Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word


 - definitions and thesaurus

What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.



The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary. Click on the thesaurus category heading under the button in an entry to see the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

noun air pronunciation in American English /er/
Word Forms
  1. 1
    [uncountable] the mixture of gases surrounding the Earth that we breathe

    Do we really want all these cars polluting the air?

    She breathed in the cold air.

    I’d like to open the window: I need some air.

    Inside the house the air smelled like fresh paint.

    a blast/rush/draft/gust of air (=a current of moving air):

    A blast of cold air swept through the house.

    1. a.

      the air

      the space around things and above the ground

      They threw their hats up into the air.

      The baby waved its legs in the air.

      birds flying through the air

  2. 2
    [singular] a feeling or attitude that someone has
    air of:

    She spoke with her usual air of authority.

    1. a.
      the feeling that a place or situation gives you

      The overgrown lawn gave the house a neglected air.

      air of:

      There was an air of gloom about the whole trial.

  3. 3


    [plural] behavior that is not natural and relaxed by someone who wants to impress people and seem important
    put on airs:

    My friends are people I trust, and I don’t have to put on airs with them.

  4. 4
    [countable] music old-fashioned a piece of music that has a simple tune



… a teaching method in which groups of children learn independently using a computer linked to the internet

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary


a derogatory word used for referring to people in the banking and investment industry who are thought of as taking serious risks in order to increase their own earnings …

add a word


A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog