thrust

1 of 2

verb

thrust; thrusting

transitive verb

1
: to push or drive with force : shove
2
: to cause to enter or pierce something by or as if by pushing
thrust a dagger into his heart
3
4
5
a
: to put (someone, such as an unwilling person) forcibly into a course of action or position
was thrust into the job
b
: to introduce often improperly into a position : interpolate
6
: to press, force, or impose the acceptance of upon someone
thrust new responsibilities upon her

intransitive verb

1
a
: to force an entrance or passage
b
: to push forward : press onward
c
: to push upward : project
2
: to make a thrust, stab, or lunge with or as if with a pointed weapon
thrust at them with a knife

thrust

2 of 2

noun

1
a
: a forward or upward push
b
: a movement (as by a group of people) in a specified direction
2
a
: salient or essential element or meaning
the thrust of the argument
b
: principal concern or objective
the plan's major thrust is testingRyan Lizza
3
a
: a strong continued pressure
b
: the sideways force or pressure of one part of a structure against another part (as of an arch against an abutment)
c
: the force produced by a propeller or by a jet or rocket engine that drives a vehicle (such as an aircraft) forward
d
: a nearly horizontal geologic fault
4
a
: a push or lunge with a pointed weapon
b(1)
: a verbal attack
(2)
: a military assault

Examples of thrust in a Sentence

Verb He thrust his hands into his pockets. He thrust his fist into the air. The doctor thrust the needle into the patient's arm. He thrust at me with his sword. Noun With one last thrust he broke through the barrier. a single thrust of his sword See More
Recent Examples on the Web
Verb
In 2013, Foster received the Cecil B. DeMille lifetime-achievement award at the Golden Globes and gave a speech that thrust her into the public eye in a new way. Jordan Kisner, The Atlantic, 18 Feb. 2024 Cowboy boots, for one, were plucked from their country context and thrust onto the urban streets of metropolitan cities years ago. Leah Dolan, CNN, 16 Feb. 2024 The last time the Supreme Court was thrust into a presidential election was in 2000 — Bush v. Gore — when the justices effectively ruled former President George W. Bush won and stopped a Florida recount. Gillian Brassil, Sacramento Bee, 8 Feb. 2024 The divorce was thrust into the national spotlight after attorneys for Trump co-defendant Michael Roman alleged in a filing in the Georgia election interference case that Nathan Wade was involved in a romantic relationship with Willis. Katrina Kaufman, CBS News, 30 Jan. 2024 There can be no other political association attached to it after the numbing scrutiny thrust onto it—first after Martin’s murder, again during the protests of 2020, and once more after that, on the tenth anniversary of Martin’s death. Peter Rubin, Longreads, 25 Jan. 2024 Iranian strikes in Iraq stoke fears of further Middle East escalation The attacks have thrust the government of Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia al-Sudani into the middle of the growing tensions between Tehran and Washington. Mustafa Salim, Washington Post, 21 Jan. 2024 Dex is thrust into a public-facing job, quickly encountering the joys and pitfalls of fame. Aramide Tinubu, Variety, 6 Feb. 2024 People who wouldn’t cross paths otherwise are suddenly thrust together and forced to overcome their differences. Ivana Kottasová, CNN, 5 Feb. 2024
Noun
Bill Peebles, another researcher on the project, notes that Sora created a narrative thrust by its camera angles and timing. Steven Levy, WIRED, 15 Feb. 2024 Experts and activists have expressed ambivalence about the coercive aspects of the new law, such as strict punishments for presenting false information and failure to apply within 30 days of receiving a notice from the registrar, saying this contradicts legislation’s supposedly progressive thrust. Anant Gupta, Washington Post, 8 Feb. 2024 Alcaraz’s power and thrust are normally enough to overwhelm opponents, albeit with the caveat that his season has rather petered out after that majestic day in Wimbledon. Tim Ellis, Forbes, 28 Nov. 2023 Each of these engines can produce more than a half-million pounds of thrust, consuming a mixture of liquified natural gas—essentially methane—and liquid oxygen. Stephen Clark, Ars Technica, 8 Jan. 2024 Perhaps it’s misplaced to crave an arc, a powerful a sense of thrust, or any of the traditional attributes of music drama. An Epic Set, Vulture, 16 Jan. 2024 James, who didn’t play in Utah, had more thrust on the defensive end and in transition, settling less for shots on the perimeter. Dan Woike, Los Angeles Times, 16 Jan. 2024 The Brothers Sun, which premiered Jan. 4, sees Yeoh as the matriarch of a family thrust into a Taipei crime syndicate; Yang plays a rival assassin. Seija Rankin, The Hollywood Reporter, 15 Jan. 2024 Future Vulcan flights can use up to six of the engines for a maximum thrust of 3.3 million pounds at liftoff. Richard Tribou, Orlando Sentinel, 8 Jan. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'thrust.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Verb

Middle English thrusten, thristen, from Old Norse thrȳsta; probably akin to Old Norse thrjōta to tire, Old English thrēat coercion — more at threat

First Known Use

Verb

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 4a

Time Traveler
The first known use of thrust was in the 13th century

Dictionary Entries Near thrust

Cite this Entry

“Thrust.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/thrust. Accessed 27 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition

thrust

1 of 2 verb
thrust; thrusting
1
: to push or drive with force : shove
2
: to cause to enter or pierce something by pushing
thrust a knife into the bread
3
: to press or force the acceptance of upon someone
thrust new responsibilities upon her

thrust

2 of 2 noun
1
a
: a push or lunge with a pointed weapon
b
: a military attack
2
: the force produced by a propeller or jet or rocket engine that drives an aircraft or rocket forward
3
a
: a forward or upward push
b
: a movement (as by a group of people) in a particular direction

More from Merriam-Webster on thrust

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