1. Situated in, toward, or facing the east.
2. Coming from the east: eastern breezes.
3. Native to or growing in the east.
4. often Eastern Of, relating to, or characteristic of eastern regions or the East.
a. Of or relating to the Eastern Church.
b. Of or relating to the Eastern Orthodox Church.
[Middle English estern, from Old English ēasterne; see aus- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.