adverb or adjective
west·​ward | \ ˈwes-twərd How to pronounce westward (audio) \

Definition of westward

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: toward the west



Definition of westward (Entry 2 of 2)

: westward direction or part sail to the westward

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Other Words from westward

Adverb or adjective

westwards \ ˈwes-​twərdz How to pronounce westwards (audio) \ adverb

Examples of westward in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb or adjective Most infamously, with one of his first acts as president, Jackson ordered the removal of Native Americans westward, opening their lands to white settlement. Daniel Gullota, National Review, "Donald Trump Is No Andrew Jackson," 10 Feb. 2020 The Germans had already fled westward, leaving behind the bodies of prisoners who had been shot and thousands of sick and starving survivors. Washington Post, "AP PHOTOS: Auschwitz, 75 years after its liberation," 21 Jan. 2020 The entomologist, the artist, and the reporter drive westward. National Geographic, "60 hours on burning Kangaroo Island," 17 Jan. 2020 The driver took off and headed westward, crashing through a gate at Battleship Memorial Park about 8 miles away. USA TODAY, "Purple haze, making the sausage, ‘Goodfellas’ tavern: News from around our 50 states," 14 Jan. 2020 The Compromise grew out of westward expansion following the Mexican War in the late 1840s, which raised the question of whether slavery would exist in California or any new state formed in the vast southwest territories gained from Mexico. David W. Blight, The New York Review of Books, "‘A Doubtful Freedom’," 7 Jan. 2020 As an early, cold dusk settled in, Pete drove us back to the lodge, which sits in an alpine valley at the end of a 38-mile-long driveway snaking westward from Raton. Joshua Berman, The Know, "Vacation with mountain lions, bobcats and bison only four hours away from Denver," 27 Dec. 2019 The work commenced simultaneously westward from the Montana side of the mountain and eastward from the Idaho side. BostonGlobe.com, "TAFT, Mont. — More than 110 years ago, as the West finally was being tamed, the Chicago, Milwaukee, and St. Paul railroad rushed to build a transcontinental rail line to the Pacific Coast. Standing in the way, though, was a formidable peak in the middle of Montana’s Bitterroot Mountains.," 15 Dec. 2019 The Northern Pacific Railway, previously extended westward from Missoula, Mont., brought supplies by rail. Bill Morlin, New York Times, "Gamblers, Wastrels and Lumberjacks: An Old Cemetery Gives Up Its Secret History," 14 Dec. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun First impression: The interior, which has swallowed up the former home of its neighbor, the American Folk Art Museum, in a westward march along 53rd Street, feels newly rangy. Eve Macsweeney, Vogue, "Will MoMA’s New Commissions Make the Museum Modern Again?," 7 Oct. 2019 The twilight of the tsarist era had seen a flowering of creative religious thought in Russia and this movement shifted westwards. The Economist, "Taking sides in the Orthodox Church’s battles over Russia and Ukraine," 9 Sep. 2019 The storm’s top sustained winds decreased slightly to 165 mph as its westward movement slowed, crawling along Grand Bahama island Monday morning at 1 mph in what forecasters said would be a daylong assault. RamÓn Espinosa, chicagotribune.com, "Hurricane Dorian, one of the strongest Atlantic storms ever recorded, keeps pounding north Bahamas," 2 Sep. 2019 Hurricane Dorian continued its assault on the Bahamas overnight with Category 5 winds, making a slow westward move that was forecast to bring the dangerous storm up the east coast of Florida. Richard Tribou, orlandosentinel.com, "Hurricane Dorian thrashing Bahamas as Florida starts to feel effects of Category 5 storm," 1 Sep. 2019 However there has been a general westward shift with its potential track. Leigh Morgan, al.com, "High chance a tropical depression forms this week in the Gulf," 8 July 2019 In Miami, the number of shipping terminals has dwindled steadily from more than thirty in the 1990s to fifteen today, as high-rise condominiums continue their westward march along the waterfront. Rowan Moore Gerety, Harper's magazine, "Downstream," 10 June 2019 Averaging 10 miles a day, nine men completed the westward run and were welcomed as heroes by the Dutch. Daniel Ford, WSJ, "‘The Escape Artists’ Review: Keep Calm and Keep Shoveling," 27 Sep. 2018 Stretching its engineering capacity and technological innovation westward helps China expand and modernize its economy, as well as bolster alliances. James T. Areddy, WSJ, "Trophy Infrastructure, Troublesome Debt: China Makes Inroads in Europe," 5 Nov. 2018

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

Adverb or adjective

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above


circa 1596, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for westward

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for westward

Last Updated

14 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Westward.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/westward. Accessed 19 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for westward


How to pronounce westward (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of westward

: toward the west


adverb or adjective
west·​ward | \ ˈwest-wərd How to pronounce westward (audio) \

Kids Definition of westward

: toward the west Settlers moved westward.

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More from Merriam-Webster on westward

Spanish Central: Translation of westward

Nglish: Translation of westward for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of westward for Arabic Speakers

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