box

1
[ boks ]
/ bɒks /

noun

verb (used with object)

Verb Phrases

box out, Basketball. to position oneself between an opposing player and the basket to hinder the opposing player from rebounding or tipping in a shot; block out.

Nearby words

  1. bowtel,
  2. bowwood,
  3. bowwow,
  4. bowyangs,
  5. bowyer,
  6. box beam,
  7. box bed,
  8. box bolt,
  9. box calf,
  10. box camera

Idioms

    out of the box, Australian Slang. remarkable or exceptional; extraordinary.
    outside the box, Informal. in an innovative or unconventional manner; with a fresh perspective: You have to think outside the box and adapt those strategies to your business.Also out of the box.

Origin of box

1
before 1000; Middle English, Old English, probably < Late Latin buxis, a reshaping of Latin pyxis; see boîte

Related formsbox·like, adjective

box

2
[ boks ]
/ bɒks /

noun

a blow, as with the hand or fist: He gave the boy a box on his ear.

verb (used with object)

to strike with the hand or fist, especially on the ear.
to fight against (someone) in a boxing match.

verb (used without object)

to fight with the fists; participate in a boxing match; spar.
to be a professional or experienced prizefighter or boxer: He has boxed since he was 16.

Origin of box

2
1300–50; Middle English box a blow, boxen to beat, of uncertain origin

box

3
[ boks ]
/ bɒks /

noun

an evergreen shrub or small tree of the genus Buxus, especially B. sempervirens, having shiny, elliptic, dark-green leaves, used for ornamental borders, hedges, etc., and yielding a hard, durable wood.
the wood itself.
any of various other shrubs or trees, especially species of eucalyptus.
Compare boxwood.

Origin of box

3
before 950; Middle English, Old English < Latin buxus boxwood < Greek pýxos

box

4
[ boks ]
/ bɒks /

verb (used with object)

Nautical. to boxhaul (often followed by off).
Meteorology. to fly around the center of a storm in a boxlike pattern in order to gather meteorological data: to box a storm.

Origin of box

4
1745–55; probably < Spanish bojar to sail around, earlier boxar, perhaps < Catalan vogir to (cause to) turn ≪ Latin volvere (see revolve); influenced by box1

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

Examples from the Web for box


British Dictionary definitions for box

box

1
/ (bɒks) /

noun

verb

Derived Formsboxlike, adjective

Word Origin for box

Old English box, from Latin buxus from Greek puxos box ³

verb

(tr) to fight (an opponent) in a boxing match
(intr) to engage in boxing
(tr) to hit (a person) with the fist; punch or cuff
box clever to behave in a careful and cunning way

noun

a punch with the fist, esp on the ear

Word Origin for box

C14: of uncertain origin; perhaps related to Dutch boken to shunt, push into position

noun

a dense slow-growing evergreen tree or shrub of the genus Buxus, esp B. sempervirens, which has small shiny leaves and is used for hedges, borders, and garden mazes: family Buxaceae
the wood of this treeSee boxwood (def. 1)
any of several trees the timber or foliage of which resembles this tree, esp various species of Eucalyptus with rough bark

Word Origin for box

Old English, from Latin buxus

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 box
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with box

box

In addition to the idioms beginning with box

  • box office
  • box score
  • box the compass

also see:

  • in a bind (box)
  • on one's soapbox
  • pandora's box
  • stuff the ballot box
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.