View synonyms for tiptoe


[ tip-toh ]


  1. the tip or end of a toe.

verb (used without object)

, tip·toed, tip·toe·ing.
  1. to move or go on tiptoe, as with caution or stealth:

    She tiptoed out of the room.


  1. characterized by standing or walking on tiptoe.
  2. straining upward.
  3. eagerly expectant.
  4. cautious; stealthy.


  1. eagerly or cautiously; on tiptoe.


/ ˈtɪpˌtəʊ /


  1. to walk with the heels off the ground and the weight supported by the ball of the foot and the toes
  2. to walk silently or stealthily


  1. on tiptoe
    1. on the tips of the toes or on the ball of the foot and the toes
    2. eagerly anticipating something
    3. stealthily or silently


  1. on tiptoe


  1. walking or standing on tiptoe
  2. stealthy or silent

Discover More

Word History and Origins

Origin of tiptoe1

1350–1400; Middle English tiptoon (plural noun). See tip 1, toe

Discover More

Idioms and Phrases

  1. on tiptoe,
    1. on the tips of one's toes.
    2. expectant; eager:

      With Christmas coming, the children were on tiptoe.

    3. stealthily; cautiously:

      The concert had already begun, so he entered the back of the hall on tiptoe.

More idioms and phrases containing tiptoe

see on tiptoe .

Discover More

Example Sentences

She published a book on moral education and joined organizations dedicated to social purity, and while medicine tiptoed along a more scientific path, she went down another.

Instead, we’ve tiptoed around it, whispering and hanging back instead of getting on with the difficult work of defusing it.

With a small packed bag, I tiptoed towards the door thinking that he was asleep.

From Quartz

Now, as the world tiptoes back toward normalcy, those who lost work will be applying to open positions in droves.

From Fortune

A lot of publishers, particularly business-facing publishers, are still tiptoeing around ticketing, said Hindman.

From Digiday

A couple of ladies, standing on tiptoe, are scribbling over it with eyeliner and lipstick.

If Romney tries to run or tiptoe away, he will trip over his own flip-flops.

Romney, on account of his wealthy personal life, has to tiptoe around policies that redistribute wealth upward.

The establishment has to tiptoe around her and handle her delicately.

You must tell George that he must walk on tiptoe and not speak—otherwise he will die someday.

He caught his breath, he paused, then stepped within on tiptoe, and the hush of four thousand years closed after him.

Again she raised herself tiptoe before me, and with a hand on each shoulder, she stood looking from her eyes into mine.

The next summer Kari had grown so big and fat that I could not reach his back even when I stood on tiptoe.

They tried to make as little noise as possible, but though they walked on tiptoe, the sound echoed back to them dully.

Mrs Bellingham went on tiptoe towards the door, and chiding herself because her stiff, weary limbs made some slight noise.


Related Words

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.