[ eest ]
See synonyms for east on Thesaurus.com
  1. a cardinal point of the compass, 90° to the right of north. Abbreviation: E

  2. the direction in which this point lies.

  1. (usually initial capital letter) a quarter or territory situated in this direction.

  2. the East,

    • the parts of Asia collectively lying east of Europe and including Asia Minor, Syria, Arabia, India, China, etc.

    • East Asia.

    • (formerly) the Soviet Union and its allies.

    • the part of the U.S. east of the Mississippi River.

    • the part of the U.S. east of the Allegheny Mountains.

    • New England.

    • Ancient and Medieval History. the Eastern Roman Empire.

  1. directed or proceeding toward the east.

  2. coming from the east: an east wind.

  1. lying toward or situated in the east: the east side.

  2. Ecclesiastical. being at the end of the church where the high altar is: an east window.

  1. to, toward, or in the east: an island located east of Sumatra; He went east.

Origin of east

First recorded before 900; Middle English est, Old English ēast; cognate with German ost, Old Norse austr; akin to Latin aurōra, Greek aúōs (Aeolic dialect variant of ēṓs, héōs ) “dawn”; see Easter

Other words from east

  • eastness, noun

Words Nearby east

Other definitions for East. (2 of 2)


  1. eastern.

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use east in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for east (1 of 2)


/ (iːst) /

  1. one of the four cardinal points of the compass, 90° clockwise from north and 180° from west

  2. the direction along a parallel towards the sunrise, at 90° to north; the direction of the earth's rotation

  1. the east (often capital) any area lying in or towards the east: Related adjective: oriental

  2. cards (usually capital) the player or position at the table corresponding to east on the compass

  1. situated in, moving towards, or facing the east

  2. (esp of the wind) from the east

  1. in, to, or towards the east

  2. archaic (of the wind) from the east

Origin of east

Old English ēast; related to Old High German ōstar to the east, Old Norse austr, Latin aurora dawn, Greek eōs, Sanskrit usās dawn, morning
  • Symbol: E

British Dictionary definitions for East (2 of 2)


/ (iːst) /

nounthe East
  1. the continent of Asia regarded as culturally distinct from Europe and the West; the Orient

  2. the countries under Communist rule and formerly under Communist rule, lying mainly in the E hemisphere: Compare West (def. 2)

  1. (in the US)

    • the area north of the Ohio and east of the Mississippi

    • the area north of Maryland and east of the Alleghenies

    • of or denoting the eastern part of a specified country, area, etc

    • (as part of a name): East Sussex

Derived forms of East

  • Eastern, adjective

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