- a servant, as at a hotel, who blacks or polishes shoes and boots.
Origin of boots
- a covering of leather, rubber, or the like, for the foot and all or part of the leg.
- Chiefly British. any shoe or outer foot covering reaching to the ankle.
- an overshoe, especially one of rubber or other waterproof material.
- an instrument of torture for the leg, consisting of a kind of vise extending from the knee to the ankle, tightened around the leg by means of screws.
- any sheathlike protective covering: a boot for a weak automobile tire.
- a protective covering for the foot and part of the leg of a horse.
- a protecting cover or apron for the driver's seat of an open vehicle.
- the receptacle or place into which the top of a convertible car fits when lowered.
- a cloth covering for this receptacle or place.
- British. the trunk of an automobile.
- a rubber covering for the connection between each spark-plug terminal and ignition cable in an automotive ignition system.
- Also called Denver boot. a metal device attached to the wheel of a parked car so that it cannot be driven away until a fine is paid or the owner reports to the police: used by police to catch scofflaws.
- U.S. Navy, Marines. a recruit.
- Music. the box that holds the reed in the reed pipe of an organ.
- a kick.
- Slang. a dismissal; discharge: They gave him the boot for coming in late.
- Informal. a sensation of pleasure or amusement: Watching that young skater win a gold medal gave me a real boot.
- Baseball. a fumble of a ball batted on the ground, usually to the infield.
- Computers. an act or instance of starting up a computer or program.
- to kick; drive by kicking: The boy booted a tin can down the street.
- Football. to kick.
- Baseball. to fumble (a ground ball).
- to put boots on; equip or provide with boots.
- to start (a computer) by loading and initializing the operating system (often followed by up).
- to start (a program) by loading the first few instructions, which will then bring in the rest (often followed by up).
- Slang. to dismiss; discharge: They booted him out of school for not studying.
- to attach a Denver boot to: Police will boot any car with unpaid fines.
- to torture with the boot.
- Computers. to start a computer or program, or be started in this way (often followed by up): My laptop won't boot and shows a blank screen.
- bet your boots, to be sure or certain: You can bet your boots that I'll be there!
- die with one's boots on,
- to die while actively engaged in one's work, profession, etc.
- to die fighting, especially in battle, or in some worthy cause.
- get a boot, Informal. to derive keen enjoyment: I really got a boot out of his ridiculous stories.
Origin of boot1
- Archaic. something given into the bargain.
- remedy; relief; help.
- Archaic. to be of profit, advantage, or avail (to): It boots thee not to complain.
- to boot, in addition; besides: We received an extra week's pay to boot.
Origin of boot2
- booty; spoil; plunder.
Origin of boot3
Related Words for bootsfootwear, knock, shove, eject, expel, bounce, evict, reset, reboot, oxford, brogan, galoshes, waders, cut, fire, dismiss, terminate, chuck, sack
Examples from the Web for boots
Contemporary Examples of boots
If anything demonstrates the power of comedy to make dictators quake in their boots, it is the events of the past few days.The Sony Hack and America’s Craven Capitulation To Terror
December 19, 2014
Sometimes there would be caricatures in which his body was swallowed up by his boots.Stonewall Jackson, VMI’s Most Embattled Professor
S. C. Gwynne
November 29, 2014
For the next hour, she verbally humiliated him while he licked her boots and feet until they were completely cleaned.Whip It: Secrets of a Dominatrix
November 25, 2014
He crumpled to the ground under a flurry of fists and boots, and as he recalls, no one around him tried to stop the attack.As 30-Year Anniversary of Mass Killings in India Arrives, Sikhs Find Safety in USA
Simran Jeet Singh
October 31, 2014
“The only disadvantage is contrary to President Obama, we definitely have ‘boots on the ground,’” the former Army officer said.Air Force Pilots Say They're Flying Blind Against ISIS
October 10, 2014
Historical Examples of boots
Ben had drawn off his boots, and was firing them one after the other at the door.Brave and Bold
There he took the boots—they were terribly stained, he saw—and drew them on.Way of the Lawless
Evan, the last boy had his boots blacked, and a fresh paper collar on!Ester Ried Yet Speaking
In an English hotel, would the chef sit down to talk with boots?The Roof of France
Ah, the truthful glass betrayed the weak point in her armor—the boots.Thoroughbreds
W. A. Fraser
- British (formerly) a shoeblack who cleans the guests' shoes in a hotel
- a strong outer covering for the foot; shoe that extends above the ankle, often to the kneeSee also chukka boot, top boot, Wellington boots, surgical boot
- an enclosed compartment of a car for holding luggage, etc, usually at the rearUS and Canadian name: trunk
- a protective covering over a mechanical device, such as a rubber sheath protecting a coupling joining two shafts
- US and Canadian a rubber patch used to repair a puncture in a tyre
- an instrument of torture used to crush the foot and lower leg
- a protective covering for the lower leg of a horse
- a kickhe gave the door a boot
- British slang an ugly person (esp in the phrase old boot)
- US slang a navy or marine recruit, esp one in training
- computing short for bootstrap (def. 4a)
- bet one's boots to be certainyou can bet your boots he'll come
- See boots and all
- die with one's boots on
- to die while still active
- to die in battle
- lick the boots of to be servile, obsequious, or flattering towards
- put the boot in slang
- to kick a person, esp when he or she is already down
- to harass someone or aggravate a problem
- to finish off (something) with unnecessary brutality
- the boot slang dismissal from employment; the sack
- the boot is on the other foot or the boot is on the other leg the situation is or has now reversed
- too big for one's boots self-important or conceited
- (tr) (esp in football) to kick
- (tr) to equip with boots
- (tr) informal
- (often foll by out)to eject forcibly
- to dismiss from employment
- Also: boot up to start up the operating system of (a computer) or (of a computer) to begin operating
Word Origin for boot
- archaic to be of advantage or use to (a person)what boots it to complain?
- obsolete an advantage
- dialect something given in addition, esp to equalize an exchangea ten pound boot to settle the bargain
- to boot as well; in additionit's cold and musty, and damp to boot
Word Origin for boot
footwear, early 14c., from Old French bote "boot" (12c.), with corresponding words in Provençal and Spanish, of unknown origin, perhaps from a Germanic source. Originally for riding boots only. An old Dorsetshire word for "half-boots" was skilty-boots [Halliwell, Wright].
"profit, use," Old English bot "help, relief, advantage; atonement," literally "a making better," from Proto-Germanic *boto (see better (adj.)). Cf. German Buße "penance, atonement," Gothic botha "advantage." Now mostly in phrase to boot (Old English to bote).
"start up a computer," 1975, from bootstrap (v.), a 1958 derived verb from bootstrap (n.) in the computer sense.
"to kick," 1877, American English, from boot (n.1). Generalized sense of "eject, kick out" is from 1880. Related: Booted; booting.
In addition to the idioms beginning with boot
- boot out
- boot up
- die with one's boots on
- get the ax (boot)
- kick (boot) out
- lick someone's boots
- pull oneself up (by the bootstraps)
- quake in one's boots
- to boot
- too big for one's breeches (boots)
- you can bet your ass (boots)
Also see undershoe.