noun \ ˈstir \

Definition of steer

1 : a male bovine animal and especially a domestic ox (Bos taurus) castrated before sexual maturity — compare stag 3
2 : an ox less than four years old

Origin and Etymology of steer

Middle English, from Old English stēor young ox; akin to Old High German stior young ox

Other Animal Husbandry Terms




Definition of steer

steered; steering; steers
1 : to control the course of : direct; especially : to guide by mechanical means (such as a rudder)
2 : to set and hold to (a course)
1 : to direct the course (as of a ship or automobile)
2 : to pursue a course of action
3 : to be subject to steering
  • the car steers well


play \ˈstir-ə-bəl\ adjective


steer clear
: to keep entirely away often used with of
  • tries to steer clear of debt

Examples of steer in a Sentence

  1. She steered the ship through the strait.

  2. He steered his car carefully into the parking space.

  3. He steered the wheelchair through the aisles.

  4. Skillful navigators can steer by the positions of the stars.

  5. The car was steering right at us.

  6. The boat steered out to sea.

  7. He tried to steer the conversation away from his recent problems.

  8. She skillfully steered the bill through the legislature.

  9. He steered the team to another championship last year.

  10. The high recent returns on stocks have steered many investors away from bonds.

Origin and Etymology of steer

Middle English steren, from Old English stīeran; akin to Old English stēor- steering oar, Greek stauros stake, cross, stylos pillar, Sanskrit sthavira, sthūra stout, thick

steer Synonyms


follow, trail;

Near Antonyms

dog, hound, shadow, tail, tailgate;

Synonym Discussion of steer

guide, lead, steer, pilot, engineer mean to direct in a course or show the way to be followed. guide implies intimate knowledge of the way and of all its difficulties and dangers.
    • guided the scouts through the cave
lead implies showing the way and often keeping those that follow under control and in order.
    • led his team to victory
steer implies an ability to keep to a course and stresses the capacity of maneuvering correctly.
    • steered the ship through a narrow channel
pilot suggests guidance over a dangerous or complicated course.
    • piloted the bill through the Senate
engineer implies finding ways to avoid or overcome difficulties in achieving an end or carrying out a plan.
    • engineered his son's election to the governorship




Definition of steer

: a hint as to procedure : tip

First Known Use of steer


in the meaning defined above

See Words from the same year
NEW! Time Traveler



Definition of steer

  • dialectal British variant of

STEER Defined for English Language Learners


Definition of steer for English Language Learners

  • : to control the direction in which something (such as a ship, car, or airplane) moves

  • —used to describe how easy or difficult it is to steer a vehicle

  • : to be moved or guided in a particular direction or along a particular course

STEER Defined for Kids



verb \ ˈstir \

Definition of steer for Students

steered; steering
1 : to make a vehicle move in a particular direction
  • steer a boat
  • … she didn't even try to steer around the bumps and holes.
  • —Jack Gantos, Joey Pigza Loses Control
2 : to guide or change the direction of something
  • I tried to steer the conversation away from politics.
3 : to follow a course of action
  • She steers clear of girls who gossip.




Definition of steer for Students

: a castrated bull usually raised for beef

Law Dictionary


transitive verb

legal Definition of steer

: to subject to steering
  • real estate agents steering Latino buyers

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