an exposure to the air, as for drying.
a public discussion or disclosure, as of ideas, proposals, or facts.
a walk, drive, exercise period, etc., in the open air, especially to promote health.
the act of broadcasting on radio or television: The new comedy program will have its first airing this Friday night.

Origin of airing

First recorded in 1600–10; air1 + -ing1




a mixture of nitrogen, oxygen, and minute amounts of other gases that surrounds the earth and forms its atmosphere.
a stir in the atmosphere; a light breeze.
overhead space; sky: The planes filled the air.
circulation; publication; publicity: to give air to one's theories.
the general character or complexion of anything; appearance: His early work had an air of freshness and originality.
the peculiar look, appearance, and bearing of a person: There is an air of mystery about him.
airs, affected or unnatural manner; manifestation of pride or vanity; assumed haughtiness: He acquired airs that were insufferable to his friends.
  1. a tune; melody.
  2. the soprano or treble part.
  3. an aria.
  4. Also Elizabethan art song.
aircraft as a means of transportation: to arrive by air; to ship goods by air.
Informal. air conditioning or an air-conditioning system: The price includes tires, radio, and air.
  1. (during an airborne stunt) the height between the ground and an athlete or an athlete with his or her equipment: The BMX course was designed for riders to get good air.
  2. such a jump or other airborne stunt: The snowboarder took first place with four clean airs.
Radio. the medium through which radio waves are transmitted.
Archaic. breath.

verb (used with object)

to expose to the air; give access to the open air; ventilate (often followed by out): We air the bedrooms every day.
to expose ostentatiously; bring to public notice; display: to air one's opinions; to air one's theories.
to broadcast or televise.

verb (used without object)

to be exposed to the open air (often followed by out): Open the window and let the room air out.
to be broadcast or televised.


operating by means of air pressure or by acting upon air: an air drill; an air pump.
of or relating to aircraft or to aviation: air industry.
taking place in the air; aerial: air war.

Origin of air

1150–1200; Middle English eir < Old French air < Latin āēr- (accusative āerem) < Greek āer- (stem of āḗr) the lower atmosphere; conflated with (especially for defs 4, 5) French air, Old French aire nature, character < Latin ager field (cf. acre) and ārea threshing floor, clearing, area; and with (for def 7) French air < Italian aria aria
Related formsair·like, adjectiveun·aired, adjectivewell-aired, adjective
Can be confusedair e'er ere err heirer err

Synonyms for air

2. See wind1. 5, 6. impression, aspect. 6. aura, demeanor, attitude. See manner1. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for airing

Contemporary Examples of airing

Historical Examples of airing

  • There was a nice fire burning in the room, and my night-apparel was airing before it.

    Wilfrid Cumbermede

    George MacDonald

  • He waved his arms, airing his grievance with which for an hour past he had regaled me.

  • She made the bed which she had been airing, she arranged the linen on the shelves of the press.

    Doctor Pascal

    Emile Zola

  • It was while Jones was airing these platitudes that Paliser entered the room.

    The Paliser case

    Edgar Saltus

  • In the club window, on the following afternoon, Jones was airing copy.

    The Paliser case

    Edgar Saltus

British Dictionary definitions for airing



  1. exposure to air or warmth, as for drying or ventilation
  2. (as modifier)airing cupboard
an excursion in the open air
exposure to public debate


abbreviation for

All India Radio



the mixture of gases that forms the earth's atmosphere. At sea level dry air has a density of 1.226 kilograms per cubic metre and consists of 78.08 per cent nitrogen, 20.95 per cent oxygen, 0.93 per cent argon, 0.03 per cent carbon dioxide, with smaller quantities of ozone and inert gases; water vapour varies between 0 and 4 per cent and in industrial areas sulphur gases may be present as pollutants
the space above and around the earth; skyRelated adjective: aerial
breeze; slight wind
public expression; utteranceto give air to one's complaints
a distinctive qualityan air of mystery
a person's distinctive appearance, manner, or bearing
  1. a simple tune for either vocal or instrumental performance
  2. another word for aria
transportation in aircraft (esp in the phrase by air)
Australian informal the height gained when getting airborne in surfing, snowboarding, etc
clear the air to rid a situation of tension or discord by settling misunderstandings, etc
give someone the air slang to reject or dismiss someone
in the air
  1. in circulation; current
  2. in the process of being decided; unsettled
into thin air leaving no trace behind
off the air not in the act of broadcasting or being broadcast on radio or television
on the air in the act of broadcasting or being broadcast on radio or television
out of thin air or from thin air suddenly and unexpectedly
take the air to go out of doors, as for a short walk or ride
up in the air
  1. uncertain
  2. informalagitated or excited
walk on air to feel elated or exhilarated
(modifier) astrology of or relating to a group of three signs of the zodiac, Gemini, Libra, and AquariusCompare earth (def. 10), fire (def. 24), water (def. 12)


to expose or be exposed to the air so as to cool or freshen; ventilateto air a room
to expose or be exposed to warm or heated air so as to dryto air linen
(tr) to make known publicly; display; publicizeto air one's opinions
(intr) (of a television or radio programme) to be broadcast
See also airs

Word Origin for air

C13: via Old French and Latin from Greek aēr the lower atmosphere



a mountainous region of N central Niger, in the Sahara, rising to 1500 m (5000 ft): a former native kingdom. Area: about 77 700 sq km (30 000 sq miles)Also called: Azbine, Asben
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 airing

"action of exposing to air," c.1600, from present participle of air (v.). Meaning "display, public exposure is from 1870.



"to expose to open air," 1520s, from air (n.1). Figurative sense of "to expose, make public" is from 1610s of objects, 1862 of opinions, grievances, etc. Meaning "to broadcast" (originally on radio) is from 1933. Related: Aired; airing.



c.1300, "invisible gases that make up the atmosphere," from Old French air "atmosphere, breeze, weather" (12c.), from Latin aerem (nominative aer) "air, lower atmosphere, sky," from Greek aer (genitive aeros) "air" (related to aenai "to blow, breathe"), of unknown origin, possibly from a base *awer- and thus related to aeirein "to raise" and arteria "windpipe, artery" (see aorta) on notion of "lifting, that which rises." In Homer mostly "thick air, mist;" later "air" as one of the four elements.

Words for "air" in Indo-European languages tend to be associated with wind, brightness, sky. In English, air Replaced native lyft, luft (see loft (n.)). To be in the air "in general awareness" is from 1875; up in the air "uncertain, doubtful" is from 1752. To build castles in the air is from 1590s (in 17c. English had airmonger "one preoccupied with visionary projects"). Broadcasting sense (e.g. on the air) first recorded 1927. To give (someone) the air "dismiss" is from 1900. Air pollution is attested by 1870.



1590s, "manner, appearance" (e.g. an air of mystery); 1650s, "assumed manner, affected appearance" (especially in phrase put on airs, 1781), from French air "look, appearance, mien, bearing, tone" (Old French aire "reality, essence, nature, descent, extraction," 12c.; cf. debonair), from Latin ager "place, field" (see acre) on notion of "place of origin."

But some French sources connect this Old French word with the source of air (n.1), and it also is possible these senses in English developed from or were influenced by air (n.1); cf. sense development of atmosphere and Latin spiritus "breath, breeze," also "high spirit, pride," and the extended senses of anima.



"melody, tune," 1580s, from Italian aria (see aria).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

airing in Medicine




A colorless, odorless, tasteless, gaseous mixture, approximately 78 percent nitrogen and approximately 21 percent oxygen with lesser amounts of argon, carbon dioxide, hydrogen, neon, helium, and other gases.
This mixture, with varying amounts of moisture and particulate matter, enveloping Earth; the atmosphere.
Any of various respiratory gases. No longer in technical use.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

airing in Science



The colorless, odorless, tasteless mixture of gases that surrounds the Earth. Air consists of about 78 percent nitrogen and 21 percent oxygen, with the remaining part made up mainly of argon, carbon dioxide, neon, helium, methane, and krypton in decreasing order of volume. Air also contains varying amounts of water vapor, particulate matter such as dust and soot, and chemical pollutants.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with airing


In addition to the idiom beginning with air

  • air one's grievances

also see:

  • breath of fresh air
  • castles in the air
  • clear the air
  • give someone the air
  • hot air
  • in the air
  • into (out of) thin air
  • nose in the air
  • off the air
  • put on airs
  • up in the air
  • walk on air
  • wash (air) one's dirty linen
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.