\ ˈsāf How to pronounce safe (audio) \
safer; safest

Definition of safe

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : free from harm or risk : unhurt
2a : secure from threat of danger, harm, or loss
b : successful at getting to a base in baseball without being put out
3 : affording safety or security from danger, risk, or difficulty
4 obsolete, of mental or moral faculties : healthy, sound
5a : not threatening danger : harmless
b : unlikely to produce controversy or contradiction
6a : not likely to take risks : cautious



Definition of safe (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a place or receptacle to keep articles (such as valuables) safe

Other Words from safe


safe or safely adverb
safeness noun

Examples of safe in a Sentence

Adjective I don't feel safe in this neighborhood. The kids were safe in the cabin. We need to make sure that the children are safe and sound. “Is the money safe?” “Yes, it's in the bank.” a world made safe from war Is it safe to walk here? He wished us a safe trip. I found a safe place to take shelter from the storm. They live in a perfectly safe neighborhood. We watched the fireworks from a safe distance. Noun the hotel recommended that we keep all our valuables in its safe during our stay See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Electrification through renewable energies is the only way for countries to quickly have secure, safe, clean, and cheap energy. Byignacio Galán, Fortune, 22 Sep. 2022 Even those who are safe in rural provinces must still contend with enormous challenges. Time, 22 Sep. 2022 Everyone was safe, and the Orioles took a 1-0 lead. Evan Petzold, Detroit Free Press, 22 Sep. 2022 Dave and Cameron did an incredible job keeping people (and the mako) safe. Li Cohen, CBS News, 15 Sep. 2022 In Ohio and elsewhere, the nostalgia for manufacturing is based on a mid-century moment when work was plentiful, reasonably safe, and high paying; unions could check corporate power; and America made what the world needed and desired. E. Tammy Kim, The New Yorker, 15 Sep. 2022 That would have been safe, secure and downright boring. Safid Deen, USA TODAY, 11 Sep. 2022 The plaintiffs said the puberty blockers and hormones are safe, effective, and necessary treatments for the small population of youth with gender dysphoria. Mike Cason |, al, 7 Sep. 2022 Also, glass cold brew makers are typically more dishwasher safe, a nice convenience factor. Nicole Papantoniou, Good Housekeeping, 6 Sep. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun In a statement, Trump also said agents searched his safe. Taylor Wilson, USA TODAY, 10 Aug. 2022 Investigators searched Schwartz’s home and found $15,000 in his safe. Adam Ferrise, cleveland, 25 May 2022 What is clear is that Trump was so compelled to override his usual habit of destroying evidence in trying to keep something in a safe. Daniel Strauss, The New Republic, 11 Aug. 2022 The group of servicemen pulled all eight individuals out of the water and within 15 minutes had them back to the base safe. Fox News, 15 July 2022 Among the book's gems: There was that time thieves broke into his London atelier and made off with not just the entire safe, but even the guard dog. Leena Kim, Town & Country, 17 June 2022 The last piece of the puzzle was locked inside a safe. Jazz Tangcay, Variety, 8 June 2022 Instead, the investigators stored the laptop in a supervisor’s office, in a special safe that had been certified to hold Top Secret documents—even though anyone could go to the Internet to see the materials that were on it. Patrick Radden Keefe, The New Yorker, 6 June 2022 In that safe was a handgun and the woman’s boyfriend’s Social Security card, bank book and passport. cleveland, 21 Jan. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of safe


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for safe


Middle English sauf, from Anglo-French salf, sauf, from Latin salvus safe, healthy; akin to Latin solidus solid, Greek holos whole, safe, Sanskrit sarva entire

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Time Traveler for safe

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

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Last Updated

24 Sep 2022

Cite this Entry

“Safe.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Oct. 2022.

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More Definitions for safe


\ ˈsāf How to pronounce safe (audio) \
safer; safest

Kids Definition of safe

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : free or secure from harm or danger I don't feel safe here.
2 : giving protection or security against harm or danger a safe neighborhood
3 : harmless safe drinking water
4 : unlikely to be wrong or cause disagreement a safe answer
5 : not likely to take risks : careful a safe driver
6 : successful in reaching a base in baseball

Other Words from safe

safely adverb



Kids Definition of safe (Entry 2 of 2)

: a metal box with a lock that is used for keeping something (as money) safe

Choose the Right Synonym for safe


safe and secure mean free from danger. safe is used of freedom from a present danger. I felt safe as soon as I crossed the street. secure is used of freedom from a possible future danger or risk. The locks on the door made us feel secure.


\ ˈsāf How to pronounce safe (audio) \
safer; safest

Medical Definition of safe

: not causing harm or injury especially : having a low incidence of adverse reactions and significant side effects when adequate instructions for use are given and having a low potential for harm under conditions of widespread availability a list of drugs generally regarded as safe safe use in pregnancy has not been established Emergency Medicine

Other Words from safe

safety \ ˈsāf-​tē How to pronounce safe (audio) \ noun, plural safeties

More from Merriam-Webster on safe

Nglish: Translation of safe for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of safe for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about safe


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