\ ˈwāt \

Definition of weight 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a : the amount that a thing weighs

b(1) : the standard or established amount that a thing should weigh

(2) : one of the classes into which contestants in a sports event are divided according to body weight

(3) : poundage required to be carried by a horse in a handicap race

2a : a quantity or thing weighing a fixed and usually specified amount

b : a heavy object (such as a metal ball) thrown, put, or lifted as an athletic exercise or contest

3a : a unit of weight or mass — see Metric System Table

b : a piece of material (such as metal) of known specified weight for use in weighing articles

c : a system of related units of weight

4a : something heavy : load

b : a heavy object to hold or press something down or to counterbalance

5a : burden, pressure the weight of their responsibilities

b : the quality or state of being ponderous

c : corpulence

6a : relative heaviness : mass

b : the force with which a body is attracted toward the earth or a celestial body by gravitation and which is equal to the product of the mass and the local gravitational acceleration

7a : the relative importance or authority accorded something the weight of her opinions

b : measurable influence especially on others throwing his weight behind the proposal

8 : overpowering force

9 : the quality (such as lightness) that makes a fabric or garment suitable for a particular use or season often used in combination summer-weight

10 : a numerical coefficient assigned to an item to express its relative importance in a frequency distribution

11 : the degree of thickness of the strokes of a type character

weight table


weighted; weighting; weights

Definition of weight (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to oppress with a burden weighted down with cares

2a : to load or make heavy with or as if with a weight

b : to increase in heaviness by adding an ingredient

3a : weigh sense 1

b : to feel the weight of : heft

4 : to assign a statistical weight to

5 : to cause to incline in a particular direction by manipulation the tax structure … which was weighted so heavily in favor of the upper classes —A. S. Link

6 : to shift the burden of weight upon weight the inside ski

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Choose the Right Synonym for weight


importance, consequence, moment, weight, significance mean a quality or aspect having great worth or significance. importance implies a value judgment of the superior worth or influence of something or someone. a region with no cities of importance consequence generally implies importance because of probable or possible effects. the style you choose is of little consequence moment implies conspicuous or self-evident consequence. a decision of great moment weight implies a judgment of the immediate relative importance of something. the argument carried no weight with the judge significance implies a quality or character that should mark a thing as important but that is not self-evident and may or may not be recognized. the treaty's significance

influence, authority, prestige, weight, credit mean power exerted over the minds or behavior of others. influence may apply to a force exercised and received consciously or unconsciously. used her influence to get the bill passed authority implies the power of winning devotion or allegiance or of compelling acceptance and belief. his opinions lacked authority prestige implies the ascendancy given by conspicuous excellence or reputation for superiority. the prestige of the newspaper weight implies measurable or decisive influence in determining acts or choices. their wishes obviously carried much weight credit suggests influence that arises from the confidence of others. his credit with the press

Examples of weight in a Sentence


Please indicate your height and weight on the form. Her weight is 105 pounds. The boat sank under the weight of the cargo. Those columns have to be strong enough to support the weight of the roof. He stays in good shape by lifting weights. I use pie weights to keep the pie crust from bubbling when I bake it.


I weighted the fishing line with a lead sinker. weighted the car with a ton of furniture and then headed off for college
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

European countries should spend more on defense and security and develop the diplomatic heft to match their economic weight, many Europe analysts say. Howard Lafranchi, The Christian Science Monitor, "How strong a Europe does US want? In Trump era, that's still the issue.," 13 July 2018 As weightier allies found at the NATO summit this week, Mr. Trump is reluctant to help those who don’t pull their weight, and who can blame him? Tony Abbott, WSJ, "An Ally Sizes Up Donald Trump," 13 July 2018 Williams won only two of her first four matches after coming back to the tour in March, struggling with her weight, movement and rhythm. Christopher Clarey, New York Times, "Serena Williams, Enjoying Every Moment, Is Back in the Wimbledon Final," 12 July 2018 Position particle board furniture so that its weight rests on the head of fasteners such as nails and screws, Van Haaren says. Matthew Jancer, Popular Mechanics, "8 Tips to Help You Move Like a Pro," 11 July 2018 Moreover, Russia and the US have diametrically opposed perspectives on Ukraine, and, indeed, on what the Kremlin genuinely views as its sovereign right to throw its weight around within its historic sphere of influence. Anna Arutunyan, Time, "No Matter What Happens in Helsinki, Putin Has Already Won," 10 July 2018 The 20-year-old has always had a proclivity to punch above his weight. Atreya Verma, azcentral, "Elie Okobo eager for the challenges the Western Conference has to offer," 4 July 2018 More recently, in November, the Department of Justice threw its weight behind a group called Students for Fair Admissions suing Harvard on the grounds that its affirmative action policies allegedly discriminated against Asian-American applicants. Monica Rodriguez, Fortune, "Obama-Era Guidelines on Using Race in College Admissions Decisions To Be Reversed by Trump Administration," 3 July 2018 Your Hershey bar may have been worth its weight in gold in Mayan times. Katie Langin, Science | AAAS, "Top stories: Chocolate money, the rise of multicellularity, and pet rabbit brains," 29 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Tuesday's vote was 60 percent to 39 percent under Metropolitan's voting system, which is weighted by property values. Dale Kasler, sacbee, "Southern California water agency agrees to spend $11 billion on Delta tunnels - again," 10 July 2018 The benchmark, which is weighted to account for differences in home type, climbed 0.7 percent from last month to C$766,300 ($595,700). Natalie Wong, Bloomberg.com, "Toronto Home Sales Off to Weakest Start Since 2009 Recession," 3 May 2018 That’s less than 3 percent of the 1,737 second-graders admitted through the appeals process, further skewing a program already heavily weighted toward whites and Asians. Matthew Barakat, The Seattle Times, "School system’s appeals process leaves some minorities out," 3 Feb. 2018 Assuming no sci-fi power source is involved, the batteries to power such a weapon would need to weight four or five times more than the entire gun's reported three kilogram weight. Eric Limer, Popular Mechanics, "Everything Suspicious About China's Laser Rifle Claims," 9 July 2018 The criteria have changed several times in the interim - just last month, the company made changes to weight paid streams on services like Spotify over unpaid ones on jukebox-esque services like Pandora for the Billboard 100 singles chart. Travis M. Andrews, chicagotribune.com, "Billboard's charts used to be our barometer for music success. Are they meaningless in the streaming age?," 9 July 2018 But reducing calories becomes more and more challenging as the brain adapts to weight loss. Kevin Klatt, SELF, "Why Weight Loss Diets Fail," 26 June 2018 In a major national study, inactivity was more closely linked to weight gain and abdominal obesity than caloric intake. New York Times, "The Dangers of Belly Fat," 11 June 2018 The list appears to be weighted toward cities with NBA teams, as all 19 above Sacramento have clubs in the league. Noel Harris, sacbee, "Sacramento among nation's Top 20 basketball cities, ranking says. Should it be higher?," 29 May 2018

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


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


1647, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for weight


Middle English wight, weght, from Old English wiht; akin to Old Norse vætt weight, Old English wegan to weigh

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Learn More about weight

Statistics for weight

Last Updated

22 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for weight

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

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More Definitions for weight



English Language Learners Definition of weight

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a measurement that indicates how heavy a person or thing is

: the amount that a person or thing weighs : the heaviness of a person or thing

: a heavy object that is lifted during exercising



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

: to put a weight on (something) to make it heavier or to keep it from moving


\ ˈwāt \

Kids Definition of weight

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the amount that something weighs Her weight is 115 pounds.

2 : the force with which a body is pulled toward the earth

3 : a unit (as a pound) for measuring weight

4 : an object (as a piece of metal) of known weight for balancing a scale in weighing other objects

5 : a heavy object used to hold or press down something

6 : a heavy object lifted during exercise

8 : strong influence The mayor threw his weight behind the proposal.


weighted; weighting

Kids Definition of weight (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to load or make heavy with a weight I weighted the fishing line so it would sink.

2 : to trouble with a burden He was weighted down with worry.


\ ˈwāt \

Medical Definition of weight 

1 : the amount that a thing weighs

2 : a unit of weight or mass

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Comments on weight

What made you want to look up weight? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


occurring twice a year or every two years

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