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a covering of leather, rubber, or the like, for the foot and all or part of the leg.
Chiefly British. any shoe or outer foot covering reaching to the ankle.
an overshoe, especially one of rubber or other waterproof material.
an instrument of torture for the leg, consisting of a kind of vise extending from the knee to the ankle, tightened around the leg by means of screws.
any sheathlike protective covering:
a boot for a weak automobile tire.
a protective covering for the foot and part of the leg of a horse.
a protecting cover or apron for the driver’s seat of an open vehicle.
the receptacle or place into which the top of a convertible car fits when lowered.
a cloth covering for this receptacle or place.
British. the trunk of an automobile.
a rubber covering for the connection between each spark-plug terminal and ignition cable in an automotive ignition system.
Also called Denver boot. a metal device attached to the wheel of a parked car so that it cannot be driven away until a fine is paid or the owner reports to the police: used by police to catch scofflaws.
U.S. Navy, Marines. a recruit.
Music. the box that holds the reed in the reed pipe of an organ.
a kick.
Slang. a dismissal; discharge:
They gave him the boot for coming in late.
Informal. a sensation of pleasure or amusement:
Watching that young skater win a gold medal gave me a real boot.
Baseball. a fumble of a ball batted on the ground, usually to the infield.
Computers. an act or instance of starting up a computer.
to kick; drive by kicking:
The boy booted a tin can down the street.
Football. to kick.
Baseball. to fumble (a ground ball).
to put boots on; equip or provide with boots.
Also, bootstrap. Computers.

Also, boot up. to start (a computer) by loading and initializing the operating system.
to start (a program) by loading the first few instructions, which will then bring in the rest.

Slang. to dismiss; discharge:
They booted him out of school for not studying.
to attach a Denver boot to:
Police will boot any car with unpaid fines.
to torture with the boot.
bet your boots, to be sure or certain:
You can bet your boots that I’ll be there!
die with one’s boots on,

to die while actively engaged in one’s work, profession, etc.
to die fighting, especially in battle, or in some worthy cause.

Also, especially British, die in one’s boots.
get a boot, Informal. to derive keen enjoyment:
I really got a boot out of his ridiculous stories.
Archaic. something given into the bargain.

remedy; relief; help.

Archaic. to be of profit, advantage, or avail (to):
It boots thee not to complain.
to boot, in addition; besides:
We received an extra week’s pay to boot.
booty; spoil; plunder.
Contemporary Examples

The Easygoing Flair of San Francisco Jolie Hunt April 9, 2010
Why Does Oscar Hate Young Men? Kevin Fallon November 8, 2014
Religion, But Not Politics Jill Jacobs October 18, 2012
Video Star of the Day: Charles Ramsey, Cleveland’s Hero Abby Haglage May 6, 2013
One Red Rose for the Green Kid Who Won the Kentucky Derby Red Smith May 2, 2014

Historical Examples

A Sheaf of Corn Mary E. Mann
Way of the Lawless Max Brand
Legends August Strindberg
Way of the Lawless Max Brand
The Emigrants Of Ahadarra William Carleton

a strong outer covering for the foot; shoe that extends above the ankle, often to the knee See also chukka boot, top boot, Wellington boots, surgical boot
an enclosed compartment of a car for holding luggage, etc, usually at the rear US and Canadian name trunk
a protective covering over a mechanical device, such as a rubber sheath protecting a coupling joining two shafts
(US & Canadian) a rubber patch used to repair a puncture in a tyre
an instrument of torture used to crush the foot and lower leg
a protective covering for the lower leg of a horse
a kick: he gave the door a boot
(Brit, slang) an ugly person (esp in the phrase old boot)
(US, slang) a navy or marine recruit, esp one in training
(computing) short for bootstrap (sense 4a)
bet one’s boots, to be certain: you can bet your boots he’ll come
See boots and all
die with one’s boots on

to die while still active
to die in battle

lick the boots of, to be servile, obsequious, or flattering towards
(slang) put the boot in

to kick a person, esp when he or she is already down
to harass someone or aggravate a problem
to finish off (something) with unnecessary brutality

(slang) the boot, dismissal from employment; the sack
the boot is on the other foot, the boot is on the other leg, the situation is or has now reversed
too big for one’s boots, self-important or conceited
(transitive) (esp in football) to kick
(transitive) to equip with boots
(transitive) (informal)

(often foll by out) to eject forcibly
to dismiss from employment

Also boot up. to start up the operating system of (a computer) or (of a computer) to begin operating
verb (usually impersonal)
(archaic) to be of advantage or use to (a person): what boots it to complain?
(obsolete) an advantage
(dialect) something given in addition, esp to equalize an exchange: a ten pound boot to settle the bargain
to boot, as well; in addition: it’s cold and musty, and damp to boot

: Give him a boot in the ass (1940s+)
: Dark atoned for his boot by making a good play on Kiner’s slow roller
A thrill; surge of pleasure; bang, kick: I get a boot from boats (1930+)
A recruit (1900+ Navy & Marine Corps)
A black person (1950s+ Black)
(also Denver boot) A metal locking device put on the wheels of a scofflaw’s car to prevent driving (late 1960s+)

To kick, esp to give a hard kick: Let’s boot a football around (1870s+)
To discharge; eject; fire, sack (1880s+)
(also boot away)To lose or waste by incompetence, inattention, etc; botch; bungle; blow: I booted three good chances (1950s+)
To commit an error, esp in handling a ground ball (1900s+ Baseball)
(also backtrack) To inject a narcotic gradually by pulling back and reinjecting blood again and again to increase the drug’s effect: The technique, known as ”booting,” is believed to prolong the drug’s initial effect (1960s+ Narcotics)
boot up (1980+ Computer)

boot out
boot up


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