way

noun
\ ˈwā How to pronounce way (audio) \

Definition of way

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : a thoroughfare for travel or transportation from place to place
b : an opening for passage this door is the only way out of the room
2 : the course traveled from one place to another : route asked the way to the museum
3a : a course (such as a series of actions or sequence of events) leading in a direction or toward an objective led the way to eventual open heart operationsCurrent Biography
b(1) : a course of action took the easy way out
(2) : opportunity, capability, or fact of doing as one pleases always manages to get her own way
c : a possible decision, action, or outcome : possibility they were rude—no two ways about it
4a : manner or method of doing or happening admired her way of thinking also : method of accomplishing : means that's the way to do it
b : feature, respect in no way resembles her mother
c : a usually specified degree of participation in an activity or enterprise active in real estate in a small way
5a : characteristic, regular, or habitual manner or mode of being, behaving, or happening knows nothing of the ways of women
b : ability to get along well or perform well she has a way with kids a way with words
6 : the length of a course : distance has come a long way in her studies still have a way to go
7 : movement or progress along a course worked her way up the corporate ladder
8a : direction is coming this way
b : participant usually used in combination three-way discussion
9 : state of affairs : condition, state that's the way things are
10a ways plural in form but sometimes singular in construction : an inclined structure upon which a ship is built or supported in launching
b ways plural : the guiding surfaces on the bed of a machine along which a table or carriage moves
11 : category, kind usually used in the phrase in the way of doesn't require much in the way of expensive equipmentForbes
12 : motion or speed of a ship or boat through the water
all the way
: to the full or entire extent : as far as possible ran all the way home seated all the way in the back
by the way
: by way of interjection or digression : incidentally
by way of
1 : for the purpose of
2 : by the route through : via
in a way
1 : within limits : with reservations
2 : from one point of view
in one's way or less commonly in the way
1 : in a position to be encountered by one : in or along one's course an opportunity had been put in my way— Ellen Glasgow
2 : in a position to hinder or obstruct
on the way or on one's way
: moving along in one's course : in progress
out of the way
1 : wrong, improper didn't know I'd said anything out of the way
2a : in or to a secluded place
b : unusual, remarkable there's nothing out of the way about the plan
3 : done, completed got his homework out of the way
the way
1 : in view of the manner in which you'd think she was rich, the way she spends money
2 : like, as we have cats the way other people have mice— James Thurber

way

adjective

Definition of way (Entry 2 of 3)

: of, connected with, or constituting an intermediate point on a route

way

adverb

Definition of way (Entry 3 of 3)

1 informal
a : by a long distance : to a considerable degree or extent : far is way ahead of the class sat way in the back row
b : by far : much ate way too much that's way too expensive
c : very sense 1 way cool way excited
2 : all the way pull the switch way back
from way back
: of long standing friends from way back

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Choose the Right Synonym for way

Noun

method, mode, manner, way, fashion, system mean the means taken or procedure followed in achieving an end. method implies an orderly logical arrangement usually in steps. effective teaching methods mode implies an order or course followed by custom, tradition, or personal preference. the preferred mode of transportation manner is close to mode but may imply a procedure or method that is individual or distinctive. an odd manner of conducting way is very general and may be used for any of the preceding words. has her own way of doing things fashion may suggest a peculiar or characteristic way of doing something. rushing about in his typical fashion system suggests a fully developed or carefully formulated method often emphasizing rational orderliness. a filing system

Examples of way in a Sentence

Noun We'll try doing it your way first. Let me explain it this way. You can pay for your purchase in one of two ways: by cash or by credit card. Which door is the way in? The back way was blocked. This door is the only way out of the room. Adverb He is way ahead of the other runners. They live way out in the country. We sat way back in the last row. I missed a week of class and fell way behind. Your parents are way cool.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The losing chefs will face off in a three-way cook-off, featuring a dish made with fried tofu. oregonlive, 4 June 2021 One recent video posted on Chang's Instagram documented a quick — and virtually mess-free — way to make mashed potatoes using the microwave. Shay Spence, PEOPLE.com, 4 June 2021 But Musk’s spotlight on environmental risks—and the way his tweets drive swings in prices—have hurt the narrative that the virtual currency is bound to win more mainstream adoption over time. Eric Lam, Fortune, 4 June 2021 By 1972, Twin Oaks had added co to its official documents, envisioning co as a simple, gender-inclusive way to refer to members of the community. Michael Waters, The Atlantic, 4 June 2021 Moments later, the wrong-way vehicle crashed into another vehicle on northbound I-15 near Mission Road, the CHP reported. Teri Figueroa, San Diego Union-Tribune, 4 June 2021 The Valkyries finished with 18 points and were followed by North Oldham (15) in second place and Owensboro Catholic, Christian Academy and Lexington Catholic in a three-way tie for third with six points. Jason Frakes, The Courier-Journal, 4 June 2021 Likely the safest way to remember Tiananmen will be behind closed doors -- similar to how the event is marked in mainland China, by the few who still choose to remember. James Griffiths, CNN, 4 June 2021 But there’s a simpler way to fancy pie crust design. Beth Segal, cleveland, 4 June 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Instead, Simpson donned protective gear and arranged a multi-way video call on her cellphone from Alvarado’s room. Lauren Caruba, ExpressNews.com, 12 July 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb Like his stablemate Bourbonic, this colt will be coming from way back. New York Times, 4 June 2021 What might have happened on that night way back when? Sean T. Collins, Vulture, 3 June 2021 South Alabama is 8-15 all-time against the Canes, but the last meeting was way back in 1997. Joseph Goodman | Jgoodman@al.com, al, 2 June 2021 Brock Lesnar hasn’t been seen in WWE since way back at WrestleMania 36 in March 2020, which comes as no surprise since his impact is significantly limited when fans aren’t around and the WWE product has been on autopilot. Blake Oestriecher, Forbes, 1 June 2021 The October 31, 2021 launch date was announced way back in July of 2020. Mike Wehner, BGR, 1 June 2021 But the two actors went way back, working together on The Juror (1996) and prior to that, starring on Broadway in the 1992 revival of Tennessee Williams' A Streetcar Named Desire. Maureen Lee Lenker, EW.com, 31 May 2021 With less of a focus on online multiplayer, the competitive aspect of unchallenging games is dialed way back. Joe Molander, Wired, 29 May 2021 Go way back to the days of Kezar Stadium and Hugh McElhenny, one of the most electrifying running backs in NFL history. Bruce Jenkins, San Francisco Chronicle, 28 May 2021

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

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Adjective

1836, in the meaning defined above

Adverb

1833, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for way

Noun

Middle English, from Old English weg; akin to Old High German weg way, Old English wegan to move, Latin vehere to carry, via way

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Time Traveler for way

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for way

Last Updated

6 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Way.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/way. Accessed 12 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for way

way

noun

English Language Learners Definition of way

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: how someone or something does something : how someone or something behaves, appears, feels, etc.
: a method or system that can be used to do something
: a person's usual habits, actions, qualities, etc.

way

adverb

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

informal
: to a great distance or extent : very far
: by a great amount

way

noun
\ ˈwā How to pronounce way (audio) \

Kids Definition of way

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the manner in which something is done or happens … Nick could feel a homework assignment coming the way a farmer can feel a rainstorm.— Andrew Clements, Frindle
2 : the course traveled from one place to another : route Do you know the way to my house?
3 : a noticeable point In some ways I wish I lived closer to school.
4 : state entry 1 sense 1 That's the way things are.
5 : distance in time or space You're a long way from home. The wedding is still a long way off.
6 : a special or personal manner of behaving Being quiet is just my way.
7 : a talent for handling something He has a way with words.
8 : room to advance or pass Make way—coming through!
9 : direction sense 1 I paid full fare each way.
10 : a track for travel : path, street
11 : a course of action He chose the easy way.
12 : personal choice as to situation or behavior : wish She insists on getting her way.
13 : progress along a course I'm working my way through college.
14 : a particular place The weather has been nice out our way.
15 : category, kind I had little in the way of help.
by the way
: apart from that By the way, did you hear what happened?
by way of
1 : for the purpose of I mentioned it by way of example.
2 : by the route through We drove by way of back roads.
in someone's way also in the way
: in a position to hinder or obstruct
out of the way
1 : in or to a place away from public view
2 : done fully He got his homework out of the way.

way

adverb

Kids Definition of way (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : far entry 1 sense 1 The sleeves hung way down.
2 : far entry 1 sense 2 He eats way too much candy.

More from Merriam-Webster on way

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for way

Nglish: Translation of way for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of way for Arabic Speakers

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