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grandstand

[gran-stand, grand-]
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noun
  1. the main seating area of a stadium, racetrack, parade route, or the like, usually consisting of tiers with rows of individual seats.
  2. the people sitting in these seats.
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verb (used without object), grand·stand·ed, grand·stand·ing.
  1. to conduct oneself or perform showily or ostentatiously in an attempt to impress onlookers: The senator doesn't hesitate to grandstand if it makes her point.
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adjective
  1. situated in a grandstand: grandstand seats.
  2. having a vantage point resembling that of a grandstand: From our office windows on the third floor, we had a grandstand view of the parade.
  3. intended to impress an onlooker or onlookers: a grandstand catch.
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Origin of grandstand

First recorded in 1835–45; grand + stand
Related formsgrand·stand·er, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for grandstand

grandstand

noun
    1. a terraced block of seats, usually under a roof, commanding the best view at racecourses, football pitches, etc
    2. (as modifier)grandstand tickets
  1. the spectators in a grandstand
  2. (modifier) as if from a grandstand; unimpeded (esp in the phrase grandstand view)
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verb
  1. (intr) informal, mainly US and Canadian to behave ostentatiously in an attempt to impress onlookers
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Derived Formsgrandstander, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for grandstand

n.

"main seating for spectators at an outdoor event," 1834, from grand (adj.)+ stand. The verb meaning "to show off" is student slang from 1895, from grandstand player, attested in baseball slang from 1888.

It's little things of this sort which makes the 'grand stand player.' They make impossible catches, and when they get the ball they roll all over the field. [M.J. Kelly, "Play Ball," 1888]

Cf. British gallery hit (1882) "showy play by a batsman in cricket, 'intended to gain applause from uncritical spectators'" [OED]. Related: grandstanding.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper