south

1 of 3

adverb

1
: to, toward, or in the south
a house facing south
2
: into a state of decline or ruin
causes the sluggish economy to go southG. F. Will

south

2 of 3

adjective

1
: situated toward or at the south
the south entrance
2
: coming from the south
a south wind

south

3 of 3

noun

1
a
: the direction of the south terrestrial pole : the direction to the right of one facing east
b
: the compass point directly opposite to north
2
capitalized : regions or countries lying to the south of a specified or implied point of orientation
especially : the southeastern part of the U.S.
3
: the right side of a church looking toward the altar from the nave
4
often capitalized
a
: the one of four positions at 90-degree intervals that lies to the south or at the bottom of a diagram
b
: a person (such as a bridge player) occupying this position in the course of a specified activity
specifically : the declarer in bridge
5
often capitalized : the developing nations of the world : third world sense 1 compare north sense 2b

Example Sentences

Adverb Turn south onto Elm Street. It's a mile south of here. The birds fly south in the winter. The company's profits have gone south in recent months. The TV show's ratings have been heading south. Noun The wind blew from the south. The birds migrate from the South. Parts of the South were hit hard by the storm. I grew up in the South. The American Civil War was between the North and the South. See More
Recent Examples on the Web
Adverb
The San Mateo County Sheriff's Office said deputies were responding to a shooting at Highway 92 near Half Moon Bay, 30 miles south of San Francisco. Louis Casiano, Fox News, 24 Jan. 2023 Alhambra is about 2 miles south of Monterey Park and also has a sizable Asian and immigrant population. Erick Mendoza, NBC News, 23 Jan. 2023 Adham Kamal, who took over Hollywood Shawarma just over a year ago, grew up in As-Suwayda (sometimes also spelled Sweida) in southwestern Syria, about 70 miles south of Damascus and near the Jordanian border. Bill Addisonrestaurant Critic, Los Angeles Times, 21 Jan. 2023 Concerns over another rural outbreak also lingered in the mind of Liu Han, a villager who had recently returned to Xiangtan, 700 miles south of Jinzhong. John Liu, New York Times, 21 Jan. 2023 Many travelers want to head south to catch a few rays – and maybe waves. Christopher Elliott, USA TODAY, 13 Jan. 2023 The bats head south for the winter to Mexico between late October and early November as the first cold fronts start to appear in Texas. Anna Mazurek, Chron, 2 Jan. 2023 For the walk, start at the grassy park at Pine Avenue and Carlsbad Boulevard, head south to Tamarack Avenue, then return, for a total round trip of about a mile. San Diego Union-Tribune, 30 Dec. 2022 But head south for a different kind of experience in Pakse, where two rivers converge in the country's second biggest city. CNN, 21 Dec. 2022
Adjective
Another recent sighting was in Fond du Lac at the south end of Lake Winnebago around November/December of 2022, Brady said. Hannah Kirby, Journal Sentinel, 12 Jan. 2023 In 2020 in another big acquisition, Capital Commercial bought American Airlines’ former headquarters at the south end of DFW International Airport. Dallas News, 22 Dec. 2022 In particular, reaching the south end of West Valley City or Kearns becomes harder — as does getting to much of Holladay, Midvale or Sandy. Andy Larsen, The Salt Lake Tribune, 17 Dec. 2022 Where to stay: On the south end of town, historic Camp Richardson offers rustic cabins and 27 lodge rooms plus snowshoeing on Lake Tahoe. Nina Kokotas Hahn, Condé Nast Traveler, 1 Dec. 2022 West Hartford leaders approved a new Starbucks with a drive-through Wednesday night, but several residents complained that traffic in the south end of town is bad and getting worse. Don Stacom, Hartford Courant, 30 Nov. 2022 There have been some photos provided to the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory that suggest that the south end of the caldera has overflowed, causing some lava flows a few kilometers (miles) out of the caldera, Hon said. Caleb Jones, Chicago Tribune, 28 Nov. 2022 At the south end of the half-finished dune, a thick pipe discharged a slurry of sand and water, pumped up from the ocean bed. Christopher Flavelle Tailyr Irvine, New York Times, 2 Nov. 2022 Additionally, the ocean shoreline from the U.S.-Mexico border to the south end of Seacoast Drive will remain closed until sampling confirms these areas are safe for water contact. San Diego Union-Tribune, 27 Oct. 2022
Noun
Obesity rates in the United States are also disproportionately influenced by ethnicity and geography, with Black Americans in the south experiencing some of the highest rates in the country. William A. Haseltine, Forbes, 24 Jan. 2023 The prototype will eventually be tested at hospitals and water treatment stations in the south of France. IEEE Spectrum, 23 Jan. 2023 Some 400 companies have moved to the Transcarpathia region alone, including a watermelon farm from Kherson in the south, said Roman Moldavchuk, a regional spokesman. David L. Stern, Washington Post, 21 Jan. 2023 Events are happening all across town, from Scottsdale in the east to Chandler in the south to Glendale in the West Valley. Kimi Robinson, The Arizona Republic, 21 Jan. 2023 With the reclaiming last year of Kherson in the south, Ukrainian forward lines can now use them to hit the main supply routes coming out of Crimea, one American military official said in an interview. Julian E. Barnes, New York Times, 18 Jan. 2023 In 2018, Bon Jovi and his son Jesse founded Hampton Water, a brand of rosé sourced from a vineyard in the south of France. Stephanie Kaloi, Peoplemag, 17 Jan. 2023 Bomb craters also scar the landscape in the region, which has become a focal point of the conflict after Ukraine’s successful counteroffensive in the south. Henry Austin, NBC News, 13 Jan. 2023 From the Everglades in the south to the panhandle in the north, Florida offers a variety of road trip options for travelers. James Barrett, Redbook, 11 Jan. 2023 See More

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

Word History

Etymology

Adverb

Middle English, from Old English sūth; akin to Old High German sund- south and probably to Old English sunne sun

First Known Use

Adverb

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

Adjective

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

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of south was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near south

Cite this Entry

“South.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/south. Accessed 27 Jan. 2023.

Kids Definition

south

1 of 3 adverb
: to or toward the south

south

2 of 3 adjective
1
: situated toward or at the south
the south entrance
2
: coming from the south
a south wind

south

3 of 3 noun
1
a
: the direction to the right of one facing east
b
: the compass point opposite to north
2
capitalized : regions or countries south of a point that is mentioned or understood
especially : the southeastern part of the U.S.

Biographical Definition

South

biographical name

Robert 1634–1716 English clergyman

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