Did you know?

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


 - definition

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 entries. Click on the T button in an entry to review the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

verb carry pronunciation in British English /ˈkæri/ 
Word Forms
present tense
present participlecarrying
past tensecarried
past participlecarried
  1. 1
    [transitive] to hold someone or something using your hands, arms, or body and take them somewhere

    Do you mind carrying this box for me?

    Luke was carrying a bag over his shoulder.

    Sarah carried her cup of coffee back to her desk.

    1. a.
      to have something with you, usually in your pocket or bag

      I never carry much cash with me.

      British police officers don't normally carry guns.

    2. b.
      to take or deliver a message to someone

      They carried the news of the massacre back to their villages.

  2. 3
    [transitive] if you carry a feeling with you, you have it in your mind all the time

    He would carry the guilt with him forever.

  3. 4
    [transitive] to publish or broadcast a news story

    All the papers carried the story the next day.

  4. 5
    [transitive] if something carries a guarantee, it has it

    All our products carry a full 25-year guarantee.

  5. 6
    [transitive] to do some of the work that someone else should be doing so that they can continue to do their job

    His colleagues rapidly grew annoyed at having to carry him.

  6. 7
    [transitive] if a crime carries a particular punishment, that is the punishment people will receive for committing it

    Murder carries a compulsory sentence of life imprisonment.

  7. 8
    [transitive] if something carries a message or warning, it has it written on it

    Packets of cigarettes must carry a government health warning.

  8. 11
    [transitive] if something carries a danger, it might cause something bad to happen

    The treatment carries less risk than some medications.

  9. 12
    [transitive] to make it possible for someone to achieve something

    His determination to succeed carried him to the top of his profession.

  10. 13
    [transitive] to persuade a number of people to support your ideas

    She seemed to carry the whole audience with her.

  11. 14
    [transitive] if you carry responsibility or blame for something, you accept it

    The government must carry the blame for this terrible tragedy.

  12. 15
    [transitive] if a shop carries goods or products, it has them for sale

    We are urging shops not to carry goods made with child labour.

  13. 16
    [intransitive] if a smell or sound carries, it can be smelt or heard over a distance

    His voice doesn't carry very well.

  14. 17
    [transitive] to do or develop something to a particular point or level

    Can we trust him to carry the task to completion?

    Carried to extremes, such behaviour can be self-destructive.

    I know we all need to be careful with our money, but some people carry it too far!

  15. 20
    [transitive] American to win an election in a particular state or district

    A Democrat has not carried Arizona since 1948.



a paid holiday given to a new employee before they start their job

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary

selfie stick

an expandable stick which you attach to a mobile phone or camera to help you take a selfie …

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