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beat - definition and synonyms

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noun [countable]     beat pronunciation in American English
Word Forms
  1. 1
    one of the regular sounds or movements of your heart
    skip/miss a beat:

    Her heart seemed to miss a beat.

    1. a.
      the series of regular sounds or movements as your heart pumps blood around your body

      I could feel the beat of his heart.

  2. 2
    [usually singular] music the main pattern of sounds in a piece of music, or the strongest sounds in this pattern

    I’d like you to tap out the beat on the table.

    music with a slow pulsating beat

    1. a.
      a single regular sound or a series of regular sounds, especially of two things hitting together

      the sound of a single drum beat

      beat of:

      the beat of horseshooves

    2. b.
      music a unit of measurement for a piece of music. Each measure has a particular number of beats

      A waltz has three beats in each measure.

  3. 3
    [usually singular] an area that a police officer has responsibility for and must walk around regularly
    walk/pound/patrol the beat:

    The two officers used to walk the beat together.

    on the beat (=walking around an area):

    We intend to increase the number of police on the beat.



a lifestyle focussing on simple pleasures such as comfort and cosiness in the home, and spending time with friends and family

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a form of location that involves the underwater detonation of a bomb which causes sound waves that are picked up by ships

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