• synonyms


[ west ]
/ wɛst /




to, toward, or in the west: The car headed west.
from the west: The wind blew west.


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Nearby words

wesleyan methodist, wesleyanism, wessex, wessex culture, wessi, west, west allis, west atlantic, west babylon, west bank, west bend


    go west, Informal. to die.

Origin of west

before 900; Middle English, Old English; cognate with Dutch, German west, Old Norse vestr; compare French ouest, Old French < Old English

Definition for west (2 of 3)


[ west ]
/ wɛst /


Benjamin,1738–1820, U.S. painter, in England after 1763.
Jerome AlanJerry, born 1938, U.S. basketball player, coach, and executive.
Mae,1892?–1980, U.S. actress.
NathanaelNathan Wallenstein Weinstein, 1902?–40, U.S. novelist.
Paul,born 1930, U.S. poet, essayist, and novelist, born in England.
Dame RebeccaCicily Isabel Fairfield Andrews, 1892–1983, English novelist, journalist, and critic, born in Ireland.
Related formsan·ti-West, adjectivepro-West, adjective

Definition for west (3 of 3)


or west. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for west

British Dictionary definitions for west (1 of 3)


/ (wɛst) /



situated in, moving towards, or facing the west
(esp of the wind) from the west


Symbol: W

Word Origin for west

Old English; related to Old Norse vestr, Sanskrit avástāt, Latin vesper evening, Greek hésperos

British Dictionary definitions for west (2 of 3)


/ (wɛst) /

noun the West

the western part of the world contrasted historically and culturally with the East or Orient; the Occident
(formerly) the non-Communist countries of Europe and America contrasted with the Communist states of the EastCompare East (def. 2)
(in the US)
  1. that part of the US lying approximately to the west of the Mississippi
  2. (during the Colonial period) the region outside the 13 colonies, lying mainly to the west of the Alleghenies
(in the ancient and medieval world) the Western Roman Empire and, later, the Holy Roman Empire


  1. of or denoting the western part of a specified country, area, etc
  2. (as part of a name)the West Coast

British Dictionary definitions for west (3 of 3)


/ (wɛst) /


Benjamin. 1738–1820, US painter, in England from 1763
Kanye, born 1977, US rap singer and producer; his albums include The College Dropout (2004) and Graduation (2007)
Mae. 1892–1980, US film actress
Nathanael, real name Nathan Weinstein. 1903–40, US novelist: author of Miss Lonely-Hearts (1933) and The Day of the Locust (1939)
Dame Rebecca, real name Cicily Isabel Andrews (née Fairfield). 1892–1983, British journalist, novelist, and critic
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 west


Old English west "in or toward the west," from Proto-Germanic *wes-t- (cf. Old Norse vestr, Old Frisian, Middle Dutch, Dutch west, Old High German -west, only in compounds, German west), from PIE *wes- (source of Greek hesperos, Latin vesper "evening, west"), perhaps an enlarged form of root *we- "to go down" (cf. Sanskrit avah "downward"), and thus literally "direction in which the sun sets." Cf. also High German dialectal abend "west," literally "evening."

French ouest, Spanish oeste are from English. West used in geopolitical sense from World War I (Britain, France, Italy, as opposed to Germany and Austria-Hungary); as contrast to Communist Russia (later to the Soviet bloc) it is first recorded in 1918. West Indies is recorded from 1550s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with west


see go west.

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