Did you know?

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

delay - definition and synonyms


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.

verb delay pronunciation in American English /dɪˈleɪ/
Word Forms
present tense
present participledelaying
past tensedelayed
past participledelayed

Related words

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  1. 1
    [intransitive/transitive] to do something later than is planned or expected
    They agreed to delay the decision for as long as possible.
    I have delayed my return home because of the weather.
    Don’t delay if you want to get your order in by Christmas.
    delay doing something: We delayed getting on board for as long as we could.
  2. 2
    [transitive] [usually passive] to make someone or something late or slow them down
    His plane had been delayed for five hours.
    If delivery is delayed, we will let you know immediately.


a course of study which is much shorter than a university course and focuses on the skills you need for a job, especially computer-related skills

BuzzWord Article

Word of the Day


a stupid person

Open Dictionary


an ancient Roman system of underfloor heating, used to heat houses with hot air; from the Latin 'hypocaustum'

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