To swing is to sway back and forth, or to move in a sweeping, curving motion. Wind chimes swing in the breeze, and a softball player swings her bat, aiming for the ball.

A TV hypnotist will swing a shiny object in front of a patient's face and say, "You are getting very sleepy." Kids on a playground will happily swing on swings for hours. And if you hear a sudden scary noise behind you, you might swing around in alarm or even take a swing, or a punch, in its direction. Since 1933, the noun swing has also meant a type of big-band jazz music.

Definitions of swing
  1. verb
    change direction with a swinging motion; turn
    swing back”
    swing forward”
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    type of:
    go, locomote, move, travel
    change location; move, travel, or proceed, also metaphorically
  2. verb
    move or walk in a swinging or swaying manner
    “He swung back”
    synonyms: sway
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    waver, weave
    sway to and fro
    lash or flick about sharply
    oscillate, vibrate
    move or swing from side to side regularly
    swing from one hold to the next
    oscillate about a desired speed, position, or state to an undesirable extent
    vibrate before coming to a total rest
    type of:
    move back and forth
    move in one direction and then into the opposite direction
  3. verb
    alternate dramatically between high and low values
    “his mood swings
    “the market is swinging up and down”
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    fluctuate, vacillate, waver
    move or sway in a rising and falling or wavelike pattern
    type of:
    undergo a change; become different in essence; losing one's or its original nature
  4. noun
    changing location by moving back and forth
    synonyms: swinging, vacillation
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    type of:
    motion, move, movement
    the act of changing location from one place to another
  5. noun
    mechanical device used as a plaything to support someone swinging back and forth
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    a swing used by circus acrobats
    type of:
    mechanical device
    mechanism consisting of a device that works on mechanical principles
    plaything, toy
    an artifact designed to be played with
  6. verb
    move in a curve or arc, usually with the intent of hitting
    “He swung his left fist”
    swing a bat”
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    wind up
    give a preliminary swing to the arm pitching
    type of:
    displace, move
    cause to move or shift into a new position or place, both in a concrete and in an abstract sense
  7. verb
    hit or aim at with a sweeping arm movement
    “The soccer player began to swing at the referee”
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    type of:
    aim, direct, take, take aim, train
    point or cause to go (blows, weapons, or objects such as photographic equipment) towards
  8. verb
    make a big sweeping gesture or movement
    synonyms: sweep, swing out
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    type of:
    handle, manage, wield
    manage or wield effectively
  9. noun
    a sweeping blow or stroke
    “he took a wild swing at my head”
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    type of:
    blow, buffet
    a powerful stroke with the fist or a weapon
  10. noun
    the act of swinging a golf club at a golf ball and (usually) hitting it
    synonyms: golf shot, golf stroke
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    a swing downward of a golf club
    fade, slice, slicing
    a golf shot that curves to the right for a right-handed golfer
    draw, hook, hooking
    a golf shot that curves to the left for a right-handed golfer
    drive, driving
    hitting a golf ball off of a tee with a driver
    a golf shot from a bunker that typically moves sand as well as the golf ball
    putt, putting
    hitting a golf ball that is on the green using a putter
    approach, approach shot
    a relatively short golf shot intended to put the ball onto the putting green
    a poor golf stroke in which the club head hits the ground before hitting the ball
    a poor golf stroke in which the heel of the club hits the ball
    the act of hitting a golf ball from the teeing ground at the start of each hole
    chip, chip shot
    (golf) a low running approach shot
    pitch, pitch shot
    a high approach shot in golf
    type of:
    shot, stroke
    (sports) the act of swinging or striking at a ball with a club or racket or bat or cue or hand
  11. noun
    in baseball; a batter's attempt to hit a pitched ball
    synonyms: baseball swing, cut
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    type of:
    shot, stroke
    (sports) the act of swinging or striking at a ball with a club or racket or bat or cue or hand
  12. verb
    hang freely
    synonyms: dangle, drop
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    droop, loll
    hang loosely or laxly
    type of:
    be suspended or hanging
  13. verb
    influence decisively
    “This action swung many votes over to his side”
    synonyms: swing over
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    type of:
    act upon, influence, work
    have and exert influence or effect
  14. verb
    live in a lively, modern, and relaxed style
    “The Woodstock generation attempted to swing freely”
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    type of:
    lead a certain kind of life; live in a certain style
  15. verb
    be a social swinger; socialize a lot
    synonyms: get around
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    type of:
    socialise, socialize
    take part in social activities; interact with others
  16. verb
    engage freely in promiscuous sex, often with the husband or wife of one's friends
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    type of:
    have sex without being married
  17. noun
    a state of steady vigorous action that is characteristic of an activity
    “the party went with a swing
    “it took time to get into the swing of things”
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    type of:
    action, activeness, activity
    the state of being active
  18. verb
    have a certain musical rhythm
    “The music has to swing
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    type of:
    have the quality of being; (copula, used with an adjective or a predicate noun)
  19. verb
    play with a subtle and intuitively felt sense of rhythm
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    type of:
    play on an instrument
  20. noun
    a style of jazz played by big bands popular in the 1930s; flowing rhythms but less complex than later styles of jazz
    synonyms: jive, swing music
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    type of:
    a genre of popular music that originated in New Orleans around 1900 and developed through increasingly complex styles
  21. noun
    a jaunty rhythm in music
    synonyms: lilt
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    type of:
    the rhythmic property imparted by the accents and relative durations of notes in a piece of music
  22. noun
    a square dance figure; a pair of dancers join hands and dance around a point between them
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    type of:
    contra danse, contradance, contredanse, country dancing, country-dance
    a type of folk dance in which couples are arranged in sets or face one another in a line
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