set on

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set 1

v. set, set·ting, sets
1. To put in a specified position or arrangement; place: set a book on a table; set the photo next to the flowers.
a. To put into a specified state: set the prisoner at liberty; set the house ablaze; set the machine in motion.
b. To cause to begin an action: The noise set the dog to barking.
c. To cause or assign (someone) to undertake an action or perform a service: The sergeant set the recruit to sweeping the barracks.
d. To incite to hostile feeling or action: a dispute that set the neighbors against each other.
3. To position (oneself) so as to be ready to do something, such as start running a race.
4. To put into a stable or fixed position, as:
a. To position or secure so as to be fixed or immobile: set the fence post in cement.
b. To put in a mounting; mount: set an emerald in a pendant.
c. To apply jewels to; stud: The tiara was set with diamonds.
d. To cause (a hook) to become fixed in a fish's mouth.
5. To cause to be in proper, useful, or working condition, as:
a. To arrange for the consumption of a meal: set the table; set a place at table.
b. To adjust (an instrument or device) to a specific point or calibration: set the alarm for 7:00.
c. To prepare (a trap) for catching prey.
d. To adjust (a saw) by deflecting the teeth.
e. Nautical To spread open to the wind: set the sails.
f. To arrange scenery on (a theater stage).
g. To restore to a proper and normal state when dislocated or broken: set a broken arm.
h. To apply equipment, such as curlers and clips, to (hair) in order to style.
a. To concentrate or direct (one's mind or attention, for example) on a purpose or goal.
b. To direct or focus (one's desires or hopes, for example) on a certain thing.
7. Sports To pass (a volleyball), usually with the fingertips, in an arc close to the net so that a teammate can drive it over the net.
8. Printing
a. To arrange (type) into words and sentences preparatory to printing; compose.
b. To transpose (text, for example) into type.
9. Music
a. To compose (music) to fit a given text.
b. To write (words) to fit a given melodic line.
10. To appoint, establish, or determine, as:
a. To declare or demonstrate (a precedent or standard, for instance).
b. To provide or establish as a model: A parent must set a good example for the children.
c. To establish as the highest level of performance: set a swimming record.
d. To arrange or establish (a computer password, for example) to allow future action.
e. To prescribe as a time for: set the meeting for Friday afternoon.
f. To prescribe the unfolding of (a drama or narrative, for instance) in a specific place: a play that is set in Venice.
a. To value or regard something at the rate of: She sets a great deal by good nutrition.
b. To fix at a given amount: The judge set bail for the defendant at $50,000.
c. To make as an estimate of worth: We set a high value on human life.
a. To cause to sit: Set yourself over by the fire.
b. To put (a hen) on eggs for the purpose of hatching them.
13. To point to the location of (game) by holding a fixed body position. Used of a hunting dog.
14. Botany To produce, as after pollination: set seed.
1. To disappear below the horizon: The sun set at seven that evening.
2. To diminish or decline; wane: when the glory of the empire set.
3. To sit on eggs. Used of fowl.
a. To become fixed; harden: allowed the aspic to set.
b. To become permanent. Used of dye.
5. To become whole; knit. Used of a broken bone.
6. To point to the location of game by holding a fixed body position. Used of a hunting dog.
7. Botany To mature or develop, as after pollination.
8. Nonstandard To sit: "If Emmett drives, I could set up front" (Bobbie Ann Mason).
9. To position oneself preparatory to an action, such as running a race.
1. Fixed or established by agreement: a set time for the launching.
2. Established by convention: followed set procedures for filing a grievance.
3. Established deliberately; intentional: Our set purpose is to win the conflict.
4. Fixed and rigid: "His bearded face already has a set, hollow look" (Conor Cruise O'Brien).
5. Unwilling or very reluctant to change: He is set in his ways.
a. Intent and determined: "He is dead set against rushing abroad to build a plant" (Fortune).
b. Ready; prepared: We are set to leave early tomorrow morning.
a. The act or process of setting.
b. The condition resulting from setting.
2. The manner in which something is positioned: the set of her cap.
3. A permanent firming or hardening of a substance, as by cooling.
4. The deflection of the teeth of a saw.
a. The carriage or bearing of a part of the body.
b. A particular psychological state, usually that of anticipation or preparedness: "The mental set of an audience is crucial to his performance" (Psychology Today).
6. A descent below the horizon.
7. The direction or course of wind or water.
8. A seedling, slip, or cutting that is ready for planting.
9. The act of arranging hair by waving and curling it.
10. Sports The act of setting a volleyball for a teammate.
11. In Texas hold'em, a hand in which a player has two cards of the same rank and another card of that rank is among the community cards.
Phrasal Verbs:
set about
To begin or start: set about solving the problem.
set apart
1. To reserve for a specific use.
2. To make noticeable: character traits that set her apart.
set aside
1. To separate and reserve for a special purpose.
2. To discard or reject.
3. To declare invalid; annul or overrule: The court has set aside the conviction.
set at
To attack or assail: The dogs set at the fox.
set back
1. To slow down the progress of; hinder.
2. Informal To cost: That coat set me back $1,000.
set by
To reserve for future use: It is wise to set food and money by in case of a future emergency.
set down
1. To cause to sit; seat: Set the baby down here.
2. To put in writing; record: We set down the facts.
a. To regard; consider: Just set him down as a sneak.
b. To assign to a cause; attribute: Let's set the error down to inexperience.
4. To land (an aircraft): The pilot set the plane down hard.
5. Baseball To put out (a batter); retire. Used of a pitcher.
set forth
1. To present for consideration; propose: set forth a sound plan.
2. To express in words: She has set forth her ideas.
set forward
To begin a journey.
set in
1. To insert: set in the sleeve of a gown.
2. To begin to happen or be apparent: "Evening was setting in as I took the road over Mountain Top" (Charles Siebert).
3. To move toward the shore. Used of wind or water.
set off
a. To give rise to; cause to occur: set off a chemical reaction.
b. To cause to explode: set off a bomb.
c. To make suddenly or demonstrably angry: The clerk's indifference finally set me off.
2. To indicate as being different; distinguish: features setting him off from the crowd.
3. To direct attention to by contrast; accentuate: set off a passage with italics.
4. To counterbalance, counteract, or compensate for: Our dismay at her leaving was set off by our knowing that she was happy.
5. To start on a journey: set off for Europe.
set out
1. To begin an earnest attempt; undertake: He set out to understand why the plan had failed.
2. To lay out systematically or graphically: set out a terrace.
3. To display for exhibition or sale.
4. To plant: set out seedlings.
5. To start a journey: She set out at dawn for town.
set to
1. To begin working energetically; start in.
2. To begin fighting.
set up
1. To place in an upright position.
a. To elevate; raise.
b. To raise in authority or power; invest with power: They set the general up as a dictator.
c. To put (oneself) forward as; claim to be: He has set himself up as an authority on the English language.
d. To assemble and erect: set up a new machine.
3. To establish; found: set up a charity.
4. To cause: They set up howls of protest over new taxes.
5. To establish in business by providing capital, equipment, or other backing.
6. Informal
a. To treat (someone) to drinks.
b. To pay for (drinks).
7. Informal To stimulate or exhilarate: a victory that really set the team up.
8. To lay plans for: set up a kidnapping.
9. Informal To put (someone else) into a compromising situation by deceit or trickery: Swindlers have set me up.
10. Sports To make a pass to (a teammate), creating a scoring opportunity.
set upon
To attack violently: Guards set dogs upon the escaping prisoners.
set against
Strongly opposed to: We are dead set against the idea.
set fire to
To cause to ignite and burn.
set foot in
To enter.
set foot on
To step on.
set in motion
To give impetus to: The indictment set the judicial process in motion.
set on
Resolved to do something or strongly wishing for something: She is set on getting a role in the play.
set (one's) heart on
To be determined to do something.
set (one's) sights on
To have as a goal: She set her sights on medical school.
set on fire
1. To cause to ignite and burn.
2. To cause to become excited: The music set the audience on fire.
set sail Nautical
To begin a voyage on water.
set (someone) straight
To inform (someone) of the truth of a situation.
set store by
To regard as valuable or worthwhile.
set the pace
1. To go at a speed that other competitors attempt to match or surpass.
2. To behave or perform in a way that others try to emulate.
set the scene/stage for
To provide the underlying basis for: saber rattling that set the stage for war.
set up housekeeping
To establish a household.
set up shop
To establish one's business operations.

[Middle English setten, from Old English settan; see sed- in Indo-European roots.]
Usage Note: Originally set meant "to cause (someone) to sit" and "to cause (something) to be in a certain position," so that it is now in most cases a transitive verb: She sets the book on the table. He sets the table. Sit is generally an intransitive verb: He sits at the table. There are some exceptions: The sun sets (not sits). A hen sets (or sits) on her eggs.

set 2

1. A group of things of the same kind that belong together and are so used: a chess set.
2. A group of persons sharing a common interest: the high-school set.
3. A group of books or periodicals published as a unit.
a. A number of couples required for participation in a square dance.
b. The movements constituting a square dance.
a. The scenery constructed for a theatrical performance.
b. The entire enclosure in which a movie is filmed; the sound stage.
6. Music
a. A session of music, typically dance music, played before an intermission.
b. The music so played.
7. The collective receiving apparatus assembled to operate a radio or television.
8. Mathematics A collection of distinct elements having specific common properties: a set of positive integers.
9. Sports
a. A group of games constituting one division or unit of a match, as in tennis.
b. An offensive formation in football or basketball.

[Middle English sette, from Old French, from Medieval Latin secta, retinue, from Latin, faction; see sect.]


n. Mythology
Variant of Seth2.

set on

vb (tr)
1. (preposition) to cause to attack: they set the dogs on him.
2. (adverb) to instigate or incite; urge: he set the child on to demand food.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Verb1.set on - attack someone physically or emotionallyset on - attack someone physically or emotionally; "The mugger assaulted the woman"; "Nightmares assailed him regularly"
bait - attack with dogs or set dogs upon
sic, set - urge to attack someone; "The owner sicked his dogs on the intruders"; "the shaman sics sorcerers on the evil spirits"
bulldog - attack viciously and ferociously
rush - attack suddenly
blindside - attack or hit on or from the side where the attacked person's view is obstructed
savage - attack brutally and fiercely
reassail - assail again; "Her old fears reassailed her"
jump - make a sudden physical attack on; "The muggers jumped the woman in the fur coat"
set upon, beset - assail or attack on all sides: "The zebra was beset by leopards"
rape, ravish, assault, dishonor, dishonour, outrage, violate - force (someone) to have sex against their will; "The woman was raped on her way home at night"
desecrate, outrage, profane, violate - violate the sacred character of a place or language; "desecrate a cemetery"; "violate the sanctity of the church"; "profane the name of God"
molest - harass or assault sexually; make indecent advances to


(set) present participle ˈsetting: past tense, past participle set verb
1. to put or place. She set the tray down on the table.
2. to put plates, knives, forks etc on (a table) for a meal. Please would you set the table for me?
3. to settle or arrange (a date, limit, price etc). It's difficult to set a price on a book when you don't know its value.
4. to give a person (a task etc) to do. The witch set the prince three tasks; The teacher set a test for her pupils; He should set the others a good example.
5. to cause to start doing something. His behaviour set people talking.
6. (of the sun etc) to disappear below the horizon. It gets cooler when the sun sets.
7. to become firm or solid. Has the concrete set?
8. to adjust (eg a clock or its alarm) so that it is ready to perform its function. He set the alarm for 7.00 a.m.
9. to arrange (hair) in waves or curls.
10. to fix in the surface of something, eg jewels in a ring.
11. to put (broken bones) into the correct position for healing. They set his broken arm.
1. fixed or arranged previously. There is a set procedure for doing this.
2. (often with on) ready, intending or determined (to do something). He is set on going.
3. deliberate. He had the set intention of hurting her.
4. stiff; fixed. He had a set smile on his face.
5. not changing or developing. set ideas.
6. (with with) having something set in it. a gold ring set with diamonds.
1. a group of things used or belonging together. a set of carving tools; a complete set of (the novels of) Jane Austen.
2. an apparatus for receiving radio or television signals. a television/radio set.
3. a group of people. the musical set.
4. the process of setting hair. a shampoo and set.
5. scenery for a play or film. There was a very impressive set in the final act.
6. a group of six or more games in tennis. She won the first set and lost the next two.
ˈsetting noun
1. a background. This castle is the perfect setting for a murder.
2. an arrangement of jewels in eg a ring.
3. music composed for a poem etc. settings of folk songs.
ˈsetback noun
a delay in progress.
set phrase
a phrase which always occurs in one form, and which cannot be changed. `Of no fixed abode' is a set phrase.
ˈset-square noun
a triangular instrument with one right angle, used in geometrical drawing etc.
ˈsetting-lotion noun
a lotion that is used in setting the hair.
an argument or fight.
ˈset-up noun
an arrangement. There are several families living together in that house – it's a funny set-up.
all set (often with to)
ready or prepared (to do something); just on the point of (doing something). We were all set to leave when the phone rang.
set about
to begin. She set about planning her holiday; How will you set about this task?
set (someone) against (someone)
to cause (a person) to dislike (another person). She set the children against their father.
set aside
to keep for a special use or purpose. He set aside some cash for use at the weekend.
set back
to delay the progress of. His illness set him back a bit at school.
set down
(of a bus etc) to stop and let (passengers) out. The bus set us down outside the post-office.
set in
to begin or become established. Boredom soon set in among the children.
set off
1. (sometimes with on) to start a journey. We set off to go to the beach.
2. to cause to start doing something. She had almost stopped crying, but his harsh words set her off again.
3. to explode or ignite. You should let your father set off all the fireworks.
set (something or someone) on (someone)
to cause (eg dogs) to attack (a person). He set his dogs on me.
set out
1. to start a journey. He set out to explore the countryside.
2. to intend. I didn't set out to prove him wrong.
set to
to start to do something (vigorously). They set to, and finished the work the same day.
set up
1. to establish. When was the organization set up?
2. to arrange or construct. He set up the apparatus for the experiment.
set up camp
to erect tents etc. They set up camp in a field.
set up house
to establish one's own home. He'll soon be earning enough to set up house on his own.
set up shop
to start a shop.
set upon (also set on)
to attack. He set upon me in the dark.