Definition of field in English:

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Pronunciation: /fēld/


1An area of open land, especially one planted with crops or pasture, typically bounded by hedges or fences: a wheat field a field of corn
More example sentences
  • As she walked past pastures and small fields of crops she could not bring herself to imagine her own life coming to that.
  • The project will reforest old crop fields and pastures and an abandoned rock quarry that has degraded over the years.
  • The country side was woods/swamps for the most part with open farm fields of wheat and corn, that was about three feet high.
meadow, pasture, paddock, grassland, pastureland
literary lea, sward
archaic glebe
1.1A piece of land used for a particular purpose, especially an area marked out for a game or sport: a football field
More example sentences
  • It's this talent, he argues, that has enabled them to maximise the potential playing area of a football field.
  • Usftl games are typically played on Sunday mornings on regulation football fields with 12-minute quarters.
  • I don't want to see injuries happen to anyone on the football field, but they are a part of the game.
playing field, ground, sports field;
British  pitch
1.2 Baseball Defensive play or the defensive positions collectively: he is fast in the field and on the bases
More example sentences
  • As far as the field is concerned, this year we've had the deepest and strongest field ever.
  • Is the field in, hovering around the centre, or is it deep-set, flung back to the periphery?
  • Other situations may also exist where there is an open gap in the field due simply to the positioning of the fielders.
1.3A large area of land or water completely covered in a particular substance, especially snow or ice: an ice field
More example sentences
  • After about a mile I kinked down to cross the Seven where there's a good, arched bridge and where the river, flowing through fields of virgin snow, was trimmed with a glaze of grey translucent ice.
  • In this case, over time, the debris field covered about two to three square mile area.
  • Observations made earlier this year by the OMEGA instrument on Mars Express showed that Mars has vast fields of perennial water ice, stretching out from its south pole.
1.4An area rich in a natural product, typically oil or gas: an oil field
More example sentences
  • Another wealthy tribe, the 16,000-strong Osage in Oklahoma, owns the rights to one of the richest oil and gas fields in the state.
  • Salekhard is surrounded by some of the richest oil and natural gas fields in the world.
  • The attention that was given to the detailed geometry of growth faults in the Gulf of Mexico, the North Sea, and the Niger Delta helped the exploitation of oil and gas fields in these areas.
1.5An area on which a battle is fought: a field of battle
More example sentences
  • But while vanquishing the enemy on the field of battle is necessary, it is not sufficient.
  • I wondered if my classmates and I could make such a sacrifice for our country on the field of battle.
  • It would have been better if they had fallen on the field of battle.
1.6 archaic A battle: many a bloody field was to be fought
More example sentences
  • Rupert made himself conspicuous during our Civil War in many a bloody field.
  • All these were slaughtered in savage fields for the faith and fell beside the standard of the Cross, breathing loyalty to God and man in their last agonies.
1.7A place where a subject of scientific study or artistic representation can be observed in its natural location or context.
Example sentences
  • When traveling to a destination with large mammals you should learn about their behavior before going out in the field.
  • Getting out in the field over and over is the best way to build up knowledge.
2A particular branch of study or sphere of activity or interest: we talked to professionals in various fields
More example sentences
  • His main fields of interest include the study of labor markets and social stratification.
  • This curious publication listed its fields of interest as ‘magic, fortune telling, palmistry, graphology and spiritualism’.
  • According to the teacher, other factors that are at play when it comes to advising the students on career paths include studying skills and the passing of interest tests for specific fields.
area, sphere, discipline, province, department, domain, sector, branch, subject
informal bailiwick
2.1 Computing A part of a record, representing an item of data.
Example sentences
  • A PRM can be thought of as a Bayesian network whose variables are fields in a relational database.
  • Buffer overflows are also a major vulnerability and happen when too much data is input into a field.
  • You can create a collection of database fields that have unique values for each drawing in the set.
2.2 Linguistics & Psychology A general area of meaning within which individual words make particular distinctions.
Example sentences
  • It is a matter of word fields and changes of meaning, but also about the creation of new words.
  • Those other words provide context and define the semantic fields being used.
  • This predictability concerns specifically psychological processes, which, by the author's definition, take place within a field of meaning.
2.3A space or range within which objects are visible from a particular viewpoint or through a piece of apparatus: the stars drift through this telescope’s field of view See also field of vision.
More example sentences
  • Cassini is now close enough to Enceladus that the moon does not fit within the camera field of view.
  • Identification of the situs is often better made by MRI because of the wider field of view.
  • Integral has a large field of view, enabling it to scan our Milky Way galaxy for neutron stars and black hole activity.
scope, range, sweep, reach, extent
2.4An area on a flag with a single background color: fifty white stars on a blue field
More example sentences
  • The protesters were rounded up underneath the fluttering white cross and red field of Denmark's flag.
  • It was a flag bearing thirteen stars on a blue field with red and white bars.
  • The Czech flag consists of a lower red field and an upper white field with a blue wedge reaching from the flagpole side of the flag to its center.
2.5 Heraldry The surface of an escutcheon or of one of its divisions.
Example sentences
  • In the coat of arms of Amsterdam, the field of the escutcheon (heraldic shield) is red.
  • The first field (top left corner) of the escutcheon shows the national arms.
3 (usually the field) All the participants in a contest or sport: he destroyed the rest of the field with a devastating injection of speed
More example sentences
  • West got away, followed by one other rider, with the rest of the field contesting a very close and tactical bunch sprint in Ramsey town.
  • Craig was head and shoulders above the rest of the field beating his nearest rival by over a minute.
  • At 11, she won Hawaii's most prestigious women's event - beating the rest of the field by nine strokes.
competitors, entrants, competition;
applicants, candidates, possibles
4 Physics The region in which a particular condition prevails, especially one in which a force or influence is effective regardless of the presence or absence of a material medium.
Example sentences
  • This approach describes how electrons are influenced by the fields produced by others in the Fermi sea.
  • They argue that quantum effects (such as intense radiation fields at the funnel) may close the Einstein-Rosen bridge.
  • In addition, possible polarization effects due to large external steady state electrical fields have been neglected.
4.1The force exerted or potentially exerted in a field: the variation in the strength of the field
More example sentences
  • What is to protect us then from the pathological possibilities of strong gravitation fields?
  • Generating and detecting x rays in the strong fields used for magnetic resonance is difficult, but it can be done.
  • It agrees with the Newtonian theory for low speeds and weak gravitational fields, but differs from it at high speeds and strong fields.
4.2 Mathematics A system subject to two binary operations analogous to those for the multiplication and addition of real numbers, and having similar commutative and distributive laws.
Example sentences
  • One of Weil's major achievements was his proof of the Riemann hypothesis for the congruence zeta functions of algebraic function fields.
  • He became interested in Artin's early work which was on quadratic number fields, in particular the analytic and arithmetic theory.
  • His work allowed computations in groups to be replaced by computations in certain polynomial algebras over the field of p elements.


1 [no object] Baseball Play as a fielder.
Example sentences
  • First, he took his eyes off the ball while fielding at short leg, and failed to notice that Sarwan had lobbed an attempted pull over his right shoulder.
  • He was a brilliant fielder preferring to field in the deep, where he took some outstanding catches, to close in fielding.
  • In spite of the soaking wet ball, Joiner also fielded well, as befitted one who, though it was never likely to be his berth in the senior game, was in his schooldays a 1st-XV full-back.
1.1 [with object] Catch or stop (the ball): he fielded the ball cleanly, but threw it down the right-field line
More example sentences
  • First baseman Jack Clark fielded the ball and threw to pitcher Todd Worrell who was covering first.
  • Ruhle fielded the ball and threw to first for an apparent double play.
  • Orioles right fielder Ken Singleton fielded the ball off the wall and threw to his cutoff man Rich Dauer who in turn fired the ball home.
catch, stop, retrieve;
return, throw back
2 [with object] Send out (a team or individual) to play in a game: a high school that traditionally fielded mediocre teams
More example sentences
  • Under new Olympic rules, only the top 16 nations are allowed to field teams at the games.
  • One is that he fielded a weakened team and then won the Challenge Cup final, so I'm sure he feels it was justified.
  • With nine men and five women this is the first time Great Britain has fielded a full team at a World Cup event.
2.1(Of a political party) nominate (a candidate) to run in an election: a radical political party that is beginning to field candidates in local elections
More example sentences
  • All three main political parties are also fielding candidates in these elections, as are the Greens.
  • The Socialist Equality Party is fielding candidates in the federal election to lay the basis for a mass political movement of the working class that will fight for this perspective.
  • ALL three major political parties have fielded candidates for the forthcoming by-election for the Ogbourne ward of Kennet District Council.
2.2Deploy (an army): no one had the power to field an army of any consequence
More example sentences
  • Unfortunately, the Zulus did not resort to guerrilla warfare as previous opponents had done, but fielded an enormous army.
  • This was an organizational imperative made necessary by the ever larger armies fielded by continental military systems during the 19th century.
  • Each side fielded armies that were very similar in tactics, organization, and equipment, and both used African and Gallic auxiliary troops.
deploy, position, range, dispose
3 [with object] Deal with (a difficult question, telephone call, etc.): she has fielded five calls from salespeople
More example sentences
  • The other day, fielding questions about her aversion for holding press conferences, she openly admitted to her feeling that media exercises may not yield the desired results.
  • He's fielding questions from young people around the world.
  • Mr. Curtis will not be fielding any questions after his remarks, and we kindly request that you respect the family's wishes.
deal with, handle, cope with, answer, reply to, respond to


1Carried out or working in the natural environment, rather than in a laboratory or office: field observations
More example sentences
  • Flight Lieutenant Prudence Buckton said it was great to be out of her office and in a field environment.
  • These studies can either be carried out in laboratory cultures or preferably in a field environment.
  • Many experiments in fields like social psychology are laboratory experiments rather than field experiments.
practical, hands-on, applied, experiential, empirical
1.1(Of military equipment) light and mobile for use on campaign: field artillery
More example sentences
  • The full bag is lightweight and fits into military field clothing pockets.
  • Light siege engines and field artillery bulked behind the infantry, crews crouched at their weapons.
  • Matrikon was chosen to develop the main application and Tridon to implement the hardware on the field equipment.
mobile, portable, transportable, movable, maneuverable, light
1.2Used in names of animals or plants found in the open country, rather than among buildings or as cultivated varieties: field ant
More example sentences
  • The fire crackled, breaking the silent slumber of the field animals who had settled down in their dens.
  • My former ant loving celly, Penguin, would be in seventh heaven if left to his own devices with the field ants.
  • The Field Mouse is a small rodent, found in long rolling plains or alternately old houses and any place in between.
1.3Denoting a game played outdoors on a marked field.
Example sentences
  • The game, the fastest and most skilful field game on the planet, requires such devotion.
  • The NLL uses the Canadian box game with certain variations taken from field lacrosse.
  • Both sides get to play a number of increasingly stupid field games until a winner is decided.



in the field

On campaign; (while) engaged in combat or maneuvers: troops in the field
More example sentences
  • These compelling books illuminate combat at the eyeball level of troops in the field.
  • Hence it came to mean a temporary encampment of troops in the field without tents and using only locally available shelter.
  • This and later increases in size were initiated more by military leaders in the field than by central authorities.
1.1Away from the laboratory or studio; engaged in practical work in a natural environment.
Example sentences
  • Lubricant effectiveness is assessed by bench scale and full scale testing in the laboratory and in the field.
  • It is not even the live organism held in the hand, caged in the laboratory, or seen in the field.
  • Dr. Drysdale has made the same observations, both in the field and in his laboratory.
1.2(Of an employee) away from the home office; working while traveling: he was a salesman in the field
More example sentences
  • At work, be it in the field or at the office, the same universal law applies.
  • One of Ray Lane's practices at Oracle was to spend his time in the field actually selling.

keep the field

archaic Continue a military campaign.
Example sentences
  • The Armies of National Defence, which kept the field after the defeat of the imperial armies, pointed the way ahead.
  • The insurgents, under able leaders, were able to keep the field, in spite of the extremely energetic and even cruel measures that were adopted to crush them.

lead the field

Be the leader in a race.
Example sentences
  • Tour leader Pierre Brambilla looked set for victory as he led the field on the morning of the last day.
  • She didn't disappoint the capacity crowd at the Sydney aquatic centre as she led the field for the entire race to win in a time of 1.58.24.
  • First out of the blocks in the Tory leadership race, he leads the field.
3.1Be the best or most popular: in the executive car group, this model leads the field
More example sentences
  • But boys were in front on maths, leading the field in most countries.
  • On the sports front the Weekender continues to lead the field in local coverage, particularly in recent years with Liam Maloney in the sports editor's chair.
  • In terms of individual models, Toyota's Tazz and Corolla once again lead the field with 2236 and 1406 sales respectively.

play the field

informal Indulge in a series of sexual relationships without committing oneself to anyone.
Example sentences
  • And so she breaks up with me because (I think) she still wants the freedom of being able to play the field.
  • By today's standards, you married young, so there's a chance you don't feel you played the field long enough.
  • She plays the field, she figures out where she's at, she knows her status and she says ‘I'm capable of getting this guy’.

take the field

(Of a sports team) go onto a field to begin a game.
Example sentences
  • Being forced to watch from the stands as his team took the field in the biggest game of their season was cruel and utterly unfair, the genial Padjoe admitted in the aftermath of one of his greatest triumphs.
  • Bester was just one of the heroes in a Bulldog team which took the field minus star fullback Tiger Mangweni who was a late withdrawal with a pulled hamstring.
  • The tournament, which is held every year with four teams taking the field in a round-robin basis, this year only saw Pingwe and Muslim from Malawi and Metropolitan and Mfuwe of Zambia participating.
Baseball 5.1 Begin one’s turn on defense in an inning.
Example sentences
  • As the Nebraska defense takes the field, AC/DC's ‘Back in Black’ blares over the Memorial Stadium PA.
  • The defense that takes the field in the season opener will be far removed from the one that started last year's playoff loss.
  • ‘I was hoping for a little more than that,’ Rock laughed as he watched the Red Sox defensive players take the field.
5.2Start a military campaign.
Example sentences
  • A true infantry soldier wants nothing more than to take the field and engage the enemy.
  • He was virtual ruler of the Empire, but also personally took the field in the Turkish campaign against the Russians in the Caucasus.
  • This new army then took the field in 1717 against Norway, where Charles was shot in the head and killed at the siege of Frederiksten.


Old English feld (also denoting a large tract of open country; compare with veld), of West Germanic origin; related to Dutch veld and German Feld.

Words that rhyme with field

afield, midfield, misfield, shield, unaneled, unconcealed, unhealed, unpeeled, unrevealed, unsealed, wield, yield

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: field

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