Definition from Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to: navigation, search
See also: Settle


Broom icon.svg A user suggests that this English entry be cleaned up, giving the reason: “outdated definitions and citations”.
Please see the discussion on Requests for cleanup(+) or the talk page for more information and remove this template after the problem has been dealt with.

Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.


From Middle English settle, setle, setel, setil, seotel, from Old English setl(that upon which one sits, a seat, a settle, a place to sit), from Proto-Germanic *setlaz(a seat; arm-chair), representing Proto-Indo-European *sed-lo-, from *sed-(sit). Cognate with Dutch zetel, German Sessel, Latin sella.

For the verb, compare Dutch zetelen(to be established, settle).



settle (third-person singular simple present settles, present participle settling, simple past and past participle settled)

  1. (transitive) To place in a fixed or permanent condition; to make firm, steady, or stable; to establish; to fix; especially, to establish in life; to fix in business, in a home etc.
    • And he settled his countenance steadfastly upon him,until he was ashamed. --2 Kings VIII. 11. (Rev. Ver.)
    • 1700, Ovid, Metamorphoses, translation of original by John Dryden:
      The father thought the time drew on Of settling in the world his only son.
  2. (transitive, obsolete, US) To establish in the pastoral office; to ordain or install as pastor or rector of a church, society, or parish.
    to settle a minister
  3. (transitive) To cause to be no longer in a disturbed condition; to quieten; to still; to calm; to compose.
  4. (transitive) To clear or purify (a liquid) of dregs and impurities by causing them to sink.
    to settle coffee, or the grounds of coffee
  5. (transitive) To restore (ground, roads etc.) or bring to a smooth, dry, or passable condition.
    clear weather settles the roads
  6. (transitive) To cause to sink; to lower.
    to settle the contents of a barrel or bag by shaking it
  7. (transitive) To determine, as something which is exposed to doubt or question; to free from uncertainty.
    • Jonathan Swift
      It will settle the wavering, and confirm the doubtful.
    to settle the mind when agitated;  to settle questions of law;  to settle the succession to a throne;  to settle an allowance
  8. (transitive) To pacify (a discussion, quarrel).
    to settle a quarrel
  9. (transitive, archaic) To adjust (accounts); to liquidate; to balance.
    to settle an account
  10. (transitive, colloquial) To pay.
    to settle a bill
  11. (transitive) To colonize; to move people to (a land or territory).
    the French first settled Canada;  the Puritans settled New England;  Plymouth was settled in 1620.
  12. (intransitive) To become fixed, permanent or stationary; to establish one's self or itself.
    • Francis Bacon
      The wind came about and settled in the west.
    • John Arbuthnot
      Chyle [] runs through all the intermediate colors until it settles in an intense red.
  13. (intransitive) To fix one's residence; to establish a dwelling place or home.
    the Saxons who settled in Britain
  14. (intransitive) To become married, or a householder.
  15. (intransitive) To be established in a profession or in employment.
    to settle in the practice of law
  16. (intransitive) To become firm, dry, and hard, like the ground after the effects of rain or frost have disappeared.
    the roads settled late in the spring.
  17. (intransitive) To become clear after being unclear or vague.
    • Joseph Addison
      A government, on such occasions, is always thick before it settles.
    the weather settled;  wine settles by standing
  18. (intransitive) To sink to the bottom of a body of liquid, for example dregs of a liquid, or the sediment of a reservoir.
  19. (intransitive) To sink gradually to a lower level; to subside, for example the foundation of a house, etc.
  20. (intransitive) To become calm; to stop being agitated.
  21. (intransitive) To adjust differences or accounts; to come to an agreement.
    He has settled with his creditors.
  22. (intransitive, obsolete) To make a jointure for a wife.
    • Samuel Garth
      He sighs with most success that settles well.



Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]


The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.


settle (plural settles)

  1. (archaic) A seat of any kind.
    • Hampole
      upon the settle of his majesty
  2. A long bench, often with a high back and arms, with storage space underneath for linen.
  3. (obsolete) A place made lower than the rest; a wide step or platform lower than some other part.
    • Bible, Ezekiel xliii. 14
      And from the bottom upon the ground, even to the lower settle, shall be two cubits, and the breadth one cubit.


External links[edit]