- the direction to the left of a person facing the sunset; direction of the South Pole from any other point on the earth's surface
- the point on a compass at 180°, directly opposite north
- a region or district in or toward this direction
- [oftenS-] the southern part of the earth, esp. the antarctic regions
Origin of southMiddle English from Old English suth, akin to Old High German sund-, Old Norse suthr from Germanic an unverified form suntha- (understood as sun side from Indo-European an unverified form sun-, sun), probably from an unverified form swintha-, strong, sound, to the right side, in reference to the east-facing position during prayer
- in, of, to, toward, or facing the south
- from the south: a south wind
- [S-] designating the southern part of a continent, country, etc.: South Asia
Origin of southfig. use, from the traditional “lower” position of south on a map or globe
- that part of the U.S. which is bounded on the north by the S border of Pa., the Ohio River, and the E and N borders of Mo.; specif., in the Civil War, the Confederacy
- the Southern Hemisphere, esp. as the region comprising the majority of the poor, underdeveloped nations on earth
- Abbr. S a. The direction along a meridian 90° clockwise from east; the direction to the right of sunrise.b. The cardinal point on the mariner's compass 180° clockwise from due north and directly opposite north.
- An area or region lying in the south.
- often South a. The southern part of the earth.b. The set of developing nations of the world, largely located to the south of the developed nations of the Northern Hemisphere.c. The southern part of a region or country.
- South The southern part of the United States, especially the states that fought for the Confederacy in the Civil War.
- The side of a church which is to the right as one faces the altar. Also called liturgical south .
- To, toward, of, facing, or in the south.
- Originating in or coming from the south: a hot south wind.
- In, from, or toward the south.
- Slang Into a worse or inferior condition, as of decreased value: a stock that went south shortly after he bought it. “If a life could be redeemed in a moment, it could go south just as fast” ( Roy Parvin )
Origin of southMiddle English from Old English sūth ; see sāwel- in Indo-European roots.Word History: When observed from the ground in the Northern Hemisphere, the path that the sun travels in the daytime lies generally in the southern half of the sky. For this reason, the sunny side of a hill or a house in the Northern Hemisphere is the south side, and this fact about the sun is reflected in the origin of the English word “south” itself. “South” in Old English was sūth, which developed from an earlier *sunth. (As Old English developed from its Germanic ancestor, an *n within a word was dropped before the sound *th, and the preceding vowel was lengthened in compensation.) The form *sunth developed from a still earlier Germanic *sunthaz, literally meaning something like “sunny, besunned,” and the first element in this word, *sun-, means “sun.” The same element can also still be found in Modern English sun, from Old English sunne. As the first word in compounds, Old English sūth, “south,” was subject to shortening, and it shows up in Modern English pronounced (sŭ). This is seen in place names like Suffolk (where the “south folk” were; compare Norfolk ), Sutton, “south town,” and Sussex, the location of the “South Saxons” (whose eastern and western cousins were located in Essex and Wessex, respectively).
- One of the four major compass points, specifically 180Â°, directed toward the South Pole, and conventionally downwards on a map.
- Toward the south; southward.
- In an adverse direction or trend.
- (meteorology) Of wind, from the south.
(third-person singular simple present souths, present participle southing, simple past and past participle southed)