1 of 2

adjective or adverb

west·​er·​ly ˈwe-stər-lē How to pronounce westerly (audio)
: situated toward or belonging to the west
the westerly end of the farm
: coming from the west
a westerly breeze


2 of 2


plural westerlies
: a wind from the west

Examples of westerly in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
Adjective or adverb
Skies will stay mostly clear into the early-morning hours of Tuesday, when westerly wind gusts will slowly dip under 15 mph. A. Camden Walker, Washington Post, 26 Nov. 2023 The real pièce de résistance, however, is Strawberry Moon, Goodtime’s signature restaurant, serving pan-Mediterranean fare from westerly tapenade to easterly baklava ice cream sandwiches. Brandon Presser, Harper's BAZAAR, 16 July 2023 Buffalo was at a red or unhealthy level Wednesday, as westerly neighbors like Detroit stayed purple, or very unhealthy. Caitlin O'Kane, CBS News, 28 June 2023 Unfortunately, the rocket took a longer and more westerly trajectory than anticipated and subsequently crashed into a mountainside in Norway. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, 28 Apr. 2023 The planets — Mercury, Jupiter, Venus, Uranus and Mars — will be visible from most everywhere on Earth with a westerly view of the sky, experts said, depending on cloud cover and surrounding light pollution. Kevin Rector, Los Angeles Times, 27 Mar. 2023 But relief is expected to arrive Tuesday in the form of moist westerly winds that will push Portland’s haze east and possibly bring showers after 11 a.m., according to the weather service. Bslovic, oregonlive, 27 Aug. 2023 Moderate westerly winds sinking and heating off the Appalachians may help boost our temperatures into at least the mid-80s to perhaps as hot as around 90. A. Camden Walker, Washington Post, 4 Aug. 2023 Part of the reason why heat has been so intense this year is that the jet stream, strong and narrow bands of westerly winds blowing above the planet’s surface, has pinned massive domes of high pressure in place across western North America, the Mediterranean and southern Asia. Liza Tetley, Fortune, 2 Aug. 2023
Their modest city saw an influx of evacuees from nearby rural and coastal regions soon after hot westerlies sent walls of flame into a string of towns and villages around New Year's Eve. NBC News, 11 Jan. 2020 As the land cools in the autumn, north-easterly winds replace the south-westerlies (see map). The Economist, 27 June 2019 But their move from the southern hemisphere to the northern, and the constraining effect of high pressure over Africa, sees them twisted from south-easterlies to south-westerlies. The Economist, 27 June 2019 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'westerly.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Adjective or adverb

obsolete wester western

First Known Use

Adjective Or Adverb

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1845, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of westerly was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near westerly

Cite this Entry

“Westerly.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/westerly. Accessed 29 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


1 of 2 adverb or adjective
west·​er·​ly ˈwes-tər-lē How to pronounce westerly (audio)
: toward the west
the ship sailed westerly
a westerly direction
: from the west
the wind blew westerly
a westerly breeze


2 of 2 noun
plural westerlies
: a wind blowing from the west

Geographical Definition


geographical name

Wes·​ter·​ly ˈwe-stər-lē How to pronounce Westerly (audio)
town in southwestern Rhode Island on the border with Connecticut population 17,936
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