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lead up to - definition and synonyms

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phrasal verb [transitive]
Word Forms
present tense
I/you/we/theylead up to
he/she/itleads up to
present participleleading up to
past tenseled up to
past participleled up to
  1. 1
    lead up to something if events, problems, actions etc lead up to an important event, they happen one after another in a way that makes it possible for the event to happen

    The negotiations leading up to the contract were very tough.

  2. 2
    lead up to something to happen or exist immediately before something

    In the weeks leading up to graduation I did very little.

  3. 3
    lead up to something to gradually direct a conversation towards a particular subject, especially one that is difficult or embarrassing

    I knew he was leading up to something, but I had no idea what.

See also main entry: lead


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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