verb (used without object), stepped, step·ping.
verb (used with object), stepped, step·ping.
- to lower or decrease by degrees.
- to relinquish one's authority or control; resign: Although he was past retirement age, he refused to step down and let his son take over the business.
- to leave a place, especially for a brief period of time.
- to walk or march at a more rapid pace.
- to go out to a social gathering or on a date: We're stepping out tonight.
- to raise or increase by degrees: to step up production.
- to be promoted; advance.
- to make progress; improve.
- moving in time to a rhythm or with the corresponding step of others.
- in harmony or conformity with: They are not in step with the times.
- not in time to a rhythm or corresponding to the step of others.
- not in harmony or conformity with: They are out of step with the others in their group.
- from one stage to the next in sequence.
- gradually and steadily: We were shown the steelmaking process step by step.
Origin of step
Related Words for steppedtread, dance, skip, tiptoe, stride, walk, advance, traipse, ambulate, descend, ascend, mince, pace, prance, hoof, trip, troop
Examples from the Web for stepped
Contemporary Examples of stepped
Brinsley stepped up to the passenger side of the patrol car, raised a silver Taurus semi-automatic pistol and began firing.'Please Don't Die!': The Frantic Battle to Save Murdered Cops
December 22, 2014
With his latest film, Big Eyes, the Robert Smith-coiffed 56-year-old has stepped back into reality.Tim Burton Talks ‘Big Eyes,’ His Taste For the Macabre, and the ‘Beetlejuice’ Sequel
December 17, 2014
Perhaps in part because it was an FBI coup, the CIA stepped in with its high-priced psychologist.The Luxury Homes That Torture and Your Tax Dollars Built
December 12, 2014
When she now stepped before the mirror, she said: “Mirror, mirror, on the wall, who in this land is the fairest of all?”In New Brothers Grimm 'Snow White', The Prince Doesn't Save Her
The Brothers Grimm
November 30, 2014
But when the time came you stepped up to the plate just like George W. Bush did.Up to a Point: Thanks to the Biggest Turkey, Uncle Sam
P. J. O’Rourke
November 27, 2014
Historical Examples of stepped
Obeying a quick impulse, Percival stepped to the curb as she came opposite to him.The Spenders
Harry Leon Wilson
When they met Fish in the road they stepped aside and said "Good morning, sir."Ancient Man
Hendrik Willem van Loon
He stepped to the door into the horse shed and paused; there was no sound.
To his unutterable astonishment Andy rose and stepped between him and the door.
He stepped to a corner of the room and by a ring he raised a trapdoor.
- marching, dancing, etc, in conformity with a specified pace or moving in unison with others
- informalin agreement or harmony
- not moving in conformity with a specified pace or in accordance with others
- informalnot in agreement; out of harmony
- informalto conduct oneself with caution and good behaviour
- to walk or move carefully
verb steps, stepping or stepped
Word Origin for step
- a set of aerobic exercises designed to improve the cardiovascular system, which consists of stepping on and off a special box of adjustable height
- (as modifier)Step aerobics
n acronym for
Old English steppan (Anglian), stæppan (West Saxon) "take a step," from West Germanic *stap- "tread" (cf. Old Frisian, Middle Dutch, Dutch stap, Old High German stapfo, German stapfe "footstep"), from PIE root *stebh- "to tread, step" (cf. Old Church Slavonic stopa "step, pace," stepeni "step, degree"). Originally strong (past tense stop, past participle bestapen); weak forms emerged 13c., universal from 16c. Stepping stone first recorded early 14c.; in the figurative sense 1650s. Step on it "hurry up" is 1923, from notion of gas pedal; step out (v.) is from 1907.
Old English steppa (Mercian), stæpe, stepe (West Saxon) "stair, act of stepping," from the source of step (v.). Meaning "action which leads toward a result" is recorded from 1540s. Warning phrase watch your step is attested from 1934. Step-dancing first recorded 1886.
In addition to the idioms beginning with step
- step aside
- step by step
- step down
- step in
- step in the right direction, a
- step into
- step into someone's shoes
- step on it
- step on someone's toes
- step out
- step out of line
- step up
- false step
- in step
- (step) out of line
- take steps
- watch one's step