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

  • n. Something, such as a chair or bench, that may be sat on.
  • n. A place in which one may sit.
  • n. The right to occupy such a place or a ticket indicating this right: got seats for the concert.
  • n. The part on which one rests in sitting: a bicycle seat.
  • n. The buttocks.
  • n. The part of a garment that covers the buttocks.
  • n. A part serving as the base of something else.
  • n. The surface or part on which another part sits or rests.
  • n. The place where something is located or based: The heart is the seat of the emotions.
  • n. A center of authority; a capital: the county seat. See Synonyms at center.
  • n. A place of abode or residence, especially a large house that is part of an estate: the squire's country seat.
  • n. Membership in an organization, such as a legislative body or stock exchange, that is obtained by appointment, election, or purchase.
  • n. The manner of sitting on a horse: a fox hunter with a good seat.
  • transitive v. To place in or on a seat.
  • transitive v. To cause or assist to sit down: The ushers will seat the members of the bride's family.
  • transitive v. To provide with a particular seat: The usher seated me in the back row.
  • transitive v. To have or provide seats for: We can seat 300 in the auditorium.
  • transitive v. To install in a position of authority or eminence.
  • transitive v. To fix firmly in place: seat an ammunition clip in an automatic rifle.
  • intransitive v. To rest on or fit into another part: The O-rings had not seated correctly in their grooves.
  • idiom by the seat of (one's) pants Slang In a manner based on intuition and experience rather than method: He ran the business by the seat of his pants.
  • idiom by the seat of (one's) pants Slang Without the use of instruments: an inexperienced pilot who had to fly the aircraft by the seat of her pants.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A place in which to sit.
  • n. The horizontal portion of a chair or other furniture designed for sitting.
  • n. A piece of furniture made for sitting; e.g. a chair, stool or bench; any improvised place for sitting.
  • n. The part of an object or individual (usually the buttocks) directly involved in sitting.
  • n. The part of a piece of clothing (usually pants or trousers) covering the buttocks.
  • n. A membership in an organization, particularly a representative body.
  • n. The location of a governing body.
  • n. an electoral district, especially for a national legislature.
  • n. The starting point of a fire.
  • v. To put an object into a place where it will rest.
  • v. To provide places to sit.
  • v. To rest; to lie down.


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

Middle English sete, probably from Old Norse sæti; see sed- in Indo-European roots.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Middle English, from Old Norse sæti, compare Old English set


  • Things looked very tempting, and he had half a mind to petition for a seat at the table; but he began to think that, even should he succeed in his request, a _seat_ would be all he could gain; for the old lady attacked the eatables very much in the style of a school-boy just come home for the holidays.

    A Grandmother's Recollections

  • Then came “the seat of war” in Afghanistan, which covered all that remained of the wall, and the other day, when the clerks of the Intelligence Department came to fix up our newest “seat of war, ” it was discovered that we had on hand so many “seats of war” that there was no room on the wall for more.

    On the Zulu War

  • A garden-seat, with a canopy of vines to shade it, may not be any more comfortable, _as a seat_, than any wooden bench, but the touch of beauty and grace imparted by the vine that roofs it makes it far more enjoyable than an expensive seat without the vine would be to the person who has a taste for pleasing and attractive things, simply because it pleases the eye by its outlines, thus appealing to the sense of the beautiful.

    Amateur Gardencraft A Book for the Home-Maker and Garden Lover

  • This seat is a decent pick-up opportunity for Democrats in 2010 but it will not be a priority for the state party.

    Matthew Yglesias » Voinovich Retiring

  • (Soundbite of laughter) MARTIN: Can I ask you, what do you think it says that the race for your seat is as tight as it now is?

    Illinois Sen. Roland Burris Prepares Exit, Has No Regrets

  • If Alexi Giannoulias, the Democrat running for Illinois's Senate seat, can turn out Democratic votes in the city and run strongly in the surrounding counties, the seat is his.

    Illinois Senate Race: Mark Kirk And Alexi Giannoulias At Their Best, And Worst

  • We're sending a message to legislators that until they come around on this issue -- their seat is at risk.

    Cynthia Nixon: Fight Back on Election Day

  • The Indiana seat is among 11 prime targets because no incumbent is running.

    Ex-senator wins GOP spot in Indiana contest

  • Nikita Stewart's and Paul Schwartzman's instructive account of how the aloof and overconfident mayor lost his seat is a fascinating study of how leadership style can undermine power.

    Fenty: The danger of going with your gut

  • Besides, as far as debt service goes, a seat is a seat is a seat, whether sold in May or August.

    Another big night in Paulsonland (Jack Bog's Blog)


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