Theories on the Identity of the Creature Wreaking Havoc on "Riverdale"," 29 Nov. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

But because the rings have some gravitational pull, Cassini deviated a bit from that path, and scientists can work backwards from that to figure out the mass of the rings. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "Saturn's Rings Are Much Younger Than You Might Think," 18 Jan. 2019 Switching partners is becoming a familiar dance for Turkey, which is strategically situated between Asia and Europe and often caught in the geopolitical push and pull of the turbulent Mideast region. Fox News, "In familiar dance, Turkey warms to Russia as US ties unravel," 27 Aug. 2018 As a teenaged rookie, he was implored by Gregg Popovich to defer to his more established elders at one minute and to take charge of them at the next, and that push-and-pull might have overwhelmed a kid with a weaker will or a thinner skin. Mike Finger, San Antonio Express-News, "Parker’s pride drove Spurs until the end," 6 July 2018 Nowhere is the push and pull of established and new more obvious than in the Mission, where outposts of burgeoning Bay Area chains like Smitten Ice Cream, Tacolicious and Souvla have cropped up alongside long-standing mom-and-pop eateries. Sarah Fritsche, SFChronicle.com, "Best new restaurants and bars to visit in the Mission right now," 17 June 2018 USA TODAY Sports The push and pull of modern stock car racing were on full display Sunday at Michigan International Speedway, only a few laps from the automotive motherland of Detroit. Mike Hembree, USA TODAY, "NASCAR's conundrum: Cup Drivers want speed, fans clamor for excitement," 10 June 2018 Between the push and pull of those dual modes is a resolution best embodied through another Warrior: Draymond Green. Rob Mahoney, SI.com, "Draymond Green Still Lives at the Heart of Everything Golden State," 22 May 2018 Many of my strength sessions hit the six fundamental movement patterns—push, pull, hinge, squat, plank, and carry—which my friend and renowned fitness expert Dan John says make a good combo for most workouts. Michael Easter, Outside Online, "What Happens When You Scrap Your Fitness Plan," 14 May 2018 At a higher level, both the US and Germany (along with much of Europe) are in the midst of reshaping their collective identity via the push and pull of debate over immigration. The Christian Science Monitor, "Why Trump and Merkel must discuss migration," 26 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pull.' 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 pull

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Noun

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

History and Etymology for pull

Verb

Middle English, from Old English pullian; akin to Middle Low German pulen to shell, cull

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Statistics for pull

Last Updated

20 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for pull

The first known use of pull was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for pull

pull

verb

English Language Learners Definition of pull

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to hold onto and move (someone or something) in a particular direction and especially toward yourself
: to remove (something) by gripping it and using force
: to cause (something you are holding or something that is attached to you) to move with you as you go in a particular direction

pull

noun

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

: the act of moving or trying to move something by holding it and bringing it toward you : the act of pulling something
: special influence and power over other people
: an ability or power to attract someone or to make someone want to go somewhere, do something, etc.

pull

verb
\ ˈpu̇l \
pulled; pulling

Kids Definition of pull

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to use force on so as to cause movement toward the force pulled the rope pulling a wagon
2 : to separate from a firm or a natural attachment pull a tooth pull weeds
3 : move entry 1 sense 1 A train pulled out of the station.
4 : to draw apart : tear, rend I pulled a flower to pieces.
5 : to move (something) up or down Pull down the shade.
6 : to operate by drawing toward Going against the current, he had to pull the oars harder.
7 : to stretch repeatedly pull taffy
pull through
: to survive a difficult or dangerous period She was seriously ill, but pulled through.

pull

noun

Kids Definition of pull (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act or an instance of grasping and causing to move two pulls on the cord
2 : a device for making something move
3 : a force that draws one body toward another the pull of gravity
\ ˈpu̇l \

Medical Definition of pull

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : extract sense 1 pull a tooth
2 : to strain or stretch abnormally pull a tendon pull a muscle

pull

noun

Medical Definition of pull (Entry 2 of 2)

: an injury resulting from abnormal straining or stretching especially of a muscle — see groin pull

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More from Merriam-Webster on pull

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with pull

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for pull

Spanish Central: Translation of pull

Nglish: Translation of pull for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pull for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about pull

Comments on pull

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