The Alternative English Dictionary

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Colourful extracts from Wiktionary. Slang, vulgarities, profanities, slurs, interjections, colloquialisms and more.

Entries

land of steady habits etymology A nickname alluding to the moral character of its inhabitants, implied by the rigid laws of the early period.
proper noun: {{en-proper noun}}
  1. (informal) Connecticut
landphoon etymology land typhoon
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (meteorology, informal) A supercell thunderstorm whose radar signature resembles that of a hurricane, with a center free of precipitation; a tornadocane.
land rights
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) the rights of indigenous peoples to land, either individually or collectively.
Synonyms: (1) native title
land up over etymology Formed by analogy with land down under.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) The United States, Canada, or another Northern Hemisphere country, from the perspective of Australia.
langer etymology Uncertain. Suggestions include:
  • from monkeys, via the regiment stationed in India
  • from languor
  • from lang, variant of long
  • from "on the lang", supposed variant of on the lam
  • from leangaire, a word in Cnósach Focal ó Bhaile Bhúirne, a dictionary of the Muskerry Gaeltacht. It means an unusually long slender salmon.
pronunciation
  • (Ireland) /ˈlæŋəɹ/
  • {{rhymes}}
  • Homophones: Langer
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, Ireland, pejorative) Fool; idiot; annoying or contemptible person (usually male).
    • 1996, Enda Walsh, Disco Pigs, ISBN 1854593986, p. 8: "Give it up will ya! get a job, ja langer!"
    • 2006, September 3, Brendan O'Connor Roy: the discreet object of our desire, Irish Independent: And central to it all is wind-up, making a langer out of people, to use that now unfortunate word that can still only be used correctly and said correctly by Cork people, even though the rest of the country has taken to it with gusto, embarrassing themselves like white people trying to talk black slang to be "street".
    • 2006 November 22, Hurling abuse when there’s no team in sight, Irish Independent: "Langers boy, every wan of ‘em. Golfers are only langers. They’re only golfing cos they can’t hurl. Anyone that golfs in Cork is only a failed hurler and a langer, boy. "
  2. (slang, Ireland, vulgar) Penis.
    • , "Taking on PJ" in Dublin Noir: The Celtic Tiger Vs. the Ugly American, ed. Ken Bruen, p.23, ISBN 1888451920: Mike opened his knees wide, so that his langer would be framed by the gap between his legs. For first impressions a boner would have been good, but not likely.
    • , All of These People: A Memoir, p.88, ISBN 0007176929: He showed me a photograph. There was a woman and a man doing something, but I wasn't sure what. The man was standing over the woman holding his langer (the Cork word) and she was looking up at him smiling. I felt ill and started to walk backwards.
  • Originally and mainly restricted to
Synonyms: (annoying or contemptible person) dickhead, knob, asshole, shithead, wanker, (penis) See also
anagrams:
  • angler, erlang, largen, regnal
langered Alternative forms: langers pronunciation
  • (Ireland) /ˈlæŋəɹd/
etymology
  • probably from langer + -ed; possibly from languor (either via langer or separately)
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (slang, Ireland) extremely drunk
    • "He was at that awkward stage where oblivion was still three or four drinks away; he was definitely pissed, but not quite langered enough not to care." David Cowzer ''A Matter of Life and Death'' (2006) [ISBN 0954050835] p.26
    • "Goes out for a few jars. Meets three young Irish Army fellaas on leave from the Lebanon. Gets langered. Wakes up in their flat next morning, in nothing but her knickers, awful hangover." Sydney Bernard Smith ''Sauce for the Gander'' (2007) [ISBN 1903105374] p.73
  • Originally and mainly restricted to
Synonyms: See also
anagrams:
  • enlarged, largened
language pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}, /ˈlæŋɡwɪdʒ/
  • {{audio}}
  • (US) {{enPR}}, /ˈleɪŋɡwɪdʒ/
etymology 1 Middle English language, from Old French language, from vl *linguāticum, from Latin lingua, from Old Latin dingua, from Proto-Indo-European *dn̥ǵʰwéh₂s 〈*dn̥ǵʰwéh₂s〉. Displaced native Middle English rearde (from Old English reord), Middle English londspeche (from Old English *landsprǣċ, Old English þēod and þēodisc.
noun: {{en-noun}} {{examples-right}} {{wikipedia}}
  1. (countable) A body of word, and set of methods of combining them (called a grammar), understood by a community and used as a form of communication. examplethe English language and the German language are related exampledeaf and mute people communicate using languages like ASL
    • 1867, Report on the Systems of Deaf-Mute Instruction pursued in Europe, quoted in 1983 in History of the College for the Deaf, 1857-1907 (ISBN 0913580856), page 240: Hence the natural language of the mute is, in schools of this class, suppressed as soon and as far as possible, and its existence as a language, capable of being made the reliable and precise vehicle for the widest range of thought, is ignored.
    • page 50, 1900, William Thomas Beckford , [http://books.google.com/books?id=KnArAAAAMAAJ The History of the Caliph Vathek] , “No language could express his rage and despair.”
    • 2000, Geary Hobson, The Last of the Ofos (ISBN 0816519595), page 113: Mr. Darko, generally acknowledged to be the last surviving member of the Ofo Tribe, was also the last remaining speaker of the tribe's language.
  2. (uncountable) The ability to communicate using words. examplethe gift of language
  3. (uncountable) The vocabulary and usage of a particular specialist field. examplelegal language;   the language of chemistry
    • {{RQ:WBsnt IvryGtP}} Thus, when he drew up instructions in lawyer language, he expressed the important words by an initial, a medial, or a final consonant, and made scratches for all the words between; his clerks, however, understood him very well.
  4. (countable, uncountable) The expression of thought (the communication of meaning) in a specified way. examplebody language;   the language of the eyes
    • 2001, Eugene C. Kennedy, ‎Sara C. Charles, On Becoming a Counselor (ISBN 0824519132): A tale about themselves [is] told by people with help from the universal languages of their eyes, their hands, and even their shirting feet.
  5. (countable, uncountable) A body of sounds, signs and/or signals by which animals communicate, and by which plants are sometimes also thought to communicate.
    • 1983, The Listener, volume 110, page 14: A more likely hypothesis was that the attacked leaves were transmitting some airborne chemical signal to sound the alarm, rather like insects sending out warnings … But this is the first time that a plant-to-plant language has been detected.
    • 2009, Animals in Translation, page 274: Prairie dogs use their language to refer to real dangers in the real world, so it definitely has meaning.
  6. (computing, countable) A computer language; a machine language.
    • 2015, Kent D. Lee, Foundations of Programming Languages (ISBN 3319133144), page 94: In fact pointers are called references in these languages to distinguish them from pointers in languages like C and C++.
  7. (uncountable) Manner of expression.
    • {{rfdate}} Cowper: Their language simple, as their manners meek, …
  8. (uncountable) The particular words used in a speech or a passage of text. exampleThe language used in the law does not permit any other interpretation. exampleThe language he used to talk to me was obscene.
  9. (uncountable) Profanity.
    • page 500, 1978, James Carroll , [http://books.google.com/books?id=Nbl6vw3uieoC Mortal Friends], 0440157897 , “"Where the hell is Horace?" ¶ "There he is. He's coming. You shouldn't use language."”
Synonyms: (form of communication) tongue, speech (spoken language); leid (Scottish), (vocabulary of a particular field) lingo (colloquial), jargon, terminology, phraseology, parlance, (computer language) computer language, programming language, machine language, (particular words used) phrasing, wording, terminology; talk (spoken words used)
hyponyms: {{hyp-top4}}
  • artificial language
  • auxiliary language
  • bad language
  • body language
  • computer language/computing language
  • constructed language
  • endangered language
  • engineered language
{{hyp-mid4}}
  • experimental language
  • extinct language
  • foreign language
  • formal language
  • foul language
  • hardware description language
  • international language
  • logical language
{{hyp-mid4}}
  • machine language
  • mathematical language
  • multi-paradigm language
  • natural language
  • pattern language
  • philosophical language
  • private language
  • programming language
{{hyp-mid4}}
  • scripting language
  • secular language
  • sign language
  • standard language
  • subject-oriented language
  • vehicular language
  • vernacular language
{{hyp-bottom}}
related terms:
  • langue
  • lingual
  • linguine
  • linguistics
  • tonguage
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (rare, now, nonstandard) To communicate by language; to express in language.
    • {{rfdate}} Fuller: Others were languaged in such doubtful expressions that they have a double sense.
etymology 2 Alteration of languet.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A languet, a flat plate in or below the flue pipe of an organ.
    • 1896, William Horatio Clarke, The Organist's Retrospect, page 79: A flue-pipe is one in which the air passes through the throat, or flue, which is the narrow, longitudinal aperture between the lower lip and the tongue, or language. … The language is adjusted by slightly elevating or depressing it, …
statistics:
  • {{rank}}
languages pronunciation
  • {{audio}}
noun: {{head}}
  1. plural of language
anagrams:
  • slanguage
lanky pronunciation
  • /ˈlæŋk.i/
  • {{rhymes}}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (informal) Somewhat lank; tall, slim, and rather ungraceful or awkward.
Synonyms: See also
laowai {{wikipedia}} etymology From the pinyin romanization of cmn Chinese 老外 (lit. "old outsider")
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (colloquial, ethnic slur, possibly offensive) A expatriate living in mainland China or Taiwan, (particularly) a Western one.
The Chinese term 老外 may be considered a low-level racial slur and may cause offense.
related terms:
  • gweilo
lap pronunciation
  • /læp/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
etymology 1 Old English læppa (skirt or flap of a garment), from Proto-Germanic *lapp-, confer Middle Dutch lappe, Old High German lappa, German Lappen, Old Norse leppr.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. The loose part of a coat; the lower part of a garment that plays loosely; a skirt; an apron.
  2. An edge; a border; a hem, as of cloth.
  3. The part of the clothing that lies on the knees or thighs when one sits down; that part of the person thus covered; figuratively, a place of rearing and fostering; as, to be reared in the lap of luxury.
  4. The upper leg of a seated person. The boy was sitting on his mother's lap
  5. (archaic, euphemistic) The female pudenda. {{defdate}}
  6. (construction) component that overlaps or covers any portion of the same or adjacent component.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. To enfold; to hold as in one's lap; to cherish.
    • Dryden Her garment spreads, and laps him in the folds.
  2. To rest or recline in a lap, or as in a lap.
    • Praed to lap his head on lady's breast
etymology 2 From Middle English lappen from earlier Middle English wlappen, from Old English *wlappan, *wlæppan, *wlappian. from Proto-Germanic *wlapp-, *wrapp-, from Proto-Indo-European *werb-. Cognate with Middle Dutch lappen, Danish dial. vravle "to wind", Old Italian goluppare "to wrap, fold up" (from gem). More at envelop, develop The sense of "to get a lap ahead (of someone) on a track" is from 1847, on notion of "overlapping." The noun meaning "a turn around a track" (1861) is from this sense.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To fold; to bend and lay over or on something. to lap a piece of cloth
  2. (transitive) to wrap around, enwrap, wrap up to lap a bandage around a finger
    • Isaac Newton About the paper … I lapped several times a slender thread of very black silk.
  3. (transitive) to envelop, enfold lapped in luxury
  4. (intransitive) to wind around
  5. (transitive) To place or lay (one thing) so as to overlap another. One laps roof tiles so that water can run off.
  6. (transitive) To polish, e.g., a surface, until smooth.
  7. (intransitive) To be turned or folded; to lie partly on or over something; to overlap. The cloth laps back; the boats lap; the edges lap.
    • Grew The upper wings are opacous; at their hinder ends, where they lap over, transparent, like the wing of a fly.
  8. (transitive) To overtake a straggler in a race by completing one more whole lap than the straggler.
  9. To cut or polish with a lap, as glass, gems, cutlery, etc.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. The act or process of lapping.
  2. That part of any substance or fixture which extends over, or lies upon, or by the side of, a part of another; as, the lap of a board; also, the measure of such extension over or upon another thing.
  3. The amount by which a slide valve at its half stroke overlaps a port in the seat, being equal to the distance the valve must move from its mid stroke position in order to begin to open the port. Used alone, lap refers to outside lap. See Outside lap (below).
  4. The state or condition of being in part extended over or by the side of something else; or the extent of the overlapping; as, the second boat got a lap of half its length on the leader.
  5. (sports) One circuit around a race track, or one traversal down and then back the length of a pool; as, to run twenty laps; to win by three laps, to swim two laps.
    • {{quote-news }}
  6. In card playing and other games, the points won in excess of the number necessary to complete a game; — so called when they are counted in the score of the following game.
  7. A sheet, layer, or bat, of cotton fiber prepared for the carding machine.
  8. A piece of brass, lead, or other soft metal, used to hold a cutting or polishing powder in cutting glass, gems, and the like, or in polishing cutlery, etc. It is usually in the form of wheel or disk, which revolves on a vertical axis.
etymology 3 From Old English lapian, from Proto-Germanic *lapajanan, akin to Old High German laffen (to lick), Old Norse lepja, Danish labe, Old Saxon lepil, German Löffel (spoon). Cognate with Latin lambo. French lamper is a loanword from German. Compare Danish leffe, dialect German läffeln.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (ambitransitive) To take (liquid) into the mouth with the tongue; to lick up with a quick motion of the tongue.
    • Shakespeare They'll take suggestion as a cat laps milk.
    • Sir K. Digby The dogs by the River Nilus's side, being thirsty, lap hastily as they run along the shore.
  2. (intransitive, of water) To wash against a surface with a splashing sound; to swash.
    • Tennyson I heard the ripple washing in the reeds, / And the wild water lapping on the crag.
anagrams:
  • alp, ALP
  • APL
  • LPA
  • pal, Pal, PAL
  • PLA
lapdog Alternative forms: lap dog
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A dog which is sufficiently small and tame to be held in the lap for long durations.
  2. (figuratively, usually, derogatory) One who is exceedingly obedient, unquestioning, and submissive to another party.
lapling etymology lap + ling
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (derogatory, archaic) One who has been fondled to excess; one fond of ease and sensual delights.
{{Webster 1913}}
Lapp etymology From Swedish lapp. This in turn originally possibly an extension of the meaning "patch" (in reference to poorness), or from Finnish lape (in reference to geography).
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (countable) An indigenous person from Lapland. One of the Sami people.
  2. (uncountable) The language of the Lapp peoples.
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. From Lapland or of the Lapp peoples Lapp Gold - translation of the Finnish beer brand Lapin Kulta which can also be variously translated as "Gold from Lapland", "Lapland Gold" and hence "Lapp Gold"
anagrams:
  • palp
lappy
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) A laptop computer.
  2. (Yorkshire) the lapwing.
anagrams:
  • apply
laptop {{wikipedia}} Alternative forms: lap-top (slightly dated) etymology lap + top. pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈlæp.tɒp/
  • (US) /ˈlæp.tɑp/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (computing) A laptop computer.
    • {{quote-magazine}}
Synonyms: (laptop computer) laptop computer, notebook computer
related terms:
  • desktop
  • palmtop
lardass Alternative forms: lard-ass etymology lard + ass
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (pejorative) An overweight or obese person.
lard-ass
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (derogatory) An overweight person.
Synonyms: butterball, chubster, fatty, lard-arse, lard-bucket
lardball etymology lard + ball
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (derogatory, informal) An overweight person.
lardboy
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) An overweight person.
lardbutt
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (vulgar, slang) An overweight person.
lardo pronunciation
  • (US) /ˈlɑɹ.doʊ/
etymology 1 Italian
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A type of salumi made by curing strips of fatback with rosemary and other herbs and spices.
etymology 2 From lard + o.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (derogatory, slang) An overweight person.
Synonyms: (overweight person) butterball, chubster, fatso, fatty, jellyroll, lardass, thunder thighs
lardy pronunciation
  • (US) /ˈlɑɹdi/
  • (UK) /ˈlɑːdi/
  • {{rhymes}}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. Resembling or containing (perhaps an excess of) lard.
  2. (colloquial, pejorative, of a person) fat or overweight.
    • 1997 August 14, "The Prince of Lies" (username), "ABOUT VIRGINIA'S PARENTIAL NOTICE LAW", in talk.abortion, Usenet: Go back to snarfling down your microwave lasagna, you lardy bitch.
    • 1999 January 20, "susanna9988" (username), "Troll Striptease 7", in alt.fan.karl-malden.nose, Usenet: Look, Jeffy didn't start this, you lardy bitch. He tried to tell you.
    • 2003 May 3, "Fred" (username), "Unwanted Emails!", alt.fan.scarecrow, Usenet: Well as you mentioned it. It's that fucking useless fat arse lardy bitch at Energis, you know the one who eats at [...]
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, pejorative) An obese person.
    • 1989, Weekly World News (14 February 1989, page 14) Funny Roseanne isn't kidding when she pushes for ladies to become lardies.
    • 2003 July 8, "NMcD32" (username), "Help Needed ! ! ! Please Help", uk.rec.bodybuilding, Usenet: You mentioned that your wife used to be a lardy and now she isn't. Did the pair of you train and diet together or was her approach more the weight watchers, slow pace jogging type?
    • 2004, Warwick Allen, Sweat, page 286: And as for the equipment they use, let's just say that Lance Armstrong won't be winning the Tour de France on one. In fact he probably wouldn't be able to turn the pedals, especially with a couple of lardies like us in the back, [...]
  2. A lardy cake.
    • 1985, Jane Grigson, Jane Grigson's British cookery, page 32: ‘A bloomer, a Hovis, thank you, that's all ... oh, and put in a couple of lardies.’ Naturally, home-made lardy cake is even feggier than the baker’s. His aim is to put in as little lard, fruit and sugar as he can get away with: yours is, or should be, to cram in as much as possible.
    • 1997 March 30, "Paul Louis" (username), "Why are Americans such wankers.", alt.nuke.europe, Usenet: >Hmmm. American food is sugary? Not as sugary as the stuff they sell at >Somerfield's and Sainsbury's and ASDA--whole aisles of cookies and tea >biscuits. Ribena instead of fresh juice. No English muffins (which are >actually American) but lots of lardies!
    • 2001 October 16, "Stephen Toogood" (username), "What is Twinkies?", alt.usage.english, Usenet: But Lardy Cake isn't really a London thing anyway. Berkshire, Oxfordshire, Wiltshire is to my mind the epicentre of lardies.
anagrams:
  • Daryl, lyard
large {{wikipedia}} etymology From Middle English large, from Old French large, from Latin larga, feminine of largus. Mostly displaced Middle English stoor (from Old English stōr) and muchel (from Old English myċel). pronunciation
  • (UK) /lɑːdʒ/
  • (US) /lɑɹdʒ/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. Of considerable or relatively great size or extent.
    • 1898, Winston Churchill (novelist) , The Celebrity, 2 , “We drove back to the office with some concern on my part at the prospect of so large a case. Sunning himself on the board steps, I saw for the first time Mr. Farquhar Fenelon Cooke.”
    exampleRussia is a large country.   The fruit-fly has large eyes for its body size.   He has a large collection of stamps.
  2. (obsolete) Abundant; ample.
    • Milton We have yet large day.
  3. (archaic) Full in statement; diffuse; profuse.
    • Felton I might be very large upon the importance and advantages of education.
  4. (obsolete) Free; unencumbered.
    • Fairfax Of burdens all he set the Paynims large.
  5. (obsolete) Unrestrained by decorum; said of language.
    • Shakespeare Some large jests he will make.
  6. (nautical) Crossing the line of a ship's course in a favorable direction; said of the wind when it is abeam, or between the beam and the quarter.
Synonyms: big, huge, giant, gigantic, enormous, stour, great, mickle, largeish, See also
antonyms:
  • small, tiny, minuscule
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (music, obsolete) An old musical note, equal to two longa, four breve, or eight semibreve.
  2. (obsolete) Liberality, generosity.
  3. (slang, plural: large) A thousand dollars. Getting a car tricked out like that will cost you 50 large.
statistics:
  • {{rank}}
anagrams:
  • Alger, Elgar, glare, lager, regal
lark Alternative forms: laverock, lavrock pronunciation
  • (UK) {{enPR}}, /lɑːk/
  • (US) {{enPR}}, /lɑːɹk/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
etymology 1 From Middle English larke, laverke, from Old English lāwerce, laewerce, lāuricæ, from Proto-Germanic *laiwazikǭ (compare dialectal West Frisian larts, Dutch leeuwerik, German Lerche), from *laiwaz (borrowed into Finnish leivo, Estonian lõo), of unknown ultimate origin with no known cognates outside of Germanic.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. Any of various small, singing passerine bird of the family Alaudidae.
  2. Any of various similar-appearing birds, but usually ground-living, such as the meadowlark and titlark.
  3. One who wake early; one who is up with the larks.
Synonyms: (one who wakes early) early bird, early riser
hyponyms:
  • (species in Alaudidae) woodlark, skylark, magpie-lark, horned lark, sea lark, crested lark, shorelark
related terms:
  • happy as a lark
  • lark bunting
  • larker
  • lark sparrow
  • larkspur, plant
  • skylark, the bird
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. To catch larks. to go larking
etymology 2 Origin uncertain, either
  • from a northern English dialectal term lake/laik (around 1300, from Old Norse leika), with an intrusive -r- as is common in southern British dialects; or
  • a shortening of skylark (1809), sailors' slang, "play roughly in the rigging of a ship", because the common European larks were proverbial for high-flying; Dutch has a similar idea in speelvogel.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A romp, frolic, some fun. {{rfquotek}}
  2. A prank.
Synonyms: whim, especially in phrase on a whim
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. To sport, engage in harmless prank.
  2. To frolic, engage in carefree adventure.
anagrams:
  • Karl
larrikin etymology Unclear. Suggested are:
  • A corruption of larking.1875, Florence Davenport Hill, ''What We Saw in Australia'', [http://books.google.com/books?id=gPkNAAAAYAAJ&q=%22larrikin%22+-intitle:%22%22&dq=%22larrikin%22+-intitle:%22%22&hl=en&ei=Ey22TtSgJLDimAWWj7HhAw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=2&ved=0CDEQ6AEwAThG page 93] — The word " larrikin " is supposed to have originated in the pronunciation of an Irish policeman, who, on being asked what had caused the appearance before the magistrate of certain young offenders, accounted for it by saying “they had been ‘ larrikin ’” (larking).
  • From Cornish larrikin ("hooligan").
  • From (area near Birmingham, UK) larrikin ("tongue"); hence, an outspoken person.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (Australia, New Zealand, slang, dated) A brash and impertinent, possibly violent, troublemaker, especially a youth; a hooligan.
    • 1896, , A Visit of Condolence, published in While the Billy Boils: Second Series, republished 2010, Selected Stories, unnumbered page, “How dare you talk to me like that, you young larrikin? Be off! or I'll send for a policeman.”
    • 1913, David Paul Gooding, , Chapter XII, Another man told me there never had been a staff on the hill; but if there had been, perhaps larrikins would have removed it. For larrikinism is one of the evils of New Zealand. Everywhere there one hears of the larrikin, or young hoodlum. Larrikins are an unorganized, mischievous fraternity. They are always despoiling or marring public or private property or making people the butt of coarse jokes and jeers. If something is stolen, "the larrikins took it"; if windows or park seats are broken, "the larrikins did it."
  2. (Australia, slang) A high-spirited person who playfully rebel against authority and conventional norm.
    • 1988, Gavin Souter, Acts of Parliament: A Narrative History of the Senate and House of Representatives, Commonwealth of Australia, page 432, When Browne's turn came, he went down like a true larrikin, giving cheek to the end.
    • 2006 September 5, , It's like a part of Australia has died, "We're all a bit embarrassed by him[]. He puts that image of Australia to the world - that larrikin attitude - and we're not all like that," says Milo Laing, 27, the manager of an Australian-themed bar on Shaftesbury Avenue.
    • 2006, Nick Economou, 26: Jeff Kennett: The larrikin metropolitan, Paul Strangio, Brian Costar (editors), The Victorian Premiers, 1856-2006, page 363, From the moment he had become opposition leader following the defeat of Lindsay Thompson's government in 1982, Jeff Kennett had been viewed as a political larrikin.
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (Australian, slang) Exhibiting the characteristics or behaviour of a larrikin; playfully rebellious against and contemptuous of authority and convention.
    • 1995, Alistair Thomson, A crisis of masculinity? Australian military manhood in the Great War, in Joy Damousi, Marilyn Lake (editors), Gender and War: Australians at War in the Twentieth Century, page 138, Despite his skills as a singer and storyteller, Percy sometimes felt like an outsider among the diggers, excluded by his own ideal and practice of moral manhood from the more larrikin masculinity that he perceived to be predominant.
    • 2002, Peter Craven, Introduction, in Quarterly Essay, QE 5 2002, page iii, Mungo MacCallum is hardly typecast as the chronicler of the story of what has gone right and wrong about the business of immigration, regular and irregular, to this country but this most larrikin and cold-eyed of one-time Canberra chroniclers brings to this story all his wit and dryness and power of mind.
    • 2006, Allon J. Uhlmann, Family, Gender and Kinship in Australia: The Social and Cultural Logic of Practice and Subjectivity, page 151, Another area was occupied by a group of guests with a clearly more larrikin style, and who very much belonged to the dominated fraction.…The language used was rather different (more ‘crude’ in the second one), clothing style was different too (less trendy, and much cheaper clothes in the second group), as was appearance in general (heavier tattoos in the second group, more people with bad teeth, more of the men with the working-class goatee) and the interaction was generally more boisterous.
larruped
verb: {{head}}
  1. en-past of larrup
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (slang) drunk; inebriated
Larry Dooley etymology After Larry Dooley, an otherwise forgotten early boxer, or possibly the better remembered Larry Foley. Popularised by cricket commentator when describing aggressive batsmen.'''2004''' September 10, [http://sport.guardian.co.uk/smalltalk/story/0,,1290556,00.html ''Richie Benaud''], ''The Guardian''. Alternative forms: larry-dooley
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (Australia, slang) A beating, a hiding, a ticking-off; aggro.
    • 1972, Ken Clift, The Saga of a Sig: The Wartime Memories of Six Years Service in the Second A.I.F., page 150, Meggsie and his crew gave the Japs some ‘Larry Dooley’ with a group of Brigade sigs who, galloping back and forth from the armourer′s position carried the bombs after they had been checked.
    • 2001, , The Snow Pony, page 128, She could hear her now, using her grannie′s voice, “You lose ninety per cent of your body heat through your head, young lady, so get that hat on before I give you Larry Dooley.”
  2. (Australia, slang, colloquial, sport or other competitive activity) Extra effort; extra impetus; enthusiastic aggression. As they came down the home straight, the jockey gave his horse Larry Dooley.
    • 2006, , Steven Gray, Roy: Going for Broke, page 135, As Ian Harvey came in, my carefully considered words of advice were something like: ‘Have a look, get settled and then let′s give ′em a bit of Larry Dooley!’
  3. (Australia, slang) Pain, gyp.
    • 1978, , Mary Lord, Hal Porter, Portable Australian Authors, 1980, page 316, “Don't be euphemistic. I′m getting drunk. I intend to get drunker. My sciatica′s giving me Larry Dooley. From now on I′ll pour my own, thank you very much.″
    • 1988, Alexandra Towle, Mothers: A Celebration in Prose, Poetry, and Photographs of Mothers and Motherhood, page 178, And, taking off her shoes new filmed with the dust of roads and adventure, “My corn is giving me Larry Dooley!”
In the sporting sense, one may give, or be exhorted to give, a horse or a car Larry Dooley to speed it up in a race.
LART etymology Acronym of pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈlɑː(ɹ)t/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, computing, facetious) luser attitude readjustment tool; something with which a clueless person is struck
Synonyms: cluebat
larynx {{wikipedia}} etymology From Middle French larynx, from Ancient Greek λάρυγξ 〈lárynx〉 pronunciation
  • /ˈlæ.ɹɪŋks/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. An organ of the neck of mammals involved in breath control, protection of the trachea and sound production, housing the vocal cords, and that is situated at the point where the upper tract splits into the trachea and the oesophagus/esophagus.
Synonyms: voice box (informal)
lasering
verb: {{head}}
  1. present participle of laser
anagrams:
  • aligners, engrails, inlarges, realigns, resignal, sanglier, seal ring, signaler, slangier
lashing pronunciation
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. Something used to tie something or lash it to something. The lashings, that were holding the chest to the deck of the storm tossed ship, broke and it went overboard.
  2. (in the form "lashings of"): plenty of Lashings of ginger beer
  3. The act of one who, or that which, lashes; castigation; chastisement. {{rfquotek}}
verb: {{head}}
  1. present participle of lash
  2. (Ireland, slang) raining heavily.
anagrams:
  • shaling
lashings
noun: {{head}}
  1. plural of lashing.
  2. (informal, UK) Lots; a great amount (usually followed by of). examplelashings of ginger beer
anagrams:
  • hassling
  • slashing
lash up
verb: {{head}}
  1. (transitive, informal) To construct in a shoddy, makeshift manner.
    • 1851, , , Of things not properly belonging to the room, there was a hammock lashed up, and thrown upon the floor in one corner; [...]
Synonyms: jury-rig
anagrams:
  • sulpha
lass etymology From Middle English lasse, from Old Norse *. Cognate with Scots lassie. pronunciation
  • /læs/
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (archaic, informal) A young woman or girl. "Come and dance, ye lads and lasses!"
  2. (Geordie) A sweetheart.
Still prevalent in Scottish English and Northern English dialects such as Geordie (Tyneside), Wearside/County Durham, Northumberland/Northumbrian, Teesside and Yorkshire. Sometimes used poetically in other dialects of English. Synonyms: See also
related terms:
  • buffer lass
  • lad
  • lassie
last-gasp Alternative forms: last gasp
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (colloquial) Happening at the very end of an event.
    • {{quote-news }}
last straw etymology Ellipsis of the straw that broke the camel's back.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) A small addition to a burden which causes it to exceed the capacity. That’s the last straw; it’s a petty demand but I’m already under too much work. I quit!
Synonyms: final straw, the straw that broke the camel's back
anagrams:
  • stalwarts
latchkey kid
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) A schoolchild who carries keys to his or her house because there is usually no parent home when school finishes.
Synonyms: latchkey child
late pronunciation
  • /leɪt/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
etymology From Middle English late, lat, from Old English læt, from Proto-Germanic *lataz, from Proto-Indo-European *lē(y)d-. Cognate with Scots lat, Saterland Frisian leet, Western Frisian let, Dutch laat, Low German laat, German lass, German lässig, Swedish lat, Icelandic latur, Latin lassus. See also last.
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. Near the end of a period of time. exampleIt was late in the evening when we finally arrived.
  2. Specifically, near the end of the day. exampleIt was getting late and I was tired.
  3. (usually, not used comparatively) Associated with the end of a period. exampleLate Latin is less fully inflected than classical Latin.
  4. Not arriving until after an expect time. exampleEven though we drove as fast as we could, we were still late. examplePanos was so late that he arrived at the meeting after Antonio, who had the excuse of being in hospital for most of the night.
  5. Not having had an expected menstrual period. exampleI'm late, honey. Could you buy a test?
  6. {{anchor}}(not comparable, euphemistic) Deceased, dead: used particularly when speaking of the dead person's actions while alive. (Often used with "the"; see usage notes.)
    • 1918, W. B. Maxwell, 12 , [http://openlibrary.org/works/OL1097634W The Mirror and the Lamp] , “To Edward […] he was terrible, nerve-inflaming, poisonously asphyxiating. He sat rocking himself in the late Mr. Churchill's swing chair, smoking and twaddling.”
    exampleHer late husband had left her well provided for. exampleThe piece was composed by the late Igor Stravinsky.
  7. Existing or holding some position not long ago, but not now; departed, or gone out of office. examplethe late bishop of London;  the late administration
  8. Recent — relative to the noun it modifies.
    • 1914, Robert Frost, North of Boston, "A Hundred Collars": Lancaster bore him — such a little town, / Such a great man. It doesn't see him often / Of late years, though he keeps the old homestead / And sends the children down there with their mother…
  • (deceased) in this sense is unusual among English adjectives in that it qualifies named individuals (in phrases like ) without creating a contrast with another Mary who is not late. Contrast hungry: a phrase like is usually only used if another Mary is under discussion who is not hungry.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) A shift (scheduled work period) that takes place late in the day or at night.
    • 2007, Paul W Browning, The Good Guys Wear Blue At about 11 pm one night in Corporation Street my watch were on van patrol and Yellow Watch were on lates as usual.
adverb: {{en-adv}}
  1. After a deadline has passed, past a designated time. We drove as fast as we could, but we still arrived late.
  2. formerly, especially in the context of service in a military unit. Colonel Easterwood, late of the 34th Carbines, was a guest at the dinner party.
statistics:
  • {{rank}}
anagrams:
  • et al.
  • ETLA
  • leat
  • tael
  • tale
  • teal
  • tela
lateish etymology late + ish
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (colloquial) Quite late
adverb: {{en-adv}}
  1. (colloquial) Quite late
later pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}
    • (UK) /ˈleɪtə/
    • (US) /ˈleɪtɚ/, [ˈleɪ̯ɾɚ]
    • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
etymology late + -er
adverb: {{head}}
  1. en-comparative of late You came in late yesterday and today you came in even later.
  2. Afterward in time (used with than when comparing with another time). My roommate arrived first. I arrived later. I arrived later than my roommate.
  3. At some unspecified time in the future. I wanted to do it now, but I'll have to do it later.
antonyms:
  • earlier
adjective: {{head}}
  1. en-comparative of late Jim was later than John.
  2. Coming afterward in time (used with than when comparing with another time). The Victorian era is a later period of English history than the Elizabethan era.
  3. At some time in the future. The meeting was adjourned to a later date.
antonyms:
  • earlier
interjection: {{head}}
  1. (slang) See you later; goodbye. Later, dude.
  2. (slang) Dismissive term to minimize importance of an annoying persons.
Frequently used with "for you". "Later for you."
statistics:
  • {{rank}}
anagrams:
  • alert
  • alter
  • artel
  • ratel
  • taler
laters etymology Shortened from see you later, with hypocoristic -s (compare toodles from toodleloo and bye-byes from good-bye). pronunciation
  • {{audio}}
interjection: {{en-interj}}!
  1. (slang) see you later; an expression used at parting.
    • 2001, Anna Maxted, Getting Over It : But all she says is “Ring us if you want to go out this week. Laters!” and puts the phone down.
    • 2004, J J Connolly, Layer Cake : ‘Shanks,’ says Trevor into his mobile, ‘we just gone down a snake. I’ll see ya tomorrow, laters.’
    • 2004, Thomas Neradin, Last Train : You know where the money is and how much. Tell him the usual. Yep. Laters.
anagrams:
  • alerts, alters, artels, estral, laster, ratels, salter, slater, staler, talers
lather, rinse, repeat etymology From the directions on a bottle of shampoo.
phrase: {{en-phrase}} {{wikipedia}}
  1. (informal, often humorous) Indicating that an action or process is repeated.
    • 2005, Deke McClelland, Galen Fott, Photoshop Elements 3 for Dummies Use the step backward icon again and experiment with the other three icons, drawing overlapping shapes. Lather, rinse, repeat.
    • 2006, Annalee Newitz, Charlie Anders, She's such a geek!: women write about science, technology and other nerdy stuff Then, burned-out after a spring and summer of machining, testing, tweaking, lather, rinse, repeat, I took a driving vacation with my husband...
    • 2007, M P Dunleavey, Money Can Buy Happiness: How to Spend to Get the Life You Want Lather, rinse, repeat until you get tired of watching your money go down the drain.
Latino etymology From Spanish latino {{pos_a}}, from Spanish latinoamericano (Latin American), from Latin latinus (pertaining to Latium, the region of Italy around Rome), possibly from Proto-Indo-European base *stela- (to spread, to extend, hence flat country as opposed to mountainous). pronunciation
  • (US) /ləˈtinoʊ/, /læˈtinoʊ/
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. Of Latin America descent.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A person, especially and usually a male, from Latin America. (Compare Latina.) Latinos have quickly become the largest ethnic minority in the United States.
anagrams:
  • lation, talion
latrine etymology From French latrine, from Latin lātrīna. pronunciation
  • (UK) /ləˈtɹiːn/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A very simple toilet facility, usually just a pit or trench. See also the slang terms john and johnny house.
related terms:
  • privy
anagrams:
  • entrail
  • larnite
  • line art
  • ratline
  • reliant
  • retinal
  • trainel
  • trenail
lats
etymology 1 From Latvian lats. pronunciation
  • (GenAm) /ˈlɑts/
  • (RP) /ˈlɑːts/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. Former currency of Latvia, divided into 100 santims; it was replaced by the Euro on Jan. 1, 2014.
Synonyms: lat
etymology 2 {{clipping}} + -s pronunciation
  • (GenAm) /ˈlæts/
noun: {{en-plural noun}}
  1. (informal) The latissimus dorsi muscle.
anagrams:
  • last
  • salt
  • slat
laugh Alternative forms: laff (eye dialect), laughe (archaic), larf (Cockney eye dialect) etymology From Middle English laughen, laghen, from Old English (Anglian) hlæhhan, hlehhan, (West Saxon) hliehhan, from Proto-Germanic *hlahjaną, from Proto-Indo-European *klok-ie. {{rel-top}} Germanic: (with j-present) Scots lauch, Icelandic hlæja, Danish le; (without) Low German lachen, Dutch lachen, German lachen. Indo-European: Russian клоктать 〈kloktatʹ〉, клохтать 〈klohtatʹ〉 ‘to cluck, cackle’, Ancient Greek κλώζω 〈klṓzō〉, κλώσσω 〈klṓssō〉 ‘to cackle, clack’, Welsh cloch ‘bell’, possibly Latin glōcīre ‘to cluck’. {{rel-bottom}} pronunciation
  • (Australia) /laːf/
  • (UK) /lɑːf/
  • (US) {{enPR}}, /læf/
    • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}} {{examples-right}}
  1. An expression of mirth particular to the human species; the sound heard in laughing; laughter.
    • 1803, Oliver Goldsmith, The Poetical Works of Oliver Goldsmith, M.B.: With an Account of His Life, page 45: And the loud laugh that spoke the vacant mind.
    • 1869, F. W. Robertson, Lectures and Addresses on Literary and Social Topics, page 87: That man is a bad man who has not within him the power of a hearty laugh.
  2. Something that provokes mirth or scorn.
    • 1921, Ring Lardner, The Big Town: How I and the Mrs. Go to New York to See Life and Get Katie a Husband, The Bobbs-Merrill Company, page 73: “And this rug,” he says, stomping on an old rag carpet. “How much do you suppose that cost?” ¶ It was my first guess, so I said fifty dollars. ¶ “That’s a laugh,” he said. “I paid two thousand for that rug.”
    • 1979, Monty Python, Always Look on the Bright Side of Life Life's a piece of shit / When you look at it / Life's a laugh and death's a joke, it's true.
  3. (UK) A fun person.
    • 2010, The Times, March 14, 2010, Tamzin Outhwaite, the unlikely musical star Outhwaite is a good laugh, yes, she knows how to smile: but deep down, she really is strong and stern.
Synonyms: (expression of mirth) cackle, chortle, chuckle, giggle, guffaw, snicker, snigger, titter, cachinnation, (something that provokes mirth or scorn) joke, laughing stock
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (intransitive) To show mirth, satisfaction, or derision, by peculiar movement of the muscle of the face, particularly of the mouth, causing a lighting up of the face and eye, and usually accompanied by the emission of explosive or chuckling sound from the chest and throat; to indulge in laughter.
    • c. 1602, William Shakespeare, Troilus and Cressida, act I, scene ii: But there was such laughing! Queen Hecuba laugh'd that her eyes ran o'er.
    • 1899, Stephen Crane, The roars of laughter which greeted his proclamation were of two qualities; some men laughing because they knew all about cuckoo-clocks, and other men laughing because they had concluded that the eccentric Jake had been victimised by some wise child of civilisation.
    • 1979, Monty Python, Always Look on the Bright Side of Life If life seems jolly rotten / There's something you've forgotten / And that's to laugh and smile and dance and sing.
  2. (intransitive, obsolete, figuratively) To be or appear cheerful, pleasant, mirthful, lively, or brilliant; to sparkle; to sport.
    • 1693, John Dryden, "Of the Pythagorean Philosophy", from the 15th book of Ovid's Metamorphoses Then laughs the childish year, with flowerets crowned…
    • 1734, Alexander Pope, An Essay on Man, Chapter 3 In Folly’s cup ſtill laughs the bubble Joy.
  3. (intransitive, followed by "at") To make an object of laughter or ridicule; to make fun of; to deride; to mock.
    • 1731-1735, Alexander Pope, Moral Essays No wit to flatter left of all his store, No fool to laugh at, which he valu'd more.
    • 1890, Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray, Chapter 3 There was something about him, Harry, that amused me. He was such a monster. You will laugh at me, I know, but I really went in and paid a whole guinea for the stage-box. To the present day I can't make out why I did so; and yet if I hadn't! – my dear Harry, if I hadn't, I would have missed the greatest romance of my life. I see you are laughing. It is horrid of you!"
    • 1967, The Beatles, Penny Lane On the corner is a banker with a motorcar / The little children laugh at him behind his back
  4. (transitive) To affect or influence by means of laughter or ridicule.
    • 1611, William Shakespeare, The Tempest, act II, scene i: Will you laugh me asleep, for I am very heavy?
    • 1611, William Shakespeare, The Tempest, act II, scene ii: I shall laugh myself to death.
  5. (transitive) To express by, or utter with, laughter.
    • 1602, William Shakespeare, Troilus and Cressida, act I, scene iii: From his deep chest laughs out a loud applause.
    • 1866, Louisa May Alcott, Behind A Mask or, A Woman's Power; Chapter 8 Fairfax addressed her as "my lady," she laughed her musical laugh, and glanced up at a picture of Gerald with eyes full of exultation.
    • 1906, Jack London, Moon-Face "You refuse to take me seriously," Lute said, when she had laughed her appreciation. "How can I take that Planchette rigmarole seriously?"
The simple past tense forms laught, laugh'd and low and the past participles laught, laugh'd and laughen also exist, but are obsolete. Synonyms: (show mirth by peculiar movement of the muscles of the face) cackle, chortle, chuckle, giggle, guffaw, snicker, snigger, titter, See also
antonyms:
  • (show mirth by peculiar movement of the muscles of the face) cry, weep
coordinate terms:
  • (show mirth by peculiar movement of the muscles of the face) cry
related terms:
  • laughster
  • laughter
anagrams:
  • Aghul
laughathon etymology laugh + athon
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) Something very funny; a comedy session or period of great amusement.
    • 1995, Paul Auster, Mr. Vertigo Oh, I had a jolly time in South Dakota, all right, a regular laughathon of nonstop fun and entertainment
    • 2000, Mike Douglas, Thomas Kelly, Michael Heaton, I'll Be Right Back: Memories of TV's Greatest Talk Show They were already into that raucous rhythm that made their show a TV landmark. Nonstop jokes, topping each other, full speed ahead, no holds barred laughathon.
    • 2002, Terrence D. Haynes, Desert Norm: A Journal/Novel About the Gulf War (page 169) It was a laughathon at Headquarters.
    • 2004, Carrie Asai, The Book of the Shadow (page 36) What if they were having a big laughathon over Heaven and her stupid crush?
Synonyms: laughfest, riot
laughing academy
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) A mental hospital.
    • 1971 Oct. 11, Stefan Kanfer, "Cinema: Senescent Saint" (film review of Kotch), Time (retrieved 7 June 2014): "Tell me, do you think your old man has slipped his trolley—that he belongs in a laughing academy?"
    • 1981 Nov. 23, , "Books Of The Times" (review of The Letters of Nunnally Johnson), New York Times (retrieved 7 June 2014): One day the men in white will walk in, throw a net over him, and take him off to the laughing academy.
    • 2009, , Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, ISBN 9780345512505, (Google books preview): Meanwhile William struggled to shake the thought of his mother spending her final years locked away in a nuthouse—a laughing academy, a funny farm.
Synonyms: See
laughing gear
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (UK, Australia, New Zealand, jocular, slang) The mouth.
    • 2005, Brian Castro, The Garden Book, Giramond Publishing, NSW, page 110, His dumb face made me believe him. I told him if he saw anything unusual to come and tell me. Sure, Mr Damon, he whimpered. Sure, Mr Damon...I could have knocked out his laughing-gear.
    • 2007, Danny Palmerlee, South America on a Shoestring, Lonely Planet, page 801, Wrap your laughing gear around these luscious Lebanese swamis (meat and spice wrapped in Lebanese bread).
    • 2008, Teri Louise Kelly, Sex, Knives and Bouillabaisse, Wakefield Press, South Australia, page 59, You will recognize him instantly — a man with his laughing gear permanently attached to a liquor bottle.
    • 2008, Charles Rawlings-Way, New Zealand Wrap your laughing gear around fresh bread and tasty spreads to set yourself up for the day.
    • 2009, Mark Abernethy, Second Strike, Allen & Unwin, NSW, page 586, ‘Get your laughing gear round that lot,’ Frank drawled as he put the chops, steaks and bangers on the table.
    • 2012, Peter Kaminsky, Fishing For Dummies, John Wiley & Sons, UK, page 63, Despite having pretty mean teeth, it lacks the laughing gear of the pike and thus smaller baits tend to be used.
laughing hyena Alternative forms: laughing hyaena (dated)
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) The spotted hyena ({{taxlink}}); so called because of the resemblance of its call to laughter.
Synonyms: spotted hyena
laugh one's head off
verb: {{head}}
  1. (idiomatic, informal) To laugh uproarious.
lav pronunciation
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (British, slang) Lavatory. Please miss, Johnny wants to go to the lav.
Synonyms: (lavatory):
  • (standard): lavatory, toilet
  • (colloquial/slang): little boy's room, little girl's room, loo, smallest room
  • (coarse/taboo slang): bog, crapper, shithouse, shitter
, (standard): lavatory, toilet, (colloquial/slang): little boy's room, little girl's room, loo, smallest room, (coarse/taboo slang): bog, crapper, shithouse, shitter
anagrams:
  • Val
lava {{wikipedia}} etymology From Italian lava, originally, in Naples, a torrent of rain overflowing the streets, from lavare. See etymology for the English verb lave. pronunciation
  • (US), (UK) {{enPR}}, /ˈlɑːvə/
  • (CA) /ˈlɑːvə/, /ˈlævə/
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. The melted rock ejected by a volcano from its crater or fissure sides.
  2. (informal, proscribed) Magma.
  3. A shade of red, named after the volcanic lava. {{color panel}}
Geologists make a distinction between magma (molten rock underground) and lava (molten rock on the surface).
anagrams:
  • aval
Laval {{wikipedia}}
proper noun: {{en-proper noun}}
  1. A city in France, the prefecture of the department of Mayenne.
  2. The second largest city in Quebec, a province of Canada
  3. (informal) Île Jésus, an island in Quebec, where the city of Laval is located.
lavatory etymology From Latin as if *, from ll lavator, from lavō; see lave. pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈlæv.ə.tri/, /ˈlæv.ə.təɹ.i/
  • (US) /ˈlæv.ə.tɔɹ.i/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A bathroom; a washroom; a room containing a toilet.
    • 2003, Gauvin A. Bailey, Between Renaissance and Baroque: Jesuit Art in Rome, 1565-1610, University of Toronto Press, [http//books.google.com.au/books?id=suRw3StCpEEC&pg=PA61&dq=%22lavatory%22|%22lavatories%22+-intitle:%22%22+-inauthor:%22%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=f4ueT5_FJayKmQW2wcTODg&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=%22lavatory%22|%22lavatories%22%20-intitle%3A%22%22%20-inauthor%3A%22%22&f=false page 61], Even the lavatory, a vestibule to the refectory through which the novices would pass on their way to the recreation room, boasted a painting cycle.
    • 2003, Rob Rachowiecki, Danny Palmerlee, Ecuador and the Galápagos Islands, [http//books.google.com.au/books?id=4KQbiA1T-MEC&pg=PA44&dq=%22lavatory%22|%22lavatories%22+-intitle:%22%22+-inauthor:%22%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=X6CeT5LlMaWiiAejgpmrBQ&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=%22lavatory%22|%22lavatories%22%20-intitle%3A%22%22%20-inauthor%3A%22%22&f=false page 44], People needing to use the lavatory often ask to use the baño in a restaurant; toilet paper is rarely available, so the experienced traveler always carries a personal supply.
  2. A facility for washing hand; a basin.
    • 2005, Michael W. Litchfield, Renovation, [http//books.google.com.au/books?id=CPZQYiuX-W0C&pg=PA325&dq=%22lavatory%22|%22lavatories%22+-intitle:%22%22+-inauthor:%22%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=bJSeT7KmLOK5iQfDko3_Ag&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=%22lavatory%22|%22lavatories%22%20-intitle%3A%22%22%20-inauthor%3A%22%22&f=false page 325], Lavatories (bathroom sinks) are available in a blizzard of colors, materials, and styles.
    • 2010, Chris Peterson, Black & Decker: The Complete Guide to Bathrooms, Third Edition, [http//books.google.com.au/books?id=vPxIRYtCMxkC&pg=PA162&dq=%22lavatory%22|%22lavatories%22+-intitle:%22%22+-inauthor:%22%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=f4ueT5_FJayKmQW2wcTODg&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=%22lavatory%22|%22lavatories%22%20-intitle%3A%22%22%20-inauthor%3A%22%22&f=false page 162], If your lavatory doesn′t have a predrilled flange, the great advantage to the widespread configuration is that you gain flexibility in locating your spout and handles (probably a bigger advantage for tubs than for lavatories).
    • 2011, Sharon Koomen Harmon, Katherine E. Kennon, The Codes Guidebook for Interiors, [http//books.google.com.au/books?id=BdT-tAR_afAC&pg=PA288&dq=%22lavatory%22|%22lavatories%22+-intitle:%22%22+-inauthor:%22%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=f4ueT5_FJayKmQW2wcTODg&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=%22lavatory%22|%22lavatories%22%20-intitle%3A%22%22%20-inauthor%3A%22%22&f=false page 288], Anywhere a water closet is used, a lavatory (ie, hand-washing sink) must also be installed.
  3. (UK, New England) A toilet, a water closet.
    • 1997, , The Plague of Fantasies, Verso, London, [http//books.google.com.au/books?id=NM5PqgKd2dsC&pg=PA4&dq=%22lavatory%22|%22lavatories%22+-intitle:%22%22+-inauthor:%22%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=k5eeT66OGdDymAXFtJnSDg&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=%22lavatory%22|%22lavatories%22%20-intitle%3A%22%22%20-inauthor%3A%22%22&f=false page 4], In a traditional German lavatory, the hole in which shit disappears after we flush water is way in front, so that the shit is first laid out for us to sniff at and inspect for traces of some illness; in the typical French lavatory, on the contrary, the hole is in the back - that is, the shit is supposed to disappear as soon as possible; finally, the Anglo-Saxon (English or American) lavatory presents a kind of synthesis, a mediation between these two opposed poles - the basin is full of water so that the shit floats in it - visible, but not to be inspected.
related terms:
  • lavatorium
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (dated) Washing, or cleansing by washing.
lavish Alternative forms: lavis, laves, lavas (obsolete) etymology From Middle English lavas, from Old French lavasse. pronunciation
  • /ˈlævɪʃ/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. Expending or bestow profuse; profuse; prodigal. examplelavish of money;   lavish of praise
    • 1898, Winston Churchill (novelist) , The Celebrity, 8 , “The day was cool and snappy for August, and the Rise all green with a lavish nature. Now we plunged into a deep shade with the boughs lacing each other overhead, and crossed dainty, rustic bridges over the cold trout-streams, the boards giving back the clatter of our horses' feet:….”
    • {{RQ:Chrsty Atbgrfy}} Mind you, clothes were clothes in those days. There was a great deal of them, lavish both in material and in workmanship.
  2. Superabundant; excessive; as, lavish spirits.
    • 1623, William Shakespeare, Measure for Measure Act 2 Scene 2 Let her haue needfull, but not lauish meanes
Synonyms: (expending profusely): profuse, prodigal, wasteful, extravagant, exuberant, immoderate, See also
related terms:
  • lavy
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To expend or bestow with profusion; to use with prodigality; to squander; as, to lavish money or praise.
related terms:
  • lavisher
  • lavishly
  • lavishness
anagrams:
  • Vishal
law {{wikipedia}} pronunciation
  • (UK) {{enPR}}, /lɔː/
    • {{audio}}
    • {{rhymes}}
  • (US) {{enPR}}, /lɔ/
  • (cot-caught) {{enPR}}, /lɑ/
    • {{audio}}
  • {{homophones}} (in some non-rhotic accents)
etymology 1 From Middle English lawe, laȝe, from Old English lagu, from Old Norse *, an early plural form of lag, lǫg, from Proto-Germanic *lagą, from Proto-Indo-European *legh-. Cognate with Icelandic lög, Swedish lag, Danish lov. Replaced Old English ǣ and gesetnes. More at lay. {{rfc}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (uncountable) The body of rules and standard issued by a government, or to be applied by court and similar authorities. exampleBy law, one is not allowed to own a wallaby in New York City.
    • 1918, W. B. Maxwell, 22 , [http://openlibrary.org/works/OL1097634W The Mirror and the Lamp] , “Not unnaturally, “Auntie” took this communication in bad part.…Next day she…tried to recover her ward by the hair of the head. Then, thwarted, the wretched creature went to the police for help; she was versed in the law, and had perhaps spared no pains to keep on good terms with the local constabulary.”
  2. A particular such rule. exampleA new law forbids driving on that road.
    • {{RQ:Brmnghm Gsmr}} As a political system democracy seems to me extraordinarily foolish,{{nb...}}. My servant is, so far as I am concerned, welcome to as many votes as he can get.…I do not suppose that it matters much in reality whether laws are made by dukes or cornerboys, but I like, as far as possible, to associate with gentlemen in private life.
  3. (more generally) A written or understood rule that concern behaviour and their consequence. Laws are usually associated with mores. example"Do unto others as you wish them to do unto you" is a good law to follow.
  4. (scientific, strictly) A well-established, observed physical characteristic or behavior of nature. The word is used to simply identify "what happens," without implying any explanatory mechanism or causation. Compare to theory. exampleNewton's third law of motion states that to every action there is always an equal and opposite reaction. This is one of several laws derived from his general theory expounded in the Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica.
  5. (mathematics) A statement that is true under specified condition.
  6. A category of English "common law" petition that request monetary relief, as opposed to relief in forms other than a monetary judgment; compare to "equity".
  7. (cricket) One of the official rules of cricket as codified by the MCC.
  8. (slang, uncountable, ) The police. exampleHere comes the law — run! 〈Here comes the law — run!〉
  9. (fantasy) One of the two metaphysical forces of the world in some fantasy settings, as opposed to chaos.
  10. An oath, as in the presence of a court. See wager of law.
hyponyms:
  • sharia law
etymology 2 From Old English hlāw. Also spelled low.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (obsolete) a tumulus of stones
  2. (Scottish and northern dialectal, archaic) a hill
    • 1892, Robert Louis Stevenson, Across the Plains You might climb the Law [...] and behold the face of many counties.
etymology 3 Compare la.
interjection: {{en-interj}}
  1. (dated) An exclamation of mild surprise; lawks.
statistics:
  • {{rank}}
anagrams:
  • awl
lawn dart
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A large dart used in the playing of certain lawn games.
  2. (humorous, derisive) Any of various makes and models of airplane that have gained a reputation for crashing.
lawn food
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) Fertilizer for grass.
    • 1989 June 19, Julie Greenwalt, "The Grass Is Always Greener on Jerry Baker's Lawn Because He Feeds It Beer, Soap and Ammonia," People Magazine (retrieved 22 April 2015): To fertilize, take a hose-end sprayer. Pour in one cup of liquid lawn food and follow with a can of beer, a cup of flea-and-tick shampoo and the balance in household ammonia.
    • 2007 Oct. 5, "Garden advice: Thorny problems," Telegraph (UK) (retrieved 22 April 2015): Buy him a rake, a rotary mower with a grass collection box, some autumn lawn food and The Lawn Expert by Dr Hessayon (£7.99, Transworld).
    • 2015 April 14, Mary Hunt, "Secrets of a cheapskate gardener," twincities.com Pioneer Press (retrieved 22 April 2015): Mix four pounds magnesium sulfate (Epsom salts) with a bag of your favorite lawn food that covers 2,500 square feet.
law of averages {{wikipedia}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (statistics) The statistical tendency toward a fixed proportion in the result when an experiment is repeat a large number of times; the law of large numbers.
    • 1919, William David Winter, Marine Insurance: Its Principles and Practice, McGraw-Hill, Page 96, ... as they will not have sufficient distribution of risk to permit the law of averages to play its part and a severe total loss may ...
    • 1971, Russell Langley, Practical Statistics Simply Explained, Courier Dover Publications, ISBN 0486227294, Page 22 Second Law - The Law of Averages. Whenever something (such as throwing a die) can have more than one result, if all the possible results have an equal chance ...
    • 1986, Geoffrey Grimmett & Dominic Welsh, Probability: An Introduction, OUP, ISBN 0198532644, Page 124, It is upon the ideas of 'repeated experimentation' and the law of averages that many of our notions of chance are founded.
  2. (informal) An imaginary or perceived "law" of probabilities which is wrongly used to predict results in the short-term. This coin has landed on heads ten times, so by the law of averages it must land on tails next time.
Law of Conservation of Ninjutsu etymology law + of + conservation + of + ninjutsu Taken literally, this law states that each team of ninjas has the same finite amount of "power" of martial arts, therefore a team with less ninjas has more powerful ninjas.
proper noun: {{en-proper noun}}
  1. (narratology, fiction, informal, humorous) In a fictional fight, the phenomenon of the team with fewer people often being apparently more powerful than the other team.
    • {{quote-usenet }} > The more creativity and ingenuity you give your aliens, the less is > available for your humans, generally the protagonists, which means > things will end poorly for Our Heroes. [...] Sort of like a SCIENCE application of the Law of Conservation of Ninjutsu?
    • {{quote-usenet }} In other words, if I can tweak the minion->normal->elite->solo system into a in-game representation of the Law of Conservation of Ninjutsu, there will be much win.
    • {{quote-usenet }} The Law of Conservation of Ninjutsu was working in the main characters' favor, but even so, it was hard going.
lawsuit {{wikipedia}} etymology law + suit pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}, /ˈlɔˌsut/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (legal) In civil law, a case where two or more people disagree and one or more of the parties take the case to a court for resolution.
    • {{quote-magazine}}
    exampleThe lawyer advised his client against filing a lawsuit as it would take a lot of time and money to resolve.
lawyer {{wikipedia}} Alternative forms: lawer (obsolete) etymology From Middle English lawyer, lawer, equivalent to law + yer. pronunciation
  • (RP) /ˈlɔːjə(ɹ)/, /ˈlɔɪ.ə(ɹ)/''Oxford English Dictionary''. "Lawyer, n."
  • (US) /lɔɪ.ɚ/
  • (US) /lɔ.jɚ/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
  • {{hyphenation}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A professional person qualified (as by a law degree and/or bar exam) and authorized to practice law, i.e. conduct lawsuits and/or give legal advice.
    • {{RQ:Chmbrs YngrSt}} His forefathers had been, as a rule, professional men—physicians and lawyers; his grandfather died under the walls of Chapultepec Castle while twisting a tourniquet for a cursing dragoon; an uncle remained indefinitely at Malvern Hill;{{nb...}}.
  2. By extension, a legal layman who argues points of law.
Synonyms: advocate, attorney, counselor
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (informal) To practice law.
  2. To perform, or attempt to perform, the work of a lawyer.
  3. To make legalistic arguments.
  4. With "up", to acquire the services of a lawyer.
  5. (colloquial, criminal law) With "up", to exercise the right to ask for the presence of one's attorney.
  6. To barrage with questions in order to get the person to admit something, usually used in the past tense "[You've been] lawyered."
related terms:
  • lawyer up
anagrams:
  • warely
lawyerball etymology lawyer + ball, after the names of sports such as football and basketball.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal, humorous, derogatory) A supposed game consisting of pedantic legal wrangling.
    • 1998, "Eddie Auerbach", Rules Question: Straddling Foul Line OK? (discussion on Internet newsgroup rec.sport.baseball) I think this answers your question. It is sufficiently vague enough that it doesn't answer your question *specifically* if you're playing lawyerball, but I think the meaning is clear.
    • 2000, "Steve Ferra", (NBC) Turning away from FL for a minute... (discussion on Internet newsgroup rec.music.artists.springsteen) ...Ashcroft/Carnahan is now 50/50, and the bulk of the MO vote is from St. Louis. All hail the dead man! (Should be an interesting court battle, although the Republicans ought to accept the popular will and not play lawyerball).
    • 2007, Ronald J York, The Police Negotiator's Handbook If your attorney and the city's attorney wrestle control of the negotiating process away from you, they will immediately start playing "lawyerball."
lawyerese etymology lawyer + ese
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) The jargon used by lawyer.
lawyerspeak etymology lawyer + speak
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) The abstruse jargon of lawyer.
    • {{quote-news}}
Synonyms: legalese
lawyer up
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (intransitive, chiefly, US, informal) To exercise one's right to legal representation, especially on the occasion of refusing to answer law-enforcement official' questions without the presence of such legal representation. Lawyer up, delete Facebook, hit the gym.
    • 2001, Amanda Ripley, "Rage Of The Hamptons," Time, 15 July: By the time patrol cars got to the friend's house, so had her lawyer. With her attorney running blocker, police could not even ascertain if Grubman had been driving the car, says Suffolk County district attorney James Catterson. "She was lawyered up, as we like to say."
  2. (intransitive, chiefly, US, informal, business) To conduct matters in accord with legal formalities or so as to avoid legal risk. Whenever we do business with those guys, we lawyer up to protect ourselves.
  3. (transitive, informal, business) To arrange in a way reflecting legal advice. By the time we finished lawyering up the agreement, we didn't want to sign it.
laxer
adjective: {{head}}
  1. en-comparative of lax
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) lacrosse player
anagrams:
  • relax
lay pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}, /leɪ̯/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
  • {{homophones}}
etymology 1 From Middle English layen, leggen, from Old English lecgan, from Proto-Germanic *lagjaną, causative form of Proto-Germanic *ligjaną, *legjaną, from Proto-Indo-European *legʰ-. Cognate with West Frisian lizze, Dutch leggen, German legen, Norwegian ligge, Swedish lägga, Icelandic leggja, Albanian lag.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To place down in a position of rest, or in a horizontal position. to lay a book on the table;   to lay a body in the grave A shower of rain lays the dust.
    • Bible, Book of Daniel vi. 17 A stone was brought, and laid upon the mouth of the den.
    • 1735, author unknown, The New-England Primer, as reported by Fred R. Shapiro in The Yale Book of Quotations (2006), Yale University Press, pages 549–550: Now I lay me down to sleep, / I pray the Lord my Soul to keep. / If I should die before I ’wake, / I pray the Lord my Soul to take.
    • 1898, Winston Churchill (novelist) , The Celebrity, 1 , “He used to drop into my chambers once in a while to smoke, and was first-rate company. When I gave a dinner there was generally a cover laid for him.”
    • {{RQ:Chrsty Atbgrfy}} An indulgent playmate, Grannie would lay aside the long scratchy-looking letter she was writing (heavily crossed ‘to save notepaper’) and enter into the delightful pastime of ‘a chicken from Mr Whiteley's’.
    A corresponding intransitive version of this word is lie.
  2. (transitive, archaic) To cause to subside or abate.
    • 1590, Edmund Spenser, The Faerie Queene, II.viii: The cloudes, as things affrayd, before him flye; / But all so soone as his outrageous powre / Is layd, they fiercely then begin to shoure …
    • 1662, Sir_Thomas_Salusbury,_2nd_Baronet, Galileo's Dialogue Concerning the Two World Systems, Dialogue 2: But how upon the winds being laid, doth the ship cease to move?
  3. (transitive) To prepare (a plan, project etc.); to set out, establish (a law, principle).
    • 2006, Clive James, North Face of Soho, Picador 2007, p. 48: Even when I lay a long plan, it is never in the expectation that I will live to see it fulfilled.
  4. (transitive) To install certain building materials, laying one thing on top of another. lay brick;  lay flooring
  5. (transitive) To produce and deposit an egg.
  6. (transitive) To bet (that something is or is not the case). I'll lay that he doesn't turn up on Monday.
  7. (transitive) To deposit (a stake) as a wager; to stake; to risk.
    • William Shakespeare (1564-1616) I dare lay mine honour / He will remain so.
  8. (transitive, slang) To have sex with.
    • 1944, Raymond Chandler, The Lady in the Lake, Penguin 2011, p. 11: ‘It's because he's a no-good son of a bitch who thinks it is smart to lay his friends' wives and brag about it.’
  9. (nautical) To take a position; to come or go. to lay forward;  to lay aloft
  10. (legal) To state; to allege. to lay the venue {{rfquotek}}
  11. (military) To point; to aim. to lay a gun
  12. (ropemaking) To put the strands of (a rope, a cable, etc.) in their proper places and twist or unite them. to lay a cable or rope
  13. (printing) To place and arrange (pages) for a form upon the imposing stone.
  14. (printing) To place (new type) properly in the case.
  15. To apply; to put.
    • Bible, Book of Proverbs xxxi. 19 She layeth her hands to the spindle.
  16. To impose (a burden, punishment, command, tax, etc.). to lay a tax on land
    • Bible, Book of Isaiah liii. 6 The Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.
  17. To impute; to charge; to allege.
    • Bible, Book of Job xxiv. 12 God layeth not folly to them.
    • William Shakespeare (1564-1616) Lay the fault on us.
  18. To present or offer. to lay an indictment in a particular county;   to lay a scheme before one
{{Webster 1913}}
etymology 2 From the verb.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. Arrangement or relationship; layout. the lay of the land
  2. A share of the profits in a business.
    • 1851, , , I was already aware that in the whaling business they paid no wages; but all hands, including the captain, received certain shares of the profits called lays, and that these lays were proportioned to the degree of importance pertaining to the respective duties of the ship’s company.
  3. The direction a rope is twist. Worm and parcel with the lay; turn and serve the other way.
  4. (colloquial) A casual sexual partner.
    • 1996, JoAnn Ross, Southern Comforts, MIRA (1996), ISBN 9780778315254, page 166: Over the years she'd tried to tell himself that his uptown girl was just another lay.
    • 2000, R. J. Kaiser, Fruitcake, MIRA (2000), ISBN 1551666251, page 288: To find a place like that and be discreet about it, Jones figured he needed help, so he went to see his favorite lay, Juan Carillo's woman, Carmen.
    • 2011, Kelly Meding, Trance, Pocket Books (2011), ISBN 9781451620924, pages 205-206: “Because I don't want William to be just another lay. I did the slut thing, T, and it got me into a lot of trouble years ago. {{…}}
    What was I, just another lay you can toss aside as you go on to your next conquest?
  5. (colloquial) An act of sexual intercourse.
    • 1993, David Halberstam, The Fifties, Open Road Integrated Media (2012), ISBN 9781453286074, unnumbered page: Listening to this dismissal of his work, [Tennessee] Williams thought to himself of Wilder, “This character has never had a good lay.”
    • 2009, Fern Michaels, The Scoop, Kensington Books (2009), ISBN 9780758227188, pages 212-213: {{…}} She didn't become this germ freak until Thomas died. I wonder if she just needs a good lay, you know, an all-nighter?" Toots said thoughtfully.
    • 2011, Pamela Yaye, Promises We Make, Kimani Press (2011), ISBN 9780373861996, unnumbered page: “What she needs is a good lay. If she had someone to rock her world on a regular basis, she wouldn't be such a raging bit—”
  6. (slang, archaic) A plan; a scheme. {{rfquotek}}
Synonyms: (casual sexual partner) see also .
etymology 3 From Middle English laie, lawe, from Old English lagu, from Proto-Germanic *laguz, from Proto-Indo-European *lakw-. Cognate with Icelandic lögur, Latin lacus.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A lake.
etymology 4 From Old French lai
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. Non-professional; not being a member of an organized institution.
    • {{quote-book }}
  2. Not belonging to the clergy, but associated with them. They seemed more lay than clerical. a lay preacher; a lay brother
  3. (obsolete) Not educated or cultivated; ignorant.
related terms:
  • laity
  • layman
  • layperson
  • lay person
  • laywoman
etymology 5 See lie
verb: {{head}}
  1. en-simple past of lie when pertaining to position. The baby lay in its crib and slept silently.
  2. (proscribed) To be in a horizontal position; to lie (from confusion with lie).
    • 1969 July, Bob Dylan, “Lay Lady Lay”, Nashville Skyline, Columbia: Lay, lady, lay. / Lay across my big brass bed.
    • a. 1970, Paul Simon, Simon & Garfunkel, “The Boxer”, Bridge over Troubled Water, Columbia Records: Laying low, seeking out the poorer quarters / Where the ragged people go
    • 1974, John Denver, “Annie’s Song”, Back Home Again, RCA: Let me lay down beside you. / Let me always be with you.
etymology 6 From Middle English lay, from Old French lai, from frk *, from Proto-Germanic *laikaz, *laikiz, from Proto-Indo-European *loig-, *(e)laiǵ-. Akin to Old High German leih, Middle High German leich, Old English lācan. See lake.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A ballad or sung poem; a short poem or narrative, usually intended to be sung.
    • 1742, , , I strive, with wakeful melody, to cheer The sullen gloom, sweet Philomel! like thee, And call the stars to listen: every star Is deaf to mine, enamour’d of thy lay.
    • 1805 The Lay of the Last Minstrel, Sir Walter Scott.
etymology 7
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (obsolete) A meadow; a lea. {{rfquotek}}
etymology 8
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (obsolete) A law.
    • Spenser many goodly lays
  2. (obsolete) An obligation; a vow.
    • Holland They bound themselves by a sacred lay and oath.
etymology 9 {{calque}}.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (Judaism, transitive) To don put on (tefillin phylacteries).
statistics:
  • {{rank}}
anagrams:
  • Aly
layabout pronunciation
  • /ˈleɪəˌbaʊt/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A lazy person.
Synonyms: See also
lay into
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (colloquial) To beat up.
  2. (colloquial) To berate; to scold.
lay low
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive, informal) To topple; to cause to fall; (of a person) to knock out. He was laid low by a vicious blow to the head.
    • The dragon's ire, more fierce than fire, laid low their towers and houses frail. —J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit
  2. (intransitive, informal) Past tense of lie low. Future: 'I’m going to lie low for a while in case the police come looking for me.' Present: 'I'm lying low because the police are looking for me.' Past: 'I lay low yesterday when the police came looking.' Past perfect: 'I have lain low because the police have been looking for me.'
  • The verb to lay is a transitive verb, which means it requires an object (such as an egg). In this case the word 'low' could be substituted for any prepositional phrase, such as in the straw.
  1. Future: 'The hen is going to lay an egg low.' Present: 'The hen is laying an egg low.' Past: 'The hen laid an egg low.' Past perfect: 'The hen had laid an egg low.'
  • The confusion between lie low and lay low stems from the fact that the past tense of to lie (intransitive verb) is lay; whereas the past tense of to lay (transitive verb) is laid. Also, in this case lie low is an idiom so both words must be used together; this is consistent with many other idioms, such as 'hurry up,' for example.
  • When hiding out, the verb to lie is the appropriate choice. Similarly, the verb to lie is the correct choice for 'going to lie down,' which has the identical pattern of verb tense usage as going to lie low for exactly the same reasons.
Synonyms: (to remain hidden) lie low
lay off
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive, chiefly US) (of an employer) To dismiss (worker) from employment, e.g. at a time of low business volume, often with a .
  2. (transitive) (of a bookmaker) To place all or part of a bet with another bookmaker in order to reduce risk.
  3. (transitive, idiomatic) To cease, quit, stop (doing something). Lay off the singing, will you! I'm trying to study. When are you gonna lay off smoking?
  4. (transitive and intransitive, idiomatic) To stop bother, teasing, or pester someone; to leave (someone) alone. Just lay off, okay! I've had enough! Things have been better since the boss has been laying off a little. I told him to lay off me but he wouldn't stop. Lay off it, already!
  • In the first two transitive senses the object can come before or after the particle (laid off the whole department). If the object is a pronoun, then it must come before the particle (laid them off).
  • In the final two idiomatic "cease" senses, all objects, including pronouns, come after the complete phrase (lay off me!).
Synonyms: (to dismiss workers from employment) make redundant, let go The following synonyms carry a harsher context than "lay off":
  • can, dismiss, fire, sack, terminate, give the axe, give the boot, give (someone) their cards, give the chop, give the elbow, give the old heave-ho
, can, dismiss, fire, sack, terminate, give the axe, give the boot, give (someone) their cards, give the chop, give the elbow, give the old heave-ho, See also
anagrams:
  • Offaly
lay out etymology to lay + out
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. to expend
    • 1843, Thomas Carlyle, Past and Present (book), book 2, ch. X, Government There are but two ways of paying debt: increase of industry in raising income, increase of thrift in laying it out.
  2. to arrange in a certain way
    • 2005, Plato, Sophist. Translation by Lesley Brown. Stephanus pagination. Because his opinions are all over the place, they find it easy to scrutinise them and lay them out;
  3. (transitive) to concoct; think up
    • 1884: Mark Twain, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Chapter VII It was about dark now; so I dropped the canoe down the river under some willows that hung over the bank, and waited for the moon to rise. I made fast to a willow; then I took a bite to eat, and by and by laid down in the canoe to smoke a pipe and lay out a plan.
  4. To prepare a body for burial.
    • 1851, , , So that no white sailor seriously contradicted him when he said that if ever Captain Ahab should be tranquilly laid out— which might hardly come to pass, so he muttered—then, whoever should do that last office for the dead, would find a birth-mark on him from crown to sole.
    • 1913, , , The family was alone in the parlour with the great polished box. William, when laid out, was six feet four inches long. Like a monument lay the bright brown, ponderous coffin.
  5. (colloquial) To render [someone] unconscious; to knock out; to cause to fall to the floor.
  6. (intransitive, US colloquial) To lie in the sunshine.
related terms:
  • layout
anagrams:
  • outlay
lay the smack down etymology A catchphrase of wrestler "The Rock" (); see also smackdown.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (slang) To start a fight (sometimes with on).
layup Alternative forms: lay-up etymology lay + up
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (basketball) A close-range shot in which the shooter banks the ball off the backboard from a few feet away.
  2. (colloquial) A relatively easy task. Meeting the numbers will be a layup, if not a slam dunk.
related terms:
  • reverse layup
anagrams:
  • uplay
lazy {{rfc}} etymology 1540, origin uncertain, but probably from gml lasich, from las, from Proto-Germanic *lasiwaz, *laskaz, from Proto-Indo-European *las-. Akin to Dutch leuzig "lazy", Old Norse lasinn "limpy, tired, weak", Old English lysu "false, evil, base". More at lush. Alternate etymology traces lazy to laysy, a derivative of lay (plural lays) in the same way that tipsy is derived from tip. See lay. pronunciation
  • /ˈleɪzi/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. Unwilling to do work or make an effort. exampleGet out of bed, you lazy lout!
  2. Requiring little or no effort.
  3. Relaxed or leisurely. exampleI love staying inside and reading on a lazy Sunday. exampleWe strolled along beside a lazy stream.
  4. (optometry) Of an eye, squint because of a weakness of the eye muscle.
  5. (cattle branding) Turned so that the letter is horizontal instead of vertical.
  6. (comptheory) Employing lazy evaluation; not calculating results until they are immediately required. examplea lazy algorithm
  7. (UK, obsolete or dialect) wicked; vicious {{rfquotek}}
  • Nouns to which "lazy" is often applied: person, man, woman, bastard, morning, day, time, way.
Synonyms: (unwilling to work) bone-idle, idle, indolent, slothful, work-shy, See also
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (informal) To laze, act in a lazy manner
lazy ass Alternative forms: lazy-ass, lazyass pronunciation
  • [ˈleɪ̯.zi.æs]
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (vulgar, slang) A person who is lazy.
    • 2005, Lauren Mechling, Laura Moser, The Rise and Fall of a 10th Grade Social Climber, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, page 128: The only redeeming thing about dragging your ass to Baldwin on Mondays is checking your school e-mail account (technological lazyass that I am, I still haven't figured out how to access it from a remote computer).
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (vulgar, slang) Lazy.
    • 1994, George Stambolian, Men on Men: Best New Gay Fiction, Issue 5, New American Library, page 338: “Lazyass motherfuckers,” the kid said.
    • 2010, Leah Braemel, Texas Tangle, Carina Press, page ...?: Plus Phil was a lazy-ass bastard who was content to let his sister do all the work while he sat on his butt.
lazyback etymology lazy + back
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (colloquial) A support for the back, attached to the seat of a carriage.
{{Webster 1913}}
lazybones
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) A person who is lazy; one who is inactive and without ambition.
    • 1839, , Oliver Twist, ch. 42, The foremost traveller stopped and called impatiently to his companion. "Come on, can't yer? What a lazybones yer are, Charlotte."
    • 2013, , . Melbourne, Australia: The Text Publishing Company. chapter 16. p. 145. Isn't it time you got up, you lazybones?
Synonyms: See also
lazy eye
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal, pathology) amblyopia
lazyweb etymology lazy + Web
proper noun: {{en-proper noun}}
  1. (Internet, informal, humorous) The World Wide Web, personified as a being that will answer the questions of those who are too lazy to do their own research.
    • 2008, "Ricardo SIGNES", dear lazyweb: hashref instead of objects (on newsgroup perl.moose)
    • 2009, "Jonno Downes", lazyweb request for reusable menu code (on newsgroup comp.sys.apple2.programmer)
LBD
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) initialism of little black dress, a basic fashion item in the female wardrobe.
le etymology From French le. pronunciation
  • /lə/, /leɪ/
article: {{head}}
  1. (informal, humorous, chiefly, Internet) the
lead {{elements}}
etymology 1 From Middle English leed, from Old English lēad, from Proto-Germanic *laudą, from Proto-Indo-European *lAudh-. Cognate with Scots leid, lede, Northern Frisian lud, luad, Western Frisian lead, Dutch lood, German Lot, Swedish lod, Icelandic lóð, Irish luaidhe. Alternative etymology suggests the possibility that Proto-Germanic *laudą may derive from Proto-Celtic *loudhom, from an assumed Proto-Italo-Celtic *ploudhom, from Proto-Indo-European *plou(d)-. If so, then cognate with Latin plumbum. More at flow. pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}, /lɛd/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{homophones}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (uncountable) A heavy, pliable, inelastic metal element, having a bright, bluish color, but easily tarnished; both malleable and ductile, though with little tenacity. It is easily fusible, forms alloys with other metals, and is an ingredient of solder and type metal. Atomic number 82, symbol Pb (from Latin plumbum).
  2. (countable) A plummet or mass of lead attached to a line, used in sounding depth at sea or (dated) to estimate velocity in knots.
  3. A thin strip of type metal, used to separate lines of type in printing.
  4. (uncountable, typography) Vertical space in advance of a row or between rows of text. Also known as leading. This copy has too much lead; I prefer less space between the lines.
  5. Sheets or plates of lead used as a covering for roofs.
  6. (plural leads) A roof cover with lead sheet or terne plate.
    • I would have the tower two stories, and goodly leads upon the top. —
  7. (countable) A thin cylinder of black lead or plumbago (graphite) used in pencil.
  8. (slang) Bullets; ammunition. They pumped him full of lead.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To cover, fill, or affect with lead; as, continuous firing leads the grooves of a rifle.
  2. (transitive, printing, historical) To place leads between the lines of. to lead a page; leaded matter
  3. (transitive, climbing) Lead climb.
Note carefully these three senses are verbs derived from the noun referring to the metallic element, and are unrelated to the heteronym defined below under #Etymology 2.
etymology 2 {{wikipedia}} From Middle English leden, from Old English lǣdan, from Proto-Germanic *laidijaną, causative of Proto-Germanic *līþaną, from Proto-Indo-European *leit-, *leith-. Cognate with Western Frisian liede, Dutch leiden, German leiten, Danish lede, Swedish leda. Related to Old English līþan. pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}, /liːd/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{homophones}}
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (heading, transitive) To guide or conduct.
    1. To guide or conduct with the hand, or by means of some physical contact connection. examplea father leads a child;  a jockey leads a horse with a halter;  a dog leads a blind man
      • John Wycliffe on If a blind man lead a blind man, both fall down in the ditch.
      • They thrust him out of the city, and led him unto the brow of the hill.
      • John Milton (1608-1674) In thy right hand lead with thee / The mountain nymph, sweet Liberty.
    2. To guide or conduct in a certain course, or to a certain place or end, by making the way known; to show the way, especially by going with or going in advance of, to lead a pupil; to guide somebody somewhere or to bring somebody somewhere by means of.instruction. Hence, figuratively: To direct; to counsel; to instruct; as, to lead a traveler.
      • The Lord went before them by day in a pillar of a cloud, to lead them the way.
      • He leadeth me beside the still waters.
      • John Milton (1608-1674) This thought might lead me through the world’s vain mask. Content, though blind, had I no better guide.
      • 1913, Joseph C. Lincoln, 1 , [http://openlibrary.org/works/OL5535161W Mr. Pratt's Patients], 1 , “I stumbled along through the young pines and huckleberry bushes. Pretty soon I struck into a sort of path that, I cal'lated, might lead to the road I was hunting for. It twisted and turned, and, the first thing I knew, made a sudden bend around a bunch of bayberry scrub and opened out into a big clear space like a lawn.”
    3. To conduct or direct with authority; to have direction or charge of; as, to lead an army, an exploring party, or a search; to lead a political party; to command, especially a military or business unit.
      • Robert South (1634–1716) Christ took not upon him flesh and blood that he might conquer and rule nations, lead armies, or possess places.
    4. To guide or conduct oneself in, through, or along (a certain course); hence, to proceed in the way of; to follow the path or course of; to pass; to spend. Also, to cause (one) to proceed or follow in (a certain course). exampleThe evidence leads me to believe he is guilty.
      • That we may lead a quiet and peaceable life.
      • 1849, Alfred Tennyson, In Memoriam A.H.H, In Memoriam A.H.H#XXXIII Nor thou with shadow'd hint confuse / A life that leads melodious days.
      • 1849-50, Charles Dickens, David Copperfield, Chapter 61 You remember…the life he used to lead his wife and daughter.
  2. (intransitive) To guide or conduct, as by accompanying, going before, showing, influencing, directing with authority, etc.; to have precedence or preeminence; to be first or chief; — used in most of the senses of the transitive verb.
  3. (heading) To begin, to be ahead.
    1. (transitive) To go or to be in advance of; to precede; hence, to be foremost or chief among. examplethe big sloop led the fleet of yachts;  the Guards led the attack;  Demosthenes leads the orators of all ages
      • 1600, Edward Fairfax, The Jerusalem Delivered of Torquato Tasso As Hesperus, that leads the sun his way.
      • Leigh Hunt (1784-1859) And lo! Ben Adhem's name led all the rest.
      • 1898, Winston Churchill (novelist) , The Celebrity, 4 , ““Well,” I answered, at first with uncertainty, then with inspiration, “he would do splendidly to lead your cotillon, if you think of having one.” ¶ “So you do not dance, Mr. Crocker?” ¶ I was somewhat set back by her perspicuity.”
    2. (intransitive) To lead off or out, to go first; to begin.
    3. (intransitive) To be more advanced in technology or business than others.
    4. (heading, sport)
      1. (transitive, cards, dominoes) To begin a game, round, or trick, with; as, to lead trumps. exampleHe led the ace of spades.
      2. (intransitive) To be ahead of others, e.g., in a race.
      3. (intransitive) To have the highest interim score in a game.
      4. (baseball) To step off base and move towards the next base. exampleThe batter always leads off base.
      5. (shooting) To aim in front of a moving target, in order that the shot may hit the target as it passes.
  4. (transitive) To draw or direct by influence, whether good or bad; to prevail on; to induce; to entice; to allure; as, to lead one to espouse a righteous cause.
    • 1649, King Charles I of England, Eikon Basilike He was driven by the necessities of the times, more than led by his own disposition, to any rigor of actions.
    • . Silly women, laden with sins, led away by divers lusts.
    • {{quote-magazine}}
  5. (intransitive) To tend or reach in a certain direction, or to a certain place. examplethe path leads to the mill;  gambling leads to other vices
    • ca. 1590, William Shakespeare, , The mountain-foot that leads towards Mantua.
    • {{quote-magazine}}
  6. To produce (with to). exampleThe shock led to a change in his behaviour.
    • {{quote-magazine}}
  7. misspelling of led
noun: {{wikipedia}} {{en-noun}}
  1. (uncountable) The act of leading or conducting; guidance; direction, course; as, to take the lead; to be under the lead of another.
    • At the time I speak of, and having a momentary lead, … I am sure I did my country important service. — Edmund Burke
  2. (uncountable) Precedence; advance position; also, the measure of precedence; as, the white horse had the lead; a lead of a boat’s length, or of half a second; the state of being ahead in a race; the highest score in a game in an incomplete game.
    • {{quote-news }}
  3. (countable) An insulated metallic wire for electrical devices and equipment.
  4. (baseball) The situation where a runner steps away from a base while waiting for the pitch to be thrown The runner took his lead from first.
  5. (uncountable, card games, dominoes) The act or right of playing first in a game or round; the card suit, or piece, so played; as, your partner has the lead.
  6. (countable) A channel of open water in an ice field.
  7. (countable, mining) A lode.
  8. (nautical) The course of a rope from end to end.
  9. A rope, leather strap, or similar device with which to lead an animal; a leash
  10. In a steam engine, the width of port opening which is uncovered by the valve, for the admission or release of steam, at the instant when the piston is at end of its stroke.
    • Usage note: When used alone it means outside lead, or lead for the admission of steam. Inside lead refers to the release or exhaust.
  11. charging lead {{rfex}}
  12. (civil engineering) The distance of haul, as from a cutting to an embankment.
  13. (horology) The action of a tooth, as a tooth of a wheel, in impelling another tooth or a pallet. — Claudias Saunier
  14. Hypothesis that has not been pursued The investigation stalled when all leads turned out to be dead ends.
  15. Information obtained by a detective or police officer that allows him or her to discover further details about a crime or incident.
  16. (marketing) Potential opportunity for a sale or transaction, a potential customer. Joe is a great addition to our sales team, he has numerous leads in the paper industry.
  17. Information obtained by a news reporter about an issue or subject that allows him or her to discover more details.
  18. (curling) The player who throws the first two rocks for a team.
  19. (newspapers) A teaser; a lead-in; the start of a newspaper column, telling who, what, when, where, why and how. (Sometimes spelled as lede for this usage to avoid ambiguity.)
  20. An important news story that appears on the front page of a newspaper or at the beginning of a news broadcast
  21. (engineering) The axial distance a screw thread travels in one revolution. It is equal to the pitch times the number of starts.
  22. (music) In a barbershop quartet, the person who sings the melody, usually the second tenor
  23. (music) The announcement by one voice part of a theme to be repeated by the other parts.
  24. (music) A mark or a short passage in one voice part, as of a canon, serving as a cue for the entrance of others.
  25. (engineering) The excess above a right angle in the angle between two consecutive crank, as of a compound engine, on the same shaft.
  26. (electrical) The angle between the line joining the brush of a continuous-current dynamo and the diameter symmetrical between the pole.
  27. (electrical) The advance of the current phase in an alternating circuit beyond that of the electromotive force producing it.
Note that these noun (attributive) uses are all derived from the verb, not the chemical element in #Etymology 1.
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (not comparable) Foremost. The contestants are all tied; no one has the lead position.
Synonyms: (foremost) first, front, head, leader, leading
etymology 3
verb: {{head}}
  1. misspelling of led
statistics:
  • {{rank}}
anagrams:
  • Adel
  • dale, Dale
  • deal
  • E.D. La.
  • lade
leaderene
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (UK, informal) A female leader (especially an autocratic one)
  • Used especially to refer to
leaderfag etymology leader + fag
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (Internet slang, derogatory) A person, especially a member of the hacktivist group Anonymous, who acts bossy or unilaterally declares himself/herself to be in control of something.
lead-pipe cinch etymology Related to saddle sense at cinch.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (US, slang) A cinch; something very easy.
lead poisoning
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A chronic intoxication produced by the absorption of lead into the body, characterized by severe colicky pains, a dark line along the gum, and local muscular paralysis.
  2. (slang) Being shot by a firearm.
Synonyms: See plumbism
leaf peeper Alternative forms: leaf-peeper
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (US, slang) A tree sightseer, who enjoys to observe the color change in their leaves, especially in the autumn.
    • 2000, William G. Tapply, Snake Eater/Seventh Enemy/Close to the Bone: A Brady Coyne Omnibus (#13, 14 ...‎ - Page 340 Actually, I'm a leaf peeper myself in May, and when the trail began its acute northwest ascent into the Berkshire foothills west of Greenfield, I found myself marveling at the thousands of pale shades of green and yellow and pink in the new May leaves that walled the roadside and formed a canopy overhead.
    • 2007 (Oct), "Best Places to Catch Fall Color", Atlanta‎ Magazine, page 244 Perched on a peak amidst the leaf peeper's paradise of Western North Carolina, Fire Mountain Inn is a secluded retreat with close ties to the land.
leaf-raking etymology From the nature of some of the activities of the during the Great Depression in the US.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (US, usually, pejorative) Marginally productive government-financed employment.
    • The Worldly Philosophers: The Lives, Times, and Ideas of the Great Economists, page 225, Robert L. Heilbroner, 1955, “Relief was essential and began under Hoover; then, under Roosevelt, relief turned into leaf-raking, and leaf-raking turned into constructive enterprise.”
    • Lone Star Rising: Lyndon Johnson and His Times, 1908-1960, 1, Robert Dallek, 1991, “public agencies were to plan building programs that would do the job and preserve communities from “the necessity of feeding hungry men through the expediency of 'leaf-raking' projects or the dole or soup lines.”
    • The Colonel: The Life and Legend of Robert R. McCormick, 1880-1955, page 63, Richard Norton Smith, 2003, “Yet neither man came close to realizing his early political promise, or to forgiving the tendency of the average voter to sell his birthright for a leaf-raking job or Social Security card.”
league {{wikipedia}} pronunciation
  • /liːɡ/
  • {{rhymes}}
etymology 1 From Middle English ligg, from Middle French ligue, from Italian lega, from the verb legare, from Latin ligō.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A group or association of cooperating members. the League of Nations
    • Denham And let there be / 'Twixt us and them no league, nor amity.
  2. An organization of sports team which play against one another for a championship. My favorite sports organizations are the National Football League and the American League in baseball.
  3. (informal) Rugby league. Are you going to watch the league tonight?
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. To form an association; to unite in a league or confederacy; to combine for mutual support. {{rfquotek}}
etymology 2 From ll leuga, possibly from Gaulish.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (measurement) The distance that a person can walk in one hour, commonly taken to be approximately three English mile (about five kilometer).
    • M. Le Page Du Pratz, History of Louisiana (PG), p. 47 Seven leagues above the mouth of the river we meet with two other passes, as large as the middle one by which we entered.
  2. A stone erected near a public road to mark the distance of a league.
leak etymology From Middle English leken, from Middle Dutch leken or Old Norse leka; both from Proto-Germanic *lekaną, from Proto-Indo-European *leg-, *leǵ-. Cognate with Dutch lekken, German lechen, lecken, Swedish läcka, Icelandic leka. Related also to Old English leċċan, Albanian lag, lak. See also leach, lake. pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}, /liːk/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
  • {{homophones}}
noun: {{wikipedia}} {{en-noun}}
  1. A crack, crevice, fissure, or hole which admits water or other fluid, or lets it escape. a leak in a roof a leak in a boat a leak in a gas pipe
  2. The entrance or escape of a fluid through a crack, fissure, or other aperture. The leak gained on the ship's pumps.
  3. A divulgation, or disclosure, of information previously held secret. The leaks by Chelsea Manning showed the secrets of the US military.
  4. The person through whom such divulgation, or disclosure, occurs. The press must have learned about the plan through a leak.
  5. A loss of electricity through imperfect insulation, or the point where it occurs.
  6. (computing) The gradual loss of a system resource caused by failure to deallocate previously reserved portions. resource leak memory leak
  7. (vulgar, slang, especially with the verb "take") An act of urination. I have to take a leak.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. To allow fluid to escape or enter something that should be sealed. The faucet has been leaking since last month.
  2. To reveal secret information. Someone must have leaked it to our competitors that the new product will be out soon.
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (obsolete) Leaky.
    • 1596, Edmund Spenser, The Faerie Queene, VI.8: Yet is the bottle leake, and bag so torne, / That all which I put in fals out anon […].
anagrams:
  • kale
  • lake
learn pronunciation
  • (UK) {{enPR}}, /ləːn/
  • (US) {{enPR}}, /lɝn/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
etymology 1 From Middle English lernen, from Old English leornian, from Proto-Germanic *liznaną. Compare German lernen.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. To acquire, or attempt to acquire knowledge or an ability to do something.
  2. To attend a course or other educational activity.
    • 1719, , For, as he took delight to introduce me, I took delight to learn.
  3. To gain knowledge from a bad experience. learn from one's mistakes
  4. To be studying.
  5. To come to know; to become inform of; to find out. He just learned that he will be sacked.
  • See other, dated and regional, sense of learn below.
Synonyms: study
antonyms:
  • forget
  • teach
etymology 2 From Old English læran, from Proto-Germanic *laizijaną. Compare Dutch leren, German lehren. See lere.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (now only in slang and dialects) To teach.
    • {{RQ:Mlry MrtDrthr}}: And whan she had serched hym / she fond in the bottome of his wound that therin was poyson / And soo she heled hym…/ and therfore Tramtrist cast grete loue to la beale Isoud / for she was at that tyme the fairest mayde and lady of the worlde / And there Tramtryst lerned her to harpe / and she beganne to haue grete fantasye vnto hym
    • 1599, William Shakespeare, Much Ado About Nothing, Sweet prince, you learn me noble thankfulness.
    • circa 1611, William Shakespeare, Cymbeline, : Have I not been / Thy pupil long? Hast thou not learn’d me how / To make perfumes?
    • 1993, The Simpsons, (18 Feb. 1993) Lisa's thoughts: That'll learn him to bust my tomater.
Now often considered non-standard.
related terms:
  • larn
  • lore
anagrams:
  • Laren
  • renal
leastwise etymology least + wise
adverb: {{en-adv}}
  1. (informal) "at least".
  2. minimally
leather {{wikipedia}} etymology From Middle English lether, from Old English leþer, from Proto-Germanic *leþrą, from Proto-Indo-European *létrom. Cognate with West Frisian leare, Low German Ledder, Dutch leder, leer, German Leder, Danish læder, Swedish läder, Icelandic leður. The Celtic forms (Welsh lledr, Old Irish lethar) ultimately derive from the Germanic. pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈleðə/
  • (US) /ˈlɛðɚ/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A tough material produced from the skin of animal, by tan or similar process, used e.g. for clothing.
  2. A piece of the above used for polish.
  3. (colloquial) A cricket ball or football.
  4. (plural: leathers) clothing made from the skin of animals, often worn by motorcycle riders.
  5. (baseball) A good defensive play Jones showed good leather to snare that liner.
  6. (dated, humorous) The skin.
hyponyms: (types of leather) chagrin, cordovan, cordwain, galuchat, maroquin, morocco, morocco leather, shagreen, sharkskin, taw
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. Made of leather.
    • 1898, Winston Churchill (novelist) , The Celebrity, 2 , “Sunning himself on the board steps, I saw for the first time Mr. Farquhar Fenelon Cooke.…A silver snaffle on a heavy leather watch guard which connected the pockets of his corduroy waistcoat, together with a huge gold stirrup in his Ascot tie, sufficiently proclaimed his tastes.”
  2. Referring to one who wears leather clothing (motorcycle jacket, chaps over 501 jeans, boots), especially as a sign of sadomasochistic homosexuality.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. To cover with leather.
  2. To strike forcefully. He leathered the ball all the way down the street.
anagrams:
  • haltere
  • lethera
  • Tar Heel
leather cheerio
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, vulgar) anus
leatherneck etymology From leather + neck. pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈlɛðənɛk/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) A soldier.
  2. (US) Specifically, a marine.
    • 2011, Steven Pinker, The Better Angels of Our Nature, Penguin 2012, p. 318: The Marine Corps has instituted a martial-arts program in which leathernecks are indoctrinated in a new code of honor, the Ethical Marine Warrior.
leather queen
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, LGBT) A gay man with a fetish for leather
    • 1991, Lawrence Block, A Ticket To The Boneyard (ISBN 0380709945), page 142: This was a long way from making him a leather queen, I had to admit, but I didn't have any trouble picturing him in those bars, leaning sinuously against something, those long strong fingers curled around a beer bottle, those flat cold eyes staring, measuring, challenging.
    • 1993, Anthony Giddens, The Transformation of Intimacy: Sexuality, Love and Eroticism in Modern Societies (ISBN 0804722145), page 147: The macho gay, the leather queen, the denim groupie — these are more than just ironic rejoinders to heterosexual masculinity.
    • 1997, Chris Horrocks, Introducing Foucault (Totem Books, Icon Books; ISBN 1840460865), page 3: To find the real Michel Foucault is to ask “which one”?Should we look at the life of the man himself, who as a boy wanted to be a goldfish, but became a philosopher and historian, political activist, leather queen, bestseller, tireless campaigner for dissident causes?

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