There are 2 definitions of left in English:

left1

Line breaks: left
Pronunciation: /lɛft
 
/

adjective

  • 1On, towards, or relating to the side of a human body or of a thing which is to the west when the person or thing is facing north: her left eye the left side of the road
    More example sentences
    • The patient was a sturdy young man with an abscess on the outer side of his left thigh.
    • He fell off of me, and as he got up I punched him square on the side of his left eye.
    • Take your right leg, bend it and pull the knee over towards the floor next to your left side.
    Synonyms
    left-hand, sinistral, at nine o'clock; Nautical port
    Nautical , • archaic larboard
    Heraldry sinister
  • 2Relating to a person or group favouring radical, reforming, or socialist views: Left politics left periodicals such as Marxism Today
    [see left wing]
    More example sentences
    • The Green Party leadership appear to believe that the left vote is theirs by right.
    • The crowd was solidly left and markedly anarchist and Marxist for the most part it seems.
    • The Respect coalition has shown people are willing to vote for a left alternative.

adverb

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  • On or to the left side: turn left here keep left
    More example sentences
    • Leave the ticket office and pass in front of the main house, turning left at the far side.
    • Follow the lane and at the next road junction bear left to another junction of lanes.
    • Silverdale train station can be reached by going left at this road junction.

noun

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  • 1 (the left) The left-hand part, side, or direction: turn to the left (one's left) the general sat to his left
    More example sentences
    • She turned her eyes directly to the left when she saw a flicker of light from the barn.
    • There were only a few seats left, and one of them was the place directly to the left of him.
    • There is a small bar area to the left as you walk inside and then the main dining room to the right.
  • 1.1(In football or a similar sport) the left-hand half of the field when facing the opponents' goal: a free kick from the left
    More example sentences
    • Villa gained possession and advanced into the penalty area to the left of goal.
    • Del Piero, who's had a quiet game, expertly cuts in from the left and goes for goal.
    • Another charge was cut short illegally by a tug from Barker five yards to the left of the penalty area.
  • 1.2The left wing of an army: a token attack on the Russian left
  • 1.3A left turn: take a left here
    More example sentences
    • After doing right turns and lefts until I lost count, I came to a huge oak brown door and knocked on it.
    • There are six rights and eight lefts, and the main straight is only 650m, so it will be quite demanding.
    • Take two lefts, then a right past Venice and you're there.
  • 1.4A road, entrance, etc. on the left: my road’s the first left
  • 1.5A person’s left fist, especially a boxer’s: a dazzler with the left
  • 1.6A blow given with the left fist: a left to the body
    More example sentences
    • Hunt KOs Jerome, with a flurry of lefts and rights, polished off by a right hook to the head that tracks him down to the mat.
    • A right hand and a succession of lefts hurt Carey again in the third.
    • However, he pulled himself together and near corners scored frequently with well-placed lefts to the nose, drawing blood.
  • 2 (often the Left) [treated as singular or plural] A group or party favouring radical, reforming, or socialist views: the Left is preparing to fight presidential elections he is on the left of the party
    More example sentences
    • One is never enough because the Left is going to distort the facts just as much as the Right.
    • The parties of the Left and of the Right are in conflict because they both aim at supreme power.
    • The Left has much in common with the radicals in the Green movement and wants to work with them.

Phrases

have two left feet

Be clumsy or awkward: if you stumble when you dance, you’ve got two left feet
More example sentences
  • Well I gave it a try and quickly discovered that I had two left feet and my dreams went up in smoke.
  • She is wrinkled, she is overweight, and she still has two left feet when it comes to dancing.
  • Maybe you've realized you have two left feet, skewed rhythm and zero coordination.

left, right, and centre (also left and right or right and left)

On all sides: deals were being done left, right, and centre
More example sentences
  • In a mild winter we are seeing people turning power off left, right, and centre.
  • I'm turning theatre down left, right, and centre at the moment and I hope my plan pays off.
  • You already ruled on this when Mr Mallard was on his feet insulting people left, right, and centre.

Derivatives

leftish

adjective
More example sentences
  • Ever since, leftish malcontents have taken every opportunity to condemn the iniquity of holding all applicants for admission to the same standards.
  • For a while, leftish bloggers were quite caught up in the notion that the correlation of good economic performance with Democratic presidencies had to be causal.
  • If the pollsters are overestimating Labour's support once more, the consequences of their blunders could leave a lot of leftish voters looking very silly.

leftward

Pronunciation: /ˈlɛftwəd/
adjective & adverb

leftwards

adverb
More example sentences
  • I caught another set of headlights approaching me, and then looked leftwards to see who was beside me.
  • Immediately below the bridge, a path runs leftwards, uphill to a tarmac road where a signpost to Birnam Hill points to the left.
  • Today the revolt is generally being channelled leftwards.

Origin

Old English lyft, left 'weak' (the left-hand side being regarded as the weaker side of the body), of West Germanic origin.

More definitions of left

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