verb (used with object), set·tled, set·tling.

verb (used without object), set·tled, set·tling.

Verb Phrases

Nearby words

  1. setter,
  2. setting,
  3. setting lotion,
  4. setting rule,
  5. setting-up exercise,
  6. settle a score,
  7. settle down,
  8. settle for,
  9. settle in,
  10. settle on

Origin of settle

before 1000; Middle English set(t)len, Old English setlan (attested once) to place, derivative of setl settle2; compare Dutch zetelen

Related forms




a long seat or bench, usually wooden, with arms and a high back.

Origin of settle

before 900; Middle English: seat, sitting place, Old English setl; cognate with German Sessel armchair, Gothic sitls seat, Latin sella saddle; akin to sit1 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for settle

British Dictionary definitions for settle




(tr) to put in order; arrange in a desired state or conditionhe settled his affairs before he died
to arrange or be arranged in a fixed or comfortable positionhe settled himself by the fire
(intr) to come to rest or a halta bird settled on the hedge
to take up or cause to take up residencethe family settled in the country
to establish or become established in a way of life, job, residence, etc
(tr) to migrate to and form a community; colonize
to make or become quiet, calm, or stable
(intr) to be cast or spread; come downfog settled over a wide area
to make (a liquid) clear or (of a liquid) to become clear; clarify
to cause (sediment) to sink to the bottom, as in a liquid, or (of sediment) to sink thus
to subside or cause to subside and become firm or compactthe dust settled
(sometimes foll by up) to pay off or account for (a bill, debt, etc)
(tr) to decide, conclude, or dispose ofto settle an argument
(intr; often foll by on or upon) to agree or fixto settle upon a plan
(tr; usually foll by on or upon) to secure (title, property, etc) to a person, as by making a deed of settlement, will, etche settled his property on his wife
to determine (a legal dispute, etc) by agreement of the parties without resort to court action (esp in the phrase settle out of court)

Derived Formssettleable, adjective

Word Origin for settle

Old English setlan; related to Dutch zetelen; see settle ²


a seat, for two or more people, usually made of wood with a high back and arms, and sometimes having a storage space in the boxlike seat

Word Origin for settle

Old English setl; related to Old Saxon, Old High German sezzal

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 settle
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper