There are 2 main definitions of full in English:

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full 1

Pronunciation: /fʊl/


1Containing or holding as much or as many as possible; having no empty space: waste bins full of rubbish she could only nod, for her mouth was full the hotel is full up
More example sentences
  • The supply truck tows a water trailer and carries full water cans for direct exchange.
  • The Opera House was far from full and yet the noise throughout the performance was quite amazing.
  • She was going to ride the same bus as us, but this one was too full, so she was placed on the second bus.
filled, filled up, filled to capacity, filled to the brim, brimming, brimful, topped up;
overflowing, running over
crowded, packed, crammed, cramped, congested, crushed, solid (with people), full of people, full to capacity, full to bursting, overfull, teeming, swarming, overcrowded, thronged;
North American  mobbed
British informal like Piccadilly Circus
1.1Having eaten to one’s limits or satisfaction: she just ate till she was full up
More example sentences
  • How good one feels when one is full - how satisfied with ourselves and with the world!
  • A high fibre meal gives the sensation of being quickly full and satisfied.
  • Of course, we all had far too much to eat, and ended up flopped on the settee feeling full but satisfied for the rest of the night.
replete, satisfied, well fed, sated, satiated, full up, full to bursting, having had enough;
informal stuffed
archaic satiate, surfeited
1.2 (full of) Containing or holding much or many; having a large number of: his diary is full of entries about her
More example sentences
  • Turn a corner and we were faced with a whole street full of quite beautiful patisserie shops.
  • It was the happiest day of my life and my life has been full of happy moments.
  • They are full of exquisite period details, from the accents to the frocks.
1.3 (full of) Having a lot of (a particular quality): she was full of confidence
More example sentences
  • Its a story of the French Revolution, and a period piece full of courtly intrigue and a love story.
  • The Glitterati have managed to produce an album full of strength without overpowering you.
  • The dancers in Trisha Brown's troupe are superb, full of talent and strength.
1.4 (full of) Unable to stop talking or thinking about: they had their photographs taken and he was full of it
More example sentences
  • She was full of it, spouting out a load of rubbish she probably read in The Sun.
  • At the moment he's full of his various building schemes.
1.5 (full of) Filled with intense emotion: his heart was full of hate
More example sentences
  • There is nothing that pleases the Father more, than to see His children full of joy and thankfulness!
  • That was many years ago, but to this day she is still full of guilt and shame.
  • This is music full of loathing, both for itself and for the audience.
1.6Involving many activities: he lived a full life
More example sentences
  • He believes the treatment will ultimately pay for itself in that it will help patients lead a fuller, more normal life.
  • His full schedule leads him around the world, partnering some of the most famous singers of our time.
  • Under the expert tutelage of former sailors, the young people had a very full programme indeed.
eventful, interesting, exciting, lively, action-packed, noteworthy;
busy, strenuous, hectic, frantic, energetic, active
1.7Australian /NZ & Scottish informal Drunk: we were all pretty well full when the van rolled into Mittagong
2 [attributive] Not lacking or omitting anything; complete: a full range of sports facilities
More example sentences
  • This is because pears have to be eaten ripe to get anything like the full range of their taste and texture.
  • The police claimed to have full details of their names and residences.
  • I do not have the full details of the name of the officer who granted the permit to the individual concerned.
2.1(Often used for emphasis) reaching the utmost limit; maximum: he reached for the engine control and turned it up to full power John made full use of all the tuition provided
More example sentences
  • The result is that many people do not reach their full potential while studying.
  • I know she just wants us to do our best all the time, she wants us to reach our full potential all the time.
  • I wish Ian well, and hope the change of school will motivate him to reach his full potential.'
2.2Having all the privileges and status attached to a particular position: the country applied for full membership of the European Community
More example sentences
  • Whether pushing for observer status or full membership, the bid is a difficult one.
  • For Marshall, citizenship expresses full membership in the national political community.
  • The table tennis centre of excellence at Millthorpe School has been upgraded to full club status by the ETTA.
2.3(Of a report or account) containing as much detail or information as possible: a full report of the conference fuller descriptions of these varieties are available elsewhere
More example sentences
  • They will have to publish the full report, so that will put it all in perspective.
  • For a fuller description and statistical analysis of these polls, see the website.
  • Implementation of the plans is also dependent on a full archeological survey being carried out on the effected area.
2.4Used to emphasize an amount or quantity: he kept his fast pace going for the full 14-mile distance
More example sentences
  • She came to her full five foot six inches then and glared daggers at him.
  • It was low tide and in the far distance, perhaps a full mile away, lay the distant glint of the sea.
  • Gerhard drew himself up to his full five feet ten inches and looked up at the annoying man.
2.5(Of a covering material in bookbinding) used for the entire cover: bound in full cloth
More example sentences
  • Each volume is sewn and bound in full cloth and printed in a classic typeface on cream-wove, acid-free paper.
3(Of a person’s figure or part of the body) plump or rounded: she had full lips the fuller figure
More example sentences
  • She was a pretty woman, with a slightly pointed face, a small upturned nose, and full ruby-red lips.
  • Her own size seven body was full and firm, but it was nowhere as curvaceous as Nicola's.
  • He lifted her by the waist, her curves full and voluptuous as he edged her towards the bed.
3.1(Of the hair) having body: volumizing products coat each strand, making hair appear thick and much fuller
More example sentences
  • His hair was still full and a shade of light gray that stood in sharp contrast with the dark suit he wore.
  • For example, if you have full hair worn close to the face try thinner, lighter frames.
  • Her raven black hair was full and lustrous, reflecting the unpredictable writhings of the candle flames.
3.2(Of a garment) cut generously with gathers or folds or so as to fit loosely: the dress has a square neck and a full skirt
More example sentences
  • It was a pale blue silk dress with a square cut neckline, fitted sleeves and a very full skirt.
  • The length of the short should hit the shapeliest part of your leg and not be too full or too tight.
  • That's the mainstream style now: sort of fitted at the waist, and fuller in the leg.
loose-fitting, loose, baggy, easy-fitting, generously cut, roomy, voluminous, capacious, billowing
3.3(Of a sound) strong and resonant: this season’s sopranos produced a full but translucent sound her voice had become fuller
More example sentences
  • With two trombonists, they have a characteristic full sound down low on the music scale.
  • With a very full sound and varied music mix the lads are sure to go from strength to strength.
  • The dynamics are mixed and it builds well but most of the time it's soft and thin or thick and full sound.
3.4(Of a flavour or colour) rich or intense: any unpasteurized cheese will have a fuller flavour than its treated counterpart
More example sentences
  • Very clean and full with a biscuity flavour and subtle hints of citrus fruits on the nose.
  • She explained that to get the full taste of a whiskey you need to add a little water.
  • The full palate is rich in white peaches and not overly aggressive on the mousse which leaves a creamy, lengthy finish.
rich, intense, deep, heavy, vivid, strong, vibrant, bold, warm


1Straight; directly: she turned her head and looked full into his face
More example sentences
  • Ariadne looked back at the Minotaur, with interest, and laughed ‘full in his face’.
  • Instead he planted it full in the solar plexus, lifting the man clear of the floor.
  • His pillow missed Gary and hit Will full in the face.
2Very: he knew full well she was too polite to barge in
More example sentences
  • The queer present negotiates with the past, knowing full well that the future is at stake.
  • She understands full well that even when some men are given every option to embrace the role of Mr. Mom, they may still need a push.
  • I'm doing what I can but I know full well I could do more.
very, perfectly, quite, extremely, entirely
informal darn, damn, damned
British informal jolly, bloody
North American informal darned
archaic or Northern English  right
2.1 archaic Entirely (used to emphasize an amount or quantity): they talked for full half an hour
More example sentences
  • Live full four-score years on this earth and heading to start another one when the Good Lord say ‘Come on, now, step aside and give somebody else a chance!’
  • He weighed full fifteen stone.


(the full) archaic
1The period, point, or state of the greatest fullness or strength.
Example sentences
  • So many of those who were killed in the attacks were right in the full of their lives.
  • It would be very easy, even in the full of your health, to fall off a bike and that's exactly what happened.
1.1The state or time of full moon.
Example sentences
  • The moon is past the full, and she rises at nine.
1.2 archaic or Irish The whole.
Example sentences
  • He summoned the full of his eloquence in persuasion.
  • His mug was waiting by the stove. He poured himself the full of it and stirred in three spoons of sugar.


1 [with object] West Indian Make (something) full; fill up: he full up the house with bawling
More example sentences
  • Next thing, them going get up one morning and go to the seaside and want to full up the basket and empty the sea.
  • Once the ports are fulled up, any one trying to log on will get rejected with username and password.
  • The 24-27 dates turned out to be Memorial Day weekend & Reno is fulled up that weekend.
2 [with object] Gather or pleat (fabric) so as to make a garment full: a straight piece fulled into a small band at the top
More example sentences
  • Her skirt was white, fulled and gathered and looked as if the entire milky way had fallen upon it.
3 [no object] dialect or US (Of the moon or tide) become full: fulling moon aloft doth ride
More example sentences
  • I have cured many cases of goitre with Iodine, giving a powder every night for four nights, after the moon fulled and was waning.
  • This gross darkness held till about one o'clock, although the moon had fulled but the day before.
  • The September moon fulls on the 20th at 24 minutes past midnight, and is called the harvest moon.



full and by

Sailing Close-hauled but with sails filling.
Example sentences
  • We are steering full and by and watch securing gear round the decks.
  • For example, in a fresh gale, a well-conditioned man-of-war could just carry in chase, full and by, treble-reefed topsails, etc.
  • Eagle was sailing full and by under her uppers, lowers, and course sails, plus the headsails.

full colour

Pronunciation: /ˌfʊl ˈkʌlə/
The full range of colours: lively illustrations in full colour
More example sentences
  • Just about every UK newspaper has produced at least one, if not several, full colour photo supplements recording the scenes from the past few days, ranging from eight to sixteen pages.
  • Interested bidders should apply for gala auction tickets and a full colour auction catalogue by calling a hotline, 0161-832 6373.
  • All the stars are there in full colour on the front of the flyer, and the 30 tour dates are listed including St. George's Hall, Bradford, on June 9.

full of beans

see bean.

be full of it

informal Be lying or talking nonsense: don’t listen to a word she says, she’s full of it
More example sentences
  • He was full of it when he was explaining why he withheld information from the inquiry.
  • He is full of it on his economic policies.
  • She was full of it, spouting out a load of rubbish she probably read in the tabloids.

full of oneself

Very self-satisfied and with an exaggerated sense of self-worth: he’d always been very full of himself
More example sentences
  • He was entirely full of himself and his opinions.
  • At the same time, don't bow and scrape before the vulgar, even when they are proud and full of themselves.
  • We were strong, arrogant and so full of ourselves.

full of years

archaic Having lived to a considerable age: he died far from his native Champagne and full of years
More example sentences
  • A Tory life peer died recently, full of years, and there was a four-column piece about his achievements which, however, noted that.
  • The greatest, Edward Elgar, had been the first to die, full of years and loaded with honours, at his home in Worcester on February 23.
  • One was older than the other and she died full of years quietly in her bed surrounded by devoted friends and family.

full on

1Running at or providing maximum power or capacity: he had the heater full on
More example sentences
  • We heard guitars full on in both left and right directions!
  • I was driving full on back from Tesco, and at the traffic lights, in the car next to me, was Prince Edward.
  • The oven tap had been turned full on, and there was a big fat paw print next to it.
2So as to make a direct or significant impact: the recession has hit us full on
More example sentences
  • He was very close to me, and I straightened my back, meeting his smouldering gaze full on in pure defiance.
  • The frantic tone caused her to roll out of bed immediately, hitting the floor full on.
  • He felt as if he had just hit a brick wall full on, the pain was incredible.
2.1 (full-on) informal Not diluted in nature or effect: this is full-on ballroom boogie
More example sentences
  • But his voice is all wrong for the full on Dr. Doom effect.
  • Since all the vegetation has been removed the Canada geese have full on access to the back parking lot and are trying to come into the back door of the bird store.
  • Somehow, someone has given them my travel itinerary and they are waging a full on attack while I am incapable of traveling out there to rearrange and rectify the situation.

full out

1As much or as far as possible; with maximum effort or power: he held his foot to the floor until the car raced full out
More example sentences
  • Clonaslee Tidy Towns committee are working full out in an effort to enhance the appearance of the village before judging in the national competition takes place.
  • I try to do what my doctor says and skip certain steps, like arabesque, but I feel like I'm being lazy unless I do everything full out.
  • His smirk disappeared and he was full out glaring at me.
to the maximum, flat out;
at full speed, at maximum speed, as fast as possible, with maximum power, at full tilt, at full pelt, at breakneck speed
informal hell for leather, hammer and tongs, like crazy, like mad, like a bat out of hell
British informal like the clappers, like billy-o
2 Printing Flush with the margin.
Example sentences
  • Paragraphs starting ‘full out’ may be indistinguishable from the previous paragraph if the latter ends with a full, or almost full, line.

full steam (or speed) ahead

With as much speed or energy as possible: just turn right and keep going full steam ahead it’s full steam ahead with the business of government
More example sentences
  • You can see they feel that this is a much better nomination, that they want to move ahead, full steam ahead.
  • And just ahead, partisan politics is moving full steam ahead here in Washington.
  • Permission was finally granted this summer for the brewery to go ahead and the glass worker has been going full steam ahead since July.

full to the brim

see brim.

in full

With nothing omitted: I shall expect your life story in full
More example sentences
  • She explained the story in full to her mother, who sounded somewhat shocked and appalled.
  • The hospital also comes across looking bad, but their side of the story hasn't been told in full.
  • Whole paragraphs, like the following one, are worth quoting in full for their vivid illumination of an age.
in its entirety, in total, without omission/abridgement, unabridged, uncut, fully;
Latin in toto
11.1To the full amount due: their relocation costs would be paid in full
More example sentences
  • When the end of the term is reached, the outstanding loan amount must be repaid in full.
  • The obvious risk is that the fund will not have grown sufficiently to pay back your capital amount in full.
  • Now Bernie has only a matter of days to go before his dues are paid in full and he's determined to leave Las Vegas to make a fresh start in life.
11.2To the utmost; completely: the textbooks have failed to exploit in full the opportunities offered
More example sentences
  • Our stance and programme is rehabilitation to assist them to exploit their potential in full.
  • This they say will allow children to have a better opportunity to benefit in full from the education system.
  • By March, however, it is intended to start implementing the bye-laws in full.

to the full

To the greatest possible extent: enjoy your free trip to Europe to the full
More example sentences
  • Every young person must be allowed to develop his or her skills and creativeness to the full.
  • He farmed all his life until his retirement a few years ago, and he was a man who enjoyed those years to the full.
  • Matthew, the youngest of three children, was described by his father as a livewire who lived life to the full.
fully, thoroughly, completely, to the utmost, to capacity, to the limit, to the maximum, for all one's worth, with a vengeance, with all the stops out


Old English, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch vol and German voll.

Words that rhyme with full

bull, Istanbul, pull, push-pull, wool

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There are 2 main definitions of full in English:

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full 2

Pronunciation: /fʊl/


[with object] (often as noun fulling)
Clean, shrink, and felt (cloth) by heat, pressure, and moisture: weaving and fulling were all formerly part of the normal domestic scene
More example sentences
  • The best of them all was surely broadcloth, which in the eighteenth century was a superfine grade of woolen cloth that was fulled, or shrunk, napped, and shorn so that it was the consistency of felt but with a smooth surface.
  • Felting and/or fulling require heat, agitation and/or alkalinity.
  • According to mill historian Martin Watts, the double mill is likely to have served a dual function, with one mill building used to grind corn and the other used for another purpose such as cloth fulling.


Middle English: probably a back-formation from fuller1, influenced by Old French fouler 'press hard upon' or medieval Latin fullare, based on Latin fullo 'fuller'.

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