synonyms, antonyms, definitions, examples & translations of ease in English

English Online Dictionary. What means ease‎? What does ease mean?



From Middle English ese, ays, etc., from Anglo-Norman ese (ease), from Old French eise and aise (elbow room; opportunity), of uncertain and obscure origin. Cognate with Provencal ais, Italian agio and asio, Sicilian aciu and Portuguese azo. Sometimes ascribed to Latin *asia or *asium, possibly from ansa (handle; occasion) but more likely from a Vulgar Latin *adjace(m), from Latin adjacēns, present participle of adjaceō. Alternatively, possibly from a non-Latin source such as Germanic or Celtic on the basis of the conflicting forms which appear in various Romance languages. Compare Old English īeþe (easy), Gothic 𐌰𐌶𐌴𐍄𐌹 (azēti, ease; pleasure), *𐌰𐌶𐌴𐍄𐍃 (*azēts, easy), Breton eaz, ez (easy), Irish adhais (easy; leisure). Compare also Frankish *ansiju (loophole, eyelet; handle, arms akimbo, elbow room). See also eath.

The verb is from Middle English esen, ultimately of the same origin.


  • (UK) IPA(key): /iːz/
  • (US) enPR: ēz, IPA(key): /iz/,
  • Rhymes: -iːz
  • Homophones: ees, E's, 'e's


ease (uncountable)

  1. Ability, the means to do something, particularly:
    1. (obsolete) Opportunity, chance.
      • a. 1200, Ancrene Riwle (Cleopatra MS C.vi), p. 213:
        ...Ȝef þer is eise to fulle þe dede...
    2. Skill, dexterity, facility.
  2. Comfort, a state or quality lacking unpleasantness, particularly:
    1. Freedom from pain, hardship, and annoyance, sometimes (derogatory, archaic) idleness, sloth.
    2. Freedom from worry and concern; peace; sometimes (derogatory, archaic) indifference.
    3. Freedom from difficulty.
    4. Freedom from effort, leisure, rest.
    5. Freedom from financial effort or worry; affluence.
    6. Freedom from embarrassment or awkwardness; grace.
  3. Relief, an end to discomfort, particularly:
    1. Followed by of or from: release from or reduction of pain, hardship, or annoyance.
    2. (euphemistic, obsolete) Release from intestinal discomfort: defecation.
    3. Release from constraint, obligation, or a constrained position.
    4. (clothing) Additional space provided to allow greater movement.
  4. (obsolete) A convenience; a luxury.
  5. (obsolete) A relief; an easement.


  • (ability): ability, dexterity, facility, skill
  • (comfort): comfort, peace
  • (freedom from worry): peace of mind
  • (freedom from effort): free time, leisure, relaxation, rest

Derived terms

Related terms

  • easy, easiness



ease (third-person singular simple present eases, present participle easing, simple past and past participle eased)

  1. (transitive) To free (something) from pain, worry, agitation, etc.
    • Elyse Saugstad, a professional skier, wore a backpack equipped with an air bag, a relatively new and expensive part of the arsenal that backcountry users increasingly carry to ease their minds and increase survival odds in case of an avalanche.
  2. (transitive) To alleviate, assuage or lessen (pain).
  3. (transitive) To give respite to (someone).
  4. (nautical, transitive) To loosen or slacken the tension on a line.
  5. (transitive) To reduce the difficulty of (something).
  6. (transitive) To move (something) slowly and carefully.
  7. (intransitive) To lessen in severity.
  8. (intransitive) To proceed with little effort.


  • (free (something) from pain, worry, agitation, etc): assuage, salve
  • (alleviate, assuage or lessen (pain)): allay, alleviate, assuage, lessen, reduce
  • (give respite to (someone)): give someone a break (informal), lay off (informal)
  • (loosen or slacken the tension on (something)): loosen, relax, slacken
  • (reduce the difficulty of (something)): facilitate, simplify
  • (lessen in severity): lessen, reduce
  • (proceed with little effort): cruise




  • ESEA

Middle English


ease (plural eases)

  1. Alternative spelling of ese

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