Did you know?

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

hand over - 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.

Thesaurus diagram

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.

phrasal verb
Word Forms
present tense
I/you/we/theyhand over
he/she/ithands over
present participlehanding over
past tensehanded over
past participlehanded over
Related words
  1. 1
    [transitive] to give something to someone by holding it in your hand and offering it to them

    Albert bowed and handed over the letter.

    hand something over to someone:

    He handed the car keys over to Stella.

  2. 2
    [transitive] to give someone to the police or another authority that will become responsible for them
    hand someone over to someone:

    The suspects have now been handed over to the French authorities.

  3. 3
    [intransitive/transitive] to give power or control to someone else
    hand something over to someone:

    They formally hand power over to the new government next week.

  4. 4
    [intransitive/transitive] to stop speaking to or dealing with someone and let someone else do it
    hand over to someone:

    I’m now going to hand over to my colleague back in the studio.

    hand someone over to someone:

    Let me hand you over to John, who will show you around.

See also main entry: hand


to manipulate someone psychologically so that they begin to question their own perceptions and memories

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary

Dunning-Kruger effect

the phenomenon by which an incompetent person is too incompetent to understand his own incompetence

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
Macmillan learn live love play