UK:*UK and possibly other pronunciationsUK and possibly other pronunciations/ˈsɛt/US:USA pronunciation: IPA and respellingUSA pronuncation: IPA/sɛt/ ,USA pronunciation: respelling(set)

Inflections of 'set' (v): (⇒ conjugate)
v 3rd person singular
v pres pverb, present participle: -ing verb used descriptively or to form progressive verb--for example, "a singing bird," "It is singing."
v pastverb, past simple: Past tense--for example, "He saw the man." "She laughed."
v past pverb, past participle: Verb form used descriptively or to form verbs--for example, "the locked door," "The door has been locked."

WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2020
set /sɛt/USA pronunciation   v.,  set, set•ting, n., adj. 
  1. to put (something or someone) in a particular place or posture:[+ object]to set a vase on a table.
  2. to put or cause to pass into some condition:[+ object]to set a house on fire.
  3. to put or apply:[+ object]to set fire to a house.
  4. to fix definitely;
    decide upon:[+ object]to set a wedding date.
  5. to put (a price or value) upon something:[+ object]to set a high price for the car.
  6. to fix the value of (something) at a certain amount, rate, or point:[+ object]sets honesty above everything.
  7. to post, station, or appoint for a duty:[+ object]For safety we plan to set guards at the door.
  8. to place or plant firmly:[+ object]to set a flagpole in concrete.
  9. to direct or settle with firmness or great hopes:[+ object]She can really set her mind to a task.
  10. to establish (an example, etc.) for others to follow:[+ object]to set a fast pace.
  11. to assign (a task, problem, etc.) to (someone): [+ object]The teacher set ten math problems for homework.[+ object + to + verb]The teacher set the students to work.
  12. to distribute or arrange china, silver, etc., for use on (a table):[+ object]Set the table for dinner.
  13. Clothing
    • [+ object] to style (the hair) by using rollers, clips, etc., to cause curls, waves, etc.:She said she had to set her hair.
    • [no object] (of the hair) to produce curls, waves, etc., as a result of rollers, clips, etc.:Her thin hair doesn't set well.
  14. to put in the proper condition for use:[+ object]to set a trap.
  15. to adjust (a mechanism) so as to control its performance:[+ object]to set one's watch (= to put the hands or numbers at the correct or desired time).
  16. Jewelry to mount (a gem or the like) in a frame or setting:[+ object]The diamond is set in a beautiful gold mounting.
  17. to cause to sit;
    seat:[+ object]to set a child in a highchair.
  18. to cause to take a particular direction:[+ object]to set one's course to the south.
  19. to (cause to) be put into a fixed, rigid state, such as the face or muscles: [+ object]He set his jaw and tried to frown.[no object]His face set into an ugly frown.
  20. Surgery[+ object] to put (a broken or dislocated bone) back in position.
  21. Chemistryto become or cause (glue, mortar, etc.) to become fixed or hard: [no object]Has the glue set yet?[+ object]The cold air will set the cement faster.
  22. to urge to attack:[+ object]to set the hounds on a trespasser.
  23. Music and Dance[+ object]
    • to fit (words) to music.
  24. [+ object]
    • Printingto arrange (type) for printing.
  25. Astronomy to pass below the horizon;
    sink:[no object]The sun sets early in winter.
  26. Slang Terms[Nonstandard.]to sit:[no object]Come in and set a spell.
  27. set about, to begin* start: [+ about + object]to set about one's work.[+ about + verb-ing]to set about repairing the engines.
  28. set against, [+ object + against + object]
    • to cause (one person, party, etc.) to be hostile to (another):The Civil War set brother against brother.
    • to compare or contrast (one person or thing) with (another):to set advantages against disadvantages.
  29. set ahead, [+ object + ahead] to set to a later time:In Spring we set our clocks ahead one hour.
  30. set aside: 
    • to put to one side;
      reserve: [+ aside + object]The clerk set aside the diamond bracelet.[+ object + aside]to set the bracelet aside.
    • to dismiss from the mind;
      reject: [+ aside + object]to set aside hatreds.[+ object + aside]to set our hatred aside.
    • to overrule;
      annul: [+ aside + object]The judge set aside the verdict.[+ object + aside]to set the verdict aside.
  31. set back: 
    • to slow down progress of;
      impede: [+ back + object]Bad weather set back the rescue attempts.[+ object + back]The loss of their best player set the team back.
    • to fix at an earlier time or lower point on a scale: [+ back + object]Set back your clocks one hour.[+ object + back]Set the clocks back one hour.
    • [+ object + back + object][Informal.]to cause to pay;
      cost:The house set them back $200,000.
  32. set down: 
    • to record or copy in writing or printing: [+ down + object]The girl had set down her ideas in her diary.[+ object + down]She had set her ideas down in writing.
    • to land an airplane: [+ down + object]to set down the plane safely.[+ object + down]to set the plane down safely.
  33. set forth: 
    • [+ forth + object] to give an account of;
      describe:The physicist set forth her ideas.
    • [no object] to begin a journey;
      start:They set forth on the expedition.
  34. set in, [no object] to begin to come;
    arrive:Infection was setting in.
  35. set off: 
    • to cause to become ignited or to explode: [+ off + object]to set off fireworks.[+ object + off]to set fireworks off.
    • [+ off + object] to begin;
      start:The TV show set off a rush of phone calls.
    • [+ off + object] to intensify the look of by contrast or by emphasizing different colors, etc.:The dark dress really sets off her pale features.
    • [no object] to begin a journey or trip;
      depart:The hikers set off before sunrise.
  36. set on: 
    • Also,  set upon. [+ on/upon + object] to attack:He was set upon by a gang.
    • Also,  set upon. [+ object + on/upon + object] to cause to attack:to set a dog on an intruder.
  37. set out: 
    • [no object] to begin a journey or course:The explorers set out long before dawn.
    • [+ out + to + verb] to try;
      undertake:set out to reform the system.
    • to define;
      describe: [+ out + object]set out his main ideas in a short paper.[+ object + out]to set his ideas out in an essay.
    • to lay or spread out, usually in order: [+ out + object]Let's set out some extra glasses for the guests.[+ object + out]to set some plates out for our guests.
  38. set to, [no object] to begin work with strength and activity:Let's set to and clean things up.
  39. set up: 
    • to put in an upright or ready position: [+ up + object]to set up a roadblock.[+ object + up]to set a roadblock up.
    • to put into a powerful position: [+ up + object]The Western government had helped to set up the dictator.[+ object + up]to set the dictator up as a puppet.
    • to construct or assemble for use: [+ up + object]to set up a computer.[+ object + up]Do you know how to set a computer up?
    • to establish or start: [+ up + object]to set up a business.[+ object + up]to set a business up.
    • to cause (someone) to be able to begin in business: [+ up + object]He set up his son in the construction business.[+ object + up]He set his son up in the construction business.
    • Informal Termsto treat, as to drinks: [+ up + object]Bartender, set up a few drinks for my friend here.[+ object + up]to set a few drinks up.
    • [+ object + up] to lure into a situation so as to embarrass or trap:The crooks set the shopkeeper up and fooled him completely.[+ up + object]to set up a victim.
    • [+ object + up] to arrange a date for:set me up with his sister.

n. [countable]
  1. a collection of articles for use together:a set of carving knives.
  2. a number or combination of things of similar nature or function:a set of ideas.
  3. a number or group of persons having common interests or status:the smart set.
  4. the way one is thinking or acting:[usually: singular]The set of his mind was obvious.
  5. the way one carries oneself, as when walking:[usually: singular]The set of his shoulders showed how discouraged he was.
  6. Clothingthe styling of the hair with rollers, pins, etc., or the hairstyle so formed.
  7. an apparatus for receiving radio or television programs;
    receiver:My TV set is broken.
  8. Show Businesssomething built to represent the place of action in a play, film, etc.:The Hollywood set for that street scene occupied several square blocks.
  9. Mathematicsa collection of objects or elements classed together:The null set has no members.

  1. fixed or decided:[before a noun]no set time for the meeting.
  2. specified;
    fixed:[before a noun]The hall holds a set number of people.
  3. customary:[before a noun]a few set phrases in the same old speech.
  4. fixed;
    rigid:[before a noun]a set smile.
  5. resolved or determined:[be + ~]They are old and set in their ways (= They are not able or willing to change their habits).
  6. completely prepared;
    ready:[be + ~]Is everyone set?

WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2020
set  (set),USA pronunciation v.,  set, set•ting, n., adj., interj. 
  1. to put (something or someone) in a particular place:to set a vase on a table.
  2. to place in a particular position or posture:Set the baby on his feet.
  3. to place in some relation to something or someone:We set a supervisor over the new workers.
  4. to put into some condition:to set a house on fire.
  5. to put or apply:to set fire to a house.
  6. to put in the proper position:to set a chair back on its feet.
  7. to put in the proper or desired order or condition for use:to set a trap.
  8. to distribute or arrange china, silver, etc., for use on (a table):to set the table for dinner.
  9. Clothingto place (the hair, esp. when wet) on rollers, in clips, or the like, so that the hair will assume a particular style.
  10. to put (a price or value) upon something:He set $7500 as the right amount for the car. The teacher sets a high value on neatness.
  11. to fix the value of at a certain amount or rate;
    value:He set the car at $500. She sets neatness at a high value.
  12. to post, station, or appoint for the purpose of performing some duty:to set spies on a person.
  13. to determine or fix definitely:to set a time limit.
  14. to resolve or decide upon:to set a wedding date.
  15. to cause to pass into a given state or condition:to set one's mind at rest; to set a prisoner free.
  16. to direct or settle resolutely or wishfully:to set one's mind to a task.
  17. to present as a model;
    place before others as a standard:to set a good example.
  18. to establish for others to follow:to set a fast pace.
  19. to prescribe or assign, as a task.
  20. to adjust (a mechanism) so as to control its performance.
  21. to adjust the hands of (a clock or watch) according to a certain standard:I always set my watch by the clock in the library.
  22. to adjust (a timer, alarm of a clock, etc.) so as to sound when desired:He set the alarm for seven o'clock.
  23. Jewelryto fix or mount (a gem or the like) in a frame or setting.
  24. Jewelryto ornament or stud with gems or the like:a bracelet set with pearls.
  25. to cause to sit;
    seat:to set a child in a highchair.
  26. to put (a hen) on eggs to hatch them.
  27. Animal Husbandryto place (eggs) under a hen or in an incubator for hatching.
  28. to place or plant firmly:to set a flagpole in concrete.
  29. to put into a fixed, rigid, or settled state, as the face, muscles, etc.
  30. to fix at a given point or calibration:to set the dial on an oven; to set a micrometer.
  31. to tighten (often fol. by up):to set nuts well up.
  32. to cause to take a particular direction:to set one's course to the south.
  33. Surgeryto put (a broken or dislocated bone) back in position.
  34. (of a hunting dog) to indicate the position of (game) by standing stiffly and pointing with the muzzle.
  35. Music and Dance
    • to fit, as words to music.
    • to arrange for musical performance.
    • to arrange (music) for certain voices or instruments.
  36. Show Business[Theat.]
    • to arrange the scenery, properties, lights, etc., on (a stage) for an act or scene.
    • to prepare (a scene) for dramatic performance.
  37. Nautical, Naval Termsto spread and secure (a sail) so as to catch the wind.
  38. [Print.]
    • Printingto arrange (type) in the order required for printing.
    • Printingto put together types corresponding to (copy);
      compose in type:to set an article.
  39. [Baking.]to put aside (a substance to which yeast has been added) in order that it may rise.
  40. to change into curd:to set milk with rennet.
  41. Chemistryto cause (glue, mortar, or the like) to become fixed or hard.
  42. to urge, goad, or encourage to attack:to set the hounds on a trespasser.
  43. Games[Bridge.]to cause (the opposing partnership or their contract) to fall short:We set them two tricks at four spades. Only perfect defense could set four spades.
  44. to affix or apply, as by stamping:The king set his seal to the decree.
  45. to fix or engage (a fishhook) firmly into the jaws of a fish by pulling hard on the line once the fish has taken the bait.
  46. Buildingto sharpen or put a keen edge on (a blade, knife, razor, etc.) by honing or grinding.
  47. Textilesto fix the length, width, and shape of (yarn, fabric, etc.).
  48. Building[Carpentry.]to sink (a nail head) with a nail set.
  49. Buildingto bend or form to the proper shape, as a saw tooth or a spring.
  50. Buildingto bend the teeth of (a saw) outward from the blade alternately on both sides in order to make a cut wider than the blade itself.

  1. Astronomyto pass below the horizon;
    sink:The sun sets early in winter.
  2. to decline;
  3. to assume a fixed or rigid state, as the countenance or the muscles.
  4. Clothing(of the hair) to be placed temporarily on rollers, in clips, or the like, in order to assume a particular style:Long hair sets more easily than short hair.
  5. Chemistryto become firm, solid, or permanent, as mortar, glue, cement, or a dye, due to drying or physical or chemical change.
  6. to sit on eggs to hatch them, as a hen.
  7. to hang or fit, as clothes.
  8. to begin to move;
    start (usually fol. by forth, out, off, etc.).
  9. Botany(of a flower's ovary) to develop into a fruit.
  10. Sport(of a hunting dog) to indicate the position of game.
  11. Meteorologyto have a certain direction or course, as a wind, current, or the like.
  12. Nautical, Naval Terms(of a sail) to be spread so as to catch the wind.
  13. Printing(of type) to occupy a certain width:This copy sets to forty picas.
  14. Slang Terms[Nonstandard.]sit:Come in and set a spell.
  15. set about: 
    • to begin on;
    • to undertake;
    • to assault;
  16. set against: 
    • to cause to be hostile or antagonistic.
    • to compare or contrast:The advantages must be set against the disadvantages.
  17. set ahead, to set to a later setting or time:Set your clocks ahead one hour.
  18. set apart: 
    • to reserve for a particular purpose.
    • to cause to be noticed;
      distinguish:Her bright red hair sets her apart from her sisters.
  19. set aside: 
    • to put to one side;
      reserve:The clerk set aside the silver brooch for me.
    • to dismiss from the mind;
    • to prevail over;
      annul:to set aside a verdict.
  20. set back: 
    • to hinder;
    • to turn the hands of (a watch or clock) to show an earlier time:When your plane gets to California, set your watch back two hours.
    • to reduce to a lower setting:Set back the thermostat before you go to bed.
  21. set by, to save or keep for future use.
  22. set down: 
    • to write or to copy or record in writing or printing.
    • to consider;
      estimate:to set someone down as a fool.
    • to attribute;
      ascribe:to set a failure down to bad planning.
    • to put in a position of rest on a level surface.
    • to humble or humiliate.
    • to land an airplane:We set down in a heavy fog.
    • (in horse racing) to suspend (a jockey) from competition because of some offense or infraction of the rules.
  23. set forth: 
    • to give an account of;
      describe:He set forth his theory in a scholarly report.
    • to begin a journey;
      start:Columbus set forth with three small ships.
  24. set forward, to turn the hands of (a watch or clock) to show a later time:When your plane lands in New York, set your watch forward two hours.
  25. set in: 
    • to begin to prevail;
      arrive:Darkness set in.
    • (of winds or currents) to blow or flow toward the shore.
  26. set off: 
    • to cause to become ignited or to explode.
    • to begin;
    • to intensify or improve by contrast.
    • to begin a journey or trip;
  27. set on: 
    • Also,  set upon. to attack or cause to attack:to set one's dog on a stranger.
    • to instigate;
      incite:to set a crew to mutiny.
  28. set one's face against. See  face (def. 35).
  29. set out: 
    • to begin a journey or course:to set out for home.
    • to undertake;
      attempt:He set out to prove his point.
    • to design;
      plan:to set out a pattern.
    • to define;
      describe:to set out one's arguments.
    • to plant:to set out petunias and pansies.
    • to lay out (the plan of a building) in actual size at the site.
    • to lay out (a building member or the like) in actual size.
  30. set store by. See  store (def. 9).
  31. set to: 
    • to make a vigorous effort;
      apply oneself to work;
    • to begin to fight;
  32. Gamesset up: 
    • to put upright;
    • to put into a high or powerful position.
    • to construct;
    • to be assembled or made ready for use:exercise equipment that sets up in a jiffy.
    • to inaugurate;
    • to enable to begin in business;
      provide with means.
    • Informal Termsto make a gift of;
      treat, as to drinks.
    • Informal Termsto stimulate;
    • to propound;
    • to bring about;
    • to become firm or hard, as a glue or cement:a paint that sets up within five minutes.
    • to lead or lure into a dangerous, detrimental, or embarrassing situation, as by deceitful prearrangement or connivance.
    • to entrap or frame, as an innocent person in a crime or a criminal suspect in a culpable circumstance in order to achieve an arrest.
    • to arrange the murder or execution of:His partner set him up with the mob.
    • [Bridge.]to establish (a suit):to set up spades.

  1. the act or state of setting or the state of being set.
  2. a collection of articles designed for use together:a set of china; a chess set.
  3. a collection, each member of which is adapted for a special use in a particular operation:a set of golf clubs; a set of carving knives.
  4. a number, group, or combination of things of similar nature, design, or function:a set of ideas.
  5. a series of volumes by one author, about one subject, etc.
  6. a number, company, or group of persons associated by common interests, occupations, conventions, or status:a set of murderous thieves; the smart set.
  7. Clothingthe fit, as of an article of clothing:the set of his coat.
  8. fixed direction, bent, or inclination:The set of his mind was obvious.
  9. bearing or carriage:the set of one's shoulders.
  10. the assumption of a fixed, rigid, or hard state, as by mortar or glue.
  11. Clothingthe arrangement of the hair in a particular style:How much does the beauty parlor charge for a shampoo and set?
  12. Buildinga plate for holding a tool or die.
  13. an apparatus for receiving radio or television programs;
  14. Stamps[Philately.]a group of stamps that form a complete series.
  15. Sport[Tennis.]a unit of a match, consisting of a group of not fewer than six games with a margin of at least two games between the winner and loser:He won the match in straight sets of 6–3, 6–4, 6–4.
  16. a construction representing a place or scene in which the action takes place in a stage, motion-picture, or television production.
  17. [Mach.]
    • Mechanical Engineeringthe bending out of the points of alternate teeth of a saw in opposite directions.
    • Mechanical Engineeringa permanent deformation or displacement of an object or part.
    • Mechanical Engineeringa tool for giving a certain form to something, as a saw tooth.
  18. Buildinga chisel having a wide blade for dividing bricks.
  19. Botany[Hort.]a young plant, or a slip, tuber, or the like, suitable for planting.
  20. Music and Dance[Dancing.]
    • the number of couples required to execute a quadrille or the like.
    • a series of movements or figures that make up a quadrille or the like.
  21. Music and Dance
    • a group of pieces played by a band, as in a night club, and followed by an intermission.
    • the period during which these pieces are played.
  22. Games[Bridge.]a failure to take the number of tricks specified by one's contract:Our being vulnerable made the set even more costly.
  23. [Naut.]
    • Naval Termsthe direction of a wind, current, etc.
    • Naval Termsthe form or arrangement of the sails, spars, etc., of a vessel.
    • Naval Termssuit (def. 12).
  24. Animal Behavior, Psychology[Psychol.]a temporary state of an organism characterized by a readiness to respond to certain stimuli in a specific way.
  25. Mininga timber frame bracing or supporting the walls or roof of a shaft or stope.
  26. Building[Carpentry.]See  nail set. 
  27. Mathematicsa collection of objects or elements classed together.
  28. Printingthe width of a body of type.
  29. Textilessett (def. 3).

  1. fixed or prescribed beforehand:a set time; set rules.
  2. specified;
    fixed:The hall holds a set number of people.
  3. deliberately composed;
    customary:set phrases.
  4. fixed;
    rigid:a set smile.
  5. resolved or determined;
    habitually or stubbornly fixed:to be set in one's opinions.
  6. completely prepared;
    ready:Is everyone set?
  7. Informal Termsall set, in readiness;
    prepared:They were at the starting line and all set to begin.

  1. (in calling the start of a race):Ready! Set! Go!
Also,  get set! 
  • Latin secta sect (in later use influenced by the verb, verbal and Middle Low German gesette set, suite)
  • Old French
  • Gmc *satjan, causative of *setjan to sit1; (noun, nominal) (in senses denoting the action of setting or the state of being set) Middle English set, set(t)e, derivative of the verb, verbal and its past participle; (in senses denoting a group) Middle English sette
  • bef. 900; (verb, verbal) Middle English setten, Old English settan; cognate with Old Norse setja, German setzen, Gothic satjan, all
    • 1.See corresponding entry in Unabridged position, locate, situate, plant. See  put. 
    • 11.See corresponding entry in Unabridged estimate, appraise, evaluate, price, rate.
    • 13.See corresponding entry in Unabridged establish.
    • 55.See corresponding entry in Unabridged solidify, congeal, harden.
    • 88.See corresponding entry in Unabridged clique. See  circle. 
    • 90.See corresponding entry in Unabridged attitude.
    • 91.See corresponding entry in Unabridged posture.
    • 112.See corresponding entry in Unabridged predetermined.
    • 116.See corresponding entry in Unabridged stubborn, obstinate.
    The verbs set and sit1 are similar in form and meaning but different in grammatical use. Set is chiefly transitive and takes an object:Set the dish on the shelf.Its past tense and past participle are also set:Yesterday he set three posts for the fence. The judge has set the date for the trial.Set also has some standard intransitive uses, as "to pass below the horizon'' (The sun sets late in the northern latitudes during the summer) and "to become firm, solid, etc.'' (This glue sets quickly). The use of set for sit, "to be seated,'' is nonstandard:Pull up a chair and set by me.Sit is chiefly intransitive and does not take an object:Let's sit here in the shade.Its past tense and past participle are sat:They sat at the table for nearly two hours. Have they sat down yet?Transitive uses of sit include "to cause to sit'' (Pull up a chair and sit yourself down) and "to provide seating for'' (The waiter sat us near the window).

Set  (set),USA pronunciation n. [Egyptian Relig.]
  1. Eastern Religionsthe brother and murderer of Osiris, represented as having the form of a donkey or other mammal and regarded as personifying the desert.
Also,  Seth. 
Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::
set /sɛt/ vb (sets, setting, set)(mainly tr)
  1. to put or place in position or into a specified state or condition: to set a book on the table, to set someone free
  2. (also intr; followed by to or on) to put or be put (to); apply or be applied: he set fire to the house, they set the dogs on the scent
  3. to put into order or readiness for use; prepare: to set a trap, to set the table for dinner
  4. (also intr) to put, form, or be formed into a jelled, firm, fixed, or rigid state: the jelly set in three hours
  5. (also intr) to put or be put into a position that will restore a normal state: to set a broken bone
  6. to adjust (a clock or other instrument) to a position
  7. to determine or establish: we have set the date for our wedding
  8. to prescribe or allot (an undertaking, course of study, etc): the examiners have set ``Paradise Lost''
  9. to arrange in a particular fashion, esp an attractive one: she set her hair, the jeweller set the diamonds in silver
  10. Also: set to music to provide music for (a poem or other text to be sung)

  11. Also: set up to arrange or produce (type, film, etc) from (text or copy); compose
  12. to arrange (a stage, television studio, etc) with scenery and props
  13. to describe or present (a scene or the background to a literary work, story, etc) in words: his novel is set in Russia
  14. to present as a model of good or bad behaviour (esp in the phrases set an example, set a good example, set a bad example)
  15. followed by on or by: to value (something) at a specified price or estimation of worth: he set a high price on his services
  16. (also intr) to give or be given a particular direction: his course was set to the East
  17. (also intr) to rig (a sail) or (of a sail) to be rigged so as to catch the wind
  18. (intransitive) (of the sun, moon, etc) to disappear beneath the horizon
  19. to leave (dough, etc) in one place so that it may prove
  20. to sink (the head of a nail) below the surface surrounding it by using a nail set
  21. to give (a binary circuit) the value 1
  22. (of plants) to produce (fruits, seeds, etc) after pollination or (of fruits or seeds) to develop after pollination
  23. to plant (seeds, seedlings, etc)
  24. to place (a hen) on (eggs) for the purpose of incubation
  25. (intransitive) (of a gun dog) to turn in the direction of game, indicating its presence
  26. to defeat (one's opponents) in their attempt to make a contract
  27. a dialect word for sit
  1. the act of setting or the state of being set
  2. a condition of firmness or hardness
  3. bearing, carriage, or posture: the set of a gun dog when pointing
  4. the scenery and other props used in and identifying the location of a stage or television production, film, etc

  5. Also called: set width the width of the body of a piece of type
  6. the width of the lines of type in a page or column
  7. a temporary bias disposing an organism to react to a stimulus in one way rather than in others
  8. a seedling, cutting, or similar part that is ready for planting: onion sets
  9. a variant spelling of sett
  1. fixed or established by authority or agreement: set hours of work
  2. (usually postpositive) rigid or inflexible: she is set in her ways
  3. unmoving; fixed: a set expression on his face
  4. conventional, artificial, or stereotyped, rather than spontaneous: she made her apology in set phrases
  5. (postpositive; followed by on or upon) resolute in intention: he is set upon marrying
  6. (of a book, etc) prescribed for students' preparation for an examination

See also set about, set againstEtymology: Old English settan, causative of sittan to sit; related to Old Frisian setta, Old High German sezzan
set /sɛt/ n
  1. a number of objects or people grouped or belonging together, often forming a unit or having certain features or characteristics in common: a set of coins, John is in the top set for maths
  2. a group of people who associate together, esp a clique: he's part of the jet set

  3. Also called: class a collection of numbers, objects, etc, that is treated as an entity: 3, the moon is the set the two members of which are the number 3 and the moon
  4. any apparatus that receives or transmits television or radio signals
  5. one of the units of a match, in tennis one in which one player or pair of players must win at least six games: Graf lost the first set
  6. the number of couples required for a formation dance
  7. a series of figures that make up a formation dance
  8. a band's or performer's concert repertoire on a given occasion: the set included no new numbers
  9. a continuous performance: the Who played two sets
vb (sets, setting, set)
  1. (intransitive) (in square dancing and country dancing) to perform a sequence of steps while facing towards another dancer
  2. (usually tr) to divide into sets: in this school we set our older pupils for English
Etymology: 14th Century (in the obsolete sense: a religious sect): from Old French sette, from Latin secta sect; later sense development influenced by the verb set1
WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2020
sett  (set),USA pronunciation n. 
  1. BuildingAlso called  pitcher. a small, rectangular paving stone.
  2. BuildingAlso called  stake. a hand-held tool that is struck by a hammer to shape or deform a metal object.
  3. TextilesAlso,  set. the distinctively colored pattern of crisscrossed lines and stripes against a background in which a Scottish tartan is woven.
  • variant of set 1870–75

Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::
sett, set /sɛt/ n
  1. a small rectangular paving block made of stone, such as granite, used to provide a durable road surface
  2. the burrow of a badger
  3. a square in a pattern of tartan
  4. the pattern itself
Etymology: 19th Century: variant of set1 (n)
'set' also found in these entries:
Collocations: set the [rules, agenda, stage, tone], a [complete, full, partial, unique] set, follows a set pattern, more...

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