Idioms

    in the field,
    1. in actual use or in a situation simulating actual use or application; away from a laboratory, workshop, or the like: The machine was tested for six months in the field.
    2. in contact with a prime source of basic data: The anthropologist is working in the field in Nigeria.
    3. within a given profession: The public knows little of him, but in the field he's known as a fine mathematician.
    keep the field, to remain in competition or in battle; continue to contend: The troops kept the field under heavy fire.
    out in left field. left field(def 3).
    play the field, Informal.
    1. to vary one's activities.
    2. to date a number of persons rather than only one: He wanted to play the field for a few years before settling down.
    take the field,
    1. to begin to play, as in football or baseball; go into action.
    2. to go into battle: They took the field at dawn.

Origin of field

before 1000; Middle English, Old English feld; cognate with German Feld
Related formsmis·field, verbun·field·ed, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019


British Dictionary definitions for take the field

Field

noun

John . 1782–1837, Irish composer and pianist, lived in Russia from 1803: invented the nocturne

field

noun

an open tract of uncultivated grassland; meadowRelated adjective: campestral
a piece of land cleared of trees and undergrowth, usually enclosed with a fence or hedge and used for pasture or growing cropsa field of barley
a limited or marked off area, usually of mown grass, on which any of various sports, athletic competitions, etc, are helda soccer field
an area that is rich in minerals or other natural resourcesa coalfield
the mounted followers that hunt with a pack of hounds
  1. all the runners in a particular race or competitors in a competition
  2. the runners in a race or competitors in a competition excluding the favourite
cricket the fielders collectively, esp with regard to their positions
a wide or open expansea field of snow
  1. an area of human activitythe field of human knowledge
  2. a sphere or division of knowledge, interest, etchis field is physics
  1. a place away from the laboratory, office, library, etc, usually out of doors, where practical work is done or original material or data collected
  2. (as modifier)a field course
the surface or background, as of a flag, coin, or heraldic shield, on which a design is displayed
Also called: field of view the area within which an object may be observed with a telescope, microscope, etc
physics
  1. See field of force
  2. a region of space that is a vector field
  3. a region of space under the influence of some scalar quantity, such as temperature
maths a set of entities subject to two binary operations, addition and multiplication, such that the set is a commutative group under addition and the set, minus the zero, is a commutative group under multiplication and multiplication is distributive over addition
maths logic the set of elements that are either arguments or values of a function; the union of its domain and range
computing
  1. a set of one or more characters comprising a unit of information
  2. a predetermined section of a record
television one of two or more sets of scanning lines which when interlaced form the complete picture
obsolete the open countrybeasts of the field
hold the field or keep the field to maintain one's position in the face of opposition
in the field
  1. militaryin an area in which operations are in progress
  2. actively or closely involved with or working on something (rather than being in a more remote or administrative position)
lead the field to be in the leading or most pre-eminent position
leave the field informal to back out of a competition, contest, etc
take the field to begin or carry on activity, esp in sport or military operations
play the field informal to disperse one's interests or attentions among a number of activities, people, or objects
(modifier) military of or relating to equipment, personnel, etc, specifically designed or trained for operations in the fielda field gun; a field army

verb

(tr) sport to stop, catch, or return (the ball) as a fielder
(tr) sport to send (a player or team) onto the field to play
(intr) sport (of a player or team) to act or take turn as a fielder or fielders
(tr) military to put (an army, a unit, etc) in the field
(tr) to enter (a person) in a competitioneach party fielded a candidate
(tr) informal to deal with or handle, esp adequately and by making a reciprocal gestureto field a question

Word Origin for field

Old English feld; related to Old Saxon, Old High German feld, Old English fold earth, Greek platus broad
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 take the field

field

v.

"to go out to fight," 16c., from field (n.) in the specific sense of "battlefield" (Old English). The meaning "to stop and return the ball" is first recorded 1823, originally in cricket; figurative sense is from 1902. Related: Fielded; fielding.

field

n.

Old English feld "plain, open land" (as opposed to woodland), also "a parcel of land marked off and used for pasture or tillage," probably related to Old English folde "earth, land," from Proto-Germanic *felthuz "flat land" (common West Germanic, cf. Old Saxon and Old Frisian feld "field," Old Saxon folda "earth," Middle Dutch velt, Dutch veld Old High German felt, German Feld "field," but not found outside it; Swedish fält, Danish felt are borrowed from German), from PIE *pel(e)-tu-, from root *pele- (2) "flat, to spread" (see plane (n.1)).

Finnish pelto "field" is believed to have been adapted from Proto-Germanic. The English spelling with -ie- probably is the work of Anglo-French scribes (cf. brief, piece). Collective use for "all engaged in a sport" (or, in horseracing, all but the favorite) is 1742; play the field "avoid commitment" (1936) is from notion of gamblers betting on other horses than the favorite. Field glasses attested by 1836.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

take the field in Science

field

[fēld]

A distribution in a region of space of the strength and direction of a force, such as the electrostatic force near an electrically charged object, that would act on a body at any given point in that region. See also electric field magnetic field.
The region whose image is visible to the eye or accessible to an optical instrument.
A set of elements having two operations, designated addition and multiplication, satisfying the conditions that multiplication is distributive over addition, that the set is a group under addition, and that the elements with the exception of the additive identity (0) form a group under multiplication. The set of all rational numbers is a field.
  1. In a database, a space for a single item of information contained in a record.
  2. An interface element in a graphical user interface that accepts the input of text.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with take the field

take the field

Enter a competition, as in The country's best spellers took the field in the national spelling bee. This term originated around 1600 when it meant “to open a military campaign.” The field here is the field of battle. The term has been used figuratively almost as long, the first recorded use being in 1614.

field

In addition to the idiom beginning with field

  • field day

also see:

  • cover the field
  • far afield
  • out in left field
  • play the field
  • take the field
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.