start

The beginning of something is the start. The start of the movie may have been a little slow, but by the end you were on the edge of your seat.

As a verb, start means to begin an activity or event. Some people turn to the last page of a book before they even start it, so they'll be prepared for the ending. Start can also mean to move suddenly in surprise or alarm, or to startle. This is actually the original meaning of the word start, which comes from the Old English word styrtan, meaning to caper or to leap up.

Definitions of start
  1. verb
    take the first step or steps in carrying out an action
    “Who will start?”
    synonyms: begin, commence, get, get down, set about, set out, start out
    begin
    begin to speak, understand, read, and write a language
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    Antonyms:
    end, terminate
    bring to an end or halt
    types:
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    recommence
    begin again
    strike out
    set out on a course of action
    fall
    begin vigorously
    jump off
    set off quickly, usually with success
    get to
    arrive at the point of
    auspicate
    commence in a manner calculated to bring good luck
    attack
    set to work upon; turn one's energies vigorously to a task
    break in
    start in a certain activity, enterprise, or role
    launch, plunge
    begin with vigor
    come on
    occur or become available
    embark, enter
    set out on (an enterprise or subject of study)
    bestir oneself, get cracking, get going, get moving, get rolling, get started, get weaving
    start to be active
    take up
    pursue or resume
  2. verb
    begin work or acting in a certain capacity, office or job
    start a new job”
    synonyms: take up
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    types:
    take office
    assume an office, duty, or title
    accede, enter
    take on duties or office
    adopt, assume, take on, take over
    take on titles, offices, duties, responsibilities
  3. verb
    set in motion, cause to start
    “The U.S. started a war in the Middle East”
    synonyms: begin, commence, lead off
    begin
    have a beginning, of a temporal event
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    Antonyms:
    end, terminate
    bring to an end or halt
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    jump-start, jumpstart
    start or re-start vigorously
    recommence
    cause to start anew
    inaugurate, introduce, usher in
    be a precursor of
    set off
    set in motion or cause to begin
    commence, embark on, start up
    get off the ground
    inaugurate, kick off
    commence officially
    open
    begin or set in action, of meetings, speeches, recitals, etc.
  4. verb
    get off the ground
    “Who started this company?”
    “I start my day with a good breakfast”
    “The blood shed started when the partisans launched a surprise attack”
    synonyms: commence, embark on, start up
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    inaugurate, kick off
    commence officially
    open
    begin or set in action, of meetings, speeches, recitals, etc.
    swear in
    administer on oath to
    dedicate
    open to public use, as of a highway, park, or building
    inaugurate
    open ceremoniously or dedicate formally
    call to order
    open formally
    type of:
    begin, commence, lead off
    set in motion, cause to start
  5. verb
    begin an event that is implied and limited by the nature or inherent function of the direct object
    “She started the soup while it was still hot”
    “We started physics in 10th grade”
    synonyms: begin
    begin
    have a beginning characterized in some specified way
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    type of:
    act, move
    perform an action, or work out or perform (an action)
  6. verb
    get going or set in motion
    “We simply could not start the engine”
    start up the computer”
    synonyms: start up
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    Antonyms:
    stop
    cause to stop
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    kick-start
    start (a motorcycle) by means of a kick starter
    hot-wire
    start (a car engine) without a key by bypassing the ignition interlock
    re-start, restart
    start an engine again, for example
    crank, crank up
    start by cranking
    jump, jump-start, jumpstart
    start (a car engine whose battery is dead) by connecting it to another car's battery
  7. verb
    begin or set in motion
    “I start at eight in the morning”
    synonyms: get going, go
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    Antonyms:
    halt, stop
    come to a halt, stop moving
    types:
    come on, come up, go on
    start running, functioning, or operating
    get off the ground, take off
    get started or set in motion, used figuratively
  8. verb
    bring into being
    Start a foundation”
    synonyms: initiate, originate
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    types:
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    initiate, lead up
    set in motion, start an event or prepare the way for
    set
    apply or start
    date back, date from, go back
    belong to an earlier time
    ascend
    go back in order of genealogical succession
    type of:
    create, make
    make or cause to be or to become
  9. verb
    have a beginning, in a temporal, spatial, or evaluative sense
    “Prices for these homes start at $250,000”
    synonyms: begin
    begin
    have a beginning characterized in some specified way
    begin
    have a beginning, of a temporal event
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    Antonyms:
    cease, end, finish, stop, terminate
    have an end, in a temporal, spatial, or quantitative sense; either spatial or metaphorical
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    break out, erupt
    start abruptly
    bud
    start to grow or develop
    break out
    begin suddenly and sometimes violently
    kick in, set in
    enter a particular state
    dawn
    appear or develop
    originate
    begin a trip at a certain point, as of a plane, train, bus, etc.
  10. verb
    have a beginning characterized in some specified way
    synonyms: begin
    begin
    begin an event that is implied and limited by the nature or inherent function of the direct object
    begin
    have a beginning, in a temporal, spatial, or evaluative sense
    begin
    be the first item or point, constitute the beginning or start, come first in a series
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    type of:
    be
    have the quality of being; (copula, used with an adjective or a predicate noun)
  11. verb
    play in the starting lineup
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    type of:
    play
    participate in games or sport
  12. noun
    the act of starting something
    synonyms: beginning, commencement
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    Antonyms:
    finish, finishing
    the act of finishing
    examples:
    Creation
    (theology) God's act of bringing the universe into existence
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    jumping-off point, point of departure, springboard
    a beginning from which an enterprise is launched
    activation
    making active and effective (as a bomb)
    attack, tone-beginning
    a decisive manner of beginning a musical tone or phrase
    constitution, establishment, formation, organisation, organization
    the act of forming or establishing something
    debut, entry, first appearance, introduction, launching, unveiling
    the act of beginning something new
    face-off
    (ice hockey) the method of starting play; a referee drops the puck between two opposing players
    first step, initiative, opening, opening move
    the first of a series of actions
    groundbreaking, groundbreaking ceremony
    the ceremonial breaking of the ground to formally begin a construction project
    housing start
    the act of starting to construct a house
    icebreaker
    a beginning that relaxes a tense or formal atmosphere
    inauguration, startup
    the act of starting a new operation or practice
    creation, foundation, founding, initiation, innovation, instauration, institution, introduction, origination
    the act of starting something for the first time; introducing something new
    installation, installing, installment, instalment
    the act of installing something (as equipment)
    jump ball
    (basketball) the way play begins or resumes when possession is disputed; an official tosses the ball up between two players who jump in an effort to tap it to a teammate
    kickoff
    (football) a kick from the center of the field to start a football game or to resume it after a score
    recommencement, resumption
    beginning again
    scrum, scrummage
    (rugby) the method of beginning play in which the forwards of each team crouch side by side with locked arms; play starts when the ball is thrown in between them and the two sides compete for possession
    startup
    the act of setting in operation
    induction
    the act of bringing about something (especially at an early time)
    product introduction
    the introduction (usually by an advertising campaign) of a new product or product line
    authorship, paternity
    the act of initiating a new idea or theory or writing
    unionisation, unionization
    act of forming labor unions
    ushering in
    the introduction of something new
    curtain raiser
    any preliminary activity
    first base
    the initial stage in accomplishing something
    peace initiative
    opening move in negotiating a peace treaty
    tap-off, tip-off
    the act of starting a basketball game with a jump ball
    naturalisation, naturalization
    the introduction of animals or plants to places where they flourish but are not indigenous
    collectivisation, collectivization
    the organization of a nation or economy on the basis of collectivism
    communisation, communization
    the organization of a nation of the basis of communism
    federation
    the act of constituting a political unity out of a number of separate states or colonies or provinces so that each member retains the management of its internal affairs
    colonisation, colonization, settlement
    the act of colonizing; the establishment of colonies
    type of:
    change of state
    the act of changing something into something different in essential characteristics
  13. noun
    the beginning of anything
    “it was off to a good start
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    adrenarche
    the increase in activity of the adrenal glands just before puberty
    menarche
    the first occurrence of menstruation in a woman
    thelarche
    the start of breast development in a woman at the beginning of puberty
    oncoming, onset
    the beginning or early stages
    dawn, morning
    the earliest period
    flying start, running start
    a quick and auspicious beginning
    opener
    the first event in a series
    alpha
    the beginning of a series or sequence
    curtain raising, opening, opening night
    the first performance (as of a theatrical production)
    kickoff, send-off, start-off
    a start given to contestants
    racing start
    the start of a race
    flying start, running start
    a racing start in which the contestants are already in full motion when they pass the starting line
    type of:
    beginning
    the event consisting of the start of something
  14. noun
    the time at which something is supposed to begin
    “they got an early start
    synonyms: beginning, commencement, first, get-go, kickoff, offset, outset, showtime, starting time
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    Antonyms:
    middle
    time between the beginning and the end of a temporal period
    end, ending
    the point in time at which something ends
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    birth
    the time when something begins (especially life)
    incipience, incipiency
    beginning to exist or to be apparent
    starting point, terminus a quo
    earliest limiting point
    threshold
    the starting point for a new state or experience
    cradle
    birth of a person
    type of:
    point, point in time
    an instant of time
  15. noun
    a signal to begin (as in a race)
    “the runners awaited the start
    synonyms: starting signal
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    type of:
    sign, signal, signaling
    any nonverbal action or gesture that encodes a message
  16. noun
    a line indicating the location of the start of a race or a game
    synonyms: scratch, scratch line, starting line
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    type of:
    line
    in games or sports; a mark indicating positions or bounds of the playing area
  17. noun
    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”
    synonyms: starting
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    type of:
    play, turn
    (game) the activity of doing something in an agreed succession
  18. verb
    leave
    synonyms: depart, part, set forth, set off, set out, start out, take off
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    lift off, take off
    depart from the ground
    roar off
    leave
    blaze, blaze out
    move rapidly and as if blazing
    sally forth, sally out
    set out in a sudden, energetic or violent manner
    type of:
    go away, go forth, leave
    go away from a place
  19. noun
    the advantage gained by beginning early (as in a race)
    “with an hour's start he will be hard to catch”
    synonyms: head start
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    type of:
    advantage, vantage
    the quality of having a superior or more favorable position
  20. verb
    move or jump suddenly, as if in surprise or alarm
    synonyms: jump, startle
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    shy
    start suddenly, as from fright
    boggle
    startle with amazement or fear
    rear back
    start with anger or resentment or in protest
    jackrabbit
    go forward or start with a fast, sudden movement
    type of:
    move
    move so as to change position, perform a nontranslational motion
  21. noun
    a sudden involuntary movement
    “he awoke with a start
    synonyms: jump, startle
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    types:
    startle reaction, startle response
    a complicated involuntary reaction to a sudden unexpected stimulus (especially a loud noise); involves flexion of most skeletal muscles and a variety of visceral reactions
    Moro reflex, startle reflex
    a normal reflex of young infants; a sudden loud noise causes the child to stretch out the arms and flex the legs
    flinch, wince
    a reflex response to sudden pain
    type of:
    inborn reflex, innate reflex, instinctive reflex, physiological reaction, reflex, reflex action, reflex response, unconditioned reflex
    an automatic instinctive unlearned reaction to a stimulus
  22. verb
    bulge outward
    synonyms: bug out, bulge, bulge out, come out, pop, pop out, protrude
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    type of:
    change form, change shape, deform
    assume a different shape or form
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