Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Forward movement or the rate of forward movement, especially of a ship.
  • n. Progress toward a goal.
  • n. The clear vertical space beneath a ceiling or archway; clearance.
  • n. The distance in time or space that separates two vehicles traveling the same route.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Movement ahead or forward.
  • n. Forward motion, or its rate.
  • n. The interval of time or distance between the fronts of two vehicles (e.g. buses) moving in succession in the same direction, especially along the same pre-determined route.
  • n. Progress toward a goal.
  • n. The clearance beneath an object, such as an arch, ceiling or bridge; headroom.
  • n. A cross-heading.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The progress made by a ship in motion; hence, progress or success of any kind.
  • n. Clear space under an arch, girder, and the like, sufficient to allow of easy passing underneath; clearance; headroom.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Motion ahead or forward; force or amount of such motion; rate of progress: said specifically of a ship, but applied to all kinds of progress, literally or figuratively.
  • n. In architecture, clear space in height, as from a floor to a ceiling, or from the ground to the crown of an arch; specifically, the perpendicular distance from any step or landing of a stair to the ceiling.
  • n. In coal-mining, a cross-heading.
  • n. In railroading, the. time which elapses after one train passes a certain point before the following train passes that point.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. forward movement
  • n. vertical space available to allow easy passage under something

Etymologies

Partly from Middle English headway, from Old English hēafodweġ ("head-road, main-road"), equivalent to head- +‎ way; partly as a shortening of ahead-way, the source of the nautical sense. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Actually, while it seems counterintuitive, frequent headway is critical to changing behavior on a more permanent basis.

    Why Vancouver’s Transit System Has Seattle Beat « PubliCola

  • So, in fact, any American gays serving in the U.S. military, knowing what would happen to them if our side lost, would be more loyal, more patriotic and more mission-focused, because while some headway is being made against homophobia in the United States, none is occurring in many of these backward Islamic religious fundamentalist ultra-orthodox societies, where gays are treated even more horribly than women even tend to be.

    Think Progress » Fox News Military Analyst Endorses DADT Repeal, Criticizes McCain For Flip-Flopping

  • More photos and interactive graphics Mr. Serra's loss of headway is the result of a renewed emphasis in the election on Brazil's economic boom and the consequent popularity of departing two-term President Luiz In á cio Lula da Silva, who picked Ms. Rousseff to succeed him as the leftist Workers Party candidate.

    Brazil Challenger's Chances Dim

  • One debate per week amounts to 2 things for McCain: (1) free air time, as his campaign can't compete with Obama's finacially, and (2) to tie up Obama's campaign schedule, making it harder for him to gain headway in key battleground states.

    McCain pushes for town hall debates

  • If you want to make long-term headway in American politics, defence is a long-term hold.

    John Terry’s sacking as England captain tells us something interesting...

  • Howard Dean, Nancy Pelosi, and Harry Reid can talk about nebulous ideas of common sense economics and a strong global image, but the only way to even get to the table and make headway is for the Democrats to win back control of the House and Senate and then start putting their plans into action.

    May 2006

  • You feel happy as long as headway is being made, but as soon as you are obstructed or your individuality and freedom of action are restricted, you experience an intense nervous reaction.

    All Hallow's Eve

  • These days I feel like we are finally making "headway" - getting our lives back on track.

    lostinmylove Diary Entry

  • ROBERTS: They are making headway, which is a good thing.

    CNN Transcript Sep 3, 2009

  • Monster Yuppy and Barnes amongst others touch on one of the real deal breakers with making any kind of headway on health and fitness.

    Cheeseburger Gothic » Burger lite.

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.