\ ˈwest \

Definition of west

 (Entry 1 of 7)

: to, toward, or in the west



Definition of west (Entry 2 of 7)

1 : situated toward or at the west the west exit
2 : coming from the west a west wind



Definition of west (Entry 3 of 7)

1a : the general direction of sunset : the direction to the left of one facing north
b : the compass point directly opposite to east

2 capitalized

a : regions or countries lying to the west of a specified or implied point of orientation
b : the noncommunist countries of Europe and America
3 : the end of a church opposite the chancel

4 often capitalized

a : the one of four positions at 90-degree intervals that lies to the west or at the left of a diagram
b : a person (such as a bridge player) occupying this position during a specified activity


biographical name (1)
\ ˈwest \

Definition of West (Entry 4 of 7)

Benjamin 1738–1820 American painter


biographical name (2)

Definition of West (Entry 5 of 7)

Nathanael 1903–1940 originally Nathan Wallenstein Weinstein American novelist


biographical name (3)

Definition of West (Entry 6 of 7)

Dame Rebecca 1892–1983 pseudonym of Cicily Isabel Andrews née Fairfield English critic and novelist


biographical name (4)

Definition of West (Entry 7 of 7)

Thomas — see de la warr

Examples of west in a Sentence


They drove west after they got off the highway. They live just west of here.


cities on the west coast


There's a beautiful pond to the west of the trail. We will be traveling into the city from the west. If that way is east, then this way is west. Floods have caused extensive damage in the West. Come explore the natural wonders of the American West. policies foreign to the West
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb

In Avondale, Arizona, a city of 85,000 about 12 miles west of downtown Phoenix, Ducey selected three of eight eligible opportunity zones, including a northeastern portion of the city that is home to a budding medical corridor. Jeff Andrews, Curbed, "Opportunity zones: vital community development tool or tax windfall for the rich?," 3 Oct. 2018 Launched today just west of Hamburg, the Coradia iLint trains are the very first in the world to create electricity through a chemical reaction between hydrogen and oxygen. Meredith Carey, Condé Nast Traveler, "The World's First Hydrogen-Powered Train Just Arrived in Germany," 17 Sep. 2018 Currently, Microsoft’s Canadian headquarters is in Mississauga, a suburb just west of Toronto. Rachel Lerman, The Seattle Times, "Microsoft moving Canadian headquarters into Toronto as it expands," 11 Sep. 2018 Carlin-Kraft was found dead on Aug. 22 in the bedroom of her condo in the upscale suburb of Ardmore, located just west of Philadelphia. Ryan Gaydos, Fox News, "Man arrested in ex-Playboy model's murder released from prison month before attack, father seeks probe," 31 Aug. 2018 Hurricane Fabio was active off the coast just west of Baja from Monday to Wednesday, said Bill Rasch, a NWS meteorologist. Cassie Dickman, sacbee, "Why was Sacramento suddenly cloudy this morning? Blame Fabio, weather experts say," 6 July 2018 The Stoll Fire — a 300-acre conflagration just west of Red Bluff — was 60 percent contained as of Monday morning. Lizzie Johnson, SFChronicle.com, "Proactive Pawnee Fire response in Lake County seeks to avoid another catastrophe," 25 June 2018 Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport reached 101 degrees Friday, and more triple-digit temperatures are likely later this week just west of Fort Worth. Bill Hanna, star-telegram, "Weird weather: Temperature soars near 100 after midnight in Texas town," 25 June 2018 Williams was in the street when Anderson's SUV hit him Monday on West State Street just west of North 27th Street, police said. Michael Johnson, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Milwaukee driver was drunk with 8-day-old baby in SUV before hitting, killing pedestrian, complaint says," 22 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Living > Parties This past week, the best of Los Angeles flocked to the very west side, specifically to Caruso’s latest addition to the shopping landscape of the city, Palisades Village. Vogue, "Kris Jenner, Zoe Saldana, Storm Reid, and More Toast Tamara Mellon," 14 Dec. 2018 Trump’s first stop on the continent was the west African country of Ghana—notable not for its wilderness areas but, historically, for being the major point of embarkation for African slaves. Klara Glowczewska, Town & Country, "Melania Trump Gave Us All a Valuable Lesson in How Not to Dress in Africa," 9 Oct. 2018 Arena-scale shooting My final Quest demo of the day was the most intriguing: A multiplayer, arena-scale version of the Rift's wild-west zombie shooter Dead & Buried played in a massive 4,000 square foot playspace. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "Hands-on: Oculus Quest is an intriguing new middle ground for VR," 27 Sep. 2018 The west wing focuses on the main entertaining spaces, with steel beams and concrete floors accenting an open kitchen and outside courtyard dining space. Megan Barber, Curbed, "Sleek shipping container house asks $875K," 26 Sep. 2018 Her new cedar-shingle roof is also west-Texas traditional, but because Lebermann, who grew up on a ranch, wanted exposed shingles inside the house as well as out, two separate roofs ended up being built. Rima Suqi, ELLE Decor, "How an Abandoned Texas Home Is Restored Into an Ethereal Country Getaway," 20 Sep. 2018 Ouisie’s Table, a Southern food restaurant on the city’s west side, was among the spots the Bushes frequented. Russell Gold, WSJ, "In Houston, His Adopted Home, George H.W. Bush Was Beloved," 2 Dec. 2018 About 1 million Uighurs, Kazakhs and other minorities have been arbitrarily detained in mass internment camps in China’s far west Xinjiang region, according to estimates by a U.N. panel. Yanan Wang, The Seattle Times, "China says interning Muslims brings them into ‘modern’ world," 16 Oct. 2018 In 1956, Moses had decided to expand Tavern on the Green, the restaurant on the park’s west side, and to build an eighty-car parking lot north of the building—on the site of a children’s playground. Alexandra Lange, Curbed, "How not to cheat children: Let them build their own playgrounds," 18 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Almost Hitchcock-like is the account of Shchukin’s second wife, their daughter Irina and the governess making their escape west on the Ukraine train. E.a. Carmean Jr., WSJ, "‘The Collector’ Review: Before the Fall," 7 Dec. 2018 The collision occurred when the Nissan, heading west on Third Street, crossed over the double yellow line and sideswiped a Seidl’s Party Supplies Rentals van driven by a 51-year-old Ramona man, said Ensign. Ramona Sentinel, "Woman injured in Third Street collision," 13 July 2018 While on patrol in the area of U.S. 30 and Schoolhouse Road in New Lenox, a sheriff’s deputy spotted the vehicle, a white Chevrolet Impala, heading west on U.S. 30, police said. Mike Nolan, Daily Southtown, "Orland Park man dies after car found wrecked in ditch, police say," 10 July 2018 By Lionsgate Related stories from Miami Herald Has Pat Riley's approach with the Heat changed now that LeBron is headed out west? Manny Navarro, miamiherald, "Will Miami end up with half of Banana Boat Crew? Some say Heat is interested in Carmelo," 6 July 2018 According to Phoenix police, the man was crossing mid-block at Dunlap Avenue near 34th Avenue after 10 p.m. when he was struck by a white, newer-model, mid-size pickup truck heading west. Kelsey Mo, azcentral, "Pedestrian 'critical' after hit-and-run in Phoenix; search continues for pickup truck," 5 July 2018 A few miles away, Vladimir Gunin, a 57-year-old Russian émigré, was driving west. Jonathan Small, Good Housekeeping, "A Drunk Driver Destroyed Jennifer Tracy's Family. Now, She Wants to Save Him.," 2 July 2018 The protest began on the Capitol Mall around 10 a.m. but by about 11:30 a.m. protesters walked up 7th Street, blocking several intersections, before heading west to I Street. Daniel Wilson And Cassie Dickman, sacbee, "Thousands march in downtown Sacramento against Trump’s anti-immigration policies," 30 June 2018 The man left without any cash and got into a black minivan that headed west on Farmington Avenue, police said. Christine Dempsey, courant.com, "Clipboard-Wielding Robber Flees Bristol Bank, Police Say," 27 June 2018

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above


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


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

History and Etymology for west


Middle English, from Old English; akin to Old High German westar to the west and probably to Latin vesper evening, Greek hesperos

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Statistics for west

Last Updated

23 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for west

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

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More Definitions for west



English Language Learners Definition of west

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to or toward the west



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

: located in or toward the west

: coming from the west


\ ˈwest \

Kids Definition of west

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: to or toward the direction of sunset We'll drive west.



Kids Definition of west (Entry 2 of 3)

: placed toward, facing, or coming from the direction of sunset the west side of the house



Kids Definition of west (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : the direction of sunset : the compass point opposite to east
2 capitalized : regions or countries west of a point that is mentioned or understood

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More from Merriam-Webster on west

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with west

Spanish Central: Translation of west

Nglish: Translation of west for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of west for Arabic Speakers

Comments on west

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


a complex dispute or argument

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