1

set

play
verb \ˈset\

Definition of set

set

;

setting

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to cause to sit :  place in or on a seat

  3. 2a :  to put (a fowl) on eggs to hatch themb :  to put (eggs) for hatching under a fowl or into an incubator

  4. 3 :  to place (oneself) in position to start running in a race

  5. 4a :  to place with care or deliberate purpose and with relative stability set a ladder against the wall set a stone on the graveb :  transplant 1 set seedlingsc (1) :  to make (a trap) ready to catch prey (2) :  to fix (a hook) firmly into the jaw of a fishd :  to put aside (something, such as dough containing yeast) for fermenting

  6. 5 :  to direct with fixed attention set your mind to it

  7. 6a :  to cause to assume a specified condition, relation, or occupation slaves were set free set the house on fireb :  to cause the start of set a fire

  8. 7a :  to appoint or assign to an office or dutyb :  post, station

  9. 8 :  to cause to assume a specified posture or position set the door ajar

  10. 9a :  to fix as a distinguishing imprint, sign, or appearance the years have set their mark on himb :  affixc :  apply set a match to kindling

  11. 10 :  to fix or decide on as a time, limit, or regulation :  prescribe set a wedding day set the rules for the game

  12. 11a :  to establish as the highest level or best performance set a record for the half mileb :  to furnish as a pattern or model set an example of generosityc :  to allot as a task setting lessons for the children to work upon at home — Manchester Examiner

  13. 12a :  to adjust (a device and especially a measuring device) to a desired position set the alarm for 7:00 set a thermostat at 68; also :  to adjust (something, such as a clock) in conformity with a standardb :  to restore to normal position or connection when dislocated or fractured set a broken bonec :  to spread to the wind set the sails

  14. 13a :  to put in order for use set a place for a guestb :  to make scenically ready for a performance set the stagec (1) :  to arrange (type) for printing set type by hand (2) :  to put into type or its equivalent (as on film) set the first word in italic

  15. 14a :  to put a fine edge on by grinding or honing set a razorb :  to bend slightly the tooth points of (a saw) alternately in opposite directionsc :  to sink (the head of a nail) below the surface

  16. 15 :  to fix in a desired position (as by heating or stretching)

  17. 16 :  to arrange (hair) in a desired style by using implements (such as curlers, rollers, or clips) and gels or lotions

  18. 17a :  to adorn with something affixed or infixed :  stud, dot clear sky set with starsb :  to fix (something, such as a precious stone) in a border of metal :  place in a settingc :  to place in a specified literary or dramatic setting a story set in Paris

  19. 18a :  to hold something in regard or esteem at the rate of sets a great deal by daily exerciseb :  to place in a relative rank or category set duty before pleasurec :  to fix at a certain amount set bail at $500d :  value, rate their promises were set at naughte :  to place as an estimate of worth set a high value on life

  20. 19 :  to place in relation for comparison or balance theory set against practice

  21. 20a :  to direct to actionb :  to incite to attack or antagonism war sets brother against brother

  22. 21a :  to place by transporting was set ashore on the islandb :  to put in motionc :  to put and fix in a direction set our faces toward home once mored of a dog :  to point out the position of (game) by holding a fixed attitude

  23. 22 :  to defeat (an opponent or a contract) in bridge

  24. 23a :  to fix firmly :  make immobile :  give rigid form or condition to set her jaw in determinationb :  to make unyielding or obstinate

  25. 24 :  to cause to become firm or solid set milk for cheese

  26. 25 :  to cause (fruit or seed) to develop

  27. intransitive verb
  28. 1 chiefly dialectal :  sit

  29. 2 :  to be becoming :  be suitable :  fit the coat sets well

  30. 3 :  to cover and warm eggs to hatch them

  31. 4a :  to affect one with or as if with weight the pudding sets heavily on my stomachb :  to place oneself in position in preparation for an action (such as running)

  32. 5 of a plant part :  to undergo development usually as a result of pollination

  33. 6a :  to pass below the horizon :  go down the sun setsb :  to come to an end this century sets with little mirth — Thomas Fuller

  34. 7 :  to apply oneself to some activity set to work

  35. 8 :  to have a specified direction in motion :  flow, tend the wind was setting from Pine Hill to the farm — Esther Forbes

  36. 9 of a dog :  to indicate the position of game by crouching or pointing

  37. 10 :  to dance face to face with another in a square dance set to your partner and turn

  38. 11a :  to become solid or thickened by chemical or physical alteration the cement sets rapidlyb of a dye or color :  to become permanentc of a bone :  to become whole by growing together

set about

  1. :  to begin to do

set apart

  1. 1 :  to reserve to a particular use

  2. 2 :  to make noticeable or outstanding

set aside

  1. 1 :  to put to one side :  discard

  2. 2 :  to reserve for a purpose :  save

  3. 3 :  dismiss

  4. 4 :  annul, overrule

set at

  1. :  to mount an attack on :  assail would go although … devils should set at me — Charlotte Yonge

set eyes on

  1. :  to catch sight of

set foot in

  1. :  enter

set foot on

  1. :  to step onto

set forth

  1. 1 :  to give an account or statement of

  2. 2 :  to start out on a journey

set forward

  1. 1 :  further

  2. 2 :  to start out on a journey

set in motion

  1. :  to give impulse to sets the story in motion vividly — Howard Thompson

set one's hand to

  1. :  to become engaged in

set one's heart on

  1. :  resolve vt vt 5 she set her heart on going to medical school

set one's house in order

  1. :  to organize one's affairs

set one's sights on

  1. :  to determine to pursue

set one's teeth on edge

set one straight

  1. :  to correct someone by providing accurate information

set sail

  1. :  to start out on a course; especially :  to begin a voyage set sail for Bermuda

set store by

or

set store on

  1. :  to consider valuable, trustworthy, or worthwhile

set the stage

  1. :  to provide the basis or background this trend will set the stage for higher earnings

set to music

  1. :  to provide music or instrumental accompaniment for (a text)

set upon

  1. :  to attack usually with violence the dogs set upon the trespassers

Examples of set in a sentence

  1. We need to set some extra chairs around the table.

  2. He set the ladder against the wall and walked away.

  3. I remember setting my bag right here.

  4. They set the bricks along the walkway.

  5. The jeweler can set the stone several different ways.

  6. He turned off the car and set the parking brake.

  7. Rangers will set a trap to catch the bear.

  8. We set an extra place at the table for our guest.

Origin and Etymology of set

Middle English setten, from Old English settan; akin to Old High German sezzen to set, Old English sittan to sit


First Known Use: before 12th century


2

set

noun

Definition of set

  1. 1a :  the act or action of settingb :  the condition of being set

  2. 2 :  a number of things of the same kind that belong or are used together an electric train set

  3. 3a :  mental inclination, tendency, or habit :  bent a set toward mathematicsb :  a state of psychological preparedness to perceive or respond to an anticipated stimulus or situation

  4. 4 :  direction of flow the set of the wind

  5. 5 :  form or carriage of the body or of its parts her face took on a cynical set — Raymond Kennedy

  6. 6 :  the manner of fitting or of being placed or suspended in order to give the skirt a pretty set — Mary J. Howell

  7. 7 :  amount of deflection from a straight line set of a saw's teeth

  8. 8 :  permanent change of form (as of metal) due to repeated or excessive stress

  9. 9 :  the act or result of arranging hair by curling or waving

  10. 10 or less commonly settplay \ˈset\ a :  a young plant or rooted cutting ready for transplantingb :  a small bulb, corm, or tuber or a piece of tuber used for propagation onion setsc :  the blossoms of a plant that have set fruit as a result of fertilization

  11. 11 or sett :  the burrow of a badger

  12. 12 :  the width of the body of a piece of type

  13. 13 :  an artificial setting for a scene of a theatrical or film production

  14. 14 or less commonly sett :  a rectangular paving stone of sandstone or granite

  15. 15 :  a division of a tennis match won by the side that wins at least six games beating the opponent by two games or by winning a tiebreaker

  16. 16 :  a collection of books or periodicals forming a unit

  17. 17 :  a clutch of eggs

  18. 18 :  the basic formation in a country-dance or square dance

  19. 19 :  a session of music (such as jazz or dance music) usually followed by an intermission; also :  the music played at one session

  20. 20 :  a group of persons associated by common interests

  21. 21 :  a collection of elements and especially mathematical ones (such as numbers or points) —called also class

  22. 22 :  an apparatus of electronic components assembled so as to function as a unit a television set

  23. 23 :  a usually offensive formation in football or basketball

  24. 24 :  a group of a specific number of repetitions of a particular exercise

Examples of set in a sentence

  1. I need to buy a new set of golf clubs.

  2. The kids are allowed to watch two hours of television. After that, I turn off the set.

  3. We met on the set of Hamlet.

14th Century

First Known Use of set

14th century


3

set

adjective

Definition of set

  1. 1 :  intent, determined set upon going

  2. 2 :  intentional, premeditated did it of set purpose

  3. 3 :  fixed by authority or appointment :  prescribed, specified set hours of study

  4. 4 :  reluctant to change set in their ways

  5. 5a :  immovable, rigid set frownb :  built-in a set tub

  6. 6 :  settled, persistent set defiance

  7. 7 :  being in readiness :  prepared set for an early morning start

Examples of set in a sentence

  1. Her college is set in the countryside.

  2. Their house is set back from the road.

  3. a man with deep-set eyes

  4. She has very set ideas about how children should behave.

Origin and Etymology of set

Middle English sett, from Old English gesett, past participle of settan


First Known Use: 14th century


SET Defined for Kids

1

set

play
verb \ˈset\

Definition of set for Students

set

;

setting

  1. 1 :  to put or fix in a place or condition I set the box on a table.

  2. 2 :  to cause to be, become, or do Police set the prisoner free.

  3. 3 :  1start 4 He set a fire.

  4. 4 :  to fix or decide on They set the wedding date. Have you set a price?

  5. 5 :  to furnish as a model You should set an example for the others. She ran to the front and set the pace.

  6. 6 :  to adjust or put in order for use Please set the table. Did you set the alarm?

  7. 7 :  to fix firmly He sets his feet and takes aim.

  8. 8 :  to pass below the horizon :  go down The sun is setting.

  9. 9 :  to begin some activity They set to work on the cleaning project.

  10. 10 :  to cause to sit I set the baby in her chair.

  11. 11 :  to arrange in a desired and especially a normal position Doctors set the broken bone.

  12. 12 :  to become or cause to become firm or solid Wait for the cement to set.

  13. 13 :  to cover and warm eggs to hatch them The hen set for days.

  14. 14 :  to locate the plot of (a story)

  15. 15 :  to provide (as words or verses) with music

set aside

  1. :  to reserve for some purpose

set eyes on

  1. :  to catch sight of :  see Though he lived nearby, I had never set eyes on him.

set in

  1. :  to make its appearance :  begin They needed to leave arctic waters before winter set in.

set off

  1. 1 :  to start a journey We set off for home.

  2. 2 :  explode 1 We set off fireworks.

  3. 3 :  to make noticeable The phrase is set off by commas.

  4. 4 :  to cause to start The story set them off laughing.

set out

  1. 1 :  to begin on a course or journey We arrived a month after we set out.

  2. 2 :  to begin with a purpose He set out to win.

set up

  1. 1 :  to place or secure in position Help me set up the tables.

  2. 2 :  to put in operation The community set up an animal shelter.


2

set

play
noun

Definition of set for Students

  1. 2 :  the act or action of going below the horizon the set of the sun

  2. 3 :  an electronic apparatus a television set

  3. 4 :  a collection of mathematical elements

  4. 5 :  a group of tennis games that make up a match

  5. 6 :  the form or movement of the body or of its parts the set of the shoulders

  6. 7 :  an artificial setting for a scene of a play or motion picture


3

set

play
adjective

Definition of set for Students

  1. 1 :  fixed by authority a set rule

  2. 2 :  not very willing to change The people he works with are set in their ways.

  3. 3 :  1ready 1 Are you all set?


Medical Dictionary

1

set

play
verb \ˈset\

Medical Definition of set

set

;

setting

  1. transitive verb

  2. :  to restore to normal position or connection when dislocated or fractured set a broken bone

  3. 1

  4. intransitive verb

  5. :  to become solid or thickened by chemical or physical alteration

  6. 2of a bone :  to become whole by knitting


2

set

noun

Medical Definition of set

  1. :  a state of psychological preparedness usually of limited duration for action in response to an anticipated stimulus or situation the influence of mental set on problem solving



Seen and Heard

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

WORD OF THE DAY

a trip made at another's expense

Get Word of the Day daily email!

WORD GAMES

Take a 3-minute break and test your skills!

Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

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

TAKE THE QUIZ