View synonyms for throw


[ throh ]

verb (used with object)

, threw, thrown, throw·ing.
  1. to propel or cast in any way, especially to project or propel from the hand by a sudden forward motion or straightening of the arm and wrist:

    to throw a ball.

    Synonyms: launch, fling

  2. to hurl or project (a missile), as a gun does.
  3. to project or cast (light, a shadow, etc.).
  4. to project (the voice).
  5. to make it appear that (one's voice) is coming from a place different from its source, as in ventriloquism.
  6. to direct or send forth (words, a glance, etc.).
  7. to put or cause to go or come into some place, position, condition, etc., as if by hurling:

    to throw someone into prison;

    to throw a bridge across a river;

    to throw troops into action.

  8. to put on, off, or away hastily:

    to throw a shawl over one's shoulders.

  9. Machinery.
    1. to move (a lever or the like) in order to activate, turn on, disconnect, etc., an apparatus or mechanism:

      to throw the switch.

    2. to connect, engage, disconnect, or disengage by such a procedure:

      to throw the current.

  10. to shape on a potter's wheel:

    to throw a vase.

  11. to bring to bear or invest:

    Throw all your energy into your work.

    The FBI threw every available agent into the case.

  12. to deliver (a blow or punch):

    He threw a hard left jab to his opponent's chin.

  13. to cause to fall to the ground, especially to hurl to the ground, as an opponent in wrestling.
  14. Cards. to play (a card).
  15. to lose (a game, race, or other contest) intentionally, as for a bribe.
  16. to cast (dice).
  17. to make (a cast) at dice:

    She threw two sixes.

  18. (of an animal, as a horse) to cause (someone) to fall off; unseat:

    The horse threw his rider twice.

  19. to organize and host:

    They threw a lavish party celebrating his 80th birthday.

  20. (of domestic animals) to bring forth (young).
  21. Textiles. to twist (filaments) without attenuation in the production of yarn or thread.
  22. Informal. to overcome with astonishment or confusion; amaze, disconcert, or confuse:

    It was her falsetto voice on top of it all that really threw me.

  23. to turn on a lathe.

verb (used without object)

, threw, thrown, throw·ing.
  1. to cast, fling, or hurl a missile or the like.


  1. an act or instance of throwing or casting; cast; fling:

    For your first time playing catch, I'd have to say that was a great throw!

  2. the distance to which anything is or may be thrown:

    a stone's throw.

  3. Informal. a venture or chance:

    It was his last throw.

  4. Machinery.
    1. the distance between the center of a crankshaft and the center of the crankpins, equal to one half of the piston stroke.
    2. the distance between the center of a crankshaft and the center of an eccentric.
    3. the movement of a reciprocating part in one direction.
  5. (in a movie theater) the distance between the projector and the screen.
  6. (in an auditorium or the like) the distance between a loudspeaker and the audience.
  7. the length of a beam of light:

    a spotlight with a throw of 500 feet.

  8. Theater.
    1. the distance to which a spotlight can be projected.
    2. the area illuminated by a spotlight.
  9. a scarf, boa, shawl, or the like.
  10. a light blanket, as for use when reclining on a sofa.
  11. a cast of dice.
  12. the number thrown with a pair of dice.
  13. Wrestling. the act, method, or an instance of throwing an opponent.
  14. Geology, Mining. the amount of vertical displacement produced by a fault.

verb phrase

    1. to dispose of; discard.
    2. to employ wastefully; squander.
    3. to fail to use; miss (a chance, opportunity, etc.):

      He threw away a college education and a professional career.

    4. (of a performer) to speak or tell (lines, a joke, etc.) casually or indifferently.
  1. Informal.
    1. to add as a bonus or gratuity:

      They throw in breakfast with the room.

    2. to bring into (a discussion, plan, etc.) as an addition; interject:

      The president threw in an amusing anecdote to relieve the tension.

    3. Cards. to abandon (a hand).
    1. to give up; relinquish.
    2. to build hastily.
    3. to vomit.
    4. to point out, as an error; criticize.
    5. (of a hawk) to fly suddenly upward.
    1. to make in a hurried and haphazard manner.
    2. to cause to associate:

      Many nationalities have been thrown together in the American melting pot.

    1. to retard the development or advancement of:

      His illness threw him back a year at school.

    2. to force into dependence upon or necessary use of.
    3. to return to; hark back.
    4. to revert to a type found in one's ancestry; manifest atavism:

      Her red hair and blue eyes throw back to her great-grandmother.

    1. to free oneself of; cast aside:

      to throw off the wet poncho;

      to throw off the yoke of slavery.

    2. to escape from or delay, as a pursuer.
    3. to give off; discharge.
    4. to perform or produce with ease:

      The entertainer threw off a few songs and jokes to begin the show.

    5. to confuse; fluster:

      Thrown off by jeers, she forgot her lines.

    6. Australian Slang. to criticize or ridicule (usually followed by at ).
    1. to fight or to challenge someone to a fight:

      You wanna throw down with me, punk?

    2. to give a share of the cost; contribute (money):

      Are you going to throw down for this pizza, or what?

    3. to produce or execute (something) successfully; put down:

      The skiers threw down a few good runs before the snow turned to slush.

    4. to cast down; cause to drop:

      Throw down your weapons and surrender!

  2. to forsake; abandon:

    She threw over her first husband for another man.

    1. to cast away; remove; discard.
    2. to bring up for consideration; propose:

      The committee threw out a few suggestions.

    3. to put out of mind; reject:

      We can throw out that scheme.

    4. Baseball. to cause to be out by throwing the ball to a fielder, especially an infielder, in time to prevent a batter or runner from reaching base safely:

      The shortstop backhanded the ball and threw the batter out at first.

    5. to eject from a place, especially forcibly:

      He started making a disturbance so the bartenders threw him out.

    6. to expel, as from membership in a club.


/ θrəʊ /


  1. also intr to project or cast (something) through the air, esp with a rapid motion of the arm and wrist
  2. foll byin, on, onto, etc to put or move suddenly, carelessly, or violently

    she threw her clothes onto the bed

  3. to bring to or cause to be in a specified state or condition, esp suddenly or unexpectedly

    the news threw the family into a panic

  4. to direct or cast (a shadow, light, etc)
  5. to project (the voice) so as to make it appear to come from other than its source
  6. to give or hold (a party)
  7. to cause to fall or be upset; dislodge

    the horse soon threw his rider

    1. to tip (dice) out onto a flat surface
    2. to obtain (a specified number) in this way
  8. to shape (clay) on a potter's wheel
  9. to move (a switch or lever) to engage or disengage a mechanism
  10. to be subjected to (a fit)
  11. to turn (wood, etc) on a lathe
  12. informal.
    to baffle or astonish; confuse

    the last question on the test paper threw me

  13. boxing to deliver (a punch)
  14. wrestling to hurl (an opponent) to the ground
  15. informal.
    to lose (a contest, fight, etc) deliberately, esp in boxing
    1. to play (a card)
    2. to discard (a card)
  16. (of a female animal, esp a cow) to give birth to (young)
  17. to twist or spin (filaments) into thread
  18. throw cold water on something informal.
    to be unenthusiastic about or discourage something
  19. throw oneself at
    to strive actively to attract the attention or affection of
  20. throw oneself into
    to involve oneself enthusiastically in
  21. throw oneself on
    to rely entirely upon

    he threw himself on the mercy of the police


  1. the act or an instance of throwing
  2. the distance or extent over which anything may be thrown

    a stone's throw

  3. informal.
    a chance, venture, or try
  4. an act or result of throwing dice
    1. the eccentricity of a cam
    2. the radial distance between the central axis of a crankshaft and the axis of a crankpin forming part of the shaft
  5. a decorative light blanket or cover, as thrown over a chair
  6. a sheet of fabric used for draping over an easel or unfinished painting, etc, to keep the dust off
  7. geology the vertical displacement of rock strata at a fault
  8. physics the deflection of a measuring instrument as a result of a sudden fluctuation

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Derived Forms

  • ˈthrower, noun

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Other Words From

  • mis·throw verb misthrew misthrown misthrowing

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Word History and Origins

Origin of throw1

First recorded before 1000; Middle English verb throwen, thrawen, Old English thrāwan “to twist, turn”; cognate with Dutch draaien, German drehen “to turn, spin, twirl, whirl”; akin to Latin terere, Greek teírein “to rub away”

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Word History and Origins

Origin of throw1

Old English thrāwan to turn, torment; related to Old High German drāen to twist, Latin terere to rub

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Idioms and Phrases

  1. a throw, Informal. each:

    He ordered four suits at $300 a throw.

  2. throw (someone or something) to the wolves / dogs, Informal. wolf ( def 13 ).
  3. throw (someone or something) under the bus, Informal. bus 1( def 11 ).
  4. throw in the sponge, Informal. sponge ( def 21 ).
  5. throw in the towel, Informal. towel ( def 3 ).
  6. throw oneself at someone / someone's head, to strive to attract the interest or attention of, especially in order to win the love or admiration of:

    Don't expect me to throw myself at you.

  7. throw oneself into, to engage in with energy or enthusiasm:

    She threw herself into learning the new routines.

  8. throw oneself on / upon someone, to commit oneself to another's mercy, generosity, support, etc.; trust in:

    The members of his wife's family have all thrown themselves on him.

  9. throw the bull, Slang. bull 2( def 2 ).
  10. throw cold water on. cold ( def 31 ).
  11. throw down the gauntlet / glove. gauntlet 1( def 5 ).
  12. throw one's hat in the ring. hat ( def 8 ).
  13. throw out the baby with the bathwater. bathwater ( def 2 ).

More idioms and phrases containing throw

  • cast (throw) one's lot with
  • cast (throw) the first stone
  • have (throw) a fit
  • (throw) in one's face
  • knock (throw) for a loop
  • pour (throw) cold water on
  • shed (throw) light on
  • stone's throw

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Synonym Study

Throw, cast, pitch, toss imply projecting something through the air. Throw is the general word, often used with an adverb that indicates direction, destination, etc.: to throw a rope to someone, the paper away. Cast is a formal word for throw, archaic except as used in certain idiomatic expressions ( to cast a net, black looks; cast down; the compound broadcast, etc.): to cast off a boat. Pitch implies throwing with some force and definite aim: to pitch a baseball. To toss is to throw lightly, as with an underhand or sideways motion, or to move irregularly up and down or back and forth: to toss a bone to a dog.

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Example Sentences

A lot of throw blankets and children’s bedding are made from Minky.

The best heated throw blankets will let you control the temperature setting.

Mahomes ran 497 yards before making throws or taking sacks, according to NFL Next Gen Stats, the most in one game since it started keeping track.

Those throws come from a highly practiced palm and well-schooled eyes.

Still, the ability to get in Mahomes’s face is associated with a big drop in accuracy even after accounting for the particulars of the throw.

In general, their presence is meant to throw you off your game by design.

Would a state with a keen understanding of the power of propaganda be so willing to just throw away such a trove of information?

Just wanted to place it in the context of slates needing picture choices that throw off revenue to make the numbers work.

Archrival India has money to throw around, and Iran and Russia are also exerting influence in the region.

He went so far as to throw an “Activation Party” in their honor just weeks before his September arrest.

If you throw away this chance, you will both richly deserve to be hanged, as I sincerely trust you will be.

That woman meant mischief, or she would never have dared to suggest that a British officer should throw in his lot with hers.

If the Turks get hold of a lot of fresh men and throw them upon us during the night,—perhaps they may knock us off into the sea.

Nothing will be easier then to throw the Poles into the shade of the picture, or to occupy the foreground with a brilliant review.

All this will, doubtless, throw a number of deserving persons out of employ.


Definitions and idiom definitions from Unabridged, based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

Idioms from The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.




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