- a person or thing that starts.
- a person who gives the signal to begin, as for a race, the running of a train, bus, elevator, etc.
- a device that starts an internal-combustion engine without a need for cranking by hand.
- a person or thing that starts in a race or contest: Only five starters finished the race.
- a culture of bacteria used to start a particular fermentation, as in the manufacture of cheese, buttermilk, sour cream, etc.
- Cookery. sourdough(def 1).
- Slang. a shill, as at a gaming table in a casino.
- Cribbage. the card turned face up on the stack before the play.
- constituting a basis or beginning: a starter set of dishes; a starter home.
- for starters, Informal. as the first step or part; initially; first: We will have soup for starters. For starters, he doesn't even know how to drive.
Origin of starter
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
- a device for starting an internal-combustion engine, usually consisting of a powerful electric motor that engages with the flywheelFormerly called self-starter
- US a person who organizes the timely departure of buses, trains, etc
- a person who supervises and signals the start of a race
- a competitor who starts in a race or contest
- informal, mainly Australian and NZ an acceptable or practicable proposition, plan, idea, etc
- Australian and NZ informal a person who is willing to engage in a particular activity
- a culture of bacteria used to start fermentation, as in making cheese or yogurt
- mainly British the first course of a meal
- (modifier) designed to be used by a novicea starter kit
- for starters slang in the first place
- under starter's orders
- (of horses in a race) awaiting the start signal
- (of a person) eager or ready to begin
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
c.1400, stertour "instigator; one who starts," agent noun from start (v.). For starters "to begin with" is 1873, American English colloquial. Starter home is from 1976; starter set is from 1946, originally of china.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
see for openers.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.