1. a person or thing that opens.
  2. a device for opening sealed containers: can opener.
  3. the first of several theatrical numbers, variety acts, sports events, etc.: a humorous monologue as an opener.
  4. openers, Poker. cards in a hand, as a pair of jacks or better, that according to a given standard are worth enough to enable the holder to make the first bet of a deal.
  1. for openers, as an initially stated reason or argument; at the outset; to begin with: Well, for openers, I don't have the money.

Origin of opener

First recorded in 1540–50; open + -er1
Related formsself-o·pen·er, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for openers

Historical Examples of openers

British Dictionary definitions for openers


  1. an instrument used to open sealed containers such as tins or bottlesa bottle opener
  2. a person who opens, esp the player who makes the first bid or play
  3. the first or opening section or episode in a series
  4. US the first song, act, etc, in a variety show
  5. (plural) a start; beginning (esp in the phrase for openers)
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 openers



"one who opens," Old English openere, agent noun from open (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper