Definition of due in English:

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Pronunciation: /djuː/


1 [predicative] Expected at or planned for at a certain time: the baby’s due in August he is due back soon [with infinitive]: talks are due to adjourn tomorrow
More example sentences
  • The figures for last year, due soon, are expected to show a further increase.
  • Also next year the European elections are due with both polls expected to go ahead on the same day, June 10.
  • She had reportedly told her husband Kevin that she was expecting a child, due December 12.
1.1(Of a payment) required at a certain time: the May instalment was due
More example sentences
  • New technology installed in more than 100,000 vehicles offers drivers a friendly reminder when the car payments are due.
  • Please note final payment is due before Thursday, August 15.
  • Please note the balance of payments are now due.
owing, owed, to be paid, payable, payable now, payable immediately, receivable immediately;
North American  delinquent, past due
1.2(Of a person) having reached a point where the thing mentioned is required or owed: she was due for a rise
More example sentences
  • Court advocates when someone is due for trial who has been responsible for having a significantly negative impact on a community's quality of life, members of that community attend court.
  • Originally, I was not due for parole until 2028.
  • The next encounter I had with the razor came about two weeks later, when I went back to the bathroom mirror to inspect my chin and see if I was due for a shave.
1.3(Of a thing) required or owed as a legal or moral obligation: he was only taking back what was due to him you must pay any income tax due
More example sentences
  • Workers cannot secure the liability of wages or holiday pay earned, or, indeed, of redundancy compensation that is due and payable.
  • When the company went under, Beggs told the receiver that €3.7 million was due in outstanding debts.
  • He has prevaricated over the payment of sums acknowledged to be due, though the sum currently due and payable by way of costs is not alleged to be large.
2 [attributive] Of the proper quality or extent: driving without due care and attention
More example sentences
  • ‘The important thing is that the submissions from both bidders are given proper and due consideration,’ he told the House.
  • Our message to dog owners is that they must take due and proper care of their pets and of Manchester's environment.
  • Any business that treats its customers without due care and consideration is not fulfilling its most important role.
proper, right and proper, correct, rightful, fitting, suitable, appropriate, apt, adequate, sufficient, enough, ample, satisfactory, requisite
formal condign
archaic meet


1 (one's due/dues) One’s right; what is owed to one: he thought it was his due
More example sentences
  • Some say the public gets its due with the program itself.
  • Rathbone argued that motherhood was socially valuable and thus compensable, entitled to the respect due such an important profession.
  • Sledge gives the common soldier his just due in eloquent prose that explores the emotions and trauma associated with a brutal war and its consequences.
rightful treatment, fair treatment, deserved fate, just punishment;
right, entitlement;
informal comeuppance
archaic recompense
2 (dues) An obligatory payment; a fee: he had paid trade union dues for years
More example sentences
  • These included the payment of salary arrears, the payment of dues of retired employees and outstanding promotions.
  • It was conceded that membership required no payment of dues nor any other participation in the affairs of the organization.
  • It is time once again for the payment of dues for the Annual Silver Circle draw.
fee, membership fee, subscription, charge, toll, levy;


(With reference to a point of the compass) exactly; directly: we’ll head due south again on the same road
More example sentences
  • A few more yards due south of that, hard by the western approach to the Limehouse Link, there's a little park, perhaps an ex-churchyard to go with the ex-rectory.
  • Its destination was Christmas Island, an Australian territorial outpost, about 300 nautical miles due south of Sumatra.
  • Then the car turns around and travels 40 meters due south in 5.0 seconds.
directly, straight, exactly, precisely, without deviating, undeviatingly, dead, plumb, squarely


Due to in the sense ‘because of’, as in he had to retire due to an injury, has been condemned as incorrect on the grounds that due is an adjective and should not be used as a preposition; owing to is often recommended as a better alternative. However, the prepositional use, first recorded at the end of the 19th century, is now common in all types of literature and is regarded as part of standard English.



due to

1Caused by or ascribable to: his death was not due to any lack of care
More example sentences
  • She also found signs of hypoxic damage to nerve cells due to lack of oxygen before death.
  • The delay was due to a lack of scaffolding.
  • We have had some pretty stupid rows due to the lack of sleep and worry as to what is it that keeps waking him.
2Because of; owing to: he had to withdraw due to a knee injury
More example sentences
  • The central bank has noted that overall inflation has been higher than expected, due mainly to a jump in gasoline prices.
  • A small amount of hiss and distortion shows up from time to time, though this is to be expected due in part to the film's budget.
  • An employee at the company says staff morale is low due to the lack of job certainty in the future.

give someone their due

Be fair to someone: give the man his due—he’s a vegetarian and he generates his own electricity with wind towers
More example sentences
  • Yet, with the onset of commercialisation in the field, practitioners of traditional medicine feel that they have not been given their due.
  • To give them their due, most are apologetic about it.
  • I can't say that I was cheering Liverpool on, but let's give them their due.

in due course

At the appropriate time: the range will be extended in due course
More example sentences
  • I shall hear counsel on the appropriate form of order to be made in due course.
  • The subject appears to be a political exercise that will die its natural death in due course.
  • The annual school tour plans are well underway and parents will be notified in due course.
at the appropriate time, when the time is ripe, in time, in due time, in the fullness of time, in the course of time, at a later time, at a later date, at length, at a future time/date, at some point in the future, in the future, in time to come, as time goes on/by, by and by, one day, some day, sooner or later, in a while, after a bit, eventually

pay one's dues

Fulfil one’s obligations: if she was the caring person she makes herself out to be she would insist on paying her dues
More example sentences
  • He pays his dues to the sport but without romance.
  • For many, today's vote was about what has to happen from now on, rather than paying their dues to factional alliances.
  • We are taught that if we work hard and pay our dues, we will be rewarded in riches and love from family and friends.
4.1Experience difficulties before achieving success: this drummer has paid his dues with the best
More example sentences
  • He's paid his dues, he's experienced, he knows what it entails, he knows the personnel of this team.
  • Their reward is a job well done, but age and experience definitely count; you must pay your dues as you progress up the ladder of success.
  • I have paid my dues, produced many successful students and defined my policies so that I am respected and established.


Middle English (in the sense 'payable'): from Old French deu 'owed', based on Latin debitus 'owed', from debere 'owe'.

Words that rhyme with due

accrue, adieu, ado, anew, Anjou, aperçu, askew, ballyhoo, bamboo, bedew, bestrew, billet-doux, blew, blue, boo, boohoo, brew, buckaroo, canoe, chew, clew, clou, clue, cock-a-doodle-doo, cockatoo, construe, coo, Corfu, coup, crew, Crewe, cru, cue, déjà vu, derring-do, dew, didgeridoo, do, drew, endue, ensue, eschew, feu, few, flew, flu, flue, foreknew, glue, gnu, goo, grew, halloo, hereto, hew, Hindu, hitherto, how-do-you-do, hue, Hugh, hullabaloo, imbrue, imbue, jackaroo, Jew, kangaroo, Karroo, Kathmandu, kazoo, Kiangsu, knew, Kru, K2, kung fu, Lahu, Lanzhou, Lao-tzu, lasso, lieu, loo, Lou, Manchu, mangetout, mew, misconstrue, miscue, moo, moue, mu, nardoo, new, non-U, nu, ooh, outdo, outflew, outgrew, peekaboo, Peru, pew, plew, Poitou, pooh, pooh-pooh, potoroo, pursue, queue, revue, roo, roux, rue, Selous, set-to, shampoo, shih-tzu, shoe, shoo, shrew, Sioux, skean dhu, skew, skidoo, slew, smew, snafu, sou, spew, sprue, stew, strew, subdue, sue, switcheroo, taboo, tattoo, thereto, thew, threw, thro, through, thru, tickety-boo, Timbuktu, tiramisu, to, to-do, too, toodle-oo, true, true-blue, tu-whit tu-whoo, two, vendue, view, vindaloo, virtu, wahoo, wallaroo, Waterloo, well-to-do, whereto, whew, who, withdrew, woo, Wu, yew, you, zoo

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