There are 2 main definitions of go in English:

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go 1

Pronunciation: /ɡō/

verb (goes, going; past went /went/; past participle gone /ɡôn/ /ɡän/)

1 [no object] Move from one place or point to another; travel: he went out to the store she longs to go back home we’ve got a long way to go
More example sentences
  • Clara, still with no idea where she was going, went to ask the boy for directions.
  • I had a two-hour break between classes and went to the pub - I drank three pints and went home and crashed on the couch.
  • We said hi and then they went on their way, and I got on my bus and went home.
move, proceed, make one's way, advance, progress, pass;
walk, travel, journey
literary betake oneself
1.1Travel a specified distance: you just have to go a few miles to get to the road
More example sentences
  • Heavy freight that goes long distances, from Auckland to Wellington, should travel by road.
  • Dozens of families boarded a vintage steam train and went the short distance up the track to see Santa in his grotto.
  • The other kind of holiday I like is going 10 miles from where you live, so that you have hardly any travelling time.
1.2Travel or move in order to engage in a specified activity or course of action: let’s go and have a beer [with infinitive]: we went to see her [with present participle]: she used to go hunting
More example sentences
  • I had gone to visit my parents for the weekend, and my mother drove me to the Greyhound station for my return trip.
  • I was actually thinking of going to visit him this week.
  • ‘Let's go shopping tomorrow,’ she said, in between bites of her lunch.
1.3 (go to) Attend or visit for a particular purpose: we went to the movies he went to Brown University
More example sentences
  • She regularly goes to the movies and attends film festivals.
  • This isn't surprising, though, since attending church is like going to the theatre.
  • More often than not, she attends opening ceremonies, goes to parties, meets people and takes part in charity work for the local community.
1.4 [in imperative] Begin motion (used in a starter’s order to begin a race): ready, set, go!
More example sentences
  • ‘On your marks, get set, go!’ Coach Henderson blew the whistle.
  • When I say go, run as fast as you can to that rock on your right and hide behind it.
  • All right: ready, steady, go!
1.5 (go to) (Of a rank or honor) be allotted or awarded: the top prize went to a twenty-four-year-old sculptor
More example sentences
  • The first award went to Manchester's Christie Hospital for its pioneering work in cancer treatment and research.
  • The best international group award went to the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Pink took home best international female title.
  • Last year the award went to N.H. Dini, one of Indonesia's most famous female writers.
be given, be donated, be granted, be presented, be awarded;
be devoted;
be handed (over)
1.6 (go into/to/toward) (Of a thing) contribute to or be put into (a whole); be used for or devoted to: considerable effort went into making the operation successful
More example sentences
  • Much of Murray's efforts have gone towards trying to raise money from the private sector.
  • All proceeds from the venture are going towards the new Community Centre in Loughglynn.
  • The income goes towards maintaining the buildings and the estate.
contribute, help, serve;
incline, tend
1.7Pass a specified amount of time in a particular way or under particular circumstances: sometimes they went for two months without talking
More example sentences
  • That's the longest I've gone without one for many years.
  • You know, anybody who's gone without sleep, even for just one night, knows that it can really sort of, you know, mess with your head.
  • Teenagers went without food for a whole day to raise money for orphans in Africa.
1.8Used to indicate how many people a supply of food, money, or another resource is sufficient for or how much can be achieved using it: the sale will go a long way toward easing the huge debt burden a little luck can go a long way
More example sentences
  • These three steps will go a long way towards lowering the risk of virus infection on the internet.
  • I can't promise any miracles, but a small amount of regular practice can go a long way, over time.
  • Their meager paychecks didn't go very far, but the stores didn't have many products to sell anyway.
1.9(Of a thing) lie or extend in a certain direction: the scar started just above her ankle and went all the way up inside her leg
More example sentences
  • We opened the bridge that goes across the river so people can go back and forth.
  • The mirror went all the way up to the ceiling and was just as wide as it was tall.
  • Her black hair went down to her shoulders and looked as though she had her own person stylist come in and do it every morning.
extend, stretch, reach;
1.10Change in level, amount, or rank in a specified direction: prices went up by 15 percent
More example sentences
  • The bank's share price also went up by 3.6 per cent to 1223 pence.
  • Those subsidies cause the global market to be flooded with farm products, driving down prices and making it harder for Third World farmers to make a living.
  • I only bring the subject up because of the news on the front page of last week's Daily Record that the price of a pint is to go up by 10p.
1.11 informal Used to emphasize the speaker’s annoyance at a specified action or event: then he goes and spoils it all [with present participle]: don’t go poking your nose where you shouldn’t
More example sentences
  • After predicting that Clark would be the eventual nominee he goes and ruins my career as a political prognosticator by dropping out of the race.
  • Just when he thinks things can't get any worse, he goes and does exactly what he does best - make an eejit of himself.
  • It's only a matter of time before she goes and spoils it all with an act of self-destructive petulance or a complete misreading of a perfectly innocent situation.
1.12 informal Said in various expressions when angrily or contemptuously dismissing someone: go and get stuffed
More example sentences
  • I told her to go to hell, and she screamed several things back at me, but I really didn't care.
  • ‘Go to hell,’ Isabelle muttered, but even she wasn't brave enough to say that loud enough for him to hear.
  • My husband and I still disagree, but I just tell him to go and get stuffed.
2 [no object] Leave; depart: I really must go
More example sentences
  • The next day Phil phoned me asking what had happened as he'd blanked out in the pub and when he came round everyone had gone.
  • After some time, he came over to me and said that we must be going now - we had to meet someone.
  • I really must be going, but before I do there are some things you need to know.
leave, depart, go away, withdraw, absent oneself, make an exit, exit;
set off, start out, get underway, be on one's way;
decamp, retreat, retire, make off, clear out, run off, run away, flee, make a move
informal make tracks, push off, beat it, take off, skedaddle, scram, split, scoot
2.1(Of time) pass or elapse: the hours went by three years went past
More example sentences
  • Will was alarming me more and more with every second that went past.
  • Anyway, this week went by fairly smoothly.
  • With just over four minutes gone it was again level at 24 apiece.
pass, elapse, slip by/past, roll by/past, tick away;
fly by/past
2.2Come to an end; cease to exist: a golden age that has now gone for good 11,500 jobs are due to go by next year
More example sentences
  • Those golden days, if they ever existed, are long gone in most professional sports.
  • The days of a manager commanding respect from his players simply because of who he is are long gone if they ever existed at all.
  • The a la carte menu's gone and she now serves traditional, home-cooked grub.
disappear, vanish, be no more, cease to exist, come to an end, be over, run its course, fade away;
finish, end, cease
2.3Leave or resign from a post: I tried to persuade the Chancellor not to go
2.4Be lost or stolen: when he returned minutes later, his equipment was gone
More example sentences
  • I think I was just worried that we'd come back and all the equipment would have gone.
  • I went up to my locker, only to discover that the lock was missing and half my books were gone.
  • When Wood returned to the truck parked on Panorama Drive, her bike was gone along with two others belonging to friends visiting from Washing-ton state.
2.5Die (used euphemistically): I’d like to see my grandchildren before I go
More example sentences
  • I think possibly his death might have been a little easier to handle because I was young and I didn't quite understand but when my grandfather went it hit me like a ton of bricks just because I was that bit older and I know he wasn't coming back.
  • But when I'm gone it will be taken from my estate.
  • Long after I'm gone, some kid can walk into a place and see an image of me and read what I did in the NFL.
die, pass away, pass on, lose one's life, expire, breathe one's last, perish, go to meet one's maker
2.6(Of money) be spent, especially in a specified way: the rest of his money went into medical expenses
More example sentences
  • The money had gone in excessive compensation and unapproved bonuses, fees and loans.
  • Perhaps that is the reason why no one knows where the billion dollars in aid money went.
  • But what if you don't have a say about where your tax money goes?
be used up, be spent, be exhausted, be consumed, be drained, be depleted
3 (be going to be/do something) Intend or be likely or intended to be or do something; be about to (used to express a future tense): I’m going to be late for work she’s going to have a baby
More example sentences
  • He told me that he saw no future at all for the club and that he was going to close us down in two weeks' time.
  • They've come out of a tough division and all the players knew they were going to get a hard game today.
  • I thought we were going to be trapped at the top of the tower block and that my children and me were going to die.
4 [no object] Pass into a specified state, especially an undesirable one: the food is going bad her mind immediately went blank he’s gone crazy
More example sentences
  • I put an arm around him and try to think of something comforting to say but my mind's gone blank.
  • Food was plentiful and only the poorest starved or went hungry.
  • One horrified witness later told police the defendant looked as if he had gone crazy.
4.1 (go to/into) Enter into a specified state, institution, or course of action: she turned over and went back to sleep the car went into a spin no one went hungry in our house
More example sentences
  • We watched the movies David's mum had rented for us before we finally decided to go to sleep.
  • By the time the movie was over it was well past midnight, so they both decided to go to sleep.
  • She left corporate America in 1992 to take a real-estate appraising course and soon went into business for herself.
4.2Make a sound of a specified kind: the engine went bang
More example sentences
  • This is due to an unfortunate event affecting our home computer - basically, it went bang.
  • They used a flash grenade, it went bang and the whole place lit up.
  • The elevator went ping and the doors opened.
4.3(Of a bell or similar device) make a sound in functioning: I heard the buzzer go four times
More example sentences
  • Keenan tried one last run but was hauled down, Morrison and company held Couper up, and when the whistle went it was pandemonium as the Hawks celebrated.
  • ‘I still expect to see her standing there every time the door goes,’ she said.
  • I manage half a day of final tweaking then the phone goes.
make a sound, sound, reverberate, resound;
ring, chime, peal, toll, clang
4.4 [with direct speech] informal Say: the kids go, “Yeah, sure.”
More example sentences
  • I was still sat there when this cop comes up and goes, ‘You best be clearing off and getting home son.’
  • Then this punk is like talking to his teacher, and the teacher goes, ‘You've got no grip on reality do you boy?’
  • So I kind of went ‘yeah, good to meet you’, and he turned around and I never said another word to him; he couldn't have cared less!
4.5 (go by/under) Be known or called by (a specified name): he now goes under the name Charles Perez
More example sentences
  • It turns out that fibromyalgia went by a different name two centuries ago.
  • I remember when Pearl was at high school, there was this one guy who went by the name Jim Silk.
  • Nancy may be going by the name ‘Flora’ and may have altered her appearance to look like an older woman.
5 [no object] Proceed in a specified way or have a specified outcome; turn out: how did the weekend go? it all went off smoothly
More example sentences
  • Then I went off to do my gig in Bristol, which went pretty well.
  • His meeting must have gone well because he looked a whole lot happier now then when he left.
  • Things are going smoothly at the moment.
turn out, work out, develop, come out;
result, end (up)
informal pan out
5.1Be successful, especially in being enjoyable or exciting: the hosts had to struggle to make things go
5.2Be acceptable or permitted: underground events where anything goes
More example sentences
  • Just about anything goes, probably because anything went in the family home on Belfast's Ormeau Road.
  • In a city where anything goes and everything is possible, six strangers are about to be given the chance of a lifetime!
  • It's the abolition of all standards that has caused the permissive society that we live in, where anything goes and laws can be broken.
5.3(Of a song, account, verse, etc.) have a specified content or wording: if you haven’t heard it, the story goes like this
More example sentences
  • There's an old Jefferson Airplane song that goes something like ‘Don't you want somebody to love’.
  • Stop the funding, the theory goes, and the projects won't happen.
  • Education, so the argument goes, is about empowerment - about increasing students' confidence by making them feel good about themselves.
6 [no object] Be harmonious, complementary, or matching: rosemary goes with roast lamb the earrings and the scarf don’t really go
More example sentences
  • Its aroma is very full-bodied and complex, and it went deliciously well in this soup.
  • Salmon and pasta really go well together - once again, it's a texture thing.
  • Acidic foods and acidic wines often go well together; like a salad and Beaujolais.
match, be harmonious, harmonize, blend, be suited, be complementary, coordinate, be compatible
6.1Be found in the same place or situation; be associated: cooking and eating go together
More example sentences
  • Who says that art and commerce don't go together?
  • Drum, who holds a journalism degree from California State University, admits to ‘some doubt about whether blogging and professional journalism can go together’.
  • For adults the back to school date signals an end to summer and all that goes with it - normality has returned.
7 [no object] (Of a machine or device) function: my car won’t go
More example sentences
  • If you plan to keep the car until it won't go anymore, it doesn't matter if you get a 2003 or a 2004. Just buy something you like enough to drive for 10 years or more.
  • Ok Bobby, keep the engine going and I'll be back in a few minutes.
  • But for the past week I have struggled to get this clock to go.
7.1Continue in operation or existence: the committee was kept going even when its existence could no longer be justified
More example sentences
  • But something other than money, even vast piles of it, keeps Bond going.
  • All cooking was done over an open fire, which also their source of heat and which was kept going all the year round.
  • The organisation promotes physical activity and health through country walking, and the money will keep it going for the next year.
8 [no object] (Of an article) be regularly kept or put in a particular place: remember which card goes in which slot
More example sentences
  • We've sent them E-mails explaining what goes where.
  • My cases go in the cupboard under the stairs.
  • Glasses go right side up in the cupboard.
belong, be kept
8.1Fit or be able to be accommodated in a particular place or space: you’re trying to fit a round peg into a square hole, and it just won’t go
More example sentences
  • On the corner Agnes, Will, and Casper were waiting by a large mailbox and Agnes was trying to fit her head through the tiny slot where the mail goes.
  • Slowly pour the liquid until the reservoir is close to full (basically to the point where no more liquid goes in).
  • ‘It's like a key to a door,’ he says. ‘You're sure you've got the right key. But it just won't go in the damned lock.’
9 [no object] informal Use a toilet; urinate or defecate.
Example sentences
  • You may notice that you need to pass water more often; have very little warning before you need to go, and sometimes do not reach the lavatory in time.
  • ‘Why can't you control yourself?’ ‘How can you, when you want to go? I'm sorry.’
  • She has also developed a device for older children that reminds them to wash their hands after going to the loo.

noun (plural goes)

1An attempt or trial at something: I thought I’d give it a go
More example sentences
  • What with it being a double roll-over on Saturday I had had a couple of goes and when I checked my numbers on Sunday I realised my lucky dip line had won me ten pounds.
  • It is something I have always wanted to have a go at and the noise it makes is fantastic.
  • I worked for a while as a deputy manager of a leisure centre, but then I decided to have a go at what I always wanted to do, becoming a police officer.
informal shot, stab, crack, bash, whirl, whack
formal essay
1.1chiefly British A state of affairs: this seems a rum sort of go
More example sentences
  • It's a very rum go, and in the end, despite the occasional hoots of sardonic delight which it all provokes, it just makes you feel a bit depressed.
  • That husband of hers, still doing the cooking? Saw him on telly the other day. He had an apron on. Seems a rum sort of go. In my day we left cooking to the women.
1.2chiefly British An attack of illness: he’s had this nasty go of dysentery
More example sentences
  • He's had this nasty go of dysentery, it's left him really rather weak.
1.3North American A project or undertaking that has been approved: tell them the project is a go
More example sentences
  • I received another e-mail from JoAnn. She said the project is a go.
  • We should know if the sale is a go for sure by late September or early October.
  • For anybody who doesn't know, it seems that our move to London is a go, details and timeline to be determined.
1.4chiefly British Used in reference to a single item, action, or spell of activity: he put it to his lips then knocked it back in one go
More example sentences
  • In summary, if you receive a demand for the return of overpaid tax credits, don't feel obliged to pay it all in one go.
  • He poured himself a glass of milk and downed it in one go.
  • At thirty quid a go, there was no way I'd try it.
2 dated Spirit, animation, or energy: there’s no go in me at all these days
More example sentences
  • Physically, he is a wonderful man…very wiry, and full of energy and go.
  • The Yaris is a young driver's car and one that will please both the boy-racers and the ladies who expect their city car to have a bit of go and a bit of show.
  • I'm looking for people with a bit of go about them, who enjoy an adventure, are fit and motivated to work and who are prepared to use their initiative.
energy, vigor, vitality, life, liveliness, spirit, verve, enthusiasm, zest, vibrancy, sparkle;
stamina, dynamism, drive, push, determination
2.1Vigorous activity: it’s all go around here
More example sentences
  • What a busy week. It is just go go go and no rest for the wicked.
  • Alexa had started work at 6 am and it had been all go ever since.
  • All in all, his life seems to be all go, as he has some other projects in hand as well, but he is enjoying it.


[predicative] informal
Functioning properly: all systems go
More example sentences
  • Eat less than 1,200 calories a day - the minimum amount most women need to keep all systems go - and you will likely burn lean muscle mass instead of fat.
  • It is all systems go here in Dublin. We have moved into new premises and are commencing our advertising and marketing campaign.


The use of go followed by and, as in I must go and change (rather than I must go to change), is extremely common but is regarded by some grammarians as an oddity. For more details, see and (usage).



as (or so) far as it goes

Bearing in mind its limitations (said when qualifying praise of something): the book is a useful catalog as far as it goes
More example sentences
  • His reasoning is sound so far as it goes, and he's produced an enjoyable and thought-provoking read that I highly recommend.
  • All of this is true so far as it goes, but it ignores the one big question: Who is going to pay for all of this?
  • In so far as it goes, it is based on fact, experience and experiment.

as —— go

Compared to the average or typical one of the specified kind: as castles go, it is small and old
More example sentences
  • I've traveled this highway hundreds of times, and for about three months on a near daily basis, and as far as freeways go it's still by far my favorite.
  • He's pretty undemanding, as far as boyfriends go.
  • After sticking our heads into various hostels to inquire about prices, we picked one a few blocks from the square which was very clean, as hostels go.

from the word go

informal From the very beginning.
Example sentences
  • It really is best to get the facts straight from the word go.
  • The New Zealander was apparently in uncommunicative form from the word go, and quickly passed to the angry stage before clamming up completely.
  • Suddenly he found himself watching almost as many games from the subs' bench as he was playing in - an imbalance he is anxious to put right this time round, right from the word go.

go figure!

North American informal Said to express the speaker’s belief that something is amazing or incredible.
Example sentences
  • Well, all the good looking women were sitting with the physicists' table (go figure!) so I had to settle for sitting next to Steve Case.
  • This is a reality series watched by 40 million Americans every week - go figure.
  • We six kids are very close together in age, with my next sister being 10 and a half months younger than me - go figure! - which has always led me to believe that mum and dad kind of liked each other.

go great guns

see gun.

go halves

Share something equally.
Example sentences
  • The asking price was IR £40,000, but we were strapped and couldn't afford it and neither could the other couple, so we decided to go halves, taking an acre apiece.
  • So i chimed in and said that i'd go halves with him.
  • Incredibly, he won the £20,000 jackpot but with humbling generosity he is keeping his word to go halves and now wants Marge to get in touch because he has lost her phone number.

going! (, going!,) gone!

An auctioneer’s announcement that bidding is closing or closed.
Example sentences
  • Going, going, gone will be heard all tomorrow as the hammer comes down at Debenham's on Manningham Lane, Bradford.
  • Joan Livesey's semi will soon be going, going, gone - on TV.
  • By then, his reputation and standing in New York's high society will be going, going, gone.

going on —— (British alsogoing on for ——)

Approaching a specified time, age, or amount: I was going on fourteen when I went to my first gig
More example sentences
  • It wasn't hard for Pearson and Kelly to find summer jobs since Pearson was seventeen and Kelly was going on it.
  • Aren't you a little old for this? You're going on forty-five, Elena.
  • He did have a job but never really bothered to do anything productive. There aren't many things you can do when you're sixteen going on seventeen.

go (to) it

British informal Act in a vigorous, energetic, or dissipated way: Go it, Dad! Give him what for!
More example sentences
  • And, as if two books in a matter of months wasn't going it just a bit, her new novella, Beasts, is being published by Orion in March.
  • You've got your missions. Go to it.

go it alone

see alone.

go to show (or prove)

(Of an occurrence) serve as evidence or proof of something specified.
Example sentences
  • Evidently none of the guys who ended up there are terribly happy with their new positions either, so it just goes to prove that it's not just me, but the whole situation…
  • It just goes to show that the whole protest culture is fundamentally flawed.
  • His silence at last week's press conference - and the chaos which filled it - only went to show again how much the party will suffer from his absence.

have a go at

1Make an attempt at; try: let me have a go at straightening the rim
More example sentences
  • Very few of the big stars from England's 1990 World Cup team or the early years of the Premiership have even attempted to have a go at management.
  • Since then a string of restaurateurs have had a go at it, with little success.
  • It's not going to be easy, but I'm looking forward to having a go at it and doing my part.
2chiefly British Attack or criticize (someone): she’s always having a go at me
More example sentences
  • I feel that I'm always having a go at Lori in her comments, which I'm not, because I like Lori, and certainly wish she would post more.
  • The problem is my aunt and uncle are always having a go at me.
  • It's normal that the two big rivals in any league will always have a go at each other.

have —— going for one

informal Used to indicate how much someone has in their favor or to their advantage: Why did she do it? She had so much going for her
More example sentences
  • As comedies, they have many things going for them: when good, they're fast, funny entertainment and they have license to be vulgar in the most endearing way.
  • You have a lot going for you, but most people will only remember you for one thing, and a lot of them will try to copy it.
  • Swindon is trying to attract people and we have a lot going for us, we are right between London and Bristol, with easy access to all sorts of great places and Wiltshire is a lovely place to live in.

make a go of

informal Be successful in (something): he’s determined to make a go of his marriage
More example sentences
  • Even after picking up that guitar and making a go of it as a musician, he still revels in the reputation of being a bad man, a womanizer, a hard drinker; that's at least part of the appeal for people who buy his records.
  • And now that Chris is here, making a go of his business, he has no intentions of heading home.
  • Just getting cracking and making a go of bringing up kids on your own isn't news!

on the go

informal Very active or busy: he’s been on the go all evening
More example sentences
  • The lads are continuously on the go and travel to all parts of the country.
  • The defence was excellent, in midfield they played a stormer, and the forwards were constantly on the go.
  • It is the right model if you want to download and play back music files, browse the Internet and do some office work while on the go.

to go

chiefly North American (Of food or drink from a restaurant or cafe) to be eaten or drunk off the premises: order one large cheese-and-peppers pizza, to go (as adjective to-go) if possible, grab a to-go coffee and hit the road early
More example sentences
  • I had a revelation recently, when I stopped into Pendelis to get a pizza to go.
  • Having watched too many US films where successful, busy, career people scream for ‘a latte and a Danish to go’, we don't feel we are truly glamorous unless we come bowling into the office juggling Styrofoam cups, pastries and a newspaper.

what goes around comes around

proverb The consequences of one’s actions will have to be dealt with eventually.
Example sentences
  • And it's a powerful belief, offering both hope to the oppressed - suffering cannot last forever - and a warning to the oppressor - take care, what goes around comes around.
  • Watford were on the receiving end of some decisions tonight as we were on Saturday, so what goes around comes around.
  • But although I strive daily to do the right thing - believing firmly in the karmic law that what goes around comes around - I've never, ever aspired to returning to earth as the Dalai Lama.

who goes there?

Said by a sentry as a challenge.
Example sentences
  • Three hundred metres further on Police Superintendent John Trott halted the marchers by standing in the roadway and calling ‘who goes there?’
  • ‘Halt, who goes there?’ yelled the larger of the men at arms that stood atop the large wall.

Phrasal verbs


go about

1Begin or carry on work at (an activity); busy oneself with: you are going about this in the wrong way
More example sentences
  • The documentary follows Mandela as he goes about his day-to-day activities in Europe, Asia, Africa and America, to uncover this truly extraordinary man.
  • The king and queen went about their daily activities as calmly as possible, trying to mask their uneasiness.
  • By the time he was finished, the sun was up and the villagers were going about their daily activities.
set about, begin, embark on, start, commence, address oneself to, get down to, get to work on, get going on, undertake;
approach, tackle, attack
informal get cracking on/with
2 Sailing Change to the opposite tack.

go after

Pursue or hunt down (someone).
Example sentences
  • You don't just go after medium-sized guys, you go after the big guys.
  • Fritz Wolf and I found a small cluster of fighters east of the field and went after them.
  • They saw two large birds coming, and as the birds came in closer they went after the boys.

go against

Oppose or resist: he refused to go against the unions
More example sentences
  • When he went against the king's orders and refused to slay a band of barbarian captives, he was promptly put under arrest.
  • Her parents went against the hospital's advice and refused to have her admitted into a psychiatric facility.
  • I won't go against my family, if they refuse to give their consent.
3.1Be contrary to (a feeling or principle): these tactics go against many of our instincts
More example sentences
  • Surely it is going against accepted moral principles to recommend such a substitute for the usual methods of contraception?
  • That is a problem for science, however, because religion is grounded in faith ‘without a need for supporting evidence’, which goes against the principles of scientific inquiry.
  • I reserve the right to refuse readings that go against my ethics as a reader and my morals as a human being.
3.2(Of a judgment, decision, or result) be unfavorable for: the tribunal’s decision went against them
More example sentences
  • Although the United manager admitted Dunn was wrong to disallow Malcolm Christie's stoppage-time effort for Derby, he was more upset by the decisions that went against the champions.
  • Residents, not just developers, should be allowed to appeal to the Deputy Prime Minister if decisions went against them, an Ilkley district councillor said this week.
  • ‘It would be easy for me to look for decisions which went against us, which probably cost us in the end, but I am not in the business of blaming anyone other than myself,’ he said.

go ahead

Proceed or be carried out without hesitation: the project will go ahead
More example sentences
  • He can't see the project going ahead without more investment in existing companies.
  • If it goes ahead, the project would be the first of its type in Britain.
  • The church warden was able to carry out a quick repair job and the service went ahead as planned.

go along with

Give one’s consent or agreement to (a person or their views): the group has decided to go along with the committee’s proposal
More example sentences
  • The administration has finally gone along with what we in Congress have been proposing, which was an increase of about 25,000 in the Army.
  • They would probably just go along with it in the hope of getting some sexual satisfaction.
  • She suggested I do a test anyway which I went along with just for her sake.
agree to/with, fall in with, comply with, cooperate with, acquiesce in, assent to, follow;
submit to, yield to, defer to

go around

1 (chiefly British go round) Spin: revolve: the wheels were going around
More example sentences
  • The wheel went round and round and suddenly Stella was thrown out and landed in a heap at her Syd's feet.
  • And in the evenings, in the mango trees, the Kuyils sang songs like squeaky wheels going round and round out of sync.
  • Because in the silence I could hear the mind's wheels going round and I could see that my friend was a little shocked at the implication of what he'd said.
2 (chiefly British go round) (Especially of food) be sufficient to supply everybody present: there was barely enough food to go around
More example sentences
  • The majority, here, now depend on food from outside, but there isn't enough to go round.
  • All these new spas popping up everywhere make me wonder how there can possibly be enough trained therapists to go round.
  • The reason simply being that there is not enough cash to go round.
2.1(Of an aircraft) abort an approach to landing and prepare to make a fresh approach.

go around with

Be regularly in the company of: he goes around with some of the neighborhood kids
More example sentences
  • So, um, where are the people you're going around with?
  • ‘Someone needs to talk some sense into that boy,’ she said, quietly, ‘he goes around with that Andrews girl all the time, but she doesn't care about him at all.
  • And I talked it over with my wife and we decided it was a very tough thing to do to go out and talk about it and I knew very little about it but I learned a lot, went around with some very good people and I began to lecture here and there on drug abuse.

go at

Energetically attack or tackle: he went at things with a daunting eagerness
More example sentences
  • They went at each other like prize-fighters in a ring.
  • That both sides found the net within the first 10 minutes was a bona fide reflection of how these teams went at each other from the outset.
  • When we went at them we showed that their defence can be exposed.

go back

1(Of a clock) be set to an earlier standard time, especially at the end of daylight saving time.
Example sentences
  • By now even the most unobservant should have realised that British Summer Time is dead and that clocks have gone back one hour.
  • The clocks have gone back, summer is over and many of us are dusting off our electric blankets ready for the long cold nights.
  • It sometimes feels like the clocks have gone back to a time before women protested at being seen as just sex objects.
2(Of two people) have known each each for a specified, typically long, period of time: Victor and I go back longer than I care to admit
More example sentences
  • ‘Your mother and I go back a long way,’ Finn said.

go back on

Fail to keep (a promise): he wouldn’t go back on his word
More example sentences
  • In his five years as Treasurer he broke solemn promises, went back on guarantees and cooked the books whenever necessary.
  • Once in office, they famously went back on that promise and said they would not extend the cut-off date beyond 1995.
  • The proposal comes several years after the former Tory council went back on promises to create a new youth centre in the area.
renege on, break, fail to honor, default on, repudiate, retract;
do an about-face
informal cop out (of)

go down

1(Of a ship or aircraft) sink or crash: he saw eleven B-17s go down
More example sentences
  • This feature not only made communication between the crew members difficult, but also proved hazardous if the aircraft went down.
  • As the task force once again pounded Truk, more Navy aircraft went down.
  • It is thought that the aircraft went down in the vicinity of Camden Ray which is west of Kaktovik, Alaska.
1.1Be defeated in a contest: they went down 2-1
More example sentences
  • Walter Mondale had a similar idea, and he went down in a landslide defeat at the hands of the last Republican president to be re-elected.
  • Farnworth finally went down to their first defeat of the season on Saturday - beaten by the side that looks set to provide them with the strongest title challenge.
  • York Groves restored some pride against local rivals Wetherby Bulldogs albeit in defeat as they went down 20-12.
lose, be beaten, be defeated
2(Of a person, period, or event) be recorded or remembered in a particular way: his name will now go down in history
More example sentences
  • The seven wins, six losses record won't go down as a great tour and there is no doubt Sir Clive will expect a much better return.
  • For extremes of temperature and conditions the summer drought of 1976 and the winter freeze of 1978 will go down as two of the worst on record.
  • This year will go down as the worst on record for forest fires in Portugal.
be remembered, be recorded, be commemorated, be immortalized
3Be swallowed: solids can sometimes go down much easier than liquids
More example sentences
  • She didn't want to swallow at first but it went down soon enough along with the third and final pill, this time without a hitch.
  • She swallowed her protests, but they burned as they went down, making her want to gag.
  • This was one of the hardest lessons in life Matt had ever swallowed, and it wasn't going down easily, it made him sick.
4(Of a person, action, or work) elicit a specified reaction: my slide shows went down reasonably well
More example sentences
  • It went down reasonably well and people laughed at the appropriate moments thank God.
  • Reactions filter through - the show has gone down seriously well, better than we anticipated.
  • It is a varied and interesting display of images, which judging by reaction from visitors to date is going down well with them.
5North American informal Happen: you really don’t know what’s going down?
More example sentences
  • You saw what went down in the courtroom today, her statement to the judge as well as her statement on the courthouse steps, apparently a vast difference.
  • And that was essentially how it went down for forty-five minutes.
  • I worry about him everyday since I heard that something went down over at the Prison.
6British informal Leave a university, especially Oxford or Cambridge, after finishing one’s studies: Dobbins went down last spring
More example sentences
  • After he went down from Cambridge, RVW retained friendly links with this group.
7 vulgar slang Have sexual intercourse (said by a male of a female).

go down on

vulgar slang Perform oral sex on.

go down with

British Begin to suffer from (a specified illness): I went down with an attack of bronchitis
More example sentences
  • The Turners' nightmare began in May 1998 when Henry went down with what his parents initially believed was a tummy bug.
  • Initially it was only a few who went down with the mysterious illness.
  • Throughout most of my twenties I tended to go down with three or four colds every winter.

go for

1Decide on; choose: I wished that we had gone for plan B
More example sentences
  • Three to choose from - I went for the Zandra Rhodes creation.
  • When choosing margarine, go for the soft rather than the hard.
  • I decided to splurge and go for the whole shampoo, cut, blow dry, and permanent colour.
choose, pick, opt for, select, decide on, settle on
1.1Tend to find (a particular type of person) attractive: Dionne went for the outlaw type
More example sentences
  • She never really went for the sparkling golden boys, preferring the calmer, more measured, determined types.
  • She's gone for rough boys in the past but maybe she's trying to change her image.
  • I'm starting to realize why Cinderella went for the Prince.
be attracted to, like, fancy;
prefer, favor, choose
2Attempt to gain or attain: he went for a job as a delivery driver
More example sentences
  • She went for gold with an attempt on 142.5kg but failed.
  • He never went for material gains nor sold his name for cheap publicity.
  • ‘As a teacher, I was always a bit short of money so I went for a rep's job selling lighting because it came with a free car,’ explained David.
2.1 (go for it) Strive to the utmost to gain or achieve something (frequently said as an exhortation): sounds like a good idea—go for it!
More example sentences
  • And, you know, I just tackled it and went for it, and I've really never looked back.
  • They wanted to score a try or two more and they went for it.
  • Well, we saw a niche in the market that wasn't filled and we went for it.
3Launch oneself at (someone); attack: she went for him with clawed hands
More example sentences
  • Realising his punches are having no effect he opts for an alternative form of attack… he goes for the legs.
  • Clive only had time to put one foot on the road before his attacker went for his jugular.
  • It then bit her shoulder before going for her face, tearing the back of her left ear.
attack, assault, hit, strike, beat up, assail, set upon, rush at, lash out at
informal lay into, rough up, have a go at, beat up on
4End up having a specified value or effect: my good intentions went for nothing
More example sentences
  • Civil service integrity and ministerial piety went for nothing.
  • Is all her eight or ten years of hard work to go for nothing?
  • I thought I could crack the top three, but when I heard that I placed fifth, I had tears in my eyes; it was as if all my hard work went for nothing.
5Apply to; have relevance for: the same goes for money-grubbing lawyers
More example sentences
  • What goes for one does not necessarily apply to all.
  • And it doesn't just apply to those on the Council - that same goes for the guards, the servants, the lesser nobility, the townsfolk, everyone.
  • Kids raised in a kibbutz, for example, very rarely marry each other, and that goes for the people who bring them up as well.

go forward

(Of a clock) be set to a later standard time, especially daylight saving time.
Example sentences
  • Now the clocks have gone forward, we must move forward with them.
  • Well, we're two hours ahead, now that the clocks have gone forward.
  • The clocks had gone forward that week, which meant she had to cover a very short distance in the dark to catch the bus to San Miguel, a few miles away.

go in for

Like or habitually take part in (something, especially an activity): I don’t go in for partying as much as Jesse and Rachel do
More example sentences
  • Although they very much enjoy sex with the right partner, they are quite undemanding and don't go in for party tricks.
  • Even when I was single, I never went in for that playing-with-fire kind of dallying - not that I was a prude.
  • Apparently this show is a departure from the stronger stuff Taki Rua usually goes in for but stick with it I say.
take part in, participate in, engage in, get involved in, join in, enter into, undertake;
practice, pursue;
espouse, adopt, embrace

go into

1Take up in study or as an occupation: he went into bankruptcy law
More example sentences
  • This trial was what made me go into medical and law studies, and apparently this has been used against me.
  • She studied everything else before going into journalism.
  • Kreutler and her late husband, Uli, arrived in 1979, and chose to go into farming, an occupation that might seem ordinary enough in rural Ireland.
2Investigate or inquire into (something): there’s no need to go into it now
More example sentences
  • But the judge was well aware of this point and these issues, as is demonstrated by the lengthy investigation that she went into with Mr Wallis and Mr Jarrold.
  • To understand why India enjoys such impunity, we need to go into the history of the commission set up in 1946.
3(Of a whole number) be capable of dividing another, typically without a remainder: six will go into eighteen, but not into five

go off

1(Of a gun, bomb, or similar device) explode or fire.
Example sentences
  • It was believed that on three of the devices the detonators went off but the bomb failed to explode.
  • As more American forces came to the scene, another bomb went off, setting fire to a second vehicle, he said.
  • Neighbours say they were convinced a bomb had gone off when the firework exploded with a massive bang earlier this week in Harington Avenue, off Melrosegate.
1.1(Of an alarm) begin to sound.
Example sentences
  • Already the air was filled with the blaring sounds of alarms going off, and a few armed guards ran off towards us as we broke out of the door.
  • From the time my alarm clock goes off, I am beginning my workout.
  • The postman always rings twice, always rings too loud, always rings ten minutes before your alarm's due to go off, and always rings and runs away before you get to the door.
1.2 informal Become suddenly angry; lose one’s temper: if you got in an argument with him, he’d just go off
2chiefly British (Especially of food) begin to decompose; become unfit for consumption.
Example sentences
  • Milk goes off more rapidly and can harbour pathogenic (food poisoning) bacteria.
  • An upcoming prospect is that soon your household appliances will be linked up to the internet and can share information so that your fridge will tell you when the milk has gone off.
  • All this to stop milk going off for a while longer?
3 informal, chiefly British Begin to dislike: I went off men after my husband left me
More example sentences
  • Any change of routine may cause your cat to go off its food.
  • Even if he had a hard race and he was beaten, where other horses would fade away and maybe go off their grub, he would actually thrive on it.
  • I may have a small steak tartare, but I've gone off food terribly.
4Go to sleep: I went off as soon as my head hit the pillow
More example sentences
  • But we went off to sleep again as the American warships moved away.
  • But we will soon be together again and knowing that I just went off to sleep…
  • She felt the girl's grip loosen as she went off to sleep.

go on

1 [often with present participle] Continue or persevere: I can’t go on protecting you
More example sentences
  • She will do so as she goes on with her work protecting Americans' private security.
  • Dancing went on till the early hours in the lower ground floor of the store, which had been turned into a night club-type space especially for the evening.
  • Later that night, the Anglers Rest Hotel in Headford was the venue for the gala dinner and music and dancing went on late into the night.
1.1Talk at great length, especially tediously or angrily: she went on about how lovely it would be to escape from the city
More example sentences
  • I could go on at length about the other prizes on offer, but I won't.
  • They went on about benefits, making ends meet and why New Labour is so out of touch with the plight of those on the dole as I nodded surreptitiously into my pint, earwigging all the while.
  • A few years back I found myself at a press launch where the man himself went on about how he was a proper journalist, yet the others were all pretenders, and not worthy to lick his boots.
last, continue, carry on, run on, proceed;
talk at length, ramble, rattle on, chatter, prattle, blather, twitter
informal gab, yak, yabber, yatter, run off at the mouth, mouth off
1.2Continue speaking or doing something after a short pause: [with direct speech]: “I don’t understand,” she went on
More example sentences
  • He bent to adjust the stirrups and went on speaking.
  • There was another pause, and she went on just before he would have answered.
  • She said each word deliberately and paused slightly before going on to the next word.
1.3 informal Said when encouraging someone or expressing disbelief: go on, tell him!
More example sentences
  • So please keep your comments coming, and if you've never said anything before, why not take the opportunity now? Go on, I dare you!
  • Go on! Tell me! What's wrong?
  • Buy it. Go on. I'm telling you, buy it.
2Happen; take place: my mom knows what went on
More example sentences
  • I was approached by the Cowboys in 2002 and was keen to get out of Sydney at the time. I don't go much on the lifestyle down there.
  • Like the biblical inhabitants of Eden, he and Jim do not ‘go much on clothes.’
3 [often with infinitive] Proceed to do: she went on to do postgraduate work
More example sentences
  • Those that persevere and succeed can go on to command six figure salaries.
  • In the program, the students spend the first four semesters at UI and go on to continue their remaining four semesters at a university abroad.
  • He encourages them to study and hopes that they will go on to higher education.

go out

1(Of a fire or light) be extinguished.
Example sentences
  • Tal saw the light from the fire go out, and decided that it would be wise to return to his own hut.
  • I think the street lights went out too - it was pitch black.
  • Then all the lights went out and the building was blacked out.
be turned off, be extinguished;
stop burning
1.1Cease operating or functioning: the power went out on our block last night
More example sentences
  • The house did not suffer any structural damage but when the lightning hit the house there was an enormous bang, the fuses blew and the power went.
  • I was riding my scooter down a steep hill, with a pillion passenger on the back, when the brake cable went.
  • The electricity is gone, and food and water are running out.
2(Of the tide) ebb; recede to low tide.
Example sentences
  • Water subsided in some areas as the tide went out but the diversion signs were back up again at high tide on Thursday morning and Thursday evening.
  • As the tide went out yesterday, cavalcades of cars and transit vans poured into the area, with a Spanish lorry parked at Bardsea and a ship on standby in the bay waiting to be loaded.
  • Otherwise they would have suffered another two and a half hour wait before the tide went out again, by which time it would have been dark.
3Leave one’s home to go to an entertainment or social event, typically in the evening: I’m going out for dinner
More example sentences
  • I wasn't a very social person, nor did I enjoy social events or going out on the town.
  • My job is quite social, and everybody goes out after work.
  • Poor levels of lighting had been making elderly residents reluctant to go out at night to events in the Butler Community Centre or even to the local shops.
3.1Carry on a regular romantic, and sometimes sexual, relationship: he was going out with her best friend
More example sentences
  • I had had a bad relationship a year prior to going out with him and things were good between us, we seemed to click (well, at least I thought we did).
  • Actually, he's going out with someone else now.
  • I was going out with this guy for two years and all that time he had been seeing another girl.
see, date, take out, be someone's boyfriend/girlfriend, be involved with
informal go steady with, go with
dated court, woo, step out with
4Used to convey someone’s deep sympathy or similar feeling: the boy’s heart went out to the pitiful figure
More example sentences
  • Our deepest sympathies go out to the victims and the families of all those involved.
  • Our thoughts and deepest sympathies go out to his family and fiends.
  • ‘We have expressed our sympathies to the family involved and our heart goes out to them at this very sad time,’ he said.
5 Golf Play the first nine holes in a round of eighteen holes. Compare with come home (see home).
Example sentences
  • Faldo, playing with Ian Poulter, one of the next generation of English young guns, got off to a great start with birdies at the second and fourth holes to go out in 34.
  • When I bogeyed those three holes going out, I was a bit concerned but I held it together after that.
6(In some card games) be the first to dispose of all the cards in one’s hand.
Example sentences
  • The play ends when a player goes out, i.e. disposes of all the cards in hand.
  • As a further development of the above ideas, some players do not allow a player to go out by discarding a card that could have been melded.
  • Getting rid of your last card is called going out.

go over

1Examine, consider, or check the details of (something): I want to go over these plans with you again
More example sentences
  • Check for spellings, go over your analysis in your own minds just to ensure that you have not made a monumentally large mistake.
  • I haven't gone over the speech and checked the accuracy of all of the statements, but it is simply untrue that he appeared crazy in some way.
  • I go over the figures, checking and double-checking, just in case I may have got them wrong.
examine, study, scrutinize, inspect, look at/over, scan, check;
analyze, appraise, review
rehearse, practice, read through, run through
2Change one’s allegiance or religion: he went over to the Democratic Party
More example sentences
  • I went over to Gmail this summer and love the ability to search all my messages.
  • Several prominent members broke with the organisation as a result, and went over to join the Socialist Party.
  • You have a whole pack of these guys, who left the Dixiecrat Party, a part of the Democratic Party, went over to the Republican Party.
3(Especially of an action or performance) be received in a specified way: his earnestness would go over well in a courtroom
More example sentences
  • They did not go over well, receiving polite applause at best.
  • Of course, this sort of talk doesn't go over well with the members of the opposite sex.
  • Although I had nothing to do with the planning or execution of this event, I thought it went over pretty well, considering.

go round

chiefly British See go around.

go through

1Undergo (a difficult or painful period or experience): the country is going through a period of economic instability
More example sentences
  • They are going through a transitional period but the kids are gaining invaluable experience.
  • After World War II Berlin was divided into separate parts and Shanghai, although restored to China, went through a period of stagnation.
  • Like most AIDS victims, he went through periods of depression, anger and self-pity.
undergo, experience, face, suffer, be subjected to, live through, endure, brave, bear, tolerate, withstand, put up with, cope with, weather
2Search through or examine carefully or in sequence: she started to go through the bundle of letters
More example sentences
  • Lily went through her purse in search of the keys to her apartment.
  • As he started the car and headed along the service road back to the main highway, she was going through each CD, examining the covers.
  • Mark walked into the bedroom and started going through their things, searching for a shirt he could put on.
search, look through, hunt through, rummage in/through, rifle through
examine, study, scrutinize, inspect, look over, scan, check;
analyze, appraise, review
3(Of a proposal or contract) be officially approved or completed: the sale of the building is set to go through
More example sentences
  • Mrs Cooper was concerned about the effect in terms of staff and morale if these proposals went through.
  • One potential side-effect is that many, many, many people will be disenfranchised if this proposal goes through.
  • If this proposal goes through, clubs will be able to fine players four weeks' wages, double the current maximum.
be completed, be concluded, be brought off;
be approved, be signed, be rubber-stamped, be given the green light
4 informal Use up or spend (available money or other resources).
Example sentences
  • Charlie had spent the entire morning shopping, and had already gone through the money Adam had given her.
  • But if people are willing to vote for politicians who go through their money like there's no tomorrow, they should take the consequences of that decision and vote more sensibly next time.
  • Many children these days go through enough money to support a family 20 years ago, but still have little fun compared with our childhood.
spend, use up, run through, get through, expend, deplete, burn up;
waste, squander, fritter away
5(Of a book) be successively published in (a specified number of editions): within two years it went through thirty-one editions
More example sentences
  • The book was first published in 1883 but went through many editions.
  • His book on ecological genetics went through several editions and his monographs on moths and butterflies are still used.
  • The first two books went through over ten editions and were clearly the dominant texts in the field for much of the first half of the century.

go through with

Perform (an action or process) to completion despite difficulty or unwillingness: he bravely went through with the ceremony
More example sentences
  • The cops threatened to bust everyone for indecent exposure if they went through with the performance, but failed to show up when the ‘exhibit’ actually took place.
  • After much consideration and in a complete daze, I went through with the termination feeling all at once ashamed, relieved and scared that I would have ruined my chances of ever having kids.
  • By sheer bloody-mindedness we went through with the law suits, despite threats from the investor, and were recently told we had won our case in the supreme court.

go under

(Of a business) become bankrupt.
Example sentences
  • His dad couldn't get any money out of the country and the business went under.
  • Businesses have gone under, and there has also been an impact on jobs.
  • A lot of businesses go under in the first year and we want to help them stay in business.
go bankrupt, be shut (down), go into receivership, go into liquidation, become insolvent, be liquidated, cease trading;
informal go broke, go belly up, fold
25.1(Of a person) die or suffer an emotional collapse.
Example sentences
  • I would think it was a very tearful and desperate time for him and I think this has probably been the closest he has come to going under.

go up

1(Of a building or other structure) be built: housing developments went up
More example sentences
  • The squatters were evicted a week later but a tent city that went up around the building persists.
  • Aside from the Norwich Union building, almost every high post-war building that has gone up in York has been a disaster, he points out.
  • New apartments are going to be built on the north campus as well as two townhouse structures now currently going up next to the gym.
2Explode or suddenly burst into flames: last night two factories went up in flames
More example sentences
  • It went up in a burst of flame, and only a smoking shell remained when the flames faded.
  • Then all of a sudden I just saw all of the downstairs go up in flames, and all the windows smashed.
  • In Edinburgh, the council is already preparing for the worst and has contacted Lothian and Borders police in order to prevent the city going up in flames.
3British informal Begin one’s studies at a university, especially Oxford or Cambridge.
Example sentences
  • Well I think really it began to falter when I went up to Oxford University to study chemistry.
  • In the 1980s, Coutts was the bank with whom Sloane Rangers opened an account before going up to Oxford or Cambridge.
  • They continued to correspond on plant matters after going up to university - Fox Talbot to Cambridge and Trevelyan to Oxford.

go with

1Give one’s consent or agreement to (a person or their views).
Example sentences
  • The choice to go with the proposal seemed risky, so the NSNU board approved the first ad.
  • Even when I went on the program and I told him the truth he still decided to go with it.
  • Of course, the likelihood of success is vastly amplified if a partner goes with it.
2Have a romantic or sexual relationship with (someone).
Example sentences
  • I had been engaged to this girl for eight months and I had been going with her for a couple of years.
  • Can you at least let word get out that in fact you are not going with The Junior?
  • I have been going with a guy for about a year and we moved in together two months ago.

go without

Suffer lack or deprivation: I like to give my children what they want, even if I have to go without
More example sentences
  • The kind of car I could afford wouldn't have been reliable enough to go any distance, so I went without.
  • We were not well off but never went without a meal.
  • Mrs Croft, who went without her salary to keep the charity afloat, will receive nearly £11,000 in back pay.
abstain from, refrain from, forgo, do without, deny oneself
be deprived, be in want, go short, go hungry, be in need


Old English gān, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch gaan and German gehen; the form went was originally the past tense of wend.

  • Words do not get much shorter, more common or more important than go. Go-cart was first recorded in the late 17th century when it denoted a baby walker: the first element is from the obsolete sense ‘walk’. The variant go-kart for a small racing car arose in the 1950s with kart as a deliberate alteration of cart. What goes around comes around is a modern proverb first used in the USA, although the idea was expressed in different ways much earlier. Also from the USA is when the going gets tough, the tough get going, a favourite family saying of President John F. Kennedy's father Joseph, although it is not certain if he actually coined it. It was later used as a slogan for the 1985 film The Jewel of the Nile with a hit theme song sung by Billy Ocean. Another film-related expression is go ahead, make my day, originally uttered by Clint Eastwood's character Harry Callaghan in Sudden Impact (1983), as he aimed his .44 Magnum gun at a gunman, daring him to shoot. The phrase was appropriated by Ronald Reagan in 1985, when the president was threatening to veto legislation raising taxes. See also pear-shaped

Words that rhyme with go

aglow, ago, alow, although, apropos, art nouveau, Bamako, Bardot, beau, Beaujolais Nouveau, below, bestow, blow, bo, Boileau, bons mots, Bordeaux, Bow, bravo, bro, cachepot, cheerio, Coe, crow, Defoe, de trop, doe, doh, dos-à-dos, do-si-do, dough, dzo, Flo, floe, flow, foe, foreknow, foreshow, forgo, Foucault, froe, glow, good-oh, go-slow, grow, gung-ho, Heathrow, heave-ho, heigh-ho, hello, ho, hoe, ho-ho, jo, Joe, kayo, know, lo, low, maillot, malapropos, Marceau, mho, Miró, mo, Mohs, Monroe, mot, mow, Munro, no, Noh, no-show, oh, oho, outgo, outgrow, owe, Perrault, pho, po, Poe, pro, quid pro quo, reshow, righto, roe, Rouault, row, Rowe, sew, shew, show, sloe, slow, snow, so, soh, sow, status quo, stow, Stowe, strow, tally-ho, though, throw, tic-tac-toe, to-and-fro, toe, touch-and-go, tow, trow, undergo, undersow, voe, whacko, whoa, wo, woe, Xuzhou, yo, yo-ho-ho, Zhengzhou, Zhou

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Syllabification: go

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There are 2 main definitions of go in English:

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go 2

Pronunciation: /ɡō/


A Japanese board game of territorial possession and capture.
Example sentences
  • The game that does seem to me to be superior to chess, in that it has both depth and simplicity, is the Japanese game of Go.
  • Yet both superpowers thought of it as another territory to compete over in a global game of go.


Late 19th century: Japanese, literally 'small stone', also the name of the game.

  • Words do not get much shorter, more common or more important than go. Go-cart was first recorded in the late 17th century when it denoted a baby walker: the first element is from the obsolete sense ‘walk’. The variant go-kart for a small racing car arose in the 1950s with kart as a deliberate alteration of cart. What goes around comes around is a modern proverb first used in the USA, although the idea was expressed in different ways much earlier. Also from the USA is when the going gets tough, the tough get going, a favourite family saying of President John F. Kennedy's father Joseph, although it is not certain if he actually coined it. It was later used as a slogan for the 1985 film The Jewel of the Nile with a hit theme song sung by Billy Ocean. Another film-related expression is go ahead, make my day, originally uttered by Clint Eastwood's character Harry Callaghan in Sudden Impact (1983), as he aimed his .44 Magnum gun at a gunman, daring him to shoot. The phrase was appropriated by Ronald Reagan in 1985, when the president was threatening to veto legislation raising taxes. See also pear-shaped

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: go

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