noun, often attributive
ta·​ble | \ ˈtā-bəl How to pronounce table (audio) \
plural tables

Definition of table

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : a piece of furniture consisting of a smooth flat slab fixed on legs
b(1) : a group of people assembled at or as if at a table
(2) : a legislative or negotiating session the bargaining table
c(1) : a supply or source of food
(2) : an act or instance of assembling to eat : meal sit down to table
2a : a systematic arrangement of data usually in rows and columns for ready reference
b : a condensed enumeration : list a table of contents
4a tables plural : backgammon
b : one of the two leaves of a backgammon board or either half of a leaf
6 : something that resembles a table especially in having a plane surface: such as
a : the upper flat surface of a cut precious stone — see brilliant illustration
b(1) : tableland
(2) : a horizontal stratum
off the table
: not up for consideration or negotiation That option is now off the table.
on the table
: up for consideration or negotiation the subject is not on the table
under the table
1 : into a stupor can drink you under the table
2 : in a covert manner took money under the table


tabled; tabling\ ˈtā-​b(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce table (audio) \

Definition of table (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1a : to remove (something, such as a parliamentary motion) from consideration indefinitely
b British : to place on the agenda
c : to put on a table
2 : to enter in a table



Definition of table (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : suitable for a table or for use at a table a table lamp
2 : suitable for serving at a table table grapes
3 : proper for conduct at a table table manners

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms for table

Synonyms: Noun

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of table in a Sentence

Noun They were sitting at the dining table. She reserved a table for two at the restaurant. He had the attention of the entire table. The table shows the salary of each employee. Verb The committee tabled the issue until the next meeting. She plans to table a motion for debate in Parliament.
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Every room, every appliance, every table, chair and sofa. Christopher Elliott, Forbes, 5 June 2021 Why hasn't wargaming experienced the same universal addition as the other kitchen table hobbies? Luke Winkie, Wired, 5 June 2021 After four regular-season games, Portland sits at third in the NWSL table with six points as the Thorns head into Saturday night’s home game against Racing Louisville. Portland Timbers And Thorns Fc, oregonlive, 4 June 2021 Winston already knew something was up because the table was set, the candles were lit, the kitchen smelled good, and Craig, my husband, was cuing up Ella Fitzgerald on the record player. Washington Post, 4 June 2021 During the busy warm-weather season, Owamni will serve lunch and dinner and follow a hybrid service format, with table service in the dining room, online ordering on the patios and takeout for nearby picnics. Rick Nelson, Star Tribune, 4 June 2021 That was ingrained in our dinner-table conversations. WSJ, 4 June 2021 Maybe table service will be swapped out for a self-service model where customers pick up food from windows to take back to picnic tables. Claire Ballor, Dallas News, 4 June 2021 LeBron James throwing the ball into the scorer’s table then helplessly turning up his palms. Bill Plaschke, Los Angeles Times, 4 June 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Try to table heavy discussions until you both are rested and have your wits (and a good night’s rest) about you. Myth 6. Wendy Troxel, Time, 2 June 2021 The council opted to table the item to give him more time to learn the ropes of his position. Los Angeles Times, 1 June 2021 The endorsements faced resistance from some members, and an August 19, 2020 vote to table the matter came up with a 15-15 tie, according to three people with direct knowledge of the vote. Washington Post, 17 May 2021 The House approved Ball’s request to table the amendment by a vote of 53-38. Mike Cason |, al, 6 May 2021 Commissioners Todd Weaver and Marty Sullivan support moving forward with the deal, but agreed with the other three commissioners to table a vote for 90 days. Lisa Maria Garza,, 12 May 2021 House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy filed the resolution on the House floor Tuesday afternoon and Democrats immediately moved to table it, which stops the resolution from proceeding further, effectively killing it. Mariam Khan, ABC News, 20 Apr. 2021 Shortly before the jury found Chauvin guilty of murder and manslaughter charges, the House voted 216 to 210 along party lines to table a resolution from Republican House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy that would have censured Waters. Hunter Woodall, Star Tribune, 22 Apr. 2021 The House voted to table the resolution 216 to 210 along party lines. Kathryn Watson, CBS News, 21 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Sacked by the chairman, replaced by a perpetual winner who, at the time of writing, looks likely to break that habit with us, turning us into a boring, unadventurous, mid-table, mediocre side in the process. Paul Croughton, Robb Report, 8 May 2021 The movement also celebrates a return to foraging - once a common practice, lost and then found again - bringing to the table wild herbs, roots, vegetables, and fruits exploding with flavor and nutrients. Valentina Di Donato, Forbes, 19 Mar. 2021 But during the second quarter, when shutdown measures took hold, the non-table proportion shot up to 90%. Russ Wiles, The Arizona Republic, 19 Oct. 2020 Presented and mixed table side, the salad is a collection of simple ingredients that, when methodically combined, become spectacular. Justin Phillips,, 6 Mar. 2020 Use a mix of sources — floor lamps, table lamps, sconces and overheads. New York Times, 7 Feb. 2020 There’s a mix of table lamps, task lights, wall lights, and standing floor lamps on offer with shapes that range from tall mushrooms to something reminiscent of the Bat Signal. Boone Ashworth, Wired, 26 Feb. 2020 The space also was updated to include more table seating and brighter decor. Tirion Morris, azcentral, 17 Jan. 2020 Pull your naval in towards your spine and bring your knees up to a table top position. Stephanie Mansour, NBC News, 10 Jan. 2020

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

See More

First Known Use of table


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for table


Middle English, from Old English tabule & Anglo-French table; both from Latin tabula board, tablet, list

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About table

Time Traveler for table

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Statistics for table

Last Updated

7 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Table.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Jun. 2021.

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

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for table



English Language Learners Definition of table

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a piece of furniture that has a flat top and one or more legs
: a piece of furniture with a flat surface that is designed to be used for a particular purpose
: a group of people who are sitting at a table



English Language Learners Definition of table (Entry 2 of 2)

US : to decide not to discuss (something) until a later time
British : to formally present (something) for discussion


ta·​ble | \ ˈtā-bəl How to pronounce table (audio) \

Kids Definition of table

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a piece of furniture having a smooth flat top on legs
2 : food to eat Grandma sets a good table.
3 : the people around a table He waited on our table.
4 : a short list a table of contents
5 : an arrangement in rows or columns for reference multiplication tables


tabled; tabling

Kids Definition of table (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : tabulate
2 : to put on a table


ta·​ble | \ ˈtā-bəl How to pronounce table (audio) \

Medical Definition of table

1 : a piece of furniture consisting of a smooth flat slab fixed on legs especially : one used for examining or operating
2 : either of the two layers of compact bone of the skull which are separated by cancellous diploe


Test Your Vocabulary

Return of Name that Color!

  • a light greenish blue color
  • Name that color:
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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