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Syllabification: waist
Pronunciation: /wāst

Definition of waist in English:


1The part of the human body below the ribs and above the hips.
Example sentences
  • He spoke with a local accent and was wearing a red waist-length jacket, navy blue jeans and black gloves.
  • To Peter's astonishment a familiar figure was wading ashore, a red and white lifebelt about his waist.
  • I waded gingerly in to waist height, fully expecting my wetsuit to dissolve.
middle, midriff, abdomen, waistline
1.1The circumference of this: her waist is 28 inches
More example sentences
  • By this means we are told that waists can be reduced, flat chests inflated, hips broadened and lungs strengthened, to say nothing of reducing weight.
  • Ancient statues have been found of men and women with 10-inch (!) waists!
  • How lovely to think that even those with 24-inch waists will be forced to cover them up from now on.
1.2A narrowing of the trunk of the body above the hips: the last time you had a waist was around 1978
More example sentences
  • I plaited her hair so that it fell in one long rope of yellow to her narrow waist.
  • A set-in waistband hints at a waist, while the flared hemline softens a boxy shape.
  • Swimmers with this body type are more muscular, thick-chested with broad shoulders and a smaller waist.
1.3The part of a garment encircling or covering the waist.
Example sentences
  • My jeans have an elastic waist and pockets on the side and larger ones below my knees.
  • Pin your creation on your shoulder, at the waist, on a hat or handbag, even on a cuff at the wrist.
  • Drawstring pants with elastic in the waist allow for a closer fit with added flexibility.
1.4The point at which a garment is shaped so as to narrow between the rib cage and the hips: a jacket with a high waist
More example sentences
  • She was wearing a pretty blue shirt with ruffled sleeves and a high waist with lace.
  • It was designed along Grecian lines with a high empire waist, and silver lace trim.
  • Are customers trying to tell designers we've had enough of the low rise waist and want to cover it up?
1.5US A blouse or bodice.
1.6A narrow part in the middle of anything, such as a violin, an hourglass, the body of wasp, etc.
Example sentences
  • Wellington, a long almond biscuit, rounded at each end with a narrower waist.
  • The flats currently used appear to be about 0.04 inch too narrow at the waist and 0.04 inch too long.
1.7The middle part of a ship, between the forecastle and the quarterdeck.
Example sentences
  • She is 60 ft long and sleeps 10-four in the bow, four in the stern and two in the waist of the ship.
  • He stood nonchalantly next to the quarter-deck rail looking into the waist.
  • Kennedy entered the waist from below decks reaching his hand down the companion to assist her up the steep stairs!


late Middle English: apparently representing an Old English word from the Germanic root of wax2.



[in combination]: high-waisted


Example sentences
  • The strip involved primary characters who were waistless but had arms and legs, neckless but had mouths and eyes; only one had a nose.
  • She stands up decisively and pulls her t-shirt down at the sides, accentuating the waistless bulge of her torso that protrudes for some distance from her body.
  • The dress was waistless and hung mid-calf with various layers of lace.

Definition of waist in:

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