Origin of sidewalk

First recorded in 1660–70; side1 + walk Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for sidewalks

track, path, pavement, boardwalk, walkway, footpath

Examples from the Web for sidewalks

Contemporary Examples of sidewalks

Historical Examples of sidewalks

  • "These sidewalks are too narrow for four," declared Mrs. Wyeth.


    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • By noon the sidewalks were completely covered in miles of streets.

    Dr. Sevier

    George W. Cable

  • The gutters are in the middle of the thoroughfares, and the sidewalks are only a few inches in width.

    Aztec Land

    Maturin M. Ballou

  • Don't spit on the sidewalks; it spreads disease, and it is against the law.

    Rural Hygiene

    Henry N. Ogden

  • It was a very broad and magnificent street, and the sidewalks were very wide.

    Rollo in Paris

    Jacob Abbott

British Dictionary definitions for sidewalks


  1. US and Canadian a hard-surfaced path for pedestrians alongside and a little higher than a roadAlso called (in Britain and certain other countries): pavement
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 sidewalks



"path for pedestrians on the side of a street," 1739, from side (adj.) + walk (n.). The use of sidewalk for pavement as one of the characteristic differences between American and British English has been noted since at least 1902.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper