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The Longman Defining Vocabulary

Words used in the definitions in this dictionary

All the definitions in this dictionary have been written using the words in this list. If a definition includes
a word that is not in the list, that word is shown in small capital letters.

The Defining Vocabulary has been carefully chosen after a thorough study of all the well-known
frequency lists of English words. Furthermore, only the most common and ‘entral’ meanings of the
words in the list have actually been used in definitions. We have also used a special computer
program that checks every entry to ensure that words from outside the Defining Vocabulary do not
appear in definitions.

Word class restrictions

For some words in the list, a word class label such as n or adj is shown. This means that this
particular word is used in definitions only in the word class shown. So anger, for example, is used
only as a noun and not as a verb. But if no word class is shown for a word, it can be used in any of its
usual word classes: answer, for example, is used in definitions both as a noun and as a verb.

Compound words

Definitions occasionally include compound words formed from words in the Defining Vocabulary, but
this is only done if the meaning is completely clear. For example, the word businessman (formed from
business and man) is used in some definitions.

Prefixes and suffixes

The main list is followed by a list of common prefixes and suffixes. These can be added to words in
the main list to form derived words, provided the meaning is completely clear. For example, the word
nervousness (formed by adding -ness to nervous) is used in some definitions.

Phrasal verbs

Phrasal verbs formed by combining words in the Defining Vocabulary (for example, put up with) are
not used in definitions in the dictionary, except in a very small number of cases where the phrasal
verb is extremely common and there is no common equivalent. So, for example, give up (as in give
up smoking) and take off (as in the plane took off) are occasionally used.

Proper names

The Defining Vocabulary does not include the names of actual places, nationalities, religions, and so
on, which are occasionally mentioned in definitions.
Pearson Education Limited 1999
a affect
abbreviation afford
ability afraid
able after adv, conj, prep
about afternoon
above adv, prep afterwards
abroad again
absence against
absent adj age n
accept ago
acceptable agree
accident agreement
accidental ahead
according to aim
account n air n
achieve aircraft
achievement airport
acid alcohol
across alive
act all adv, pron, determiner, pre-determiner
action allow
active almost
activity alone
actor, actress along
actual alphabet
actually already
add also
addition although
additional always
address among
adjective amount n
admiration amuse
admire amusement
admit amusing
adult an
advanced ancient adj
advantage and
adventure n anger n
adverb angle n
advertise angry
advertisement animal
advice announce
advise annoy
affair annoying
another article
answer artificial
anxiety as
anxious as opposed to
any ashamed
anyone ask
anything asleep
anywhere association
apart at
apartment atom
appear attack
appearance attempt
apple attend
approval attention
approve attitude
area attract
argue attractive
argument authority
arm n autumn
army available
around average adj, n
arrange avoid
arrangement awake adj
arrival away adv
arrive awkward
beach n
B beak
baby beam n
back adj, adv, n bean
background bear
backward(s) adv beat
bad beautiful
bag n beauty
bake v because
balance become
ball n bed
band n beer
bank n before
bar n begin
base n, v beginning
basic behave
basket behaviour
bath n behind adv, prep
battle n belief
be believe
bell bottle n
belong bottom n
below bowl n
belt n box n
bend boy
beneath brain n
beside(s) branch n
best brave adj
better adj, adv bread
between break v
beyond adj, adv breakfast n
bicycle n breast
big adj breath
bill breathe
bird breed
birth brick
bit bridge n
bite bright
bitter adj bring
black adj, n broad adj
blade broadcast v
blame brother
blind adj brown adj, n
block brush
blood build v
blow building
blue bullet
board n burn
boat burst v
body bury
boil bus
bomb bush
bone n business
book n busy
boot n but conj
border n butter n
bored button n
boring buy v
born by prep

cake n calm adj
calculate camera
call v camp n, v
can chocolate
cap choice n
capital n choose
car church n
card cigarette
care cinema
careful circle n
careless circular adj
carriage citizen
carry city
case n claim v
castle class n
cat clay
catch v clean adj, v
cattle clear adj, v
cause clever
ceiling cliff
celebrate climb v
cell clock n
central close adj, adv, v
centre n cloth
century clothes
ceremony clothing
certain adj, determiner cloud n
chain n club n
chair n coal
chance n coast n
change coat n
character coffee
charge coin n
chase v cold adj, n
cheap collar n
cheat v collect v
check college
cheek n colour
cheerful comb
cheese combination
chemical combine v
chemistry come
cheque comfort
chest comfortable
chicken command
chief committee
child common adj
children communicate
chin communication
company cotton
compare v cough
comparison could
compete council n
competition count v
competitor country n
complain countryside
complaint courage
complete course n
completely court n
complicated cover
compound n cow n
computer crack n, v
concern v crash n, v
concerning crazy
concert cream n
condition n creature
confidence crime
confident criminal
confuse criticism
confusing criticize
connect crop n
connection cross n, v
conscious crowd
consider cruel
consist crush v
contain cry
container cup n
continue cupboard
continuous cure
contract n curl
control current n
conversation curtain n
cook n, v curve
copy custom n
corn customer
corner n cut
correct adj, v cycle v

daily adj, adv dark
damage date n
dance daughter
danger day
dangerous dead adj
deal n difficult
deal with difficulty
death dig v
debt dinner
decay direct
deceive direction
decide dirt
decision dirty adj
decorate disappoint
decoration disappointing
decrease discover
deep adj discovery
defeat discuss
defence discussion
defend disease n
definite dish n
definitely dismiss
degree distance
delay distant
deliberate adj divide
deliberately do v
delicate doctor n
deliver document n
demand dog n
department dollar
depend door
dependent double adj, v, pre-determiner
depth doubt
describe down adv, prep
description draw v
desert n drawer
deserve dream
design dress n, v
desirable drink
desire drive n, v
desk drop
destroy drug n
destruction drum n
detail n drunk pastpart, adj
determination dry
determined duck n
develop dull adj
dictionary during
die v dust n
difference duty
each enjoyable
eager enjoyment
ear enough
early enter
earn entertain
earth n entertainment
east entrance n
eastern envelope
easy adj environment
eat equal adj, n
economic equipment
edge n escape
educate especially
educated establish
education even adj, adv
effect n evening
effective event
effort ever
egg every
eight everyone
either everything
elbow everywhere
elect v evil
election exact adj
electric exactly
electricity examination
electronic examine
else example
embarrass excellent
embarrassing except conj, prep
emotion exchange
emphasize excite
employ v exciting
employer excuse
employment exercise
empty adj, v exist
enclose existence
encourage expect
end expensive
enemy experience
energy explain
engine explanation
engineer n explode
enjoy explosion
explosive extremely
express v eye
extreme adj

face fill v
fact film
factory final adj
fail v finally
failure financial
fair adj find v
fairly find out
faith fine adj
faithful adj finger n
fall finish v
false fire
familiar firm adj
family first adj, determiner
famous fish
far fit adj, v
farm five
farmer fix v
fashion n flag n
fashionable flame n
fast adj, adv flash n, v
fasten flat adj
fat flesh
father n flight
fault n float v
favourable flood
favourite adj floor n
fear n flour n
feather n flow
feature n flower n
feed v fly n, v
feel v fold
feeling(s) follow
female fond
fence n food
fever foot n
few football
field n for prep
fifth force
fight foreign
figure n foreigner
forest n friend
forget friendly
forgive frighten
fork n frightening
form from
formal front adj, n
former fruit n
fortunate full adj
forward(s) adv fun
four(th) funeral
frame n funny
free fur n
freedom furniture
freeze v further adj, adv
frequent adj future

gain v graceful
game n gradual
garage n grain
garden gram
gas n grammar
gate grand adj
gather v grandfather
general adj grandmother
generally grandparent
generous grass n
gentle grateful
gentleman grave n
get great adj
gift green
girl greet
give v greeting
glad grey adj, n
glass adj, n ground n
glue group n
go v grow
goat growth
god guard v
gold guess v
good guest n
goodbye guide
goods guilty
govern gun n
habit high adj, adv
hair hill
half him
hall himself
hammer n his
hand n historical
handle history
hang v hit
happen v hold v
happy hole
hard holiday n
hardly hollow adj
harm holy
harmful home adv, n
hat honest
hate v honour n
hatred hook n
have hope
he hopeful
head n horn
health horse n
healthy hospital
hear hot adj
heart hotel
heat hour
heaven house n
heavy adj how adv
heel n human
height humorous
hello humour
help hundred(th)
helpful hungry
her(s) hunt v
here hurry
herself hurt v
hide v husband n

ice n illness
idea image
if imaginary
ignore imagination
ill adj imagine
illegal immediately
importance instruction
important instrument
impressive insult v
improve insulting
improvement insurance
in adv, prep insure
include intelligence
including intelligent
income intend
increase intention
independent interest
indoor(s) interesting
industrial international adj
industry interrupt
infect into
infection introduce
infectious introduction
influence v invent
inform invitation
information invite v
injure involve
injury inwards
ink n iron adj, n
inner island
insect it pron
inside its
instead itself

jaw journey n
jewel judge
jewellery judgement
job juice
join jump
joint just adv
joke justice

keen kilometre
keep v kind
key n king
kick kiss
kill v kitchen
kilo knee n
kilogram kneel
knife n know v
knock v knowledge

lack life
lady lift
lake light
lamb like prep, v
lamp likely
land limit
language line n
large lion
last adv, determiner lip
late liquid
lately list n
laugh listen v
laughter literature
law litre
lawyer little
lay v live v
layer n load
lazy local adj
lead v lock
leaf n lonely
lean v long adj, adv
learn look n, v
least look after
leather look for
leave v look sth up
left loose adj
leg n lord n
legal lose
lend loss
length adv, pron, determiner lot
less loud
lesson love
let v low adj
let go of lower
letter loyal
level adv, adj, n loyalty
library luck n
lid lucky
lie lung
lie down

machine n metal n
machinery method
magazine metre
magic middle
mail might v
main adj mile
make v miliary adj
make into milk n
make up v million(th)
male mind
man n mine n, pron
manage mineral
manager minister n
manner minute n
many mirror n
map n miss v
march v mist n
mark mistake n
market n mix v
marriage mixture
married model n
marry modern adj
mass n moment
match money
material n monkey n
mathematics month
matter moon n
may v moral adj
me more
meal morning
mean v most
meaning n mother n
means motor adj, n
measure mountain
measurement mouse
meat mouth n
medical adj move v
medicine movement
meet v much
meeting mud
melt multiply
member murder
memory muscle n
mental music
mention v musician
message must v
my mystery

nail next adj, adv
name nice
narrow adj night
nasty nine
nation ninth
national adj no adv, determiner
natural adj noise n
nature none pron
navy nonsense
near adj, adv, prep no one
nearly nor
neat normal
necessary north
neck northern
need nose n
needle n not
negative adj note n
neither nothing
nerve n notice
nervous noticeable
net n noun
network n now
never nowhere
new number n
news nurse
newspaper nut

obey official
object n often
obtain oil n
occasion n old
ocean old-fashioned
o’clock on adv, prep
of once adv
off adv, prep one
offence onion
offend only
offensive adj only just
offer onto
office open adj, v
officer operate
operation origin
opinion original
opponent other
opportunity ought
oppose our(s)
as opposed to out adj, adv
opposite outdoor(s)
opposition outer
or outside
orange over adv, prep
order owe
ordinary own
organ owner
organize oxygen

pack v pay
package payment
page n peace
pain n peaceful
painful pen n
paint pence
painting pencil n
pair n people n
pale adj pepper n
pan n per cent
paper n perfect adj
parallel adj, n perform
parent performance
park perhaps
parliament period n
part n permanent
participle permission
particular adj person
partly personal
partner n persuade
party n pet n
pass v petrol
passage photograph
passenger phrase n
past physical adj
path piano n
patient adj pick v
pattern n pick up
pause picture n
piece n possible adj
pig n possibly
pile n possibility
pilot n post
pin pot n
pink adj, n potato
pipe n pound n
pity pour
place powder n
plain adj, n power n
plan powerful
plane n practical
plant practice
plastic practise
plate n praise
play pray
pleasant prayer
please prefer
pleased preparation
pleasure n prepare
plenty pron present adj, n
plural preserve v
pocket n president
poem press v
poet pressure n
poetry pretend
point pretty adj
pointed prevent
poison previous
poisonous price n
pole n priest
police n prince
polish v principle
polite print
political prison
politician prisoner
politics private adj
pool n prize n
poor probably adj
popular problem
population process n
port n produce v
position n product
positive production
possess profession
possession profit n
programme prove
progress n provide
promise public
pronounce pull
pronunciation pump
proof n punish
proper punishment
property pupil
proposal pure
protect purple
protection purpose n
protective push
protest put

quality question
quantity quick adj
quarrel quiet adj, n
quarter n quite
queen n

rabbit n reasonable
race receive
radio n recent
railway recently
rain recognize
raise v record n, v
range n red
rank n reduce
rapid adj reduction
rare refusal
rat n refuse v
rate n regard v
rather regular adj
raw related
reach v relative
react relation
reaction relationship
read v relax
ready adj relaxing
real religion
realize religious
really remain
reason remark n
remember rise
remind risk
remove v river
rent road
repair rob
repeat v rock n
replace roll v
reply romantic adj
report roof n
represent room n
representative n root n
request n rope n
respect rose
responsible rough adj
rest round adj, adv, prep
restaurant row
restrict royal adj
result rub v
return n, v rubber
reward rude
rice ruin v
rich rule
rid ruler
ride run
right adj, adv, n rush v
ring n

sad scientific
safe adj scientist
safety scissors
sail screen n
sale screw
salt n sea
same search
sand n season n
satisfaction seat
satisfactory second adv, n, determiner
satisfy secret
save v secretary
say v see v
scale n seed n
scatter v seem
scene sell v
school n send
science sense n
sensible shut
sensitive shy
sentence n sick adj
separate adv, v side n
series sideways
serious sight n
servant sign
serve signal
service n silence n
set n, v silent
settle v silk
seven(th) silly
several silver
severe similar
sex n simple
sexual since
shade sincere n
shadow n sing
shake single adj
shall singular
shame n sink v
shape sister
share sit
sharp adj situation
she six(th)
sheep size n
sheet skilful
shelf skill
shell n skin n
shelter skirt n
shine v sky n
shiny sleep
ship n slide v
shirt slight adj
shock n, v slippery
shocking slope
shoe n slow
shoot v small
shop smell
shore n smile
short adj smoke
shot n smooth adj
should snake n
shoulder n snow
shout so
show n, v soap n
social adj stage n
society stair
sock n stamp
soft stand v
soil n standard
soldier n star n
solid start
solution state
solve statement
some pron, determiner station n
somehow stay
someone steady adj
something steal v
sometimes steam n
somewhere steel n
son steep adj
song stem n
soon step
sore adj stick
sorry sticky
sort n stiff adj
soul still adj, adv
sound n, v sting
soup stitch
sour adj stomach n
south stone n
southern stop
space n store
speak storm n
special adj story
specific straight adj, adv
speech strange
speed n stream n
spell v street
spend strength
spin v stretch v
spirit n strict
in spite of strike v
split v string n
spoil v strong
spoon n structure n
sport n struggle
spot n student
spread v study
spring stupid
square adj, n style n
subject n suppose
substance sure adj
succeed surface n
success surprise
successful surprising
such surround v
suck v swallow v
sudden swear
suffer sweep v
sugar n sweet
suggest swell v
suit swim
suitable swing
sum n sword
summer sympathetic
sun n sympathy
supply n, v system
support n, v

table n test
tail n than
take v thank
talk that conj, pron, determiner
tall the
taste theatre
tax their(s)
taxi n them
tea then adv
teach there
team n therefore
tear these
technical they
telephone thick adj
television thief
tell thin adj
temper n thing
temperature think v
temporary third
ten this pron, determiner
tend thorough
tendency those
tennis though
tense n thought
tent thousand(th)
terrible thread n
threat town
threaten toy n
threatening track n
three trade n
throat traditional
through adv, prep traffic n
throw train
thumb n training
ticket n translate
tidy adj, v transparent
tie trap
tight adj travel
time n treat v
tired treatment
tiring tree
title tribe
to trick n, v
tobacco trip n
today tropical
toe n trouble
together trousers
toilet true adj
tomorrow trust
tongue truth
tonight try v
too tube
tool n tune n
tooth turn
top adj, n twice
total adj, n twist
touch two
tourist type n
towards typical
tower n tyre

ugly universe
under prep university
understand unless
underwear until
undo unusual
unexpected up adj, adv, prep
uniform n upper
union upright adj, adv
unit upset v, adj
unite upside down
upstairs adj, adv useful
urgent useless
us usual

valley victory
valuable adj view n
value n village
variety violence
various violent
vegetable visit
vehicle voice n
verb vote
very adv vowel

wages welcome
waist well adj, adv, n
wait v west
wake v western adj
walk wet adj
wall n what pre-determiner, determiner, pron
war n whatever
warm adj, v wheat
warmth wheel n
warn when adv, conj
warning whenever
wash where
waste whether
watch which
water while conj
wave whip
way whistle
we white
weak who
wealth whole
weapon whose
wear v why adv, conj
weather n wide adj, adv
weave v width
wedding wife
week wild adj, adv
weekly adj, adv will
weigh willing
weight n win v
wind wool
window word n
wine n work
wing n world
winter worry
wire n worse
wise adj worst
wish worth
with would
within wound
without wrap v
woman wrist
wood write
wooden wrong adj, adv, n

year you
yellow young adj
yes your(s)