What does start mean?

Definitions for start

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word start.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. startnoun

    the beginning of anything

    "it was off to a good start"

  2. beginning, commencement, first, outset, get-go, start, kickoff, starting time, showtime, offsetnoun

    the time at which something is supposed to begin

    "they got an early start"; "she knew from the get-go that he was the man for her"

  3. start, startingnoun

    a turn to be a starter (in a game at the beginning)

    "he got his start because one of the regular pitchers was in the hospital"; "his starting meant that the coach thought he was one of their best linemen"

  4. startle, jump, startnoun

    a sudden involuntary movement

    "he awoke with a start"

  5. beginning, start, commencementnoun

    the act of starting something

    "he was responsible for the beginning of negotiations"

  6. start, starting line, scratch, scratch linenoun

    a line indicating the location of the start of a race or a game

  7. starting signal, startnoun

    a signal to begin (as in a race)

    "the starting signal was a green light"; "the runners awaited the start"

  8. start, head startverb

    the advantage gained by beginning early (as in a race)

    "with an hour's start he will be hard to catch"

  9. get down, begin, get, start out, start, set about, set out, commenceverb

    take the first step or steps in carrying out an action

    "We began working at dawn"; "Who will start?"; "Get working as soon as the sun rises!"; "The first tourists began to arrive in Cambodia"; "He began early in the day"; "Let's get down to work now"

  10. begin, lead off, start, commenceverb

    set in motion, cause to start

    "The U.S. started a war in the Middle East"; "The Iraqis began hostilities"; "begin a new chapter in your life"

  11. depart, part, start, start out, set forth, set off, set out, take offverb


    "The family took off for Florida"

  12. begin, startverb

    have a beginning, in a temporal, spatial, or evaluative sense

    "The DMZ begins right over the hill"; "The second movement begins after the Allegro"; "Prices for these homes start at $250,000"

  13. originate, initiate, startverb

    bring into being

    "He initiated a new program"; "Start a foundation"

  14. start, start up, embark on, commenceverb

    get off the ground

    "Who started this company?"; "We embarked on an exciting enterprise"; "I start my day with a good breakfast"; "We began the new semester"; "The afternoon session begins at 4 PM"; "The blood shed started when the partisans launched a surprise attack"

  15. startle, jump, startverb

    move or jump suddenly, as if in surprise or alarm

    "She startled when I walked into the room"

  16. start, start upverb

    get going or set in motion

    "We simply could not start the engine"; "start up the computer"

  17. start, go, get goingverb

    begin or set in motion

    "I start at eight in the morning"; "Ready, set, go!"

  18. start, take upverb

    begin work or acting in a certain capacity, office or job

    "Take up a position"; "start a new job"

  19. startverb

    play in the starting lineup

  20. begin, startverb

    have a beginning characterized in some specified way

    "The novel begins with a murder"; "My property begins with the three maple trees"; "Her day begins with a workout"; "The semester begins with a convocation ceremony"

  21. begin, startverb

    begin an event that is implied and limited by the nature or inherent function of the direct object

    "begin a cigar"; "She started the soup while it was still hot"; "We started physics in 10th grade"

  22. start, protrude, pop, pop out, bulge, bulge out, bug out, come outverb

    bulge outward

    "His eyes popped"


  1. STARTnoun

    A Treaty between the United States and the Soviet Union which provided for stepwise reductions in the number of nuclear weapons possessed by each country.


  1. Startnoun

    A typical button for video games, with varying results. Often, it pauses a game, starts a game or chooses an option.

  2. Etymology: The verb start, with initial uppercase letter.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Startnoun

    Etymology: from the verb.

    These flaws and starts would well become
    A woman’s story at a Winter’s fire,
    Authoriz’d by her grandam. William Shakespeare.

    The fright awaken’d Arcite with a start;
    Against his bosom bounc’d his heaving heart. Dryden.

    How much had I to do to calm his rage!
    Now fear I this will give it start again. William Shakespeare, Hamlet.

    Thou art like enough, through vassal fear,
    Base inclination, and the start of spleen,
    To fight against me under Percy’s pay. William Shakespeare.

    Several starts of fancy off-hand, look well enough; but bring them to the test, and there is nothing in ’em. Roger L'Estrange.

    Are they not only to disguise our passions,
    To set our looks at variance with our thoughts,
    To check the starts and sallies of the soul? Joseph Addison, Cato.

    We were well enough pleased with this start of thought. Add.

    Methought her eyes had crost her tongue;
    For she did speak in starts distractedly. William Shakespeare.

    Thy forms are studied arts,
    Thy subtile ways be narrow straits;
    Thy curtesy but sudden starts;
    And what thou call’st thy gifts are baits. Ben Jonson.

    Nature does nothing by starts and leaps, or in a hurry; but all her motions are gradual. Roger L'Estrange.

    An ambiguous expression, a little chagrin, or a start of passion, is not enough to take leave upon. Collier.

    In strings, the more they are wound up and strained, and thereby give a more quick start back, the more treble is the sound; and the slacker they are, or less wound up, the baser is the sound. Francis Bacon, Natural History.

    Both cause the string to give a quicker start. Francis Bacon.

    How could water make those visible starts upon freezing, but by some subtile freezing principle which as suddenly shoots into it. Nehemiah Grew, Cosmol. Sac.

    You stand like greyhounds in the slips,
    Straining upon the start. William Shakespeare, Henry V.

    All leapt to chariot,
    And every man then for the start cast in his proper lot. George Chapman.

    If a man deal with another upon conditions, the start of first performance is all. Francis Bacon.

    Get the start of the majestick world. William Shakespeare, Jul. Cæs.

    All pretorian courts, if any of the parties be laid asleep, under pretence of arbitrement, and the other party, during that time, doth cautelously get the start and advantage at common law, yet the pretorian court will set back all things in statu quo prius. Francis Bacon, War with Spain.

    Doubtless some other heart
    Will get the start;
    And, stepping in before,
    Will take possession of the sacred store
    Of hidden sweets. Richard Crashaw.

    Ere the knight could do his part,
    The squire had got so much the start,
    H’ had to the lady done his errand,
    And told her all his tricks aforehand. Hudibras.

    She might have forsaken him, if he had not got the start of her. John Dryden, Æn. Dedication.

    The reason why the mathematicks and mechanick arts have so much got the start in growth of other sciences, may be resolved into this, that their progress hath not been retarded by that reverential awe of former discoverers. Joseph Glanvill.

    The French year has got the start of ours more in the works of nature than the new stile. Addison.

  2. To Startverb

    Direness, familiar to my slaught’rous thoughts,
    Cannot once start me. William Shakespeare.

    Being full of supper and distemp’ring draughts,
    Upon malicious bravery do’st thou come
    To start my quiet. William Shakespeare, Othello.

    The very print of a fox-foot would have started ye. Roger L'Estrange.

    The blood more stirs
    To rouze a lion than to start a hare. William Shakespeare.

    I started from its vernal bow’r
    The rising game, and chac’d from flow’r to flow’r. Alexander Pope.

    Conjure with ’em!
    Brutus will start a spirit as soon as Cæsar. William Shakespeare.

    It was unadvisedly done, when I was enforcing a weightier design, to start and follow another of less moment. Thomas Sprat.

    Insignificant cavils may be started against every thing that is not capable of mathematical demonstration. Addison.

    I was engaged in conversation upon a subject which the people love to start in discourse. Joseph Addison, Freeholder.

    The sensual men agree in pursuit of every pleasure they can start. William Temple.

    One, by a fall in wrestling, started the end of the clavicle from the sternon. Richard Wiseman, Surgery.

  3. To STARTverb

    Etymology: startzen, German.

    Starting is an apprehension of the thing feared, and in that kind it is a motion of shrinking; and likewise an inquisition, in the beginning, what the matter should be, and in that kind it is a motion of erection, and therefore, when a man would listen suddenly to any thing, he starteth; for the starting is an erection of the spirits to attend. Francis Bacon, Natural History.

    A shape appear’d
    Bending to look on me: I started back:
    It started back. William Shakespeare.

    I start as from some dreadful dream,
    And often ask myself if yet awake. John Dryden, Span. Fryar.

    As his doubts decline,
    He dreads just vengeance, and he starts at sin. Dryden.

    He starts at every new appearance, and is always waking and solicitous for fear of a surprize. Jeremy Collier, on Covetousness.

    Charm’d by these strings, trees starting from the ground Have follow’d with delight the powerful sound. Wentworth Dillon.

    They starting up beheld the heavy sight. Dryden.

    The mind often works in search of some hidden idea, though sometimes they start up in our minds of their own accord. John Locke.

    Might John Dryden bless once more our eyes,
    New Blackmores and new Milbourns must arise;
    Nay, should great lift his awful head,
    Zoilus again would start up from the dead. Alexander Pope.

    The flowers, call’d out of their beds,
    Start and raise up their drowsy heads. John Cleveland.

    A spirit fit to start into an empire,
    And look the world to law. John Dryden, Cleomenes.

    She at the summons roll’d her eyes around,
    And snatch’d the starting serpents from the ground. Alexander Pope.

    What trick, what starting hole, can’st thou find out to hide thee from this open shame? William Shakespeare, Henry IV.

    With tryal fire touch me his finger end;
    If he be chaste, the flame will back descend,
    And turn him to no pain; but if he start,
    It is the flesh of a corrupted heart. William Shakespeare.

    The lords and gentlemen take all the meanest sort upon themselves; for they are best able to bring them in, whensoever any of them starteth out. Edmund Spenser, on Ireland.

    I rank him with the prodigies of fame,
    With things which start from nature’s common rules,
    With bearded infants, and with teeming mules. Thomas Creech.

    Keep your soul to the work when ready to start aside, unless you will be a slave to every wild imagination. Isaac Watts.

    It seems to be rather a terminus a quo than a true principle, as the starting post is none of the horse’s legs. Boyle.

    Should some god tell me, that I should be born
    And cry again, his offer I should scorn;
    Asham’d, when I have ended well my race,
    To be led back to my first starting place. John Denham.

    When from the goal they start,
    The youthful charioteers with heaving heart
    Rush to the race. John Dryden, Virg. Georg.

    The clangor of the trumpet gives the sign;
    At once they start, advancing in a line. Dryden.

    Fair course of passion, where two lovers start,
    And run together, heart still yokt with heart. Edmund Waller.

    People, when they have made themselves weary, set up their rest upon the very spot where they started. Roger L'Estrange.

    When two start into the world together, he that is thrown behind, unless his mind proves generous, will be displeased with the other. Collier.


  1. Start

    Start! is the eleventh UK single release by the band The Jam and their second number-one, following "Going Underground"/"Dreams of Children". Upon its release on 15 August 1980, it debuted at number three, and two weeks later reached number one for one week. Written by Paul Weller and produced by Vic Coppersmith-Heaven and The Jam, "Start!" was the lead single from the band's fifth album Sound Affects. The single's B-side is "Liza Radley". "Start!" is based on both the main guitar riff and bass riff of the Beatles' 1966 song "Taxman" from the album Revolver, written by George Harrison. "Liza Radley" also utilises the "Taxman" bassline as does "Dreams of Children", B-side to "Going Underground", played then as a lead guitar riff. The album version of the song runs at 2:30 and features trumpets in the final section.


  1. start

    Start, as a verb, refers to the action of commencing or initiating something. It involves the beginning or initiation of an activity, process, event, or journey. It can also refer to the point in time or the location from which something begins. As a noun, start refers to the beginning or opening stage of something.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Startverb

    to leap; to jump

  2. Startverb

    to move suddenly, as with a spring or leap, from surprise, pain, or other sudden feeling or emotion, or by a voluntary act

  3. Startverb

    to set out; to commence a course, as a race or journey; to begin; as, to start business

  4. Startverb

    to become somewhat displaced or loosened; as, a rivet or a seam may start under strain or pressure

  5. Startverb

    to cause to move suddenly; to disturb suddenly; to startle; to alarm; to rouse; to cause to flee or fly; as, the hounds started a fox

  6. Startverb

    to bring onto being or into view; to originate; to invent

  7. Startverb

    to cause to move or act; to set going, running, or flowing; as, to start a railway train; to start a mill; to start a stream of water; to start a rumor; to start a business

  8. Startverb

    to move suddenly from its place or position; to displace or loosen; to dislocate; as, to start a bone; the storm started the bolts in the vessel

  9. Startverb

    to pour out; to empty; to tap and begin drawing from; as, to start a water cask

  10. Startnoun

    the act of starting; a sudden spring, leap, or motion, caused by surprise, fear, pain, or the like; any sudden motion, or beginning of motion

  11. Startnoun

    a convulsive motion, twitch, or spasm; a spasmodic effort

  12. Startnoun

    a sudden, unexpected movement; a sudden and capricious impulse; a sally; as, starts of fancy

  13. Startnoun

    the beginning, as of a journey or a course of action; first motion from a place; act of setting out; the outset; -- opposed to finish

  14. Startverb

    a tail, or anything projecting like a tail

  15. Startverb

    the handle, or tail, of a plow; also, any long handle

  16. Startverb

    the curved or inclined front and bottom of a water-wheel bucket

  17. Startverb

    the arm, or level, of a gin, drawn around by a horse

  18. Etymology: [Perh. from D. storten, which has this meaning also.]


  1. Start

    Start is Singaporean Mandopop artist Stefanie Sun's first Mandarin and English studio cover album. It was released on 1 February 2002 by Warner Music Taiwan. The album is a collection of 12 of Sun's and her fans' favourite songs.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Start

    stärt, v.i. to move suddenly aside: to wince: to deviate: to begin: to proceed: to give way somewhat.—v.t. to cause to move suddenly: to disturb suddenly: to rouse suddenly from concealment: to set in motion: to call forth: to invent or discover: to move suddenly from its place: to loosen: to empty: to pour out.—n. a sudden movement: a sudden motion of the body: a sudden rousing to action: an unexpected movement: a sally: a sudden fit: a quick spring: the first motion from a point or place: the outset.—n. Start′er, one who starts.—adj. Start′ful, apt to start.—adv. Start′ingly (Shak.), by fits or starts.—ns. Start′ing-point, the point from which anything starts, or from which motion begins; Start′ing-post, the post or barrier from which the competitors in a race start or begin the race.—adj. Start′ish, apt to start, skittish.—ns. Start′-up (Shak.), an upstart; Start′uppe (Spens.), a kind of high shoe or half-boot.—Start after, to set out after, to pursue; Start up, to rise suddenly, to come suddenly into notice.—Get, or Have, the start, to begin before another, to obtain an advantage over another. [M. E. sterten; closely akin to Dut. and Low Ger. storten, to plunge, Ger. stürzen.]

Dictionary of Nautical Terms

  1. start

    A long handle or tail; whence, by analogy, "start point." But sometimes applied by navigators to any point from which a departure is taken. Also, the expected place of a struck whale's rising, after having plunged or sounded.--To start, applied to liquids, is to empty; but if to any weight, as the anchor, &c., implies to move.--To start bread. To turn it out of bags or casks, and stow it in bulk.--To start a butt-end. When a plank has loosened or sprung at the butt-end, by the ship's labouring, or other cause.--To start a tack or sheet. To slack it off, as in tacking or manœuvring, "raise tacks and sheets."

Editors Contribution

  1. start

    To begin or use.

    They did start their wedding on time.

    Submitted by MaryC on March 7, 2020  

  2. start

    To cause an engine to work.

    When the key turned in the engine the car did start.

    Submitted by MaryC on January 25, 2020  

Surnames Frequency by Census Records

  1. START

    According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Start is ranked #35721 in terms of the most common surnames in America.

    The Start surname appeared 629 times in the 2010 census and if you were to sample 100,000 people in the United States, approximately 0 would have the surname Start.

    94.5% or 595 total occurrences were White.
    1.9% or 12 total occurrences were Asian.
    1.9% or 12 total occurrences were of Hispanic origin.
    0.7% or 5 total occurrences were Black.

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'start' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #808

  2. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'start' in Written Corpus Frequency: #287

  3. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'start' in Nouns Frequency: #553

  4. Verbs Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'start' in Verbs Frequency: #49

How to pronounce start?

How to say start in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of start in Chaldean Numerology is: 5

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of start in Pythagorean Numerology is: 6

Examples of start in a Sentence

  1. Justin Rose:

    I didn’t play well at all, in fact I played awfully, but you get yourself into situations where sometimes you have to work hard to make a cut, hopefully, it gives me two more days to work on my game and get some momentum going as I start the season.

  2. Mayor Miftah Hamadi:

    It was horrific, the explosion was so loud it was heard from miles away, all the victims were young, and all about to start their lives.

  3. Richard Burr:

    I am hopeful that this draft will start a meaningful and inclusive debate on the role of encryption and its place within the rule of law, based on initial feedback, I am confident that the discussion has begun.

  4. Josephine Akissi Coulibaly:

    We start at three months, they are small and we do it. Sometimes they're 18 years old. Sometimes they are mothers even. Often they bleed.

  5. Susan Lomax:

    For this start-up period, we're sailing with a reduced capacity to give us all a chance to get used to the protocols and to really allow for natural social distancing.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for start

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

  • اِبتِدَاء, نجمة, بدأ, بدايةArabic
  • başlamaqAzerbaijani
  • пачынацца, пачацца, пачатак, пачынаць, пачацьBelarusian
  • започвам, начало, почвам, почнаBulgarian
  • začínat, začít, začátek, startCzech
  • starteDanish
  • anfangen, beginnen, Ruck, Start, starten, Beginn, AnfangGerman
  • αφετηρία, εκκίνηση, αρχή, ξεκίνημαGreek
  • eki, ekoEsperanto
  • inicio, empezar, comenzar, iniciar, arrancar, comienzo, salidaSpanish
  • آغاز, شروعPersian
  • lähtö, aloittaa, alkaa, hätkähtää, säpsähtää, irrota, alku, aloitus, hätkähdys, käynnistää, aloituskokoonpano, esittää, käynnistyä, käynnistysFinnish
  • démarrer, commencer, départ, entamer, mettre en routeFrench
  • geit, cuir tús leIrish
  • toiseach, leum, clisgeadh, tòisichScottish Gaelic
  • comezar, iniciar, arrancarGalician
  • התחלה, התחיל, פצחHebrew
  • शुरू करना, प्रारंभHindi
  • komanseHaitian Creole
  • indul, elkezd, startol, elindul, felriad, indításHungarian
  • սկսել, սկսվել, սկիզբArmenian
  • mulaiIndonesian
  • komencoIdo
  • upphaf, hrökkva við, byrjun, hrökkva uppIcelandic
  • cominciare, partenza, inizio, avvioItalian
  • הַתחָלָהHebrew
  • スタート地点, 開始, 始める, 飛び起きる, 始動, 始まる, スタート, 初め, びくっとするJapanese
  • ಪ್ರಾರಂಭKannada
  • 시작하다, 스타트Korean
  • initiō, incipiō, principiumLatin
  • tīmatanga, tamaki, kahuki, tīmata, ohotata, ōrokotīmatanga, ohomauri, ohorereMāori
  • почетокMacedonian
  • starten, beginnen, aanvangen, start, startlijn, opschrikken, begin, aanvangDutch
  • begynneNorwegian
  • początek, zacząć, ruszyć, [[zerwać się]] ([[z]] [[łóżko, start, zapalić, rozpocząć, poderwać się, uruchomićPolish
  • sobressalto, abrir, iniciar, ligar, sobressaltar, começo, princípio, largada, partida, começar, inícioPortuguese
  • începe, porni, început, startRomanian
  • дёрнуться, начало, старт, запускать, запустить, начинаться, начаться, стартовать, дёргаться, рывок, начинать, начатьRussian
  • полазиште, по̀че̄ти, започети, polazište, pòčēti, načnuti, načeti, započeti, почетак, трзај, покрет, zapustiti, pustiti, početak, начнути, начети, pokrenuti, trznuti, trgnuti, trzaj, pokret, navestiSerbo-Croatian
  • začiatok, začínať, začaťSlovak
  • začeti, začetekSlovene
  • ryck, start, börja, rycka tillSwedish
  • தொடங்கு, தொடக்கத்தில்Tamil
  • ప్రారంభంTelugu
  • เริ่มต้นThai
  • simulaTagalog
  • başlangıç, start, başlamak, başlamaTurkish
  • починати, починатися, початися, початок, почати, стартUkrainian
  • آغازUrdu
  • bắt đầu, khởi đầuVietnamese
  • אָנהייבYiddish
  • 开始Chinese

Get even more translations for start »


Find a translation for the start definition in other languages:

Select another language:

  • - Select -
  • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
  • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
  • Español (Spanish)
  • Esperanto (Esperanto)
  • 日本語 (Japanese)
  • Português (Portuguese)
  • Deutsch (German)
  • العربية (Arabic)
  • Français (French)
  • Русский (Russian)
  • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
  • 한국어 (Korean)
  • עברית (Hebrew)
  • Gaeilge (Irish)
  • Українська (Ukrainian)
  • اردو (Urdu)
  • Magyar (Hungarian)
  • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
  • Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Italiano (Italian)
  • தமிழ் (Tamil)
  • Türkçe (Turkish)
  • తెలుగు (Telugu)
  • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
  • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
  • Čeština (Czech)
  • Polski (Polish)
  • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
  • Românește (Romanian)
  • Nederlands (Dutch)
  • Ελληνικά (Greek)
  • Latinum (Latin)
  • Svenska (Swedish)
  • Dansk (Danish)
  • Suomi (Finnish)
  • فارسی (Persian)
  • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
  • հայերեն (Armenian)
  • Norsk (Norwegian)
  • English (English)

Word of the Day

Would you like us to send you a FREE new word definition delivered to your inbox daily?

Please enter your email address:


Use the citation below to add this definition to your bibliography:


"start." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 21 Apr. 2024. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/start>.

Discuss these start definitions with the community:


    Are we missing a good definition for start? Don't keep it to yourself...

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Chrome

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!

    Free, no signup required:

    Add to Firefox

    Get instant definitions for any word that hits you anywhere on the web!

    Browse Definitions.net


    Are you a words master?

    identifying word or words by which someone or something is called and classified or distinguished from others
    A elusive
    B appellative
    C extroversive
    D arbitrary

    Nearby & related entries:

    Alternative searches for start: