[ as-truh-nawt, -not ]
/ ˈæs trəˌnɔt, -ˌnɒt /


a person engaged in or trained for spaceflight.

Origin of astronaut

1925–30; astro- + (aero)naut, probably via French astronaute; see astronautical

Can be confused

astronaut cosmonaut Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for astronaut

British Dictionary definitions for astronaut


/ (ˈæstrəˌnɔːt) /


a person trained for travelling in spaceSee also cosmonaut

Word Origin for astronaut

C20: from astro- + -naut from Greek nautēs sailor, on the model of aeronaut
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

Culture definitions for astronaut


A crew member of a space mission launched by the United States. (See Apollo program and Mercury program.)

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.