[countable] a remark that expresses praise or admiration of somebodyto pay somebody a compliment (= to praise them for something)‘You understand the problem because you're so much older.’ ‘I'll take that as a compliment!’It's a great compliment to be asked to do the job.to return the compliment (= to treat somebody in the same way as they have treated you)
[intransitive, transitive] to show that you have no respect for somebody by the expression on your face or by the way you speaksynonym mocksneer (at somebody/something) He sneered at people who liked pop music.a sneering commentShe gave a sneering laugh.+ speech ‘You? A writer?’ she sneered.
1. to make a judgement about something, especially people’s feelings or attitudesgauge something They interviewed employees to gauge their reaction to the changes.He tried to gauge her mood.gauge whether, how, etc… It was difficult to gauge whether she was angry or not.
2. gauge something to measure something accurately using a special instrumentprecision instruments that can gauge the diameter to a fraction of a millimetre
3. gauge something gauge how, what, etc… to calculate something approximatelyWe were able to gauge the strength of the wind from the movement of the trees.It is impossible to gauge the extent of the damage.
4. fill somebody in on something
to tell somebody about something that has happened
Please fill me in on what happened last night.
5. mince no words/not mince (your) words
to say something in a direct way even though it might offend other peopleThey were severely criticized by the chairman, who was not a man to mince his words.
6. take pains
to put a lot of effort into doing somethingThe couple went to great pains to keep their plans secret.
a line along which two edges of cloth, etc. are joined or sewn togethera shoulder seam
8. drive at
what somebody is driving at
(informal) the thing somebody is trying to sayI wish I knew what they were driving at.
the quality of being genuine or trueThe authenticity of the letter is beyond doubt.A sentry checked the ID card’s authenticity then activated the electronic turnstile.
10. chow line
a line of people waiting to be served food
based on or counted in tens or tenthsthe decimal system
the import (of something) [singular] (formal) the meaning of something, especially when it is not immediately clearIt is difficult to understand the full import of this statement.
[uncountable] (formal) the great size or importance of something; the degree to which something is large or importantWe did not realize the magnitude of the problem.a discovery of the first magnitude
a minister in charge of a Christian church or group, especially in some Nonconformist churches
expressed clearly and in a way that shows that you are very sure about what you are sayingto make a categorical statementto give a categorical assuranceThey gave him a categorical assurance that he would not be hurt.
mar something to damage or spoil something goodsynonym blight, ruinThe game was marred by the behaviour of drunken fans.
(of people or their behaviour) using authority in an unreasonable way, without considering the opinions of other peoplesynonym overbearinga high-handed mannerShe’s always so arrogant and high-handed in her dealings with people.
[transitive] foster something to encourage something to developsynonym encourage, promoteThe club's aim is to foster better relations within the community.
19. call ... on the carpet
(be/get called) on the carpet
(informal, especially North American English) called to see somebody in authority because you have done something wrongI got called on the carpet for being late.
20. rub it in
[no passive] to keep reminding somebody of something they feel embarrassed about and want to forgetI know I was stupid; you don't have to rub it in.
[intransitive, transitive] to move or make something move quickly up and down, especially in wateran old cigarette packet bobbing along in the currentbob up and down Tiny boats bobbed up and down in the harbour.bob something (up and down) She bobbed her head nervously.The maid bobbed a curtsy.
22. against time
if you do something against time, you do it as fast as you can because you do not have much timeThey're working against time to try and get people out of the rubble alive.
23. rough it
(informal) to live in a way that is not very comfortable for a short timeWe can sleep on the beach. I don't mind roughing it for a night or two.
to know, recognize or understand something, especially something that is not obvioussynonym detectdiscern something It is possible to discern a number of different techniques in her work.He discerned a certain coldness in their welcome.discern how, whether, etc… It is often difficult to discern how widespread public support is.discern that… I quickly discerned that something was wrong.
25. for a song
for a song
(informal) very cheaply; at a low priceShe bought the painting for a song.The property is going for a song because they need to sell it fast.