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circle - definition and synonyms

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verb     circle pronunciation in British English
Word Forms
present tense
present participlecircling
past tensecircled
past participlecircled
  1. 1
    [intransitive/transitive] to move in a circle in the air

    The plane continued to circle the airport, waiting for permission to land.

    1. a.
      to move in a circle on the ground

      The dog circled him, barking.

      circle around:

      The two men began circling slowly around each other.

  2. 2
    [transitive] to form a circle around something

    Her arms circled his neck.

  3. 3
    [transitive] to draw a circle around something

    Someone had circled the next paragraph.

  4. 4
    [intransitive/transitive] if people are circling, they are watching a situation and waiting for an opportunity to get something they want
  5. From our crowdsourced Open Dictionary
    circle the drain to be about to die, fail or disappear

    Our economy is circling the drain and all we have is a plan to make a plan.

    Doctors told me I had circled the drain for several days at Rancho Springs Hospital and doctors there thought I was going to die.

    Submitted from United Kingdom on 16/02/2015


a lifestyle focussing on simple pleasures such as comfort and cosiness in the home, and spending time with friends and family

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a form of location that involves the underwater detonation of a bomb which causes sound waves that are picked up by ships

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