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See more synonyms for sidestep on Thesaurus.com
verb (used without object), side·stepped, side·step·ping.
  1. to step to one side.
  2. to evade or avoid a decision, problem, or the like.
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verb (used with object), side·stepped, side·step·ping.
  1. to avoid or dodge by stepping aside.
  2. to evade or avoid (a decision, problem, or the like).
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Origin of sidestep

An Americanism dating back to 1900–05
Related formsside·step·per, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for sidestep

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • It took us all night to sidestep that outrage, but we did it.

    At Good Old Siwash

    George Fitch

  • He saw that Cheever was quicker than he at the feint and the sidestep.

  • When a man has anything somebody gets it before he can sidestep.

    The Fighting Chance

    Robert W. Chambers

  • Maybe he could sidestep the lessons before she pinned him down.

    The Southerner

    Thomas Dixon

  • Cautiously, prepared for a lunge or a sidestep, Kazan advanced a little.


    James Oliver Curwood

British Dictionary definitions for sidestep


verb -steps, -stepping or -stepped
  1. to step aside from or out of the way of (something)
  2. (tr) to dodge or circumvent
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noun side step
  1. a movement to one side, as in dancing, boxing, etc
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Derived Formssidestepper, noun
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 sidestep


also side-step, 1757, "a stepping to the side" (originally in military drill), from side (adj.) + step (n.). The verb is recorded from 1895; the figurative sense is attested from 1900.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper