• synonyms


  1. a post bearing a sign that gives information or guidance.
  2. any immediately perceptible indication, obvious clue, etc.
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verb (used with object)
  1. to provide (a place, route, etc.) with signposts.
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Origin of signpost

First recorded in 1610–20; sign + post1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for sign-posts

Historical Examples of sign-posts

  • They mean us to use them for sign-posts we mistake the sign-post for the destination.

    Howards End

    E. M. Forster

  • Actual life is full of false clues and sign-posts that lead nowhere.

    Howards End

    E. M. Forster

  • The refrains act like sign-posts to help the child to mark the progress.

    Here and Now Story Book

    Lucy Sprague Mitchell

  • "Dangerous passin," as the sign-posts say, abaout these times.'

    Over the Teacups

    Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.

  • "You ought to have sign-posts," said Chubbins, who had once been in a city.

    Twinkle and Chubbins

    L. Frank (Lyman Frank) Baum

British Dictionary definitions for sign-posts


  1. a post bearing a sign that shows the way, as at a roadside
  2. something that serves as a clue or indication; sign
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verb (tr; usually passive)
  1. to mark with signposts
  2. to indicate direction towardsthe camp site is signposted from the road
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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 sign-posts



also sign-post, 1610s, "sign on a post, usually indicating an inn or shop," from sign (n.) + post (n.1). Meaning "guide- or direction-post along a road" is attested from 1863. Figurative sense is from 1889.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper