- a part considered as higher: the top of the street.
- high gear of an automobile.
- the part of a plant that grows above ground, especially of an edible root.
- one of the tender tips of the branches or shoots of plants.
- the best card of a suit in a player's hand.
- (in duplicate bridge) the best score on a hand.
- a stroke that hits the ball above its center.
- the forward spin given to the ball by such a stroke.
- the first half of an inning.
- the first three batters in the batting order.
- a cluster of textile fibers, especially tow, put on a distaff.
- a strand of the long wool fibers in sliver form, separated from noil by combing and wound into a large ball.
- a similar strand of rayon.
verb (used with object), topped, top·ping.
- to strike (the ball) above its center, giving it a forward spin.
- to make (a stroke) by hitting the ball in this manner.
verb (used without object), topped, top·ping.
- to climax or complete, especially in an exceptional manner; finish: They topped off the evening with a ferryboat ride at midnight.
- to fill (a partly full container) completely: to top off a gas tank.
- to finish the top of (a structure).
- to reach the highest level.
THIS WORD OF THE DAY QUIZ IS HARDLY A DODDLE!
Idioms for top
- to become enraged; lose one's temper.
- to go mad; become insane: He must have blown his top to make such a fool of himself.
- over or upon.
- in addition to; over and above.
- close upon; following upon: Gale winds came on top of the floods.
- in complete control: on top of the problem.
- Military. over the top of the parapet before a trench, as in issuing to charge against the enemy.
- surpassing a goal, quota, or limit.
- beyond normal limits; outrageously extreme or excessive: His humor is so over the top that it’s embarrassing.
Origin of top1
SYNONYMS FOR top
OTHER WORDS FROM topun·topped, adjective
Definition for top (2 of 3)
Origin of top2
Definition for top (3 of 3)
WORDS THAT USE TOP-
What does top- mean?
Top- comes from the Greek tópos, meaning “place” or “commonplace.” Commonplace? Yep, discover why at our entry here.
Top- is a variant of topo-, which loses its -o– when combined with words or word elements beginning with vowels.
Want to know more? Read our Words That Use topo- article.
Examples of top-
One term that features top– is toponym, which can refer to a placename (e.g., Oakland, California) or a name derived from the name of a place. Many English words come from placenames, such as denim and jeans. Learn how in our entries for the word.
The first part of the word, top-, means “place,” as we’ve seen. The second part of the word, -onym, might also look familiar. Also from Greek, it means “word” or “name.” Toponym, if we put everything back in one place, literally translates to “place name.” Makes sense!
What are some words that use the combining form top-?
What are some other forms that top- may be commonly confused with
There are many other words that begin with the letter top- but don’t necessarily use top- as a combining form to mean “place” or “local.” The word top, of course, is entirety made up of the same letters, but it is not connected to top-, even if their senses overlap on some levels. Nor does the precious stone topaz share a root with top-.
British Dictionary definitions for top (1 of 3)
- a stroke that hits the ball above its centre
- short for topspin
- the high-frequency content of an audio signal
- (as modifier)this amplifier has a good top response
- in addition toon top of his accident, he caught pneumonia
- informal in complete control of (a difficult situation, job, etc)
- over the parapet or leading edge of a trench
- over the limit; excessive(ly); lacking restraint or a sense of proportion
verb tops, topping or topped (mainly tr)
- to hit (a ball) above the centre
- to make (a stroke) by hitting the ball in this way
- to trim off the ends of (fruit or vegetables) before cooking them
- to wash a baby's face and bottom without immersion in a bath
Word Origin for top
British Dictionary definitions for top (2 of 3)
Word Origin for top
British Dictionary definitions for top (3 of 3)
Idioms and Phrases with top
In addition to the idioms beginning with top
- top banana
- top brass
- top dog
- top dollar
- top drawer
- top off
- top out
- top to toe
- at the top of one's lungs
- big top
- blow one's top
- brass hat (top brass)
- from head to toe (top to toe)
- off the top of one's head
- on top
- on top of
- on top of the world
- over the top
- sleep like a log (top)
- thin on top