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course (kôrs)
Share:
n.
1.
a. Development in a particular way; progress: the course of events.
b. Movement in time; duration: in the course of a year.
2.
a. The direction of continuing movement: The boat took a northern course.
b. The route or path taken by something that moves, such as a stream or vehicle.
3. Sports
a. A designated route or area on which a race is held: the course of a marathon.
4. A mode of action or behavior: followed the best course and invested her money.
5. A typical, natural, or customary manner of proceeding or developing: a fad that ran its course.
6. A systematic or orderly succession; a sequence: a course of medical treatments.
7. A continuous layer of building material, such as brick or tile, on a wall or roof of a building.
8.
a. A complete body of prescribed studies constituting a curriculum: a four-year course in engineering.
b. A unit of such a curriculum: took an introductory course in chemistry; passed her calculus course.
9. A part of a meal served as a unit at one time: The first course was a delicious soup.
10. Nautical The lowest sail on a mast of a square-rigged ship.
11. A point on the compass, especially the one toward which a vehicle, such as a ship, is moving.
12. Music A string or set of two or more closely-spaced and usually identically-tuned strings, as on a lute.
v. coursed, cours·ing, cours·es
v.tr.
1. To move swiftly through or over; traverse: ships coursing the seas.
2.
a. To hunt (game) with hounds.
b. To set (hounds) to chase game.
v.intr.
1. To proceed or move swiftly in a certain direction or along a course: "Big tears now coursed down her face" (Iris Murdoch).
2. To hunt game with hounds.
Idioms:
off course
Away from the planned or intended course.
in due course
At the proper or right time: Things will get better in due course.
of course
1. As is to be expected under the circumstances; naturally or obviously: Of course someone had to clean up the mess.
2. Used to indicate assent or agreement: "Do you like her music?" "Of course!"
on course
Following the planned or intended course.
run/take its course
To follow its natural progression or development: Should we let the illness run its course?

[Middle English, from Old French cours, from Latin cursus, from past participle of currere, to run; see kers- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2017 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
 

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