Definition of put in English:

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Pronunciation: /po͝ot/

verb (puts, putting; past and past participle put)

[with object]
1Move to or place in a particular position: Harry put down his cup I put my hand out toward her watch where you’re putting your feet!
More example sentences
  • He moved closer, putting his one strong hand on her face.
  • He moved to put himself between her and the gunman.
  • Don't put your fingers too close to the screen.
place, set (down), lay (down), deposit, position, settle;
leave, plant
informal stick, dump, park, plonk, plunk, pop
1.1Cause (someone or something) to go to a particular place and remain there for a time: India has put three experimental satellites into space
More example sentences
  • She dreamed of the King catching her brother and putting him into the prison of the castle's terrible dungeon.
  • You must feel angry that those people were constructively seeking to put you behind bars.
  • Poor conditions are likely to make prisoners grow resentful towards the people who put him there.
assign to, consign to, allocate to, place in
1.2 [no object] (Of a ship or the people on it) proceed in a particular direction: she stepped into the boat and put out to sea
More example sentences
  • The Royal Navy's two new assault ships have put to sea side-by-side for the first time.
  • The jury later wrote to the coroner, deploring the fact that an unseaworthy ship could put to sea with a drunken captain.
  • Everyone was of the opinion that no boat could put to sea on a day like that.
1.3Write or print (something) in a particular place: they put my name on the cover page
More example sentences
  • It may also be pointed out that it was quite possible to register employees who were not really employed, by putting all sorts of names on a staff list for the sake of meeting the requirement.
  • It does not matter which candidate's name you elect to put your cross against so long as you make your choice.
  • The organisers had named four for every position and then over to you to put X over the name of your choice.
1.4 [no object] US archaic (Of a river) flow in a particular direction.
Example sentences
  • A small river puts into Warner Lakes from the southwest.
  • We passed the grand falls of the Columbia just above which a small river puts into the Columbia.
2Bring into a particular state or condition: they tried to put me at ease a large aid program was put into effect he is putting himself at risk
More example sentences
  • He was putting himself and other road users in grave danger.
  • Anyone who goes into the test without having a solid understanding of ‘how it works’ is putting themselves at a disadvantage.
  • A job seeker that doesn't take advantage of this opportunity is putting themselves at a big disadvantage.
2.1 (put oneself in) Imagine oneself in (a particular situation): it was no use trying to put herself in his place
More example sentences
  • The enjoyment comes from putting oneself in the situations he describes, it makes no difference if anyone actually experienced them all or not.
  • I enjoy thinking about scenarios, putting myself in those situations and allowing my mind to draw up conclusions.
  • You've got to put yourself in the pilot's situation.
2.2Express (a thought or comment) in a particular way, form, or language: to put it bluntly, he was not really divorced
More example sentences
  • As ever, the finely nuanced statement did not put matters quite so bluntly.
  • As some perceptive reviewer put it, Barry writes like an angel, but an angel on the side of the fallen.
  • Another distinguished citizen, who prefers not to be named, puts it another way.
express, word, phrase, frame, formulate, render, convey, couch;
state, say, utter
3 (put something on/onto) Cause (someone or something) to carry or be subject to something: commentators put some of the blame on Congress
More example sentences
  • This way you're putting the load on to the contractor.
  • But, crucially, it follows a similar logic of putting the responsibility on to parents to break cycles of deprivation through the sheer force of their parenting skills.
  • This deal puts the focus back on to the team's future potential.
lay on, pin on, place on, fix on;
attribute to, impute to, assign to, allocate to, ascribe to
3.1Assign a particular value, figure, or limit to: it is very difficult to put a figure on the size of the budget
More example sentences
  • Surely no figure can be put on the value of the experience and commitment of the Peterhead officers.
  • I have no reference points to start figuring out how to put a dollar value on something like that.
  • While it is difficult to put an exact figure on the total of undocumented Irish in the United States it's been estimated that there are tens of thousands.
3.2 (put something at) Estimate something to be (a particular amount): estimates put the war’s cost at $1,000,000 a day
More example sentences
  • Some estimates put the turnout at up to 300,000.
  • Nightjars are now very rare with the latest estimates putting the population at around 3,500 across Britain.
  • Later the workforce was increased, some estimates putting the final figure at about 45,000.
estimate, calculate, reckon, gauge, assess, evaluate, value, judge, measure, compute, fix, set, peg
informal guesstimate
4Throw (a shot or weight) as an athletic sport: she set a women’s record by putting the shot 56ʹ 7ʺ
More example sentences
  • He successfully putted the shot 20.16m.
  • He went on to long jump 6.71m and put the shot a personal best of 12.68m.
  • There are three primary styles of putting the shot.


1A throw of the shot or weight.
Example sentences
  • Nichols recorded a put of 61.05 on his third attempt.
  • She produced a magnificent put to end the competition, the furthest throw in the world for at least two years.
  • In June 1984 she achieved a put of 21.00 metres, which would remain her personal best.
2 Stock Market short for put option.
Example sentences
  • If you sell a put, you've agreed to buy stock at a certain price from the owner of the put.
  • A call option is the opposite to a put, and gives a right to buy at a preset price.



put something behind one

Get over a bad experience by distancing oneself from it: they have tried to put their grief behind them and rebuild their lives
More example sentences
  • Today, they've put this experience behind them.
  • Everyone in the family just wants to put this terrible experience behind us and make a fresh start.
  • She very much appreciated the kindness shown to her by those around her and is determined to get on with her life and to put this horrible experience behind her.
consign to the past, put down to experience, regard as water under the bridge, forget about, ignore

put the clocks back (or forward)

Adjust clocks or watches backward (or forward) to take account of official changes in time.
Example sentences
  • It's October 27th, and three days before we put the clocks back.
  • We put the clocks forward a couple of days ago, it's British summertime.
  • I have put my clocks forward, apart from the three that are radio-controlled and should look after themselves.

put someone's eyes out

Blind someone, typically in a violent way.
Example sentences
  • Her golden dagger clanged twice as it flashed deep into his visor and put his eyes out.
  • She punched him, and I think put his eyes out.
  • Thieves attacked her and put her eyes out.

put one's hands together

Applaud; clap: I want you all to put your hands together for Barry
More example sentences
  • Would you please put your hands together and join me in welcoming our debaters tonight.
  • Now, put your hands together for the first poet tonight.
  • Please put your hands together for our speakers.

put one's hands up

Raise one’s hands in surrender.
Example sentences
  • Put your hands up and step out of the vehicle.
  • ‘I surrender!’ I put my hands up half-heartedly.
  • They put their hands up and surrendered to police.

put it there

[in imperative] informal Used to indicate that the speaker wishes to shake hands with someone in agreement or congratulation: put it there, Steven, we beat them
More example sentences
  • When I was a kid, the first thing I heard when my uncle visited was, ‘Put it there, buddy.’
  • ‘Put it there!’ he extended a brawny paw, which closed over the minister's small hand and gave it a shake.

put it to

[with clause] Make a statement or allegation to (someone) and challenge them to deny it: I put it to him that he was just a political groupie
More example sentences
  • I put it to him that the invitation may have signalled his coming of age.
  • I put it to him that there doesn't seem to be much law in this process.
  • We put it to her that radio adverts or adverts on newspaper sites might be preferable to communicating via bulk email.

put one over on

informal Deceive (someone) into accepting something false.
Example sentences
  • I think that they were guilty merely of trying to put one over on a man who was acting as a gullible fool.
  • But don't try to put one over on him: ‘If I get the feeling I'm being jerked around, then I want the forfeit.’
  • ‘You'd be surprised,’ he told me flintily, ‘how many people try to put one over on us.’

put up or shut up

informal Justify oneself or remain silent: they called for the alderman to either put up or shut up
More example sentences
  • ‘People who want to make serious allegations against a Member of Parliament or, indeed, anybody else, have got to be prepared essentially to put up or shut up,’ Sir Philip said.
  • Council chairman Coun Colin Lampard said: ‘We have got to the stage where they must either put up or shut up.’
  • The two brothers at the centre of Australia's most infamous gold swindle have today told one of Western Australia's most senior policemen to put up or shut up.

Phrasal verbs


put about

Nautical (Of a ship) turn on the opposite tack.
Example sentences
  • Nares immediately telegraphed the engine room to stop and had the ship put about and set off back over its track.
  • As every good captain knows, a schooner that's sailing a bit too close to the wind often goes slower and runs the risk of being put about on the wrong tack.
  • The vessel put about on the other tack, but for want of wind, or not having sail enough, she drifted into the ground swell towards the beach.
turn around, tack, come about, change course

put something about

(often be put about) Spread information or rumors.
Example sentences
  • It's certainly not us putting these rumours about.
  • I also used to put stories about, hinting that staff were being watched all the time, just to keep them alert.
  • Josefina defends her friend against the ‘lie’ that she disliked children, saying it was put about by a child who was the ringleader of a group that would disturb Beatrix when she was trying to write quietly.

put something across (or over)

Communicate something effectively.
Example sentences
  • Chiefly, the author needs to form a point of view and put it across clearly and effectively.
  • I wasn't afraid to stand up and speak in public and I had learned all sorts of lessons about how to put your point across effectively.
  • There are three main causes of unclear writing: forgetting the needs of the audience; writing for a reason other than communication; and not putting a point across clearly.
communicate, convey, get across/over, explain, make clear, spell out, clarify;
get through to someone

put something aside

1Save money for future use.
Example sentences
  • He is saving slowly, putting a little money aside when he can.
  • Imagine putting your money aside for your retirement only to find that it's not there.
  • It is the second time in just over a year this has happened and I now want the council to put some money aside as a precaution for next year.
2Forget or disregard something, typically a feeling or a past difference.
Example sentences
  • Political differences and personality clashes can be put aside at times for the benefit of the whole community.
  • My brothers and I would promise to put our differences aside and try our hardest not to argue, fuss, or fight.
  • European Union countries are going to have to put their differences aside.
disregard, set aside, ignore, forget, discount, bury

put someone away

(often be put away) informal Confine someone in a prison or psychiatric hospital: he deserves to be put away forever
More example sentences
  • Her husband was trying to put her away in order to get her money.
  • He was charged with three counts of robbery with violence, and three counts of attempted murder - enough to put him away forever.
  • Apparently, if you're at risk of harming yourself or someone else, you can be put away.
jail, imprison, put in prison, put behind bars, lock up, incarcerate
certify, commit, institutionalize, hospitalize, consign to a psychiatric/mental hospital

put something away

1Save money for future use.
Example sentences
  • We now have a granddaughter and we and her parents would like to put some money away for her future.
  • They feel ‘What is the point in saving if I can get extra from the government without putting my own money away?’
  • We are spending most of what we save within weeks of putting it away for the future.
2 informal Consume food or drink in large quantities.
Example sentences
  • Having put a few drinks away, it wasn't hard to go and talk to her.
  • He looked as though he'd put a few drinks away, and his red nose suggested that that wasn't unusual for him.
  • I've managed to put away seven pints and six shots.
3 informal (In sports) dispatch or deal with a goal or shot.
Example sentences
  • Their full back Piper put the goal away to give his side a three point lead.
  • A controversial goal was put away by the visitors.
  • I'll keep making those runs then eventually things will fall to me and hopefully I'll put a few goals away.

put something back

Reschedule a planned event to a later time or date.
Example sentences
  • Venues could be forced to close if the date is not put back.
  • The monthly meeting of the guild has been put back to the later date of Wednesday, May 18.
  • Although the date of June 4 has been set for trial, it is believed an application could be made by the defence team to put that date back to enable further preparations to be made.
postpone, defer, delay, put off, adjourn, hold over, reschedule, shelve, table
informal put on ice, put on the back burner
7.1Delay something: greater public control may put back the modernization of the industry
More example sentences
  • Its launch has been put back by negotiation delays, although the company confirms it is in negotiations with the larger studios and also with TV companies.
  • The company's chief executive has been denied a visa, in a move that surely means the already delayed October 21 start of the trial will be put back still further.
  • If the university is not planning on being a partner with the council, it puts the plan back a long way.

put something by

chiefly British Save money for future use.

put someone down

1 informal Lower someone’s self-esteem by criticizing them in front of others.
Example sentences
  • They don't tend to play practical jokes, or engage in humor that humiliates or puts somebody down.
  • Why was this man so determined to belittle him, and put him down, at every chance?
  • If your critic has only said it to put you down, this makes you bigger than him.
criticize, belittle, disparage, deprecate, denigrate, slight, humiliate, shame, crush, squash, deflate
informal show up, cut down to size
2Lay a baby down to sleep.
Example sentences
  • He was a healthy, hearty, happy baby and she had no reason to be worried when she put him down to go to sleep that day.
  • I wasn't scared at first about becoming a mum, but as the months went on I started to worry about things like bathing her and putting her down to sleep properly.
  • Katie put Julie down to sleep and then went over to the dining room table so that she could do her homework and still be able to watch the kids.

put something down

1Record something in writing: he’s putting a few thoughts down on paper
More example sentences
  • It's harder for me to put it down on record because then it's clear and can be scrutinized.
  • At first, writing lectures and putting the words down on paper was quite a struggle.
  • Lobbyists are aware that it is far harder to change something once it is put down in writing than when an official is faced with a blank sheet of paper.
write down, note down, jot down, take down, set down;
list, record, register, log
2Suppress a rebellion, riot, or other disturbance by force.
Example sentences
  • That caused constant trouble for successive British governments, especially from other Commonwealth countries, who expected them to put the rebellion down by force.
  • He decided to raise an army of loyal troops so that the coup could be put down.
  • Unless the rebellion is put down quickly, and without shedding too much blood in the process, their political position could be destroyed.
suppress, check, crush, quash, squash, quell, overthrow, stamp out, repress, subdue
3 (usually be put down) Kill an animal because it is sick, injured, or old.
Example sentences
  • Sick, injured and aggressive animals will be put down.
  • He finds it difficult to put the animals down, but says there is no alternative, especially when there is not enough food for them all.
  • Their conditions were so bad, vets later had to put the animals down.
destroy, put to sleep, put out of its misery, put to death, kill, euthanize
4Pay a specified sum as a deposit: he put a thousand down and paid the rest over six months
More example sentences
  • Last week Jerry put his winnings down as a deposit on a new lorry.
  • Maybe I will buy some new clothes and put a deposit down on a laptop computer.
  • ‘People are buying straight off the plans now, they're putting their booking deposit down and are probably signing contracts straight away,’ she said.
5Preserve or store food or wine for future use.
Example sentences
  • I'd put the wine down for 4-5 years and drink it over the following 5 years.
  • Maybe I should put a bottle of this down for three more years and then taste it.
  • Not only do they grow large gardens and put food down for winter, but they work just as long hours at day jobs.
6 (also put down) Land an aircraft.
Example sentences
  • So now we had to plan our landing and, after the runway opened, plan to put the aircraft down.
  • General Porter summoned every bit of his airmanship to put the craft back down safely on friendly territory - and he did.
  • You have to wonder where, in all that welter of rock up ahead, the pilot will be able to find a comfortable pocket in which to put his aircraft down.

put someone down as

Consider or judge someone or something to be: I’d have put you down as a Vivaldi man
More example sentences
  • I would put you down as a strong girl, who knows her mind and knows how to do things.
  • I'd always put her down as someone whose bite was every bit as bad, and probably worse, than her bark.
  • I would never put him down as someone who could kill another human being.

put something down to

Attribute something to: if I forget anything, put it down to old age
More example sentences
  • She puts her longevity down to, ‘hard work, hardship and hard times’.
  • I would put his erratic behaviour down to two things however: the sheer volume of junk food he devours and the monotony of being on the road for long periods of time.
  • Some of the credit for this improvement has been put down to increased use of the CCTV network.

put someone forward

Recommend someone as a suitable candidate for a job or position: he put me forward as head of publicity
More example sentences
  • I have lost count of the times an agency has said that they are putting you forward for a position you are interested in and that's the last you hear from them.
  • To me, he is the obvious candidate and I would put him forward without any hesitation.
  • They first warned all the party members that they shouldn't put me forward as one of the candidates, and yet a lot of people did.

put something forward

Submit a plan, proposal, or theory for consideration.
Example sentences
  • A package of proposals will be put forward for public debate in the normal way, once we have reached our final conclusions.
  • The latest proposals were put forward by the county council as part of its general programme to improve the safety of home-to-school walking routes.
  • No concrete proposals were put forward at the meeting, a spokesperson said.

put in

[with direct speech] Interrupt a conversation or discussion: “But you’re a sybarite, Roger,” put in Isobel
More example sentences
  • ‘Besides,’ put in Doris, ‘we have a number of nieces your age.’
  • ‘Yes,’ put in Amanda, ‘the Bible says it's good to have a merry heart.’
  • ‘I've got a bit of a cold,’ she put in, wiping her nose.

put in at/into

(Of a ship) enter (a port or harbor).
Example sentences
  • The Ship put in at what used to be Manila, but there wasn't anything there, just green, wild islands.
  • When they arrived at Acre, the captain of the vessel, an experienced sailor, refused to put in at the harbor because he did not hear the harbor-bell rung.
  • We'll be putting in at Plymouth just long enough for your disembarkation and us to restock our food supply.

put someone in

Appoint someone to fulfill a particular role or job: he was put in to rescue the company by the stockbrokers
More example sentences
  • This Government needs to remember that the grey voters put them in, and the grey vote can remove them.
  • If the voters put him in, they deserve everything they get.
17.1(In team sports) send a player out to participate into a game.

put something in/into

1Present or submit something formally: the airport had put in a claim for damages
More example sentences
  • At present the bids are put in once a year and residents are only consulted on those which are successful.
  • York council chiefs investigating how cash went missing at the authority's finance centre say they will be putting a claim in to their insurers.
  • One resident would have to put an insurance claim in to get the damage fixed.
1.1 (put in for) Apply formally for: Adam put in for six months' leave
More example sentences
  • And, to add insult to injury, our councillors have the nerve to put in for more expenses.
  • Management has conceded the pay rise that workers put in for.
  • I will be putting in for change of use of my premises and turning it into flats.
apply for, put in an application for, try for;
request, seek, ask for
2Devote time or effort to something: employed mothers put in the longest hours of all women
More example sentences
  • We have had almost 120 training sessions, so a monumental effort has been put in.
  • Mother-daughter arguments are normal at this stage, but it's definitely worth putting some effort into improving the relationship.
  • We've been putting in a lot of work over a long period of time, it's been a struggle.
3Invest money or resources in.
Example sentences
  • If your company can show that it can create value for investors, people will put their money into your business.
  • A special screening of a few songs is vital when it comes to persuading more investors to put their money into the film.
  • Investors typically want to put their money into a business that has the potential for huge profitability.

put someone off

1Cancel or postpone an appointment with someone: he’d put off Martin until nine o’clock
More example sentences
  • But a lunch date with Marco beckoned, so reluctantly, we agreed to put Dali off until our next trip to the capital.
  • Maybe I can keep on putting them off until things are all right.
  • Suddenly amazed at their own good fortune, the Cardinals made overtures to retain Keane, but he put them off until after the World Series.
2Cause someone to lose interest or enthusiasm: she wanted to be a nurse, but the thought of night shifts put her off
More example sentences
  • Last year there were reports he was buying a luxury home in Brigg, north Lincolnshire, but it is thought the press interest put him off.
  • Yet, while I find myself disappointed, it was not disappointing enough to put me off of the movie in general.
  • If none of these factors puts you off, you may be interested to know that this book is full of dramatic moments, insights, and images that grip, enlighten, and linger in the memory.
2.1Cause someone to feel dislike or distrust: she had a coldness that just put me off
More example sentences
  • It must have been my icy coldness towards him that put him off.
  • If you know somebody will repeat everything you say over the dinner table to a gossip columnist it will probably put you off the person.
  • His whole attitude put me off.
3Distract someone: you’re just trying to put me off my game
More example sentences
  • I think he was put off by the comments.
  • The referee awarded a penalty, which was hotly contested by Bryansford, but Gavin Murdock wasn't put off and blasted to the net.
  • I tried to stare at him to inform him that he was putting me off, but he just gave me a friendly and encouraging smile.

put something off

Postpone something: they can’t put off a decision much longer
More example sentences
  • Decisions about replacing cages will be put off until 2009.
  • The proposal, with five others, was considered by Southend's cabinet yesterday but a decision was put off because of an undisclosed technical matter.
  • But a decision was put off for a further four weeks while design issues are resolved.

put someone on

informal Deceive or hoax someone.
Example sentences
  • In person he is gentle and friendly, and wouldn't think of putting you on.
  • Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on or by imbeciles who really mean it
  • Of the questions posed above, the only one I can answer definitively is whether Saunders is making this stuff up; she is not putting us on.

put something on

1Place a garment, glasses, or jewelry on part of one’s body: Julie had put on a cotton dress
More example sentences
  • I finished putting my makeup on, and took a necklace from my jewellery box and put it on.
  • Next she unzipped the garment bag and casually put the dress on, without even looking in the mirror.
  • I pull my coat out of my locker put it on and throw my books in.
1.1Attach or apply something: she put on fresh makeup
2Cause a device to operate: shall I put the light on?
More example sentences
  • He put a hand on it and found the switch, and put the light on.
  • He was woken by an intruder putting the lights on downstairs.
  • Without putting the hall light on, I went to the door and found two lollipops, one broken, under my lounge window, and the other one still wrapped, by the front door.
switch on, turn on, activate
2.1Start cooking something: she was moaning that he hadn’t put the dinner on
More example sentences
  • What say you and I put some dinner on, Rachel?
  • It can be controlled over a mobile phone, so you can put the dinner on as you leave for home.
  • I think he'd put the dinner on and then slipped and the ladders had fallen on him.
2.2Play recorded music or a video.
Example sentences
  • If I just wanted to listen to your music, I'd put the CD on.
  • Thankfully, the restaurant staff put some music on and drew the blinds, hiding us from passing commuters.
  • I wake up, shuffle out of bed, put some music on and meander down the small flight of stairs to the second floor of my house.
3Organize or present a play, exhibition, or event.
Example sentences
  • We want the community to be active in organising events and putting future shows on for residents.
  • The opening is to coincide with Oxford Art Week, and an exhibition will be put on.
  • It makes a difference when an exhibition is put on in lovely surroundings.
organize, stage, mount, present, produce
3.1Provide a public transportation service: so many people wanted to visit this spot that an extra flight had to be put on
More example sentences
  • Why can't they put a skeleton service on, at least then we would know where we were.
  • You would think that by now they could figure out to put extra buses on during the festive period.
  • We'll put coaches on to get you there and back.
provide, lay on, supply, make available
4Add a specified amount to (the cost of something): the news put 12 cents on the share price
More example sentences
  • The situation could be resolved by the publishers simply putting a penny on the cost of each paper or magazine to cover delivery to the outlets.
  • That's substantially more today than you get by putting an extra penny on income tax.
  • However, I was disappointed that Mr Brown put a penny on a pint of beer and 4p on a bottle of wine.
4.1Increase in body weight; become heavier by a specified amount: she’s given up her diet and put on 20 lbs
More example sentences
  • People who lose pounds on an ordinary diet often put the weight back on once they come off the diet.
  • His back is feeling good at the moment, so simply putting the weight back on is not an option.
  • But they are then afraid to give up for fear of putting the weight back on.
5Assume a particular expression, accent, etc. he put on a lugubrious look
More example sentences
  • And putting the accent on again, he said, ‘You no crazy at me, you no crazy.’
  • Theresa, with some effort, puts a calm expression on, and gets up.
  • Tina put on her fake sad look.
feign, fake, simulate, mimic, affect, assume
5.1Behave deceptively: she doesn’t feel she has to put on an act
More example sentences
  • They assumed that she was just putting it on to evade detention.
  • He's just putting it on, and talking complete rubbish.
  • Both women are too intelligent to put on an act to catch a man.
pretend, play-act, make believe, fake it, fool, go through the motions
6Bet a specified amount of money on: he put $1,000 on the horse to win
More example sentences
  • I won't be putting any money on him to go on and win the title.
  • Obviously I'm not putting any money on them myself, but they are all dead certs.
  • My dad put 10p each way on the horse for me that year to keep me quiet I think.
bet, gamble, stake, wager;
place, lay;
risk, chance, hazard

put someone on to

Draw someone’s attention to (someone or something useful, notable, or interesting): Pike put me on to the department’s legal section
More example sentences
  • He's a new hip-hop artist a friend put me on to, and I'll be ever thankful to her.
  • Larry put me on to a project that's of interest to me.
  • Thanks to Tony for putting me on to this story.

put out

North American vulgar slang Be willing to have sexual intercourse.

put someone out

1Cause someone trouble or inconvenience: would it put you out too much to let her visit you for a couple of hours?
More example sentences
  • Would it really put you out to just let her crash at your place?
  • She acted as if it put her out to ring up my order.
  • I know it really puts him out if I cancel within 24 hours.
inconvenience, trouble, bother, impose on, disoblige
informal put on the spot
formal discommode
1.1 (often be put out) Upset or annoy someone: he was not put out by the rebuff
More example sentences
  • He looked a tad put out.
  • I said I was going to take notes and he looked put out, as if this slowed the process to an unacceptable degree.
  • Jim was most put out - he'd only got about a third of the way through his slides.
annoy, anger, irritate, offend, affront, displease, irk, vex, pique, nettle, gall, upset
informal rile, miff, peeve
2(In sports) defeat a player or team and so cause them to be out of a competition.
Example sentences
  • The pattern of scoring had been uncannily close to that in the defeat that put England out of the last European Championship.
  • It was a wonderful goal, acknowledged as the best of the tournament, but it didn't stop Holland from putting us out of the competition.
  • He scored the goal that put Italy out of the World Cup.
3Make someone unconscious, typically by means of drugs or an anesthetic.
Example sentences
  • Finally Dr. Raymond came and gave her an injection that put her out until the following morning.
  • They'll put you out and in about five minutes, the surgery will be over.
  • Just put me out, Doc, and wake me when it's over.

put something out

1Extinguish something that is burning: firefighters from Georgetown put out the blaze
More example sentences
  • My teacher ran over with the fire extinguisher and put the fire out.
  • It took firefighters 30 minutes to put the fire out.
  • He looked up at me and grinned, putting out his cigarette on the arm of the bench.
extinguish, quench, douse, smother;
blow out, snuff out
1.1Turn off a light.
Example sentences
  • We will not continue shopping while the manager puts the lights out.
  • Inside, the house was quiet and the lights had been put out.
  • It was late enough now that all the lights had been put out inside the Ellis home when the three of them arrived.
2Lay something out ready for use: she put out glasses and paper napkins
More example sentences
  • If your family puts out a spread, choose those dishes that are lower in fat and calories.
  • The boat slows down and the crew starting putting out the spread.
  • The couple was just putting out the silverware when a knock was heard on the door.
3Issue or broadcast something: a limited-edition single was put out to promote the album
More example sentences
  • Although a press release was put out, letters were not sent to electors.
  • He spoke with a couple of New York publishers about putting it out, he says, but in the end decided to print it himself.
  • The children have been left traumatised by the incident and we are putting a warning out to the public.
issue, publish, release, bring out, circulate, publicize, post
4Dislocate a joint: she fell off her horse and put her shoulder out
More example sentences
  • His shoulder was put out again, in the second match against Morocco.
  • He fell off a slide, putting his shoulder out.
  • He went carp fishing and put his shoulder out while reeling in a 26-pounder.
5(Of a company) allocate work to a contractor or freelancer to be done off the premises.
Example sentences
  • The company he worked for decided to close down the lorry maintenance department and put the work out to contractors.
  • Within a small authority the work will need to be undertaken ‘in house’ as resources would not be available to put the work out to private consultants.
  • I decided to put the job out to a contractor.
6(Of an engine or motor) produce a particular amount of power: the new motor is expected to put out about 250 h.p.
More example sentences
  • The engine puts out 140 hp and performs very well mated to a VTi automatic transaxle.
  • The engine puts out a respectable 210-hp.
  • The 2.5-liter engine puts out 300 horsepower.

put something over

1 another way of saying put something across .
Example sentences
  • Speaking in Leeds, he said: ‘A general feeling has been put over that I am opposed to vaccination.’
  • It's a very different voice and they are putting it over in a very different way but the principle remains the same.
  • now I'm here I shall put my point over.
2North American Postpone something: let’s put the case over for a few weeks
More example sentences
  • Dawson reserved her decision and the case was put over.
  • More worrisome still was his answer when the Weekly asked how much of the present problem would be put over to future years.
  • He'll put it over until the next meeting and we'll talk it through some more.

put someone through

1Connect someone by telephone to another person or place: put me through to the mayor, please
More example sentences
  • First, you are put through to the telephone operator, who asks you which of the emergency services you require.
  • In the good old days the council switchboard put you through to the relevant department.
  • She puts me through to customer service.
2Subject someone to an unpleasant or demanding experience: I hate Brian for what he put me through
More example sentences
  • It's an awful experience to put someone through.
  • That night, sniffing and sneezing, I agonised over why my own mother would put me through such an experience.
  • He was put through a series of demanding fitness tests including press-ups, pull-ups and running.
3Pay for someone to attend school or college.
Example sentences
  • His job at Wal-Mart is putting him through college and he makes good money for a kid his age, well above the minimum wage.
  • I hope to join the Marines and they will put me through college in return for four years service when my education is finished.
  • They struggled to put me through college and to this day encourage and support me through everything.

put something through

Initiate something and see it through to a successful conclusion: he put through a reform program to try to save the regime
More example sentences
  • The necessary amendments are put through to take them off the payroll.
  • The United Nations complains that it will simply run out of money and be short more than $300 million in the first quarter of 2006 if the new budget is not put through.
  • When a partner has been selected, we can start putting the project through.

put someone to

Cause inconvenience or difficulty to someone: I don’t want to put you to any trouble
More example sentences
  • It put us to greater inconvenience and expense than taking the day off to shop.
  • The police must realise that there are serious users of the net too and that this direction is likely to put us to great inconvenience.
  • ‘I really am terribly sorry for putting you to this inconvenience,’ he apologized, annoyed and frustrated at his own weakness.

put something to

1Submit something to (someone) for consideration or attention: we are making a takeover bid and putting an offer to the shareholders
More example sentences
  • Members of the public will not be allowed to speak at the extraordinary meeting next Monday but are able to put questions to the council, which had to be submitted by February 16.
  • Detailed questions were put to 200 farmers across the South West region relating to their businesses and personal development.
  • Just a few weeks ago, this question was put to more than 3,000 Americans: ‘Can you tell me the name of the current secretary of defense.’.
submit, present, tender, offer, proffer, advance, suggest, propose, put forward
2Devote something to (a particular use or purpose): they put the land to productive use
More example sentences
  • The purposes that technology can be put to can be good or bad.
  • I'm trying to put the time to good purpose by working.
  • ‘Like the gun industry, their exceptional product can be put to bad purposes,’ he says.

put something together

Make something by assembling different parts or people: he can take a clock apart and put it back together again they decided to put a new band together
More example sentences
  • It was interesting to take other peoples' songs apart, see how they were put together and arranged.
  • The auto carriers are put together and taken apart while passengers are aboard their section of the train.
  • It can be put together on an assembly line, like an automobile.
32.1Assemble things or people to make something: a carpenter puts together shaped pieces of wood to make a table
More example sentences
  • If you don't have enough carpenters to put the wood together, the house won't go up, no matter how much wood you have.
  • There is something naturally fresh, exciting, and interesting in putting pieces together and making them work.
  • I was more interested in putting the pieces together than I was in looking at the picture once I'd finished.

put someone under

another way of saying put someone out.

put up

1Offer or show (a particular degree of resistance, effort, or skill) in a fight or competitive situation: he put up a brave fight
More example sentences
  • He's going to resist and resent and put a fight up.
  • I would be surprised if much resistance is put up.
  • We will back whatever resistance is put up by the administration.
2Stay temporarily in lodgings other than one’s own home: we put up at a hotel in the city center
More example sentences
  • We put up in a hotel full of flies.
  • You cruise through Pensacola and put up in a motel in Marianna
  • We put up in a little hotel, three or four of us in a bed, four or five of us on the floor.

put someone up

1Accommodate someone temporarily.
Example sentences
  • She asked us where we were staying, and when she heard that we were in a hotel, she said that was a total waste of money, and put us up in her house for three weeks.
  • The best part is they will put us up at someone's house and take us out every night in Rome.
  • We put them up in a shared house and pay for their petrol.
accommodate, house, take in, lodge, quarter, billet;
give a roof over someone's head
2Propose someone for election or adoption: they should have put themselves up for election
More example sentences
  • To hush up the secret in her married mother's middle-class family, she was put up for adoption.
  • My biological mother was a young, unwed college graduate student, and she decided to put me up for adoption.
  • They loved the baby, but felt too young to take care of her and decided to put her up for adoption.
nominate, propose, put forward, recommend

put something up

1Construct or erect something: I put up the tent and cooked a meal
More example sentences
  • The centre will be closing for four days from March 29 to April 2, while temporary buildings are put up on the site.
  • The report said poor quality buildings were put up in the 1960s and 1970s, and there are even older temporary buildings.
  • According to descriptions of the event at the time, tents for spectators were put up at the side of the road and bonfires were lit for warmth.
2Raise one’s hand to signal that one wishes to answer or ask a question.
Example sentences
  • I then had history where I put my hand up 12 times and answered correctly.
  • We watched him putting his hand up to ask a question during a lecture.
  • She told him to put his hand up when he had a question.
3Display a notice, sign, or poster.
Example sentences
  • ‘Mind Your Head’ signs were put up all over the hotel to prevent any accidents.
  • Since Jamie's death up to three ‘deep water’ signs had been put up.
  • Companies should apply for the proper permissions before putting signs up.
display, pin up, stick up, hang up, post
3.1Present a proposal, theory, or argument for discussion or consideration.
Example sentences
  • That was attacked as being a step that would weaken the union and the same argument has been put up again.
  • Sometimes arguments are put up which courts do not deal with because they do not have to deal with it.
  • I can't think of any occasion when this argument was put up before.
propose, put forward, present, submit, suggest, tender
4chiefly British Increase the cost of something: I’m afraid I’ve got to put your rent up
More example sentences
  • We review our prices each August and if fuel continues to increase we will inevitably have to put our prices up.
  • Of course, you can't entirely blame the small business people who are putting prices up because their suppliers have told them they'll be passing on the full ten percent.
  • Landlords of rented houses will simply put the rents up to cover the cost, but how are the rest of us supposed to raise the extra money?
5Provide money as backing for an enterprise: the sponsors are putting up $5,000 for the event
More example sentences
  • What came through, as well as putting his money up for the club, was how enthusiastic he was.
  • We believe they did have the knowledge at the time, but they would not put the money up for testing.
  • My message to the Minister for Education and to the Government will be this - ‘if you believe in it, put the money up and let's get on with it’.
provide, supply, furnish, give, contribute, donate, pledge, pay
informal fork out, cough up, shell out, ante up, pony up
6 (often be put up for) Offer something for sale or auction.
Example sentences
  • The sites were put up for sale after Carlow Town Council decided to sell them to improve the town centre as part of their Local Area Plan.
  • But a record number of Scotland's sporting estates have been put up for sale this year as their owners cash in on soaring prices.
  • An exact replica of the painting was put up for sale six months ago by Christie's for around £1million.
7 archaic Return a sword to its sheath.
Example sentences
  • Put up your swords; you know not what you do.
  • Put up your bright swords, for the dew will rust them.
  • He put up his sword in silence.

put upon

(often as adjective put-upon) informal Take advantage of (someone) by exploiting their good nature: a put-upon drudge who slaved for her employer
More example sentences
  • Chances are the older the woman is, the more she has lost hope, suffered failure in relationships and marriages and is put upon by life.
  • I think it's very important that people should be aware that you have the access to legal help if you're being put upon by a landlord or he's ripping you off.
  • She was always being put upon, always being ripped off.
take advantage of, impose on, exploit, use, misuse
informal walk all over

put someone up to

informal Encourage someone to do (something wrong or unwise): Who else would play a trick like that on me? I expect Rose put him up to it
More example sentences
  • It is not the sort of thing I would expect Junior to do and I can only believe he has been put up to it.
  • The informants claimed they were put up to everything by O'Dowd.
  • It had to be some sort of dare someone put him up to.
persuade to (do), encourage to (do), urge to (do), egg on to (do), incite to (do), goad into

put up with

Tolerate; endure: I’m too tired to put up with any nonsense
More example sentences
  • He is apparently quite passive, and puts up with all this verbal aggression from his wife.
  • What they will not put up with, however, is a lack of control over other people.
  • There would be howls of outrage from the drinks industry but we can put up with that.
tolerate, take, stand (for), accept, stomach, swallow, endure, bear, support, take something lying down
informal abide, lump it
formal brook


Old English (recorded only in the verbal noun putung), of unknown origin; compare with dialect pote 'to push, thrust' (an early sense of the verb put).

Words that rhyme with put

afoot, clubfoot, foot, hotfoot, kaput, soot, splay-foot, underfoot, wrong-foot, Yakut

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: put

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