steerage

noun
steer·​age | \ ˈstir-ij How to pronounce steerage (audio) \

Definition of steerage

1 : the act or practice of steering broadly : direction
2 [from its originally being located near the rudder] : a section of inferior accommodations in a passenger ship for passengers paying the lowest fares

Examples of steerage in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Alfred Stieglitz and Jacob Riis composed subjects with a spare, Modernist look in mind, but immigrants in steerage or children in factories were the stuff of real life. Brian T. Allen, National Review, 12 Feb. 2022 With $3 in his pocket, Sidney traveled steerage on a mail-cargo ship. Hillel Italie, The Christian Science Monitor, 7 Jan. 2022 With $3 in his pocket, Sidney traveled steerage on a mail-cargo ship. Hillel Italie, ajc, 7 Jan. 2022 With $3 in his pocket, Sidney traveled steerage on a mail-cargo ship. Hillel Italie, Anchorage Daily News, 7 Jan. 2022 His father was an orphan who came to America from Norway in 1911 with his seven brothers and sisters in the steerage of a ship, Yndestad said. Suzanne Baker, chicagotribune.com, 23 Dec. 2021 Not only had there been no lifeboat drills, the crew provided steerage passengers almost no direction at all. Cody Cassidy, Wired, 30 Oct. 2020 Under his steerage, the newspaper became an important tool to lobby for the fugitives' return. Cnn Staff, CNN, 4 Sep. 2020 To the editor: So our captain of state has telegraphed his intention to sail into a pack of icebergs at flank speed, ignoring the wishes of the majority in steerage who don’t want that. Los Angeles Times, 7 May 2020 See More

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

First Known Use of steerage

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Learn More About steerage

Time Traveler for steerage

Time Traveler

The first known use of steerage was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near steerage

steerability

steerage

steerage passenger

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for steerage

Cite this Entry

“Steerage.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/steerage. Accessed 26 Jun. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on steerage

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about steerage

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Great Words for Scrabble

  • scrabble tiles that read scrabble quiz
  • Which of the following Q-without-U words means the number five in cards or dice?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!