\ ˈsau̇th How to pronounce south (audio) \

Definition of south

 (Entry 1 of 4)

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 south— G. F. Will



Definition of south (Entry 2 of 4)

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



Definition of south (Entry 3 of 4)

1a : 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


biographical name
\ ˈsau̇th How to pronounce South (audio) \

Definition of South (Entry 4 of 4)

Robert 1634–1716 English clergyman

Examples of south in a Sentence

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.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb At 26 feet, Mockingbird Valley Road floods south of Mellwood Avenue, and if the Ohio River is at 24.5 feet, the Waldoah Beach and Transylvania Beach areas are cut off. Billy Kobin, The Courier-Journal, "River Road in downtown Louisville is closed as the Ohio River rises," 14 Feb. 2020 The explosive went off after an employee opened a letter at the office located south of the city. Fox News, "Letter bomb explodes, catches fire in Amsterdam office, fourth for Netherlands in two days," 14 Feb. 2020 Instead of continuing on Meridian Street south of 18th Street, the route will travel west on 18th Street to IU Health Methodist Hospital, and align with the Red Line on Capitol Avenue, which will increase bus frequency to every five minutes. Kellie Hwang, Indianapolis Star, "Purple Line updates: Expected timeline, a route change and how Lawrence residents feel," 14 Feb. 2020 Anthony Stott, 43, of Brisbane, was struck early Monday morning on the M1 near Cudgera Creek, a coastal town in Australia's New South Wales state, about 80 miles south of Brisbane. Morgan Winsor, ABC News, "Teacher in Australia was tied to a chair before being hit and killed by a truck, police say," 13 Feb. 2020 Kolby Treshaun Peterson, 21, was shot and killed in the parking lot of the Mountain View Community Center on Grovers Avenue, south of 12th Street and Union Hills Drive on Jan. 22. Alyssa Stoney, azcentral, "Man arrested in connection with fatal shooting at north Phoenix community center," 13 Feb. 2020 The largest outbreak outside of mainland China remains in Yokohama, a Japanese port south of Tokyo where a cruise ship has been under tight quarantine for a week now. James Griffiths, CNN, "Cruise ship outbreak worsens as China coronavirus cases appear to level off," 11 Feb. 2020 When Sinn Féin began fielding candidates south of the Irish border in the 1980s, the Troubles were still very much ongoing in Northern Ireland. K. V. Turley, National Review, "Sinn Féin’s Surge Portends a Sea Change in Irish Politics," 10 Feb. 2020 Richmond Heights Mayor David Roche said that talks to divide up income taxes from the new retail, most all of which would be located south of the Sears building, have yet to begin. cleveland, "In response to schools, Belle Oaks developer says without abatement, there is no project," 8 Feb. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Highs on Friday will range from the low 40s in north Alabama to the mid- to upper 40s in central Alabama to the upper 50s and low 60s in south Alabama, where the cold air will be the latest to arrive. Leigh Morgan, al, "Ready for a day with no rain and no severe weather?," 13 Feb. 2020 In December, Regency Centers said that a large section along the south side of the shopping center had to be torn down. Maria Halkias, Dallas News, "Tornado-damaged Preston and Royal gets its bakery back," 12 Feb. 2020 The artist is to be chosen from those who are making submissions for another downtown mural project: the south side of a skywalk over North 2nd Street, between West Wisconsin and West Michigan avenues. Tom Daykin, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "A downtown mural is coming to an unusual and very visible site: a 620-foot-wide strip at MacArthur Square," 12 Feb. 2020 Tempe Public Market Cafe, a restaurant on the northeast corner or Rural and Warner roads in south Tempe, is closed as of Friday, Jan. 17. Tirion Morris, azcentral, "After 2 years, this popular south Tempe restaurant is closed. Here's what we know," 17 Jan. 2020 The Lincoln County sheriff’s office announced the $10,000 reward Monday after the herd of six were locked into a corral in rural south Nevada, officials said. USA TODAY, "Gray whale tows calf, wolves on the move, John Dillinger won’t be exhumed; News from around our 50 states," 11 Jan. 2020 Brighton, a resort on the south coast, is well known as a raffish, radical place. Rebecca Mead, The New Yorker, "Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s Royal Flush," 10 Jan. 2020 Key areas include: The south coast of NSW from Bateman’s Bay to Wonboyn near the Victorian border. Popular Science, "Track Australia’s raging bushfires with these official sources," 7 Jan. 2020 Targeting them is especially popular during the massive mullet run along the south Atlantic Coast. Bob Mcnally, Field & Stream, "The Ultimate Guide to Catching and Keeping Saltwater Live Bait," 2 Jan. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun In a Portis novel, usually set in the South and south of the border, characters embarked on journeys that took the most unpredictable detours. Dallas News, "‘True Grit’ author Charles Portis dies at 86," 18 Feb. 2020 Snow depth from Black Rapids to the Alphabet Hills — south and west of Paxson — is extreme. John Schandelmeier, Anchorage Daily News, "A snowy winter can make things harder for some of Alaska’s moose," 15 Feb. 2020 During his brief stint in the American south, Sameer fell in love with barbecue. Mark Kurlyandchik,, "Leila is the 2020 Detroit Free Press Restaurant of the Year," 14 Feb. 2020 Chicken Salad Chick plans to open more than 50 new restaurants this year throughout the south and midwest, in states like Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky, Virginia, Texas, Arkansas and Florida. William Thornton |, al, "Chicken Salad Chick has best year in company history," 13 Feb. 2020 To the south and east of Louisville, the stretch of the Bluegrass State from Bowling Green to the Lexington area could receive closer to two inches of rain, according to the NWS. Billy Kobin, The Courier-Journal, "Louisville is under a flash flood watch Wednesday, but how high will the Ohio River get?," 12 Feb. 2020 The mountain lion, dubbed P-56, was a male between 4 and 5 years old who had been living in the western Santa Monica Mountains south of the 101 Freeway, CBS Los Angeles reports. CBS News, "California mountain lion is first to be killed under state's "three-strike" law," 11 Feb. 2020 At 9:39, the helicopter swooped back to the south at 1,400 feet to trace Highway 101 west toward Camarillo. New York Times, "‘Helicopter Went Down, Flames Seen’: Kobe Bryant’s Last Flight," 8 Feb. 2020 Snowmobiles can travel on the Military Ridge State Trail south of the park and the shoulder of Mounds Park Road through it, but the Friends group and other silent-sports advocates have opposed expanding that to recreational snowmobile use on trails. Brian E. Clark, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Blue Mound is one of the best parks in southern Wisconsin for silent winter sports," 7 Feb. 2020

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.

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First Known Use of south


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


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


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

History and Etymology for south


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

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Time Traveler for south

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for south

Last Updated

18 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“South.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for south


How to pronounce South (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of south

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: to or toward the south
US, informal : into a worse state or condition



English Language Learners Definition of south (Entry 2 of 3)

: located in or toward the south
: coming from the south



English Language Learners Definition of south (Entry 3 of 3)

: the direction that is to your right when you are facing the rising sun : the direction that is the opposite of north
: regions or countries south of a certain point especially : the southern part of the U.S.


\ ˈsau̇th How to pronounce south (audio) \

Kids Definition of south

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: to or toward the south The cabin faces south.



Kids Definition of south (Entry 2 of 3)

: placed toward, facing, or coming from the south a south wind



Kids Definition of south (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : the direction to the right of someone facing east : the compass point opposite to north
2 capitalized : regions or countries south of a point that is mentioned or understood

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More from Merriam-Webster on south

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with south

Spanish Central: Translation of south

Nglish: Translation of south for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of south for Arabic Speakers

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