float - definition and synonyms


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present tense
present participlefloating
past tensefloated
past participlefloated
  1. 1
    [intransitive] to rest or move slowly on the surface of a liquid and not sink

    Their raft would not float.

    float on/in:

    Leaves and twigs floated on the water.

    float by/along/towards etc:

    Miranda floated by on her back.

    1. a.
      [transitive] to place something or make it move on the surface of a liquid

      They were floating little paper boats on the lake.

  2. 2
    [intransitive] to be lighter than air, and to move slowly through it
    float in/through/across/over etc:

    Bubbles floated in the air.

    A cloud floated across the moon.

  3. 3
    [intransitive] if a sound or smell floats somewhere, it moves through the air so that it can be heard or smelt in different places
    float up/down/across/through etc:

    Music floated up from the garden.

    Perfume floated around her.

  4. 4
    [intransitive] to move in a very soft and graceful way
    float down/up/across etc:

    Fabia floated down the stairs in a long white dress.

  5. 5
    [intransitive] to behave in a way that shows you do not have a clear plan for what you want to do

    She just sort of floats through life.

  6. 6
    [transitive] business to start to sell a company’s shares on the stock market

    The company was floated in 1993.

  7. 7
    [transitive] to suggest an idea for people to consider to see how they will react
  8. 8
    [intransitive] informal if something such as an idea floats, it is successful or accepted
  9. 9
    [intransitive/transitive] economics if a government floats its currency, its value is allowed to change in relation to other currencies
  10. 10
    [transitive] mainly journalism to kick or hit a ball so that it moves slowly through the air
  11.   From our crowdsourced Open Dictionary
    to file a horse's teeth flatSubmitted from United Kingdom on 18/09/2010

phrasal verbs