verb \ˈpu̇t\

Definition of put




  1. transitive verb
  2. 1a :  to place in a specified position or relationship :  lay <put the book on the table>b :  to move in a specified directionc (1) :  to send (as a weapon or missile) into or through something :  thrust (2) :  to throw with an overhand pushing motion <put the shot>d :  to bring into a specified state or condition <a reapportionment … that was put into effect at the September primaries — Current Biog.>e :  to prescribe a specified regimen for —usually used with on <put her on medication> <put him on a diet>

  3. 2a :  to cause to endure or suffer something :  subject <put traitors to death>b :  impose, inflict <put a special tax on luxuries>

  4. 3a :  to set before one for judgment or decision <put the question>b :  to call for a formal vote on <put the motion>

  5. 4a (1) :  to convey into another form <want to put my feelings into words> (2) :  to translate into another language or style <put the poem into English> (3) :  adapt <lyrics put to music>b :  express, state <putting it mildly>

  6. 5a :  to devote (oneself) to an activity or end <put himself to winning back their confidence>b :  apply <put her mind to the problem>c :  assign <put them to work>d :  to cause to perform an action :  urge <put the horse over the fence>e :  impel, incite <put them into a frenzy>

  7. 6a :  repose, rest <puts his faith in reason>b :  invest 1 <put her money in the company>

  8. 7a :  to give as an estimate <put the time as about eleven>b :  attach, attribute <puts a high value on their friendship>c :  impute <put the blame on the partners>

  9. 8 :  bet, wager <put $2 on the favorite>

  10. intransitive verb
  11. 1 :  to start in motion :  go; especially :  to leave in a hurry

  12. 2 of a ship :  to take a specified course <put down the river>

put forth

  1. 1a :  assert, proposeb :  to make public :  issue

  2. 2 :  to bring into action :  exert

  3. 3 :  to produce or send out by growth <put forth leaves>

  4. 4 :  to start out

put forward

  1. :  propose <put forward a theory>

put in mind

  1. :  remind

put one's finger on

  1. :  identify <put his finger on the cause of the trouble>

put one's foot down

  1. :  to take a firm stand

put one's foot in one's mouth

  1. :  to make a tactless or embarrassing blunder

put paid to

chiefly British

  1. :  to finish off :  bring an end to

put the arm on


put the bite on

  1. :  to ask for money

put the finger on

  1. :  to inform on <put the finger on … heroin pushers — Barrie Zwicker>

put the make on

  1. :  to make sexual advances toward

put to bed

  1. :  to make the final preparations for printing (as a newspaper)

put together

  1. 1 :  to create as a unified whole :  construct

  2. 2 :  add, combine

Examples of put in a sentence

  1. Put the car in the garage.

  2. I put the keys on the table.

  3. He put his arms around her and held her tight.

  4. He fell and accidentally put his hand through a window.

  5. The illness put her in the hospital for three days.

  6. They put her in prison for forgery.

  7. Her parents decided to put her in a special school for deaf children.

  8. If she drove 55 mph for 20 minutes, that would put her about halfway there by now.

  9. Don't forget to put your signature on the check.

  10. He put his phone number on a napkin.

Origin and Etymology of put

Middle English putten; akin to Old English putung instigation, Middle Dutch poten to plant

First Known Use: 12th century




Definition of put

  1. 1 :  a throw made with an overhand pushing motion; specifically :  the act or an instance of putting the shot

  2. 2 :  an option to sell a specified amount of a security (as a stock) or commodity (as wheat) at a fixed price at or within a specified time — compare call 3d

14th Century

First Known Use of put

14th century




Definition of put

  1. :  being in place :  fixed, set <stay put until I call>


First Known Use of put


PUT Defined for Kids


verb \ˈpu̇t\

Definition of put for Students



  1. 1 :  to place in or move into a particular position <She put the book on a table.> <Put your hand up.>

  2. 2 :  to bring into a specified state or condition <The charity puts the money to good use.> <He put the room in order.>

  3. 3 :  to cause to undergo something <Our class puts them to shame.>

  4. 4 :  to give expression to <I can't put my fear into words.> <This book puts the idea clearly.>

  5. 5 :  to devote to or urge to an activity <They can improve if they put their minds to it.> <The coach is putting us to work.>

  6. 6 :  to think of as worthy of :  attribute <The candidate puts a high value on peace.>

  7. 7 :  to begin a voyage <The ship put to sea.>

put away

  1. :  to take in food and drink <She put away a big dinner.>

put down

  1. 1 :  to bring to an end by force <Police put down the riot.>

  2. 2 :  criticize 2

put forward

  1. :  propose 1 <The committee put forward a new plan.>

put in

  1. 1 :  to ask for <She put in for a job.>

  2. 2 :  to spend time in a place or activity <I put in two hours of work.>

put off

  1. :  to hold back to a later time :  defer <I put off my appointment.>

put on

  1. 1 :  to dress in <He put a new jacket on.>

  2. 2 :  pretend 2 <She put on a show of anger.>

  3. 3 :  1produce 4 <The senior class put on a play.>

put out

  1. 1 :  extinguish 1 <Be sure to put out the light.>

  2. 2 :  irritate 1, annoy <I was put out by their behavior.>

  3. 3 :  1make 1 <The factory puts out tires.>

  4. 4 :  to cause to be out (in baseball)

  5. 5 :  to make use of <The team put out a real effort.>

put together

  1. 1 :  to create as a whole :  construct

  2. 2 :  to consider as a single unit <“… Mr. Rice taught me more than all my other teachers put together.” — Katherine Paterson, Jacob Have I Loved>

put up

  1. 1 :  1build 1 <The town plans to put up a new school.>

  2. 2 :  to make (as food) ready for later use <I put vegetables up for the winter.>

  3. 3 :  to give or get shelter and often food <They often put tourists up.>

  4. 4 :  to make by action or effort <They put up a good fight.>

put up to

  1. :  to urge or cause to do something wrong or unexpected <Those kids put me up to the prank.>

put up with

  1. :  to stand for :  tolerate <I won't put up with any more of his nonsense.>

Law Dictionary



Legal Definition of put

  1. :  put option at option 3

Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up put? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to handle or deal with in a skillful way

Get Word of the Day daily email!


Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

  • m-ws-new-words-quiz
  • Which word means "inability to recognize faces"?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.