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get - definition and synonyms

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verb     get pronunciation in British English
Word Forms
present tense
present participlegetting
past tensegot
past participlegot
  1. 1
    [transitive] [never passive] to obtain, receive, or be given something

    Ross’s father got a new job.

    Did you get tickets for the game?

    You get ten points for each correct answer.

    get something from someone:

    She got a ring from her grandmother.

    get someone something/get something for someone:

    The social worker got the family a new flat and clothes for the children.

    get an answer/reply etc:

    She called out to him but got no reply.

    get the chance/opportunity:

    Young players will get the chance to meet one of their heroes.

    get permission/approval etc:

    We got permission from the council to start building.

    1. a.
      to buy something

      Where did you get that wonderful carpet?

      They had to stop and get some petrol.

      get someone something/get something for someone:

      For his birthday this year, I got my dad a sweater.

      get something for £5/£100 etc:

      You can get a jacket from a charity shop for just a few pounds.

      Synonyms and related words
    2. b.
      to go and bring something back from somewhere else

      She went and got a photograph out of the desk.

      get someone something/get something for someone:

      Will you get me a glass of water?

    3. c.
      to earn or receive an amount of money

      I think nurses should get more.

      Helen only gets £3 an hour.

      get £20/£100 etc for something:

      I bet you could get at least £50 for the painting.

    4. d.
      to obtain information

      Where did you get this story?

      I need to get some details from you about the accident.

    5. e.
      to start to have an idea or feeling

      Sometimes he gets these weird ideas.

      I got a strange feeling in my stomach as we walked towards the house.

      get the idea/impression/feeling (that):

      I got the impression they were finding the work difficult.

    6. f.
      to start to have an illness or medical condition

      I hope I don’t get the flu this winter.

      She eats standing up and then gets indigestion.

    7. g.
      to obtain a benefit or have a positive feeling when you do something

      He gets a lot of pleasure from spending time with his grandchildren.

      What do you get out of all this exercise?

    8. h.
      to obtain a particular result

      Add more water to get a thinner batter.

      What do you get if you mix red and yellow?

  2. 2
    [linking verb] to start to be in a particular state or have a particular quality

    It’s getting late – I have to go.

    If that spot gets any bigger you should go to the doctor.

    get wet/cold/tired/ill etc:

    It was raining and we all got wet.

    get angry/upset etc:

    If you got angry with me for this, I wouldn’t blame you.

    get difficult/interesting etc:

    Things are starting to get a bit difficult at home.

    get to sleep:

    Do you ever have problems getting to sleep?

    get hot/cold/humid etc:

    It’s been getting more and more humid all afternoon.

    Synonyms and related words
    1. a.
      [linking verb] to become: used with past participles to form passives

      The team is determined not to get beaten again.

      I’m sick of getting shouted at for things that aren’t my fault.

      Somehow the paper got ripped.

      You should wash that cut – it might get infected.

      Synonyms and related words
    2. b.
      [transitive] to cause someone or something to be in a particular state

      I’ll get the children dressed.

      Let’s get you completely ready to go before we call a cab.

      It took them three hours to get the fire under control.

      get someone/something dirty/wet etc:

      He got his suit all dirty.

    3. c.
      [linking verb] to put on or take off clothing
      get into/out of/on/off:

      It’s almost three o’clock and you still have to get into your uniform.

      She looks forward to getting out of her business suit and into comfortable clothes at the end of the day.

  3. 3
    [transitive] [never passive] to do something, or to have it done for you
    get something done:

    You need to get your hair cut.

    I should be able to get the first chapter finished by tonight.

    They tried to get Marly sent to prison.

    get something doing something:

    Hal managed to get my email working again.

    She worked all afternoon on the car but never got it running.

    Synonyms and related words
    1. a.
      to make someone do something, or to persuade them to do it
      get someone to do something:

      I’ll get Andrew to give you a call.

      She couldn’t get them to understand what she was saying.

      If we could only get him to try harder.

  4. 4
    [intransitive] to move to or from a position or place
    get down:

    Abby had climbed a tree and couldn’t get down.

    get in/into:

    Dad stopped the car and told me to get in.

    She forgot her keys and got into the house through the window.

    get off:

    The hill was so steep we had to get off and push our bikes.

    get on/onto:

    Watch your step when getting on the bus.

    get out:

    A car stopped and two men got out.

    get up:

    Half the audience got up and walked out.

    1. a.
      [transitive] [never passive] to make someone or something move to or from a position or place
      get someone/something down:

      Firefighters got him down using a ladder.

      get someone/something in/into:

      Let’s get you into the house where it’s warm.

      get someone/something off:

      It’s impossible to get him off the sofa and make him do anything.

      get someone/something on/onto:

      They managed to get him on the bed.

      get someone/something out:

      Get that dog out of my kitchen.

      get someone/something up:

      I don’t know how we’ll get this box up the stairs.

    2. b.
      [intransitive] to arrive at a place
      get from/to:

      How long does it take to get from London to Leeds?

      get home:

      What time did you get home last night?

      get to work/school etc:

      I usually get to work at about 8.30.

      get here/there:

      When will we get there?

    3. c.
      [intransitive] to come to be in a position or place

      How did this button get in my bag?

    4. d.
      [transitive] [never passive] to send something to a person or place

      They can get a package across the Atlantic within 24 hours.

      get something to someone/something:

      We’ll get the timetable to you as soon as we have it.

    5. e.
      [transitive] [never passive] to travel a particular distance

      How far do you hope to get before lunch?

      He got halfway along the road, then remembered he had left his wallet behind.

  5. 5
    [intransitive] to progress to a particular point when you are doing something

    How far did you get with your homework?

    get to:

    I got to page 100 of this book before I understood what was going on.

    1. a.
      [intransitive] informal to start doing something, making progress, or going somewhere
      get going/moving:

      They need to get going with this building work if they are going to finish before the winter.

      It’s time you got cracking on that assignment.

      get to work:

      Enough talking, let’s get to work.

    2. b.
      [transitive] [never passive] to make or help someone or something start doing something, making progress, or going somewhere
      get someone/something going/moving etc:

      A new manager was brought in to get things moving.

      We’d better get the kids going or they’ll be late.

      not get someone anywhere (=will not help someone to succeed):

      That aggressive attitude won’t get you anywhere with her.

  6. 6
    [transitive] [never passive] to fit or put something in a place
    get something into/in/onto something:

    You can get a lot of things into this bag.

    She couldn’t quite get all the text onto the page.

  7. 7
    [transitive] [never passive] informal to understand someone or something

    Everyone laughed, but Harold didn’t seem to get the joke.

    get it:

    I don’t get it – what’s happening?

    Oh, I get it now.

    get that:

    Look, I get that you’re really busy, but surely you can answer an email.

    get why/what etc:

    I don’t really get why she couldn’t do it herself.

  8. 8
    [intransitive/transitive] [never passive] to have the opportunity or be able to do something
    get to do something:

    Did you get to visit the Louvre when you were in Paris?

    Her brothers went out a lot, but Lisa never got to go.

  9. 9
    [transitive] [never passive] informal to kill someone

    It was cancer that got him in the end.

    1. a.
      to attack someone

      He’s threatened to get me if he ever catches me alone.

    2. b.
      to catch or punish someone

      The police need to get the person who did this.

      out to get someone (=determined to harm or punish someone):

      The way he acts, it’s like he’s out to get me.

  10. 10
    [transitive] [never passive] spoken to answer the door or telephone

    It’s OK, I’ll get it.

    Synonyms and related words
  11. 11
    [transitive] [never passive] to use a particular vehicle to travel somewhere

    It’s easiest if you get a taxi from the station.

    He usually tries to get the 9.03 train.

  12. 12
    [transitive] [never passive] to be able to receive particular broadcasts on your television or radio

    Do you get cable here?

    1. a.
      to regularly receive a newspaper or magazine

      We get The Observer on Sundays.

  13. 13
    [transitive] [never passive] to reach someone by telephone

    Is there a number where I can get you this evening?

    Could you get me the New York office right away, please.

    Synonyms and related words
  14. 14
    [transitive] [never passive] to prepare a meal

    It’s time to start getting dinner.

    get someone breakfast/lunch/dinner:

    Sit down and I’ll get you lunch.

  15. 15
    [transitive] [never passive] spoken to annoy someone
    it gets me:

    It really gets me how everyone laughs at all her stupid jokes.

    what gets me:

    What gets me is the way he’s so smug all the time.

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

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Dunning-Kruger effect

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

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