- freedom from labor, pain, or physical annoyance; tranquil rest; comfort: to enjoy one's ease.
- freedom from concern, anxiety, or solicitude; a quiet state of mind: to be at ease about one's health.
- freedom from difficulty or great effort; facility: It can be done with ease.
- freedom from financial need; plenty: a life of ease on a moderate income.
- freedom from stiffness, constraint, or formality; unaffectedness: ease of manner; the ease and elegance of her poetry.
- to free from anxiety or care: to ease one's mind.
- to mitigate, lighten, or lessen: to ease pain.
- to release from pressure, tension, or the like.
- to move or shift with great care: to ease a car into a narrow parking space.
- to render less difficult; facilitate: I'll help if it will ease your job.
- to provide (an architectural member) with an easement.
- Shipbuilding. to trim (a timber of a wooden hull) so as to fair its surface into the desired form of the hull.
- to bring (the helm or rudder of a vessel) slowly amidships.
- to bring the head of (a vessel) into the wind.
- to slacken or lessen the hold upon (a rope).
- to lessen the hold of (the brake of a windlass).
- to abate in severity, pressure, tension, etc. (often followed by off or up).
- to become less painful, burdensome, etc.
- to move, shift, or be moved or be shifted with great care.
- ease out, to remove from a position of authority, a job, or the like, especially by methods intended to be tactful: He was eased out as division head to make way for the boss's nephew.
- at ease, Military. a position of rest in which soldiers may relax but may not leave their places or talk.
Origin of ease
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for ease
Normality, domesticity, ease, in the blazing Arizona desert.The Story Behind Lee Marvin’s Liberty Valance Smile
January 3, 2015
As it stands, the deal will ease the travel ban and trade embargo, and make it easier for Americans to do business in Cuba.Cuba Is A Kleptocracy, Not Communist
December 19, 2014
She appears calmer, more at ease, since the last time I sat down with her in 2008.Annie Lennox Doesn’t Give a Damn What You Think
October 21, 2014
Baugh hopped out and towed it a block away with practiced speed and ease.The President and the Tow Truck Driver
September 25, 2014
If there is no obstacle, they would enjoy the ease that is shown to everyone else.Turkey Takes in ‘Terrorists’ from the Muslim Brotherhood
September 19, 2014
"He said he was poor," urged Billy, who had been rather taken with the ease of Arledge's manner.
Might it not be well to ease up a little after he's out there?
The gentlemen were smoking, and some of the ladies were trying to look at ease with cigarettes.Malbone
Thomas Wentworth Higginson
But, if it be to ease her heart, and not to dispute my will, you may hear her out.Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9)
And for them—and so for us—this is no time of ease or of rest.
- freedom from discomfort, worry, or anxiety
- lack of difficulty, labour, or awkwardness; facility
- rest, leisure, or relaxation
- freedom from poverty or financial embarrassment; affluencea life of ease
- lack of restraint, embarrassment, or stiffnesshis ease of manner disarmed us
- at ease military
- (of a standing soldier, etc) in a relaxed position with the feet apart and hands linked behind the back
- a command to adopt such a position
- in a relaxed attitude or frame of mind
- to make or become less burdensome
- (tr) to relieve (a person) of worry or care; comfort
- (tr) to make comfortable or give rest to
- (tr) to make less difficult; facilitate
- to move or cause to move into, out of, etc, with careful manipulationto ease a car into a narrow space
- (when intr, often foll by off or up) to lessen or cause to lessen in severity, pressure, tension, or strain; slacken, loosen, or abate
- ease oneself or ease nature archaic, euphemistic to urinate or defecate
- ease the helm nautical to relieve the pressure on the rudder of a vessel, esp by bringing the bow into the wind
Word Origin and History for ease
early 13c., from Old French aise "comfort, pleasure, well-being; opportunity," of unknown origin, despite attempts to link it to various Latin verbs.
The earliest senses in French appear to be 1. "elbow-room" (from an 11th century Hebrew-French glossary) and 2. "opportunity." This led Sophus Bugge to suggest an origin in Vulgar Latin asa, a shortened form of Latin ansa "handle," which could be used in the figurative sense of "opportunity, occasion," as well as being a possible synonym for "elbow," because Latin ansatus "furnished with handles" also was used to mean "having the arms akimbo." OED editors report this theory, and write, "This is not very satisfactory, but it does not appear that any equally plausible alternative has yet been proposed."
c.1300, "to help, assist," see ease (n.). Meaning "to give ease" is from mid-14c.; the sense of "to relax one's efforts" is from 1863. Farmer reports ease in a slang sense of "to content a woman" sexually, with an 1861 date. Related: Eased; easing.