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tap - definition and synonyms

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verb     tap pronunciation in British English
Word Forms
present tense
present participletapping
past tensetapped
past participletapped
  1. 1
    [intransitive/transitive]Sound effect to touch someone or something gently and to move them slightly, or to make a soft knocking sound

    Michael tapped his nose with his forefinger.

    He tapped another code into the computer.

    Several young men sat tapping away at keyboards (=using computers).

    tap at/on/against:

    We could hear someone tapping at the door.

    tap someone on something:

    I tapped him on the shoulder and he jumped.

    1. a.
      to touch the screen of a mobile device in order to make something happen

      If you have decided to attend a programme, tap this button to add and synchronise the event details.

  2. 2
    [transitive] to use electronic equipment to secretly listen to what someone says on the telephone
    Synonyms and related words
  3. 3
    [transitive] to get a substance from a particular place or object
    1. a.
      informal to get money from a particular person
      tap someone for something:

      I’ll have to tap Mum for my bus fare.

  4. 4



    tap into

    [transitive] if you tap something such as someone’s ability or a supply of information, you use it or get some benefit from it

    Are you tapping your staff’s full potential?

    Several other companies were already tapping this market.

phrasal verbs

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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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