in the direction of the rotation of the hands of a clock as viewed from the front or above; circularly to the right from a point taken as the top.


directed clockwise: a clockwise movement.

Origin of clockwise

First recorded in 1885–90; clock1 + -wise Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for clockwise

revolving, dexter, dextral, right-handed, counterclockwise

Examples from the Web for clockwise

Historical Examples of clockwise

  • To propel the cycle the chain-ring is turned in a clockwise direction.

    How it Works

    Archibald Williams

  • Clockwise walks the inner circle, three abreast, all young men.

    Prowling about Panama

    George A. Miller

  • They were a vast historical panorama, clockwise around the room.


    H. Beam Piper

  • Loop the bare part of the wire around the screw in the direction the screw is turned to tighten (clockwise direction).

  • In fastening wire around a terminal post it should go around in a (clockwise) (counter-clockwise) direction.

British Dictionary definitions for clockwise


adverb, adjective

in the direction that the hands of a clock rotate; from top to bottom towards the right when seen from the front
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 clockwise

also clock-wise, "in the direction of the hands of a clock," 1879, from clock (n.1) + wise (n.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper