- To transfer one's possession or holding of (something) to (someone).I gave him my coat.I gave my coat to the beggar.When they asked, I gave my coat.
- I'm going to give my wife a necklace for her birthday.She gave a pair of shoes to her husband for their anniversary.He gives of his energies to the organization.
- To pledge.I gave him my word that I'd protect his children.
- I gave them permission to miss tomorrow's class.Please give me some more time.
- To cause (a sensation or feeling) to exist in.It gives me a lot of pleasure to be here tonight.The fence gave me an electric shock.My mother-in-law gives me nothing but grief.
- To carry out (a physical interaction) with (something).I want to give you a kiss.She gave him a hug.I'd like to give the tire a kick.I gave the boy a push on the swing.She gave me a wink afterwards, so I knew she was joking.
- To pass (something) into (someone's) hand or the like.Give me your hand.On entering the house, he gave his coat to the doorman.
- To cause (a disease or condition) in, or to transmit (a disease or condition) to.My boyfriend gave me chlamydia.He was convinced that it was his alcoholism that gave him cancer.
We gave her flowers for her birthday.
Give me the scissors.
An example of give is for a child to offer his toy to another child.
Gave a groan; gave a muted response.
Give an opinion; give an excuse.
Gave us an hour to finish.
Gives generously to charity.
The doors give onto a terrace.
To give the porter a bag to carry, to give a daughter in marriage.
To give regards to someone.
To give pleasure, to give someone a cold.
Cows give milk.
To give a point in an argument.
To give every indication of being a fool.
To give a suggestion.
To give a leap.
To give someone a hug, kiss, etc.
I give their marriage one year.
The window gives on the park.
One pillar gave, then more, and suddenly the whole floor pancaked onto the floor below.
The number of men, divided by the number of ships, gives four hundred to each ship.
The soldiers give themselves to plunder.
That boy is given to fits of bad temper.
This chair doesn't have much give.
- To behave or perform creditably.
- To bear as offspring.
- To be the origin of:.A hobby that gave birth to a successful business.
- To yield to a more powerful force; retreat.
- To punish or reprimand severely:.My parents really gave it to me for coming in late.
- Plus or minus a small specified amount:.The chalet is close to the road, give or take a few hundred yards.
- To be the cause or origin of; bring about.
- To tell someone frankly what one thinks about something, especially when angry.
- To make life difficult for; harass.
- To make fun of; tease.
- To look at admiringly or invitingly.
- To look at with an expression of disapproval.
- To show to be inaccurate or untrue.
- To accuse of lying.
- To cease living or functioning; die.
- To retreat or withdraw.
- To yield the right of way:.Gave way to an oncoming car.
- To relinquish ascendancy or position:.As day gives way slowly to night.
- To collapse from or as if from physical pressure:.The ladder gave way.
- To yield to urging or demand; give in.
- To abandon oneself:.Give way to hysteria.
- To exchange on an even basis.
- To make a gift of; donate; bestow.
- In a marriage ceremony, to present (the bride) ritually to the bridegroom.
- To reveal, expose, or betray.
- To return or restore.
- To send forth; emit; issue.
- To hand in.
- To abandon a claim, fight, or argument; surrender; yield.
- To punish; beat or scold.
- To send forth or out; emit.
- Plus or minus.A price of $1.00, give or take a few cents.
- To send forth or out; emit.
- To cause to be known; make public.
- To distribute.
- To become worn out or used up; fail to last.
- To hand over.
- To stop; cease.
- To set apart for some purpose.
- To cause to understand (or believe, etc.).
- To hand over; turn over; surrender.
- To stop; cease.
- To admit failure and stop trying.
- To lose hope for; despair of.
- To sacrifice; devote wholly.
- What is going on?.
Idioms and Phrasal Verbs
Origin of give
- Middle English given from Old English giefan Old Norse gefa ghabh- in Indo-European roots
From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition
- From Middle English given, from Old Norse gefa (“to give”), from Proto-Germanic *gebaną (“to give”), from Proto-Indo-European *gʰh₁bʰ- (“to take, hold, have”). Displaced or merged with native Middle English yiven, ȝeven, from Old English ġiefan, from the same Proto-Germanic source (cf. the inherited now obsolete English doublet yive). Cognate with Scots gie (“to give”), Danish give (“to give”), Swedish giva, ge (“to give”), Icelandic gefa (“to give”), North Frisian jiw, jiiw, jeewe (“to give”), West Frisian jaan (“to give”), Low German geven (“to give”), Dutch geven (“to give”), German geben (“to give”), Latin habeō (“have, hold”), Old Irish gaibim (“I hold”), Lithuanian gabenti (“to carry, transport”), Polish gabać (“to grab, snatch”), Sanskrit गभस्ति (gabhasti, “hand”).