trouble - definition and synonyms


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  1. 1
    [countable/uncountable] problems, worries, or difficulties

    The company has had serious financial troubles recently.

    The trouble started when I was transferred to a new department.

    You could tell your troubles to this man, she thought.

    a life filled with pain and trouble

    have trouble with something:

    I’m having some trouble with this new software.

    have trouble doing something:

    He was having trouble hearing her (=finding it difficult to hear her).

    cause/make trouble for someone/something:

    She can make a lot of trouble for you.

    cause someone/something trouble:

    It would just cause me more trouble in the long run.

    1. a.
      [singular] an aspect or feature of someone or something that causes problems, worries, or difficulties
      the trouble (with someone/something) is (that):

      The trouble with my parents is they think I’m still a child.

      the only trouble (with someone/something) is (that):

      The only trouble with that idea was that Isabel would never agree to it.

      someone’s trouble is (that):

      Your trouble is you are greedy.

  2. 2
    [uncountable] a health problem affecting a part of your body
    heart/stomach/back trouble:

    My family has a history of heart trouble.

    give/cause someone trouble:

    My knee’s been giving me a lot of trouble lately.

    have trouble with something:

    She’s been having a bit of trouble with her eyes.

    1. a.
      a problem affecting a machine or system that makes it not work as it should
      engine/mechanical trouble:

      The plane developed engine trouble five minutes after take-off.

  3. 3
    [uncountable] additional or special effort that causes you problems or difficulties
    it’s no trouble (for someone to do something):

    It’s no trouble at all for me to get her phone number.

    I don’t mind waiting – it’s no trouble.

    put someone to a lot of trouble:

    Sorry we put you to such a lot of trouble.

    take the trouble to do something:

    Thank you for taking the trouble to reply.

    take trouble over/with something:

    She takes a considerable amount of trouble over her appearance.

    go to/take a lot of trouble (to do something):

    He’d gone to a lot of trouble to make the evening go perfectly.

    go to the trouble of doing something:

    Why go to the trouble of washing them by hand?

    save someone the trouble of doing something:

    I’ll do your shopping to save you the trouble of going out.

    save yourself trouble:

    You’ll save yourself a lot of trouble if you choose carefully.

    be more trouble than someone/something is worth:

    Growing roses is more trouble than it is worth.

  4. 4
    [uncountable] an unpleasant, difficult, or dangerous situation
    be in trouble:

    I knew we were in trouble when the lift stopped.

    The company is in trouble primarily because of poor management.

    run into trouble:

    The plane ran into serious trouble soon after take-off.

    get into trouble:

    The horse got into trouble at the first fence.

  5. 5
    [uncountable] a situation for which you are likely to be blamed, criticized, or punished
    be in trouble (with someone):

    I hear she’s in trouble with the police again.

    be in serious/big/deep trouble:

    If he hears about this, you’ll be in big trouble.

    get into trouble (for doing something):

    I got into trouble for being late.

    get someone into trouble:

    If you break it, you’ll get us all into trouble.

    stay/keep out of trouble:

    He’s managed to stay out of trouble since coming out of jail.

  6. 6
    [countable/uncountable] fighting, violence, or bad behaviour

    There’s been a lot of trouble in the neighbourhood recently.

    trouble starts:

    The trouble started when he accused someone of stealing his bicycle.

    make/cause trouble:

    Peter used to make a lot of trouble at school.

    crowd trouble:

    There was crowd trouble at the last match.

    trouble flares/erupts:

    Trouble flared on the estate after a youth was arrested.