wing

noun, often attributive
\ ˈwiŋ How to pronounce wing (audio) \
plural wings

Definition of wing

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : one of the movable feathered or membranous paired appendages by means of which a bird, bat, or insect is able to fly also : such an appendage even though rudimentary if possessed by an animal belonging to a group characterized by the power of flight
b : any of various anatomical structures (as of a flying fish or flying lemur) providing means of limited flight
2 : an appendage or part resembling a wing in appearance, position, or function: such as
a : a device worn under the arms to aid a person in swimming or staying afloat water wings
b : ala
c : a turned-back or extended edge on an article of clothing
d : a sidepiece at the top of an armchair
e(1) : a foliaceous, membranous, or woody expansion of a plant especially along a stem or on a samara or capsule
(2) : either of the two lateral petals of a papilionaceous flower
f : a vane of a windmill or arrow
g : sail
h : an airfoil that develops a major part of the lift which supports a heavier-than-air aircraft
i chiefly British : fender sense d
3 : a means of flight or rapid progress
4 : the act or manner of flying : flight take wing
5 : a side or outlying region or district
6 : a part or feature of a building usually projecting from and subordinate to the main or central part the servants' wing
7a : one of the pieces of scenery at the side of a stage
b wings plural : the area at the side of the stage out of sight
8a : a left or right section of an army or fleet : flank
b : one of the offensive positions or players on either side of a center position in certain team sports also : flanker
9a : either of two opposing groups within an organization or society : faction
b : a section of an organized body (such as a legislative chamber) representing a group or faction holding distinct opinions or policies — compare left wing, right wing
10a : a unit of the U.S. Air Force higher than a group and lower than a division
b : two or more squadrons of naval airplanes
11 : a dance step marked by a quick outward and inward rolling glide of one foot
12 wings plural : insignia consisting of an outspread pair of stylized bird's wings which are awarded on completion of prescribed training to a qualified pilot, aircrew member, or military balloon pilot
in the wings
1 : out of sight in the stage wings
2 : close at hand in the background : readily available had a plan waiting in the wings
on the wing
1 : in flight : flying
2 : in motion
under one's wing
: under one's protection : in one's care took her under his wing

wing

verb
winged; winging; wings

Definition of wing (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to fit with wings
b : to enable to fly or move swiftly
2a : to traverse with or as if with wings
b : to effect or achieve by flying
3 : to let fly : dispatch would start to wing punches— A. J. Liebling
4a : to wound in the wing : disable the wing of winged the duck
b : to wound (as with a bullet) without killing winged by a sniper
5 : to do or perform without preparation or guidelines : improvise winging it

intransitive verb

: to go with or as if with wings : fly often used with it winged it to Europe

Illustration of wing

Illustration of wing

Noun

wing 1a: parts of a bird's wing 1 coverts, 2 primaries, 3 secondaries

In the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from wing

Noun

wingy \ ˈwiŋ-​ē How to pronounce wingy (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for wing

Synonyms: Noun

bloc, block, body, coalition, faction, party, sect, set, side

Synonyms: Verb

aviate, fly, glide, plane, soar

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of wing in a Sentence

Noun

In the library's north wing, you'll find the current periodicals. She works in the pediatric wing of the hospital. The guest room is in the east wing.

Verb

The team winged to Moscow for the finals. She winged the ball over to first base. The soldier was winged by a stray bullet.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Once Jimmy’s Mahagonny — governed by the right to eat, make love, fight and drink — takes wing, so does Mr. van Hove’s production. Joshua Barone, New York Times, "Review: Ivo van Hove’s ‘Mahagonny’ Does Justice to Brecht and Weill," 7 July 2019 At age 25 with a 44-inch vertical leap and a 6-foot-10 wingspan, Robinson still has considerable upside, at least as a backup wing. Connor Letourneau, SFChronicle.com, "Warriors’ Glenn Robinson III out to prove he’s more than just a dunker," 6 July 2019 Premier League side Crystal Palace are in pole position to sign Atalanta wing back Timothy Castagne as the two clubs reach an advanced stage of discussions. SI.com, "Transfer Rumours: Milinkovic-Savic to Man Utd, Bayern Eye Vazquez, Douglas Costa's Future & More," 6 July 2019 In the fifth inning, Lindor added a solo home run off the right-field foul pole’s mesh wing. Bobby Nightengale, Cincinnati.com, "Home runs cost Cincinnati Reds in loss to Cleveland Indians, snaps 3-game winning streak," 5 July 2019 That receives most of the power during forward flight, with the two main rotors whirling just fast enough to maintain lift, much like a wing. Eric Adams, WIRED, "The Pirouetting S-97 Raider Makes Your Helicopter Look Lazy," 5 July 2019 Another trick is the option to add wings to a question block, making the power-up inside harder to reach. Gieson Cacho, The Mercury News, "Review: ‘Super Mario Maker 2’ gives aspiring game designers a richer canvas," 5 July 2019 The new building has a central entrance and lobby with two wings sweeping back in an arrow-like shape. Roy Kent, Houston Chronicle, "UHV Katy, UH prepares move to new location in the fall," 5 July 2019 At times during the game, Windler was guarded by second-year wing Josh Okogie. Chris Fedor, cleveland.com, "Dylan Windler heeds John Beilein’s message, but can’t lead Cleveland Cavaliers to Las Vegas Summer League win against Timberwolves," 5 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Tents were pitched on his lawn; retired journalists and overworked lawyers were winging their way into town. Christine Biederman, WIRED, "Inside Backpage.com’s Vicious Battle With the Feds," 18 June 2019 Next, heavily line the top lid with Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in Perversion, winging out on the end for a sultry cat-eye. Jenna Rosenstein, Harper's BAZAAR, "Nathalie Emmanuel and Maisie Williams Both Wore the Urban Decay Game of Thrones Collab," 4 Apr. 2019 For me, travel was all freedom, new places, and, well, winging it. Crystal Paul, The Seattle Times, "A nightmare drive down the Pacific Coast Highway conjures childhood memories," 7 Aug. 2018 And all my practice winging it was added to the mix too. Beth Woolsey, Woman's Day, "'My Father and I Approach the World Differently, But an Emergency Brought Us Together'," 4 Oct. 2018 The stiffer, shorter triangular shape also helps me easily create winged shadow, which is my one of my go-to looks. Devon Abelman, Allure, "How I Inspired Moda's Triad Eye Brush, the Only Tool I Need for a Complete Shadow Look," 16 Aug. 2018 Another consequence: Trump winging it exhausts everyone around him. James Hohmann, Washington Post, "The Daily 202: North Korea summit prep encapsulates Trump’s winging-it presidency," 11 June 2018 The love winging around the room scares her with its annihilating force. Karen Russell, The New Yorker, "Orange World," 4 June 2017 The best airlines of 2017 Advertisement When planning your travel, don't wing it! Lisa Gutierrez, kansascity, "JetBlue attendants who put oxygen mask on bulldog's face saved her life, owners say," 9 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'wing.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of wing

Noun

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

Verb

1591, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for wing

Noun

Middle English winge, of Scandinavian origin; akin to Danish & Swedish vinge wing; akin to Sanskrit vāti it blows — more at wind

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about wing

Statistics for wing

Last Updated

10 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for wing

The first known use of wing was in the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for wing

wing

noun

English Language Learners Definition of wing

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a part of an animal's body that is used for flying or gliding
: the wing of a bird and especially a chicken eaten as food
: one of usually two long, flat parts of an airplane that extend from the sides and make it possible for the airplane to fly

wing

verb

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

: to travel to a place by flying there
US, informal : to throw (something) forcefully
US, informal : to touch or hit (someone or something) especially in the arm or wing while moving past

wing

noun
\ ˈwiŋ How to pronounce wing (audio) \

Kids Definition of wing

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : one of the paired movable feathered or membranous parts with which a bird, bat, or insect flies
2 : something like a wing in appearance, use, or motion the wings of an airplane
3 : a part (as of a building) that sticks out from the main part
4 : a division of an organization
5 wings plural : an area just off the stage of a theater
on the wing
: in flight

Other Words from wing

wingless \ -​ləs \ adjective
winglike \ -​ˌlīk \ adjective

wing

verb
winged; winging

Kids Definition of wing (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to move by means of wings : fly
2 : throw entry 1 sense 1 I'd … wing a dart at the closest bull's-eye.— Jack Gantos, Joey Pigza Loses Control

wing

noun
\ ˈwiŋ How to pronounce wing (audio) \

Medical Definition of wing

1 : one of the movable feathered or membranous paired appendages by means of which a bird, bat, or insect is able to fly
2 : a winglike anatomical part or process : ala especially : any of the four winglike processes of the sphenoid bone — see greater wing, lesser wing

Other Words from wing

winged \ ˈwiŋd How to pronounce winged (audio) , ˈwiŋ-​əd How to pronounce winged (audio) \ adjective

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on wing

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with wing

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for wing

Spanish Central: Translation of wing

Nglish: Translation of wing for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of wing for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about wing

Comments on wing

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

WORD OF THE DAY

providing supplementary assistance

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Farm Idioms Quiz

  • cow coming home
  • What does 'poke' refer to in the expression 'pig in a poke'?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!