Etymology: Middle English possen, pusshen, probably from Old French pousser to exert pressure, from Latin pulsare, frequentative of pellere to drive, strike — more at felt
Date: 13th century
a. to press against with force in order to drive or impel
b. to move or endeavor to move away or ahead by steady pressure without striking
a. to thrust forward, downward, or outward
b. to cause to increase ; raise <push prices to record levels> c. to try to move beyond or expand <push one's limits> d. to hit (a ball) toward the right from a right-handed swing or toward the left from a left-handed swing — compare pull 3. a. to press or urge forward to completion b. to urge or press the advancement, adoption, or practice of <pushed a bill in the legislature>; especially to make aggressive efforts to sell <we're pushing ham this week> c. to engage in the illicit sale of (narcotics) 4. to bear hard upon so as to involve in difficulty <poverty pushed them to the breaking point> 5. to approach in age or number <grandmother must be pushing 75> intransitive verb 1. to press against something with steady force in or as if in order to impel 2. to press forward energetically against opposition 3. to exert oneself continuously, vigorously, or obtrusively to gain an end <pushing for higher wages> II. noun Date: 1563 1. a vigorous effort to attain an end ; drive: a. a military assault or offensive b. an advance that overcomes obstacles c. a campaign to promote a product 2. a time for action ; emergency 3. a. an act of pushing ; shove b. (1) a physical force steadily applied in a direction away from the body exerting it (2) a nonphysical pressure ; influence, urge c. vigorous enterprise or energy 4. a. an exertion of influence to promote another's interests b. stimulation to activity ; impetus
New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.