I UK [laɪn] / US noun
Word forms "line":
singular line plural lines
1) [countable] a long thin mark on the surface of something

Draw a straight line.

Each horizontal line on the graph represents fifteen minutes.

a) a long thin mark on the ground used in sports for marking an area in which a match is played, or for showing where a race starts or finishes

It was hard to tell whether the ball had crossed the line.

the starting line

b) a long thin mark on a road used for organizing traffic and for showing drivers where they can park

His only previous conviction is for parking on a double yellow line.

c) a thin mark on someone's skin that appears especially as they get older

There were small lines at the corners of her mouth and around her eyes.

a) [countable] a border between two regions

the line between Northern Ireland and the Republic

b) an imaginary limit or border between two situations or conditions

The country is still divided along ethnic lines.

line between:

The programme blurs the line between news and entertainment.

a fine/thin line:

There is a fine line between resolving the crisis peacefully and giving in to terrorism.

a) [countable] a telephone connection

My daughter now wants her own phone line in her bedroom.

It's a very bad line – put the phone down and I'll call you back.

b) a telephone service

The advice line is open from 6pm to 10pm on weekdays.

a chat line

a) [countable] a part of a railway system

the London to Brighton line

There are plans to reopen the railway line.

b) the long metal bars on which trains travel

Train services have been cancelled due to repair work on the line.

a) [countable, usually singular] a way of thinking, talking, or finding out about something
line of thought:

He impatiently dismissed this line of thought.

line of argument:

You also need to develop a persuasive line of argument.

line of enquiry:

What are the main lines of enquiry you intend to pursue?

b) an attitude or belief, especially one that is expressed publicly
take a tough/firm/hard line:

Environmental groups took a very tough line with the industry.

line on:

Forsyth appears to have hardened his line on Europe.

6) [countable] a series of words written or printed in a row

a line of text

a) [plural] theatre the words that an actor says in a performance

He forgot his lines.

b) [countable] a clever or funny remark
c) [singular] a remark, excuse, or explanation that is not sincere or true

Don't give me that old line.

7) [countable] a row of people or things

A line of police stood outside the post office as employees were evacuated.

On the far bank were thick reeds and a line of palm trees.

in a line:

She told the children to walk in a line and not push.

a) a row of soldiers, ships, or weapons facing an enemy

The plane was brought down behind enemy lines.

b) mainly American a queue of people waiting for something
stand in line:

We stood in line for about an hour to get the tickets.

8) [countable] the way that communication, authority, or responsibility is shared between people in an organization

We want to open up lines of communication and provide more information.

The organization's problems were caused by a lack of clear reporting lines.

9) [countable] a company that provides a transport service

The shipping line is losing money, and the government wants to sell it.

10) [countable] several products forming a set, for example because they are all of the same type or are all produced by the same company

The company is broadening its product lines to attract more buyers.

a new line of perfume

11) [countable] a piece of string, rope, or wire used for a particular purpose

a washing line

Heavy snow brought down power lines.

12) [countable] the direction or path along which someone or something moves or looks

He was so drunk he couldn't walk in a straight line.

Deep snow is blocking the mountain roads that serve as supply lines for the rebels.

line of fire (= the direction in which weapons are fired):

Though there is fighting nearby, the camp is not in the line of fire.

line of vision (= the direction in which someone is looking):

I was standing right in his line of vision.

13) [countable] an edge that shows the shape of something

Buyers are attracted by the sleek lines of the car.

14) [countable] music a series of connected musical notes that form a tune

a bass line

a) [countable] a series of connected events

This is just the latest in a long line of such scandals.

b) a series of connected generations in the same family

Mr Nelson comes from a long line of carpenters.

16) [singular] a type of work or area of interest
line of business/work:

What line of business are you in exactly?

in someone's line:

Light novels are more in my line.

17) [countable] informal a quantity of an illegal drug that is arranged into a line before being taken

a line of cocaine

along/down the line — at a stage during a process

all along/down the line (= at every stage):

Our supporters have been magnificent all along the line.

somewhere along/down the line (= at some stage):

Somewhere along the line vital information has been withheld.

further along/down the line (= at a later stage):

The judge said compensation would be considered further down the line.

along similar/different etc lines — in a similar/different etc way

We are all working along similar lines.

along the lines of (= similar to):

Vienna and Berlin were modernist cities, almost along the lines of Chicago.

bring someone/something into line — to make someone/something similar to another person or thing

The restructuring of the business has brought output and demand into line.

bring someone/something into line with:

The new ruling brings this country into line with the rest of Europe.

come/get/fall into line — to agree with or become similar to someone or something else

come/get/fall into line with:

It didn't take much pressure to make him fall into line with party policy.

in line/out of line with — similar/different to someone or something; changing/not changing in the same way as another thing

The costs were very much in line with what we expected.

Pensioners get an annual increase in line with the cost of living.

II UK [laɪn] / US verb [transitive]
Word forms "line":
present tense I/you/we/they line he/she/it lines present participle lining past tense lined past participle lined
a) to cover the inside of something, especially a piece of clothing or a container, with a layer of something else
line something with something:

Line the dish with aluminium foil.

He wore a black coat lined with dark grey silk.

b) to form a layer on the inside surface of something
2) to form rows along the sides of something

Crowds lined the streets to watch the parade.

The riverside will be transformed into a promenade lined with cafés and restaurants.

Phrasal verbs:

English dictionary. 2014.

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