\ ˈwāst How to pronounce waist (audio) \

Definition of waist

1a : the typically narrowed part of the body between the hips and chest or upper back put his arm around her waist
b : the greatly constricted basal part of the abdomen of some insects (such as wasps and flies)
2 : the part of something corresponding to or resembling the human waist: such as
a(1) : the part of a ship's deck between the poop and forecastle
(2) : the middle part of a sailing ship between foremast and mainmast
b : the middle section of the fuselage of an airplane
3 : a garment or the part of a garment covering the body from the neck to the waistline or just below:
b : blouse

Other Words from waist

waisted \ ˈwā-​stəd How to pronounce waist (audio) \ adjective

Examples of waist in a Sentence

He has a narrow waist and broad shoulders. He put his arm around her waist. These pants have an elastic waist. The waist of this skirt is too tight.
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Recent Examples on the Web It wasn’t decided until the final minutes, with DeRozan wrapping an arm around LaVine’s waist and putting his head on his teammate’s shoulder after a key basket, secure the Clippers’ streak was finally dead. Andrew Greif, Los Angeles Times, 14 Nov. 2021 For her outdoor wedding, held in Maine on October 2, Kelly wore a white gown from Loulette in Brooklyn, one that featured a velvet ribbon around the waist, embroidered flowers, and lace. Elizabeth Logan, Glamour, 26 Oct. 2021 For the society ladies of Western Europe in the 18th century, bags were effectively pockets, detached from garments and worn around the waist with a band beneath layers of skirt. Lilah Ramzi, Vogue, 12 Oct. 2021 Then, a man and an 18-year-old food worker who were at the event pulled the two to the ground, the man grabbing the teen from around the waist and the worker breaking his grip on the pole. Christine Dempsey, courant.com, 1 Oct. 2021 The man, red-faced, lost his footing and, one arm flailing, caught Bea around the waist. Esther Freud, The New Yorker, 20 Sep. 2021 The Commute Air Pro 18 sensor is activated by connecting an electronic magnetic buckle around the waist. David Kindy, Smithsonian Magazine, 14 Sep. 2021 His clothes spoke volumes with their absence of any sort of ornamentation save for an embroidered flower or two around the waist of a coat or a shoulder of a shirt. Blue Carreon, Forbes, 13 Sep. 2021 The sleeveless gown had a round neckline, ruched detail around the waist, and a high slit that began at the star's upper thigh. Quinci Legardye, Harper's BAZAAR, 4 Sep. 2021

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

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

History and Etymology for waist

Middle English wast; probably akin to Old English wæstm growth, weaxan to grow — more at wax

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Time Traveler for waist

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near waist



waist anchor

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Statistics for waist

Last Updated

24 Nov 2021

Cite this Entry

“Waist.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/waist. Accessed 3 Dec. 2021.

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More Definitions for waist



English Language Learners Definition of waist

: the middle part of your body between the hips and chest or upper back that is usually narrower than the areas above and below it
: the part of a piece of clothing that fits around your waist


\ ˈwāst How to pronounce waist (audio) \

Kids Definition of waist

1 : the part of the body between the hips and chest or upper back
2 : the part of a garment that fits around a person's waist


\ ˈwāst How to pronounce waist (audio) \

Medical Definition of waist

: the typically narrowed part of the body between the thorax and hips

More from Merriam-Webster on waist

Nglish: Translation of waist for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of waist for Arabic Speakers


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