Definition of TOWARDS

TOWARDS Preposition and Adverb

Towards serves as both a preposition and an adverb, indicating direction or movement in the direction of something or someone.

TOWARDS as a preposition

As a preposition, towards signifies movement, orientation, or focus directed to a specific point, destination, goal, or target. For example, “She walked towards the park,” suggests movement in the direction of the park. Similarly, “He showed kindness towards his neighbors,” denotes a positive attitude or behavior directed to his neighbors.

TOWARDS as an adverb

As an adverb, towards modifies verbs, adjectives, or other adverbs, indicating the direction or orientation of an action, movement, or state. For instance, “The team moved towards victory,” describes the direction of the team’s movement. Similarly, “She leaned towards the truth,” conveys the inclination or tendency towards truthfulness.

Spatial Direction and Orientation: Towards is commonly used to indicate physical movement or orientation in space, whether literal or metaphorical. It conveys the idea of proceeding in a particular direction or aligning one’s actions, intentions, or attitudes with a specific objective or destination.

Temporal Connotations: In addition to spatial direction, towards can also convey temporal connotations, suggesting progression or movement in time towards a future event, outcome, or state. For instance, “They are working towards a deadline,” implies effort or activity aimed at achieving a particular goal within a specified timeframe.

Figurative and Metaphorical Usage: Beyond its literal spatial and temporal meanings, towards is often employed in figurative or metaphorical contexts to express attitudes, sentiments, or inclinations directed to a person, idea, or cause. For example, “Her attitude towards the project changed,” suggests a shift in perspective or mindset regarding the project.

Variations and Regional Differences: While towards is widely accepted and understood in many English-speaking regions, variations such as “toward” (without the final “s”) are also used, particularly in American English. Both forms convey the same directional meaning, with “toward” being more prevalent in American usage.

In conclusion, towards serves as both a preposition and an adverb, indicating direction or movement in the direction of something or someone. Whether denoting physical movement in space, temporal progression towards a future event, or figurative attitudes or inclinations directed to a person or cause, towards facilitates communication of directionality, intentionality, and orientation in both literal and metaphorical contexts.

Examples of TOWARDS in a sentence

TOWARDS as a preposition in a sentence

  • They walked towards the sunset, hand in hand.
  • He leaned towards the microphone to speak.
  • She took a step towards the door, ready to leave.
  • The cat crept towards the mouse, preparing to pounce.
  • They sailed towards the distant island on their boat.
  • The car veered towards the right to avoid the obstacle.
  • He gestured towards the mountain, indicating their destination.
  • She moved towards the table, reaching for the book.

TOWARDS as an adverb in a sentence

  • He leaned towards to hear the whispered secret.
  • She glanced towards to see who had called her name.
  • The pendulum swung towards before changing direction.
  • They walked towards with determination in their stride.
  • The wind blew towards as they sailed across the open sea.
  • She smiled towards as she greeted her friend.
  • He nodded towards in agreement with the proposal.
  • The dog barked towards as it chased after the squirrel.

Origin of TOWARDS 

The word towards has its roots in Old English and has evolved over time:

  • Old English: The Old English form of towards was “tōweard,” where “tō” meant “to” or “in the direction of,” and “weard” meant “in the direction of” or “turning.”
  • Middle English: In Middle English, the term evolved to “toward,” maintaining its directional sense.
  • Etymology: The word is a combination of “tō” (to) and “weard” (in the direction of). It is related to other Germanic languages, such as Old High German “zuwart” and Middle Dutch “tewaert.”
  • Modern Usage: Over time, the spelling shifted from “toward” to towards without a significant change in meaning. In modern English, towards is commonly used as a preposition and an adverb to indicate direction, approach, or orientation.

The etymology reflects the historical development of the word from its Old English origins to its current usage in contemporary English, maintaining its fundamental meaning of indicating movement or direction.


  • In the direction of
  • To
  • Approaching
  • Facing
  • Against
  • On the way to
  • Heading for
  • In proximity to


  • Away from
  • Backward
  • Departing
  • Off
  • Diverging
  • Retreating
  • Opposite
  • Far from


  • Forward
  • Near
  • In line with
  • Going to
  • Advancing
  • Along
  • Upon
  • Onward

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