from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • intransitive verb To apply pressure against (something), especially for the purpose of moving it.
  • intransitive verb To move (something) by exerting force against it; thrust or shove.
  • intransitive verb To exert downward pressure on (a button or keyboard, for example); press.
  • intransitive verb To force (one's way).
  • intransitive verb To urge forward or urge insistently; pressure.
  • intransitive verb To extend or enlarge.
  • intransitive verb Informal To approach in age.
  • intransitive verb Informal To promote or sell (a product).
  • intransitive verb Slang To sell (a narcotic) illegally.
  • intransitive verb Sports To hit (a ball) in the direction toward the dominant hand of the player propelling it, as to the right of a right-handed player.
  • intransitive verb To exert pressure or force against something.
  • intransitive verb To advance despite difficulty or opposition; press forward.
  • intransitive verb To advocate or recommend something insistently.
  • intransitive verb To expend great or vigorous effort.
  • noun The act of pushing; a thrust.
  • noun The act of pressing.
  • noun A vigorous or insistent effort toward an end; a drive.
  • noun A provocation to action; a stimulus.
  • noun Informal Persevering energy; enterprise.
  • idiom (push paper) To have one's time taken up by administrative, often seemingly petty, paperwork.
  • idiom (push up daisies) To be dead and buried.
  • idiom (when/if) At a point when the situation must be confronted and dealt with.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Same as pish.
  • In cricket, to guide or force (the ball) away from the wicket with the bat, usually to the ‘on’ side.
  • noun A thrust; the exercise of a driving or impelling thrust; the application of pressure intended to overturn or set in motion in the direction in which the force or pressure is applied; a shove: as, to give a thing or a person a push.
  • noun An assault or attack; a forcible onset; a vigorous effort; a stroke; a blow.
  • noun An emergency; a trial; an extremity.
  • noun Persevering energy; enterprise.
  • noun A button, pin, or similar contrivance to be pushed in conveying pressure: as, the electric bell-push.
  • noun A pustule; a pimple.
  • noun In cricket, a stroke by which the ball is guided or forced away from the wicket, usually to the ‘on’ side.
  • noun A gang; a set of hoodlums; in thieves' English, a set of men associated for a special robbery; hence, a clique; a party: the Government House push; to be in with the push.
  • To strike with a thrusting motion; thrust, as with a sword; thrust or gore, as with the horns.
  • To thrust forcibly against for the purpose of moving or impelling in a direction other than that from which the pressure is applied; exert a thrusting, driving, or impelling pressure upon; drive or impel by pressure; shove: opposed to draw: as, to push a hand-cart; to push a thing up, down, away, etc.
  • To impel in general; drive; urge.
  • To press or urge; advance or extend by persistent or diligent effort or exertion: as, to push on a work.
  • To prosecute or carry on with energy or enterprise; use every means to extend and advance: as, to push one's business; to push the sale of a commodity.
  • To press hard.
  • Synonyms To hustle, jostle, elbow, crowd, force. See thrust.
  • To thrust, as with the horns or with a sword: hence, to make an attack.
  • To exercise or put forth a thrusting or impelling pressure; use steady force in moving something in a direction the opposite of that implied in the word draw: as, to push with all one's might.
  • To advance or proceed with persistence or unflagging effort; force one's way; press eagerly or persistently; hasten; usually with on, forward, etc.: as, to push on at a rapid pace.
  • To sit abaft an oar and propel a boat with forward strokes: as, to push down a stream.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun Obs. or Prov. Eng. A pustule; a pimple.


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

[Middle English pusshen, from Old French poulser, pousser, from Latin pulsāre, frequentative of pellere, to strike, push; see pel- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Middle English pushen, poshen, posson, from Middle French pousser (Modern French pousser) from Old French poulser, from Latin pulsare, frequentative of pellere (past participle pulsus) "to beat, strike". Displaced native Middle English thrucchen ("to push") (from Old English þryccan ("to push")), Middle English scauten ("to push, thrust") (from Old Norse skota), Middle English schoven ("to push, shove") (from Old English scofian), Middle English schuven ("to shove, push") (from Old English scūfan, scēofan ("to shove, push, thrust")), Middle English thuden, thudden ("to push, press, thrust") (from Old English þȳdan, þyddan ("to thrust, press, push")).


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  • as in pull

    February 8, 2008