swing

verb
\ ˈswiŋ How to pronounce swing (audio) \
swung\ ˈswəŋ How to pronounce swung (audio) \; swinging\ ˈswiŋ-​iŋ How to pronounce swinging (audio) \

Definition of swing

 (Entry 1 of 3)

transitive verb

1a : to cause to move vigorously through a wide arc or circle swing an ax
b : to cause to sway to and fro
c(1) : to cause to turn on an axis
(2) : to cause to face or move in another direction swing the car into a side road
2 : to suspend so as to permit swaying or turning
3 : to convey by suspension cranes swinging cargo into the ship's hold
4a(1) : to influence decisively swing a lot of votes
(2) : to bring around by influence
b : to handle successfully : manage wasn't able to swing a new car on his income swing a deal
5 : to play or sing (something, such as a melody) in the style of swing music

intransitive verb

1 : to move freely to and fro especially in suspension from an overhead support
2a : to die by hanging
b : to hang freely from a support
3 : to move in or describe a circle or arc:
a : to turn on a hinge or pivot
b : to turn in place
c : to convey oneself by grasping a fixed support swing aboard the train
4a : to have a steady pulsing rhythm
b : to play or sing with a lively compelling rhythm specifically : to play swing music
5 : to shift or fluctuate from one condition, form, position, or object of attention or favor to another swing constantly from optimism to pessimism and back— Sinclair Lewis
6a : to move along rhythmically
b : to start up in a smooth vigorous manner ready to swing into action
7 : to hit or aim at something with a sweeping arm movement
8a : to be lively, exciting, and up-to-date
b : to engage freely in sex

swing

noun

Definition of swing (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : an act or instance of swinging : swinging movement: such as
a(1) : a stroke or blow delivered with a sweeping arm movement a batter with a powerful swing
(2) : a sweeping or rhythmic movement of the body or a bodily part
(3) : a dance figure in which two dancers revolve with joined arms or hands
(4) : jazz dancing in moderate tempo with a lilting syncopation
b(1) : the regular movement of a freely suspended object (such as a pendulum) along an arc and back
(2) : back and forth sweep the swing of the tides
c(1) : steady pulsing rhythm (as in poetry or music)
(2) : a steady vigorous movement characterizing an activity or creative work
d(1) : a trend toward a high or low point in a fluctuating cycle (as of business activity)
(2) : an often periodic shift from one condition, form, position, or object of attention or favor to another
2a : liberty of action
b(1) : the driving power of something swung or hurled
(2) : steady vigorous advance : driving speed a train approaching at full swing
3 : the progression of an activity, process, or phase of existence the work is in full swing
4 : the arc or range through which something swings
5 : something that swings freely from or on a support especially : a seat suspended by a rope or chains for swinging to and fro on for pleasure
6a : a curving course or outline
b : a course from and back to a point : a circular tour
7 : jazz that is played (as by a big band) with a steady beat and that uses the harmonic structures of popular songs and the blues as a basis for improvisations and arrangements
8 : a short pass in football thrown to a back running to the outside

swing

adjective

Definition of swing (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : of or relating to musical swing a swing band swing music swing dancing
2 : that may swing often decisively either way on an issue or in an election swing voters a swing state

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Choose the Right Synonym for swing

Verb

swing, wave, flourish, brandish, thrash mean to wield or cause to move to and fro or up and down. swing implies regular or uniform movement. swing the rope back and forth wave usually implies smooth or continuous motion. waving the flag flourish suggests vigorous, ostentatious, graceful movement. flourished the winning lottery ticket brandish implies threatening or menacing motion. brandishing a knife thrash suggests vigorous, abrupt, violent movement. an infant thrashing his arms about

swing, sway, oscillate, vibrate, fluctuate, waver, undulate mean to move from one direction to its opposite. swing implies a movement of something attached at one end or one side. the door suddenly swung open sway implies a slow swinging or teetering movement. trees swaying in the breeze oscillate stresses a usually regular alternation of direction. an oscillating fan vibrate suggests the rapid oscillation of an elastic body under stress or impact. the vibrating strings of a piano fluctuate suggests constant irregular changes of level, intensity, or value. fluctuating interest rates waver stresses irregular motion suggestive of reeling or tottering. the exhausted runner wavered before collapsing undulate suggests a gentle wavelike motion. an undulating sea of grass

Examples of swing in a Sentence

Verb The sheets swung on the clothesline. The clock's pendulum stopped swinging. She sat on the edge of the table, swinging her legs. The monkeys were swinging from branch to branch high up in the trees. I swung my suitcase into the backseat of the car. She sat on the counter and swung her legs over to the other side. She swung the door open. Be careful how you swing that ax. She swung the bat but missed the ball. She swung her purse at me. Noun One swing of the hammer was all it took to drive the nail through the board. the swing of a pendulum upward swings in the stock market The kids were playing on the swings. We sat on the porch swing and watched the neighbors.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Swarms of activists may swing some surprising seats. The Economist, "The Tories are down but not out in London," 7 Dec. 2019 During the incident, Cleveland defensive end Myles Garrett removed the helmet of Pittsburgh quarterback Mason Rudolph and swung it at Rudolph’s head. Lorenzo Reyes, USA TODAY, "Steelers C Maurkice Pouncey: Fight with Myles Garrett, Browns 'was worth it'," 4 Dec. 2019 Garrett infamously ripped off Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph’s helmet and swung it at him during the closing moments of a matchup between Cleveland and Pittsburgh earlier this season. Andy Nesbitt, For The Win, "Browns fans made a Mason Rudolph piñata so they could swing a helmet at it," 24 Nov. 2019 As Powell and Kuhel starting swinging at each other, several former teammates from the Senators ran in and pummeled Powell before the umpires broke it up. Kevin Leonard, baltimoresun.com, "From Laurel by convenience: the strange tale of a racist ballplayer," 21 Nov. 2019 Smith was suspended for two preseason games and one regular-season game for swinging his helmet at then-Dolphins offensive lineman Richie Incognito. BostonGlobe.com, "Stylishly dressed in a bright blue suit and black turtleneck, the Cleveland Browns’ star defensive end met Wednesday with an appeals officer in New York in hopes of getting a reduction to an indefinite NFL suspension that has temporarily ended Garrett’s season and tarnished his career.," 21 Nov. 2019 One shirtless man grabbed a metal rod and swung it at the sign bearing Raad’s name, knocking it out of place as others cheered. Washington Post, "Lebanese protests test Hezbollah’s role as Shiites’ champion," 18 Nov. 2019 Myles Garrett ripped the helmet off of Mason Ruldolph and swung it violently at the Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback, striking him on top of the head, which led to a brawl at the end of the Cleveland Browns win over the Steelers Thursday night. Tim Brown, oregonlive, "Myles Garrett hits Mason Rudolph with a helmet, chaos ensues in Cleveland Browns win over Pittsburgh Steelers," 15 Nov. 2019 Inter and Juventus haven't been this closely matched for years, so here's some Opta stats that will give you an insight into which way this heavyweight clash could swing at San Siro. SI.com, "Inter vs Juventus: 7 Key Facts & Stats to Impress Your Mates Ahead of the Derby d'Italia," 6 Oct. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun At that point, a businessperson and Washington outsider who doesn’t unnerve swing state voters might look pretty good. Willie Brown, SFChronicle.com, "Kamala Harris wasn’t cut out for it. Here’s what she should do now," 7 Dec. 2019 This new equilibrium may be more significant than just signaling a swing in fashion’s pendulum. Marc Bain, Quartzy, "The battle between minimalist and maximalist fashion has reached a new equilibrium," 7 Dec. 2019 The impediments to trade and poor storage mean that even modest changes in supply and demand lead to wild swings in prices. The Economist, "Food is a fulcrum in Indian politics," 7 Dec. 2019 The biggest swing game on championship weekend came in the first year of the playoff. Creg Stephenson | Cstephenson@al.com, al, "UAB vs. FAU Conference USA championship game (12/7) 2019 live stream; time, TV channel, odds," 7 Dec. 2019 There’s—brace yourself here—a bondage detail swing adorned in studs and black leather. Elise Taylor, Vogue, "Versace and Sasha Bikoff Teamed Up To Create the Most Miami Furniture Ever," 6 Dec. 2019 Reed was in a sandy waste area left of the fairway on the par-5 11th when video clearly caught his sand wedge removing sand right behind the ball — twice — during practice swings. Doug Ferguson, The Denver Post, "Gary Woodland leads in the Bahamas as Tiger Woods gets within 2 shots," 6 Dec. 2019 Buttigieg’s three-state swing through the Deep South this week marked a reboot of his outreach efforts, a trip made up entirely of small, intimate affairs. Bill Ruthhart, chicagotribune.com, "Pete Buttigieg is polling at 0% with black voters in South Carolina. Here’s how he’s rebooting his 2020 approach to win them over.," 5 Dec. 2019 Waukesha Elks Lodge: TMC Legacy Dance Club line, partner and swing dancing, 7 p.m. Dec. 6, 2301 Springdale Road, Waukesha, $7, (920) 674-5373. Elaine Rewolinski, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "What’s going on in Milwaukee this week: Dec. 6-12," 5 Dec. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The party official also shared with Vox internal monitoring reports indicating a high volume of malicious Twitter handles targeting two swing races key to Democratic efforts to retake the House. Benjamin Wofford, Vox, "The midterms are already hacked. You just don’t know it yet.," 25 Oct. 2018 And Pompeo may play a swing role, a hard-line former congressman and CIA director who, in his new job, seems determined to give diplomacy a fair shot. Mark Lander, BostonGlobe.com, "Clashing views on Iran reflect a new balance of power in the cabinet," 12 May 2018 The University of South Alabama softball team will close out its 10-game road swing Wednesday night when the Jaguars travel to take on regional rival Southern Mississippi. Usa Athletic Media Relations, AL.com, "South Alabama softball closes out 10-game road swing at Southern Miss on Wednesday," 6 Mar. 2018 The University of South Alabama will continue its current 10-game road swing Wednesday night as the Jaguars travel to take on in-state rival UAB. Usa Athletic Media Relations, AL.com, "South Alabama softball continues 10-game road swing at UAB Wednesday," 27 Feb. 2018 But others in the party — most significantly, a half-dozen senators running for re-election in Democratic and swing states — face a tougher choice. Alexander Burns, New York Times, "Trump changes the game for Sanders," 4 May 2016

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

Verb

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1933, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for swing

Verb

Middle English, to beat, fling, hurl, rush, from Old English swingan to beat, fling oneself, rush; akin to Old High German swingan to fling, rush

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Time Traveler for swing

Time Traveler

The first known use of swing was in the 13th century

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Statistics for swing

Last Updated

9 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Swing.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/swing. Accessed 13 December 2019.

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More Definitions for swing

swing

verb
How to pronounce swing (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of swing

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: to move backward and forward or from side to side while hanging from something
: to move with a smooth, curving motion
: to move (your arm, a tool, etc.) with a quick, curving motion especially to try to hit something

swing

noun

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

: an act of moving something with a quick, sweeping motion : an act of swinging a bat, fist, etc.
: the movement of something that swings backward and forward or from side to side
: a usually sudden change from one state or condition to another

swing

adjective

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

: of or relating to the style of jazz music called swing
: not certain to vote for a particular candidate or party in an election and therefore often able to decide the result of the election

swing

verb
\ ˈswiŋ How to pronounce swing (audio) \
swung\ ˈswəŋ \; swinging

Kids Definition of swing

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to move rapidly in a sweeping curve I swung the bat.
2 : to turn on a hinge or pivot The door swung open.
3 : to move with a curving motion Monkeys can swing from branch to branch. She swung her legs up on the bed.
4 : to turn or move quickly in a particular direction He swung the light in the direction of the noise.
5 : to move back and forth or from side to side while hanging from a fixed point Sheets swung on the clothes line.
6 : to move back and forth in or on a swing
7 : to manage or handle successfully I'll work two jobs if I can swing it.

swing

noun

Kids Definition of swing (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a seat usually hung by overhead ropes and used to move back and forth
2 : an act of moving something (as a bat) rapidly in a sweeping curve
3 : a sweeping movement, blow, or rhythm
4 : the distance through which something sways to and fro The class measured the swing of a pendulum.
5 : a style of jazz marked by lively rhythm and played mostly for dancing

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More from Merriam-Webster on swing

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for swing

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with swing

Spanish Central: Translation of swing

Nglish: Translation of swing for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of swing for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about swing

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