walk

1 of 2

verb

walked; walking; walks

intransitive verb

1
a
: to move along on foot : advance by steps
b
: to come or go easily or readily
c
: to go at a walk
d
: to go on foot for exercise or pleasure
2
baseball : to advance to first base by taking four pitches that are balls (see ball entry 1 sense 4a) : to go to first base as a result of a base on balls
3
: to avoid criminal prosecution or conviction
walked on a technicality
4
a
: walk out
walked over problems with management
b
: to pursue a course of action or way of life : conduct oneself : behave
walk warily
c
: to be or act in association : continue in union
the British and American peoples will … walk together side by side … in peaceSir Winston Churchill
5
of an astronaut : to move about in space outside a spacecraft
6
of an inanimate object
a
: to move in a manner that is suggestive of walking
b
: to stand with an appearance suggestive of strides
pylons walking across the valley
7
a
of a spirit : to move about in visible form : appear
b
of a ship : to make headway
c
obsolete : roam, wander

transitive verb

1
a
: to cause (an animal) to go at a walk : take for a walk
walking a dog
b(1)
: to cause to move by walking
walked her bicycle up the hill
(2)
: to haul (something, such as an anchor) by walking round the capstan
2
a
: to accompany on foot : walk with
walked her home
b
: to compel to walk (as by a command)
c
: to bring to a specified condition by walking
walked us off our feet
3
: to follow on foot for the purpose of measuring, surveying, or inspecting
walk a boundary
4
: to move (an object) in a manner suggestive of walking
5
a
: to pass on foot or as if on foot through, along, over, or upon : traverse, perambulate
walk the streets
walk a tightrope
b
: to perform or accomplish by going on foot
walk guard
6
baseball : to cause (a batter) to advance to first base by pitching four balls : to give a base on balls to
7
: to perform (a dance) at a walking pace
walk a quadrille

walk

2 of 2

noun

plural walks
1
a
: an act or instance of going on foot especially for exercise or pleasure
go for a walk
took a long walk around the neighborhood
see also take a walk
2
: a place designed for walking:
a(1)
: a path specially arranged or paved for walking
(2)
b
: a public avenue for promenading : promenade
c
: a railed platform above the roof of a dwelling house
d
3
: distance to be walked
a quarter mile walk from here
4
: an accustomed place of walking : haunt
5
: a place or area of land in which animals feed and exercise with minimal restraint
6
baseball : an advance to first base awarded to a baseball player who during a turn at bat takes four pitches that are balls (see ball entry 1 sense 4a) : base on balls
7
: characteristic manner of walking
his walk is just like his father's
8
British : a ceremonial procession
9
a
: a low rate of speed
the shortage of raw materials slowed production to a walk
b
: the gait of a biped in which the feet are lifted alternately with one foot not clear of the ground before the other touches
c
: the gait of a quadruped in which there are always at least two feet on the ground
specifically : a 4-beat gait of a horse in which the feet strike the ground in the sequence near hind, near fore, off hind, off fore
10
: a route regularly traversed by a person in the performance of a particular activity (such as patrolling, begging, or vending)
11
a
: social or economic status
all walks of life
b(1)
: range or sphere of action : field, province
(2)
12
: manner of living : conduct, behavior
13
: an easy victory
won in a walk
Phrases
walk away from
1
: to give up or leave behind willingly : abandon
2
: to survive (an accident) with little or no injury
3
: to outrun or get the better of without difficulty
walk off with
1
a
: to steal and take away
b
: to take over unexpectedly from someone else : steal sense 1d
walked off with the show
2
: to win or gain especially by outdoing one's competitors without difficulty
walk on
: to take advantage of : abuse
walk on eggshells or walk on eggs
: to exercise extreme caution
walk over
: to treat contemptuously
walk the plank
1
: to walk under compulsion over the side of a ship into the sea
2
: to resign an office or position under compulsion
walk through
1
: to go through (a theatrical role, a familiar activity, etc.) perfunctorily (as in an early stage of rehearsal)
2
: to guide (someone, such as a novice) through an unfamiliar or complex procedure step-by-step
3
: to deal with or carry out perfunctorily
walk in the park
: an easy or pleasurable experience

Examples of walk in a Sentence

Verb Is your grandson walking yet? He walks home from school every day. It's not far; you can walk there in five minutes. It was a while after the accident before she could walk again. He walked away without saying goodbye! She turned and walked away from him. The driver walked away from the accident unharmed. They walk around the neighborhood every morning for exercise. We walked around the city all day seeing the sights. He walked to the store. Noun The cliff walk along the ocean is very popular. Many exotic plants can be found along the walk. See More
Recent Examples on the Web
Verb
Closer to the lodge, the woodland is also explored on walking safaris. Lauren Jade Hill, Forbes, 19 Feb. 2024 As a form of punishment, James stopped her car, not far from school, and made her son get out to walk or run the rest of the way home, a distance of around eight blocks, police said. Stepheny Price, Fox News, 19 Feb. 2024 Bowen gives a safety talk about walking on the formation. Cassidy Randall, Rolling Stone, 18 Feb. 2024 Perspective Carolyn Hax: Girlfriend waited, and waited, then walked. Amy Dickinson, Washington Post, 18 Feb. 2024 Police said the victims were in a vehicle together entering the garage when the suspect, who was wearing a light-colored jacket and dark pants, walked up and began firing into the car. City News Service, San Diego Union-Tribune, 18 Feb. 2024 Their firstborn son, Owen, helped Sweet's father walk her down the aisle. Jacklyn Krol, Peoplemag, 18 Feb. 2024 Chargers players walked off Jack Murphy Field, as it was officially known, inside the Mission Valley stadium that Hall of Fame coach Sid Gillman’s club christened in 1967, five years before the Chiefs first played in Arrowhead Stadium. Tom Krasovic, San Diego Union-Tribune, 6 Feb. 2024 When a referee called a foul more than halfway through a college basketball game Saturday, a group of shirtless men walked to the bottom of the bleachers and stood behind the hoop. Kyle Melnick, Washington Post, 6 Feb. 2024
Noun
For now, the Oakland resident believes Clio’s can provide an oasis to people craving a communal space, perhaps before or after a walk at nearby Lake Merritt. Shomik Mukherjee, The Mercury News, 18 Feb. 2024 Contra The Russian Prison Service has said Navalny felt unwell after a walk and lost consciousness. James Farrell, Forbes, 17 Feb. 2024 Endless cycle of promises and violence Orient House in East Jerusalem, set in a lush garden just a short walk from the Old City, was once the unofficial headquarters of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO). Ivana Kottasová, CNN, 17 Feb. 2024 The Federal Prison Service said in a statement that Navalny felt unwell after a walk on Friday Feb. 16, 2024 and lost consciousness. Jim Heintz, arkansasonline.com, 17 Feb. 2024 Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny reportedly died at the age of 47 on Friday after taking a walk around an Arctic penal colony, according to a Russian prison service — though many are skeptical about the circumstances of his sudden death, including the U.S. government. Esme Mazzeo, Peoplemag, 16 Feb. 2024 The love affair between Jules and Cynthia is consummated with a pre-dawn walk and a gentle hand on the shoulder. Emily Langer, Washington Post, 16 Feb. 2024 The prison authorities said that Mr. Navalny lost consciousness on Friday after taking a walk in the Arctic penal colony where he was moved late last year. Andrew E. Kramer, New York Times, 16 Feb. 2024 According to the Russian prison service, Navalny collapsed after a short walk in the prison yard and lost consciousness and died soon after. Andrei Soldatov, Foreign Affairs, 16 Feb. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'walk.' 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 walken "to roll, toss about (of the sea, waves), wander, journey, go, go on foot, stroll, move about on earth (of a dead person's spirit), be in motion, circulate, be present, live," going back to Old English wealcan (strong verb) and wealcian (weak verb) "to toss about, work with the hands, turn over (in the mind), (of waves or the sea) to roll, surge," going back to Germanic *walkan- (whence also Middle Dutch walken "to knead, full [cloth]," Old High German giwalchen "fulled, thickened," as weak verbs Old Icelandic válka "to roll, stamp," velkja "to toss about"), of uncertain origin

Note: The Middle English verb experienced a remarkable degree of semantic diversification not paralleled in other Germanic languages, taking it far from its Old English sources, and leading to the usual modern meaning "to go by foot"; see detailed discussion of forms and meanings in Oxford English Dictionary, third edition. — The Germanic verb *walkan- has been compared with Sanskrit válgati "(s/he) leaps, bounds, (it) surges," and, more remotely, Latvian val͂gs "rope." However, as pointed out by G. Kroonen (Etymological Dictionary of Proto-Germanic, Brill, 2013), there is a parallel verb *walgōn- evident in Middle Dutch walghen (in mi walghet "I feel nauseous"), Middle Low German walgen "to wrestle, strive," Old High German walgōn "to roll." If this etymon goes back to Indo-European *u̯olgh-, it cannot be related to the Sanskrit verb. Both *walkan- and *walgōn- have been seen as representing root extensions of Indo-European *u̯el- "roll"; see welter entry 1.

Noun

Middle English walk, walke, noun derivative of walken "to journey, walk entry 1"

First Known Use

Verb

12th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 7c

Noun

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

Time Traveler
The first known use of walk was in the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near walk

Cite this Entry

“Walk.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/walk. Accessed 2 Mar. 2024.

Kids Definition

walk

1 of 2 verb
1
: to move or cause to move along on foot at a natural slow gait
walk to town
walk a horse up a hill
2
: to pass over, through, or along by walking
walk the streets
3
: to perform or accomplish by walking
walk guard
4
: to take or cause to take first base with a base on balls

walk

2 of 2 noun
1
: a going on foot
go for a walk
2
: a place, path, or course for walking
3
: distance to be walked
it's a long walk
4
a
: manner of living : conduct, behavior
b
: social or economic status
various walks of life
5
a
: manner of walking
b
: a way of moving by a four-footed animal in which there are always at least two feet on the ground
especially : a slow way of moving by a horse in which the feet strike the ground in the sequence of left hind foot, left front foot, right hind foot, right front foot
6

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