Did you know?

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

climb - definition and synonyms


What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.



The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary. Click on the thesaurus category heading under the button in an entry to see the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

verb climb pronunciation in American English /klaɪm/
Word Forms
present tense
present participleclimbing
past tenseclimbed
past participleclimbed
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  1. 1
    [intransitive/transitive] to use your hands and feet to move up, over, down, or across something
    He climbed onto the roof to check the TV antenna.
    We escaped by climbing through a window.
    The barbed wire is to stop people from climbing over the fence.
    climb a ladder/tree/wall: He climbed the ladder to get onto the roof.
    1. a.
      to use your hands and feet to move up cliffs or mountains as a sport
      She was the third woman to climb Mount Everest.
      go climbing: If you go climbing you need the right boots.
  2. 2
    [intransitive/transitive] to walk to the top of something high
    We left the road and climbed the hill toward the woods.
    1. a.
      to walk to the top of some steps or stairs
      They had to climb ten flights of stairs because the elevator was broken.
  3. 3
    [intransitive] if a temperature, price, or the level of something climbs, it becomes higher
    Temperatures climbed into the 90s.
    Their profits climbed from $20 million to $50 million last year.
    climb steadily: Unemployment has climbed steadily over the past year.
  4. 4
    [intransitive] to get into or out of something, especially by stepping to a higher or lower position
    Sara yawned as she climbed wearily into bed.
  5. 5
    [intransitive] if an aircraft climbs, it moves up to a higher position in the air
    The plane climbed to an altitude of 60,000 feet.
  6. 6
    [intransitive/transitive] to move to a higher level in your job or social position
    people who climb to the top of their profession
    climb the career/social ladder: He began working at eighteen, determined to climb the career ladder.
    1. a.
      to achieve a high position in a list or competition
      climb to: The book climbed steadily to number one on the New York Times bestseller list.

phrasal verbs


a meal served in the evening which consists of foods traditionally eaten at breakfast

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary

troll factory

a company that pays its employees to write online comments in favour or against somebody or something posing as ordinary Internet users

add a word


A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog