fill

1 of 2

verb

filled; filling; fills

transitive verb

1
a
: to put into as much as can be held or conveniently contained
fill a cup with water
b
: to supply with a full complement
the class is filled
c(1)
: to cause to swell or billow
wind filled the sails
(2)
: to trim (a sail) to catch the wind
d
: to raise the level of with fill
filled land
e
: to repair the cavities of (teeth)
f
: to stop up : obstruct
wreckage filled the channel
g
: to stop up the interstices, crevices, or pores of (a material, such as cloth, wood, or leather) with a foreign substance
2
a
: feed, satiate
fill livestock
b
: satisfy, fulfill
fills all requirements
c
: make out, complete
used with out or in
fill out a formfill in the blanks
d
: to draw the playing cards necessary to complete
fill a straight or flush in poker
3
a
: to occupy the whole of
smoke filled the room
b
: to spread through
music filled the air
c
: to make full
a mind filled with fantasies
4
a
: to possess and perform the duties of : hold
fill an office
b
: to place a person in
fill a vacancy
5
: to supply as directed
fill a prescription
6
: to cover the surface of with a layer of precious metal
a gold-filled bracelet

intransitive verb

: to become full
the rivers filled

fill

2 of 2

noun

1
: a full supply
especially : a quantity that satisfies or satiates
eat your fill
2
: something that fills: such as
a
: material used to fill a receptacle, cavity, passage, or low place
b
: a bit of instrumental music that fills the pauses between phrases (as of a vocalist or soloist)
c
: artificial light used in photography to reduce or eliminate shadows
often used attributively
fill flash
Phrases
fill one's shoes
: to take over one's job, position, or responsibilities
No one will be able to fill his shoes after he retires.

Example Sentences

Verb May I fill your glass for you? She filled her house with antiques. His massive body filled the doorway. He has enough books to fill a library. Two hundred people filled the room. fill a sheet of paper with writing a vase filled with flowers stadiums filled with cheering fans The rivers have filled and are close to flooding. The stadium filled more than an hour before the game. Noun They delivered a truckload of fill for the trench. we ripped the tag off years ago, so we have no idea what the fill in that pillow is See More
Recent Examples on the Web
Verb
Tamesha Dozier's graduation leaves a void in Butler's offense, and White is qualified to fill it. J.l. Kirven, The Courier-Journal, 22 Nov. 2022 Here’s a sample admissions fee waiver from the National Association for College Admission Counseling, and a guide on how to fill it out. al, 21 Nov. 2022 Clip the coupon on Page 4A of The Arizona Republic, fill it out and mail it to P.O. Box 29250, Phoenix AZ 85038-9250. Perry Vandell, The Arizona Republic, 20 Nov. 2022 Attach a ribbon across it and then hang little tin containers labeled with the day of the month and fill them with treats. Angela Belt, House Beautiful, 17 Nov. 2022 Michigan has allowed voters to mail in absentee ballots or fill them out in clerk’s offices. Patrick Marley, Anchorage Daily News, 17 Nov. 2022 Since soup contains a ton of water, this can also help fill you up with fewer calories. Stefani Sassos, M.s., R.d.n., C.s.o., C.d.n., Good Housekeeping, 17 Nov. 2022 But don’t throw away your old pots or feel pressured to fill them immediately. Jandra Sutton, Washington Post, 14 Nov. 2022 That sentiment might shift, however, if another vacancy arises on the Supreme Court in the next two years and there is a Democratic president and Senate to fill it. Matt Ford, The New Republic, 10 Nov. 2022
Noun
But a potential benefit of a long wait for an EV fill-up is that customers would spend more time at a gas station property. Daniel Miller, Los Angeles Times, 30 Oct. 2022 The Tempur-Pedic’s memory foam pillow fill comes in three heights, so it can be customized to fit your sleeping needs. John Thompson, Men's Health, 8 Nov. 2022 The pillows feature a soft poly-fiber fill and a polyester cover. Barbara Bellesi Zito, Better Homes & Gardens, 7 Nov. 2022 It was distilled in kettle and column stills, aged in a combination of first and second fill bourbon barrels and bottled at 92 proof. Jonah Flicker, Robb Report, 7 Nov. 2022 Karsen Barnhart has played both tackle positions at different points this season and would be the logical fill-in at one of the positions. Tony Garcia, Detroit Free Press, 6 Nov. 2022 While the pay increase was just recently enacted, Ahearn said anecdotally speaking, the district is seeing higher fill rates. John Benson, cleveland, 2 Nov. 2022 As the fill-in starting point guard — who could remain in the position until Lonzo Ball returns — Dosunmu is averaging 12.5 points on 50.8% shooting, 4.7 rebounds and 3.2 assists. Julia Poe, Chicago Tribune, 29 Oct. 2022 Sabin has 40,000 bulk doses and is working with CEPI to find a company that can do the fill and finish. Byjon Cohen, science.org, 23 Oct. 2022 See More

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

Word History

Etymology

Verb

Middle English fillen, fullen, fellen, going back to Old English fyllan, going back to Germanic *fulljan- (whence also Old Frisian fella "to fill," Old Saxon fullian, Old High German fullen, Old Icelandic fylla, Gothic fulljan), weak verb derivative from the stem of *fulla- full entry 1

Noun

(sense 1) Middle English fille, fulle, felle, going back to Old English fyllu, fyll, going back to Germanic *full-īn- (whence also Middle Dutch volle "full supply, fill," Old High German fullī, follī, Old Icelandic fylli, Gothic ufarfullei "superfluity"), from *fulla- full entry 1 + *-īn-, noun suffix of quality; (sense 2) derivative of fill entry 1

Note: As with other nouns originally formed with the suffix *-īn-, Old English has reclassed the nouns as regular *-ō feminine nouns by association with the suffix *-iþō.

First Known Use

Verb

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

Noun

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

Time Traveler
The first known use of fill was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near fill

Cite this Entry

“Fill.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/fill. Accessed 1 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition

fill 1 of 2

verb

1
: to put into as much as can be held or contained
fill one's plate
2
: to become full
puddles filling with rain
3
: satisfy sense 1a
fill all requirements
4
: to occupy fully : take up whatever space there is
clothes filled the closet
5
: to spread through
laughter filled the room
6
: to stop up (as holes) : plug
fill a crack with putty
fill a tooth
7
a
: to perform the duties of : occupy
fill the office of president
b
: to put a person in
filled several vacancies
8
: to supply according to directions
fill a prescription
fill one's shoes
: to take one's place or position

fill

2 of 2

noun

1
: a full supply
especially : a quantity that satisfies
eat one's fill
2
: material used to fill a container, cavity, passage, or low place

Medical Definition

1
: to repair the cavities of (teeth)
2
: to supply as directed
fill a prescription

More from Merriam-Webster on fill

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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