Definition of ease in English:

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Pronunciation: /iːz/


[mass noun]
1Absence of difficulty or effort: she gave up smoking with ease ease of use
More example sentences
  • Presented with a gilt-edged chance, Gardyne attempted to lift his shot over Craig Wight, but the goalkeeper caught the effort with ease.
  • Women retained their rights to manage their own money and property after marriage and could obtain a divorce with the same ease - or difficulty - as a man.
  • How has the final sound mixing gone in terms of difficulty or ease?
effortlessness, no difficulty, no trouble, no bother, facility, facileness, simplicity;
deftness, adroitness, dexterity, proficiency, mastery
1.1Absence of rigidity or discomfort; poise: I was always vexed by her self-contained ease
More example sentences
  • Enthusiasm filled the place as students fired a volley of questions, which the seasoned star answered with poise and complete ease.
  • The ease and humor that he displayed in his I-do-not-choose-to-run press conference should quiet the put-downs.
  • Hass is relentless in her challenge to authority, but her real uniqueness lies in her ability to literally cross from one side to the next with an uncanny ease.
1.2Freedom from worries or problems: a life of wealth and ease
More example sentences
  • It is relentlessly positive and constantly whispering the mantra of ease and happiness through wealth and the purchase of this or that brand name product.
  • Our material ease and the freedoms it has spawned are dangerous illusions, and now comes the reckoning.
  • She was by then in her late thirties and had lived a life of great wealth and ease.
peace, peacefulness, calmness, tranquillity, composure, serenity, repose, restfulness, quiet, contentment, security, comfort
affluence, wealth, prosperity, prosperousness, luxury, opulence, plenty, sufficiency;
comfort, cosiness, contentment, content, enjoyment, well-being, freedom from hardship, freedom from troubles
rare easefulness


1 [with object] Make (something unpleasant or intense) less serious or severe: a huge road-building programme to ease congestion
More example sentences
  • The process will test his ability to make good on his promises to use rail to ease Westside traffic congestion.
  • He said network congestion would be eased in Windhoek with the opening of additional base stations.
  • The U.S. boom has softened a bit lately, easing some of the pressure on central bankers in both countries to hurry up and raise rates.
relieve, alleviate, mitigate, assuage, allay, soothe, soften, palliate, ameliorate, mollify, moderate, tone down, blunt, dull, deaden, numb, take the edge off;
lessen, reduce, lighten, diminish
1.1 [no object] Become less serious or severe: the pain doesn’t usually ease off for several hours
More example sentences
  • ‘When I get tense, I see the funny side and begin to laugh and then the tension eases,’ he explains.
  • Then the sadness and shame began to ease, and I realised that they were not productive feelings.
  • Tensions eased with each passing moment and the three friends began joking with each other.
abate, subside, die down, die away, die out, drop off, let up, slacken off, diminish, quieten, lessen, grow less, tail off, peter out, taper off, wane, ebb, relent, weaken, become weaker, come to an end
archaic remit
1.2 [no object] (ease off/up) Do something with more moderation: I’d ease up on the hard stuff if I were you
More example sentences
  • One wonders if they shouldn't ease up, calm down, breathe deep, get more securely grounded.
  • With all this, it seems unlikely that he would care to appease his critics by easing up on the self-promotion.
  • If road deaths decrease you don't ease up on road safety.
1.3Make (something) happen more easily; facilitate: Tokyo’s dominance of government was deemed to ease efficient contact-making
More example sentences
  • Behind the slick new steel and glass facades, what can you expect in the way of facilities to ease the MBA learning experience?
  • The same materials are expected to be used in the larger extension, which will have a conveyor link to the existing facility to ease the transfer of airfreight.
  • He urged Government to prioritise the provision of facilities that would ease the education and employment access of the blind.
facilitate, make easy, make easier, expedite, speed up, assist, help, aid, advance, further, forward, smooth the way for, clear the way for, simplify
2 [no object, with adverbial of direction] Move carefully or gradually: I eased down the slope with care [with object and adverbial of direction]: she eased off her shoes
More example sentences
  • Murmuring soft words of comfort and nonsense, she eased herself carefully along the wall, bringing her hand along the side of the horse.
  • Carefully, she eased over across the floor to the door, then moving as fast as she could, she swung it open.
  • Balancing the car on the throttle and I eased myself around for a couple of laps to familiarise myself with the setup.
2.1 [with object] (ease someone into) Introduce someone gradually to (an activity): he brought in someone new and eased them into the job
More example sentences
  • I think we need to ease Richard into a job with the Civil Service.
  • It remembers your previous volume setting just like a normal radio, but instead of jumping to that volume it slowly fades up to it, easing you into whatever happens to be playing at the moment.
  • It is effortlessly uplifting, totally breezy and an ideal way of easing you into what follows.
2.2 [with object] (ease someone out) Gradually exclude someone from a post, especially by devious or subtle manoeuvres: after the scandal he was eased out of his job
More example sentences
  • It looks more and more as if he was eased out not so much because of what he did, but because certain elements in the Labour Party wanted rid of him.
  • But, as I say, the plan is to ease them out of that.
  • The Army, contrary to perception, tends to ease them out of frontline duty.
2.3 (ease something away/down/off) Nautical Slacken a rope or sail slowly or gently.
Example sentences
  • The ship ran aground for three minutes before it was eased off.
3 [no object] (Of share prices, interest rates, etc.) decrease in value or amount: shares eased 6p to 224p
More example sentences
  • House price inflation needs to ease to a rate of 6 per cent if a disorderly correction is to be avoided.
  • The report came amid improving macroeconomic indicators as inflation has eased, interest rates are down and the rupiah has strengthened.
  • They feel that though interest rates should ease, banks may not be in a position to slash their lending rates.



at (one's) ease

Free from worry or awkwardness; relaxed: she was never quite at ease with Phil
More example sentences
  • The main courses arrived swiftly, with the kind of faultlessly friendly, attentive yet unobtrusive service that always puts you at your ease in a restaurant.
  • The master of ceremonies will welcome each of the contestants in turn, set them at their ease, and introduced the musical item that each will render.
  • He had a great way with people, and had the remarkable ability to put customers at their ease.
relaxed, calm, serene, tranquil, unworried, contented, content, happy;
comfortable, secure, safe
informal chilled
(at ease) Military 1.1 In a relaxed attitude with the feet apart and the hands behind the back (often as a command): all right, stand at ease!
More example sentences
  • Both girls ceased their jitters and tried to stand at ease, gnawing away at their lips.
  • I halted in front of the sentry box, turned to the front and stood at ease.
  • The soldiers at Micklegate Bar are not marching but are stood at ease, and may well have been from the Army Cadet Corps.

ease someone's mind

Alleviate someone’s anxiety: concentrating on the stitching helped to ease her mind
More example sentences
  • I went to a church service in the village last night and that eased my mind.
  • This will help your weight loss by easing your mind and tricking your body's metabolism and avoid plateauing.
  • ‘Well someone had to be on this island to plant the treasure,’ Dara explained, easing his mind.
calm, quieten, pacify, soothe, comfort, bring comfort to, give solace to, solace, console;
hearten, gladden, uplift, encourage





Middle English: from Old French aise, based on Latin adjacens 'lying close by', present participle of adjacere. The verb is originally from Old French aisier, from the phrase a aise 'at ease'; in later use from the noun.

  • easy from Middle English:

    Both easy and ease (Middle English) go back via Old French aisier to Latin adjacens ‘lying close by’, source also of adjacent (Late Middle English). Easy-peasy ‘childishly easy’ is only recorded from the 1970s. The ‘peasy’ is simply a rhyme and the childish word intensifies the sense.

Words that rhyme with ease

Achinese, Ambonese, appease, Assamese, Balinese, Belize, Beninese, Bernese, bêtise, Bhutanese, breeze, Burmese, Cantonese, Castries, cerise, cheese, chemise, Chinese, Cingalese, Cleese, Congolese, Denise, Dodecanese, éminence grise, expertise, Faroese, freeze, Fries, frieze, Gabonese, Genoese, Goanese, Guyanese, he's, Japanese, Javanese, jeez, journalese, Kanarese, Keys, Lebanese, lees, legalese, Louise, Macanese, Madurese, Maltese, marquise, Milanese, Nepalese, officialese, overseas, pease, Pekinese, Peloponnese, Piedmontese, please, Portuguese, Pyrenees, reprise, Rwandese, seise, seize, Senegalese, she's, Siamese, Sienese, Sikkimese, Sinhalese, sleaze, sneeze, squeeze, Stockton-on-Tees, Sudanese, Sundanese, Surinamese, Tabriz, Taiwanese, tease, Tees, telegraphese, these, Timorese, Togolese, trapeze, valise, Viennese, Vietnamese, vocalese, wheeze

For editors and proofreaders

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