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Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

Example Sentences

Macmillan Dictionary has a special focus on the most frequent 7,500 words of English. These are words that learners need to understand. Even more importantly, they need to know how to use them.

The definitions are clear and clarify the meaning. But for help with using the language, the examples are especially important, and the 7,500 frequent words are accompanied by a wealth of examples. These examples show a variety of significant features:

  • typical grammatical structures
  • typical collocations
  • typical contexts

Examples support the grammatical descriptions and demonstrate how those grammatical features actually work. So when the entry for like says that the verb occurs in the structure

like doing something

the example clarifies the structure by showing

I like going out to parties with friends or watching TV.

Similarly, at the entry for want the grammatical structure

want something done

is illustrated by the example

Mrs Miller wants the entire house repainted.

Collocations are also shown in examples. For instance, at the entry for unfair, the collocation grossly is shown, followed by the example It is grossly unfair to suggest that the school was responsible for the accident.

The examples are all taken from real texts in the World English Corpus. We don't sit at our desks and make them up – we research the language and take the most typical uses and embed them in the entries. Users of MacmillanDictionary.com can be sure that the language they encounter here is up-to-date, accurate, and reflects the language as it is used in the 21st century.