side·​ways | \ˈsīd-ˌwāz \

Definition of sideways 

1 : from one side

2 : with one side forward turn sideways

3a : in a lateral direction or downward to one side hopped sideways slump sideways

b : askance look sideways at someone

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Synonyms for sideways


broadside, crabwise, edgeways [chiefly British], edgewise, sidewise

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Examples of sideways in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Under Ballmer, the company went sideways for a good 10-15 years. Eric Johnson, Recode, "Microsoft is more valuable than Apple again. Why?," 30 Nov. 2018 Adapting taser weapons to firearms will allow Marines to make their weapons lethal again with a simple magazine or ammo switch if things quickly go sideways. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "The Marines Want Non-Lethal Taser Rounds to Stun Angry Crowds," 6 Sep. 2018 After wowing on the red carpet, the pop star was forced to turn sideways to squeeze the six-foot stunners through the gala entryway. Washington Post, "Holy haute couture: Divine designs grace carpet at Met Gala," 8 May 2018 Which is all the more reason Trump, in keeping buttoned up about Daniels, is turning political pundits sideways. Gregory Krieg, CNN, "Trump's silence on Stormy says a lot. But not about him.," 29 Mar. 2018 Unlike Bourdais and Hinchcliffe, however, Pagenaud’s season turned sideways at the start and has yet to right itself. Jim Ayello, Indianapolis Star, "IndyCar Texas preview: Why more mayhem could be on tap, and Will Power could win," 7 June 2018 That’s easy to say when nobody looks at you sideways because of the color of your skin. Otis R. Taylor Jr., San Francisco Chronicle, "Even in Oakland, calling the cops on black people just living their lives," 17 May 2018 Your behavior: Retreat gradually while turned sideways and avoiding eye contact. Rachel Levin,, "Here’s What You Should Do If You See a Bear—Whether You’re on the Trail or in Your Backyard," 16 Apr. 2018 And while increasingly difficult to articulate, Key West’s brand of camp reflects Wolkowsky’s understanding — never on the nose, always sideways, a place where anonymity feels like an innate right. Krista Stevens, Longreads, "The Town That Camp Built," 12 July 2018

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

1572, in the meaning defined at sense 3a

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Statistics for sideways

Last Updated

6 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for sideways

The first known use of sideways was in 1572

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More Definitions for sideways



English Language Learners Definition of sideways

: with one side facing forward

: to or toward the right or left side

side·​ways | \ˈsīd-ˌwāz \

Kids Definition of sideways

1 : from one side I looked at it sideways.

2 : with one side forward a sideways position He turned sideways to let me by.

3 : to one side a sideways move The statue fell sideways.

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More from Merriam-Webster on sideways

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with sideways

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sideways

Spanish Central: Translation of sideways

Nglish: Translation of sideways for Spanish Speakers

Comments on sideways

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


a soft lustrous wool fabric with mohair

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