a contest or trial of strength, as of boxing.
period; session; spell: a bout of illness.
a turn at work or any action.
a going and returning across a field, as in mowing or reaping.

Origin of bout

1535–45; variant of obsolete bought bend, turn, derivative of bow bow1; see bight

Synonyms for bout Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for bout

Contemporary Examples of bout

Historical Examples of bout

  • "We'll talk 'bout that some other time," said Mr. Winship soothingly.

  • "Don't you nevah go to worryin' 'bout what you heahs," continued the woman.

    The Little Colonel

    Annie Fellows Johnston

  • I hadn't heard nothin' 'bout it and nobody else had till he began to talk.

    The Underdog

    F. Hopkinson Smith

  • Caught him in a clearin' 'bout two miles back o' the Holler.

    The Underdog

    F. Hopkinson Smith

  • Sometimes I hev worried 'bout Bill, but I don't worry 'bout him no more.

British Dictionary definitions for bout



  1. a period of time spent doing something, such as drinking
  2. a period of illness
a contest or fight, esp a boxing or wrestling match

Word Origin for bout

C16: variant of obsolete bought turn; related to German Bucht bight; see about
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 bout

1540s, from Middle English bught, probably from an unrecorded Old English variant of byht "a bend," from Proto-Germanic *bukhta- (see bight (n.)). Sense evolved from "a circuit of any kind" (as of a plow) to "a round at any kind of exercise" (1570s), "a round at fighting" (1590s), "a fit of drinking" (1660s).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper