\ ˈstrāt How to pronounce straight (audio) \

Definition of straight

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1a : free from curves, bends, angles, or irregularities straight hair straight timber
b : generated by a point moving continuously in the same direction and expressed by a linear equation a straight line the straight segment of a curve
2a : lying along or holding to a direct or proper course or method a straight thinker
b : candid, frank a straight answer
c : coming directly from a trustworthy source a straight tip on the horses
d(1) : having the elements in an order the straight sequence of events
(2) : consecutive 12 straight days
e : having the cylinders arranged in a single straight line a straight 8-cylinder engine
f : plumb, vertical the picture isn't quite straight
3a : exhibiting honesty and fairness straight dealing
b : properly ordered or arranged set the kitchen straight set us straight on that issue also : correct get the facts straight
c : free from extraneous matter : unmixed straight whiskey
d : marked by no exceptions or deviations in support of a principle or party votes a straight Democratic ticket
e : having a fixed price for each regardless of the number sold
f : not deviating from an indicated pattern writes straight humor a straight-A student
g(1) : exhibiting no deviation from what is established or accepted as usual, normal, or proper : conventional also : square sense 5f
(2) : not using or under the influence of drugs or alcohol
4 : being the only form of remuneration on straight commission



Definition of straight (Entry 2 of 4)

: in a straight manner came straight home from work


straighted; straighting; straights

Definition of straight (Entry 3 of 4)

transitive verb

chiefly Scotland



Definition of straight (Entry 4 of 4)

1 : something that is straight: such as
a : a straight line or arrangement
b : straightaway especially : homestretch
c : a true or honest report or course
2a : a sequence (as of shots, strokes, or moves) resulting in a perfect score in a game or contest
b : first place at the finish of a horse race : win
3 : a poker hand containing five cards in sequence but not of the same suit — see poker illustration
4 : a person who adheres to conventional attitudes and mores

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Other Words from straight


straightish \ ˈstrā-​tish How to pronounce straightish (audio) \ adjective
straightly adverb
straightness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for straight

Synonyms: Adjective

Synonyms: Adverb

Antonyms: Adverb

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strait or straight?

Straight and strait are homophones (“one of two or more words pronounced alike but different in meaning or derivation or spelling”), and many people are in the habit of confusing such creatures, particularly when used in fixed phrases. If you express no emotion you have a straight face; an upright person is a straight shooter; a straight flush is “a poker hand containing five cards of the same suit in sequence.” However, if you find yourself in a difficult situation you are in dire straits. Straitjacket and straitlaced are the more commonly used forms for the restrictive garment and the “strict in manners” adjective, although straightjacket and straightlaced are also occasionally found.

Examples of straight in a Sentence

Adjective She has long, straight hair. The flagpole is perfectly straight. The picture isn't quite straight. We sat in the airport for five straight hours. Adverb She walked straight up to him and slapped him in the face. The tunnel goes straight through the mountain. The library is straight ahead. He was so drunk he couldn't walk straight. She sat with her legs straight out. The tree fell straight down. The car went straight off the road. She told him straight to his face that she hated him. Pine trees stood straight along the path. Sit up straight and don't slouch.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Depending on the foe, that’s amounted to five straight boat races with cushions of one, two or three scores. Ryan Dodson, USA TODAY Sportsbook Wire, "Georgia at Georgia Tech odds, picks and best bets," 28 Nov. 2019 After starting the season with a string of five straight blowouts against mid-major competition, the No. Don Markus,, "Anthony Cowan Jr. scores career-high 30, No. 5 Maryland basketball survives scare from Temple, 76-69," 28 Nov. 2019 Unlike other sharks that swim in a wavy pattern, mako sharks swim in a straighter pattern. Lauren Kent, CNN, "How sharks outlived dinosaurs and adapted to suit their environment," 28 Nov. 2019 The Badgers, meanwhile, have rebounded from two straight October defeats and have been riding Jonathan Taylor in the final stretch of the season. Rainer Sabin, Detroit Free Press, "Big Ten football predictions: Will Michigan stun Ohio State? Who wins the West?," 28 Nov. 2019 Does curly hair or straight hair carry more weight? Observations and Results How much weight was the strand of hair able to carry? Svenja Lohner, Scientific American, "Test the Strength of Hair," 28 Nov. 2019 After the Crimson Tide scored 10 straight points to briefly get back in the game, the Tigers kicked a late field goal to put it out of reach. Creg Stephenson |, al, "‘Not nearly enough that day’: 1989 Iron Bowl loss derailed Alabama’s title hopes," 27 Nov. 2019 Stafford/East Windsor/Somers 27, Windsor Locks/Suffield/East Granby 7: Mark McLaughlin rushed for three touchdowns and the Stafford co-op clinched a fourth straight postseason berth in a Pequot Uncas game at Windsor Locks High. Staff Reports,, "High school football: Northwest Catholic finishes strong; Rockville rolls past Ellington," 27 Nov. 2019 Mugaritz has won five straight races including the Joseph T. Grace Stakes on turf and the Bull Dog Handicap on dirt. Larry Stumes,, "This week at Golden Gate Fields, Nov. 28-Dec. 1," 27 Nov. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb And, honestly, straight-up not engaging is probably the way to go in a lot of common situations. Christine Byrne, Self, "How to Live Your Anti-Diet Values in a Weight-Obsessed World (Without Being a Jerk)," 27 Nov. 2019 Stand a chopstick or wooden skewer straight up in the pot, remove it, and use a knife to make a little notch to indicate how far up the cider goes. Amiel Stanek, Bon Appétit, "The One-Ingredient DIY Food Gift You Should (Actually) Make This Year," 22 Nov. 2019 Sprinkle nuts over salads, use them to garnish wintery soups, yogurt parfaits and oatmeal, use them to form snacks, like energy bites and bars, or just snack on a portion (about an ounce) straight up. Samantha Cassetty, NBC News, "The MIND diet: 11 foods to eat to keep your brain healthy," 22 Nov. 2019 Many scouts threw up their arms and headed straight to the airport. Ken Belson, New York Times, "Colin Kaepernick’s Workout Derailed by Dispute With N.F.L.," 16 Nov. 2019 Fourth-seed Tamalpais had won five straight before losing 56-7 to Marin Catholic-Kentfield. Mitch Stephens,, "10 high school football playoff games worthy of your attention," 13 Nov. 2019 Daudelin served 10 straight winning points in the fourth set to give the Wolverines an 11-1 lead after it was deadlocked at 1-1. Craig Clary,, "Western Tech volleyball back in state tournament’s final four for third straight year," 8 Nov. 2019 The Yankees were down 0-2 against the Braves in that Series and won four straight., "Brantley singled up the middle to load the bases. Bregman than drove a sinker deep into the left field stands for the 20th grand slam in Series history, the first since Addison Russell of the Cubs in Game 6 of the 2016 Series.," 27 Oct. 2019 The seven-game winning streak is their longest since winning eight straight during the 1984-85 seasons and matches their win total of the previous two years. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Buechele sets career marks as unbeaten SMU tops Temple 45-21," 19 Oct. 2019

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


14th century, in the meaning defined above


15th century, in the meaning defined above


1645, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for straight


Middle English streght, straight, from past participle of strecchen to stretch — more at stretch

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Time Traveler for straight

Time Traveler

The first known use of straight was in the 14th century

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Statistics for straight

Last Updated

1 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Straight.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 13 December 2019.

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More Definitions for straight


How to pronounce straight (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of straight

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: not having curves, bends, or angles
: vertical or level
: following one after the other in order : following each other without interruption



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

: in a straight or direct way
: in or into a vertical position
: without any delay : directly or immediately



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

: a straight part of a racecourse
: a hand of playing cards in poker that contains five cards in sequence (such as a five, a six, a seven, an eight, and a nine)


\ ˈstrāt How to pronounce straight (audio) \
straighter; straightest

Kids Definition of straight

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : following the same direction throughout its length : not having curves, bends, or angles a straight line
2 : being perfectly vertical or horizontal Does the flagpole look straight?
3 : following one after the other in order We worked for five straight hours.
4 : not changing from an indicated pattern I got straight A's on my report card.
5 : not straying from what is right or honest a straight answer
6 : correctly ordered or arranged We set the kitchen straight.
7 : correct entry 2 sense 1 Let's get the facts straight.
8 : not showing any feeling especially of amusement a straight face

Other Words from straight

straightness noun



Kids Definition of straight (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : without delay or hesitation I came straight home.
2 : in a direct and uninterrupted course : without turning or curving aside The library is straight ahead. Skye looked into the closet and straight through into another bedroom …— Jeanne Birdsall, The Penderwicks
3 : in or into an upright position stand straight
4 : without interruption They have been working for three days straight.
5 : in a normal or correct way I can't think straight.

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Comments on straight

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


easily led, controlled, or managed

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