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 morefrequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.
- 1[transitive] to put someone or something down in a careful way, especially so that they are lying flatlay someone/something on something:
Lay the baby on her back.lay someone/something across something:
He laid his coat across the arm of the chair.
We lay flowers on her grave once a week.
Carmen laid her head against my shoulder and fell asleep.
- 3[transitive] if you lay the table or lay a place at a table, you prepare a table for a meal by putting forks, knives, spoons, dishes etc on it. The usual American word is set
Will you lay the table while I get breakfast?lay a place (for someone):
Don't bother laying a place for me – I'm going out to dinner.
- 4[transitive] to carefully plan and prepare something that will be needed in the future to achieve an aimlay the groundwork/foundations:
The project is intended to lay the groundwork for future research.lay a trap (for someone/something) (=prepare for catching someone or something):
The gunman realized the police had laid a trap and quickly surrendered.
lay something at someone's door
lay something bare
lay the blame/responsibility (for something) on
I'd lay money/odds/a bet on somethingBritish
lay claim to something
lay emphasis/stress on something
lay someone/something flat
lay someone low[usually passive]
lay someone open to something
lay siege to something
lay someone to rest
lay something waste/lay waste to something
not lay a finger on someone
This is the British English definition of lay. View American English definition of lay