of; concerning; in regard to: instructions about the work;a book about the Civil War.
connected or associated with: There was an air of mystery about him.
near; close to: a man about my height;about six o'clock.
in or somewhere near: He is about the house.
on every side of; around: the railing about the excavation.
on or near (one's person): They lost all they had about them.
so as to be of use to: Keep your wits about you.
on the verge or point of (usually followed by an infinitive): about to leave.
here or there in, on, or over: to wander about the old castle;to look about the auditorium at the audience.
concerned with; engaged in doing: Tell me what it's about.Bring me the other book while you're about it.
near in time, number, degree, etc.; approximately: It's about five miles from here.
nearly; almost: Dinner is about ready.
nearby; not far off: He is somewhere about.
on every side; in every direction; around: Look about and see if you can find it.
halfway around; in the opposite direction: to turn a car about.
from one place to another; in this place or that: to move furniture about;important papers strewn about.
in rotation or succession; alternately: Turn about is fair play.
in circumference: a wheel two inches about.
onto a new tack.
onto a new course.
moving around; astir: He was up and about while the rest of us still slept.
in existence; current; prevalent: Chicken pox is about.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use about in a sentence
If the oft-talked-about college “hook-up culture” could be embodied by a place, it would be Shooters.Random Hook-Ups or Dry Spells: Why Millennials Flunk College Dating | Ellie Schaack | January 1, 2015 | THE DAILY BEAST
Thus far, the most talked-about Green Friday hotspot is Denver dispensary the Grass Station.Colorado Weed Dispensaries Celebrate ‘Green Friday’ | Abby Haglage | November 28, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
A former talked-about, maybe-presidential candidate, Andrew Cuomo now hints at Hillary for president at his own re-election event.
Her book, for example, does not discuss her buzzed-about, scantily clad Maxim photo shoot from last year, and so neither do we.'Boy Meets World' Star Danielle Fishel Is OK with Being Topanga Forever | Kevin Fallon | September 11, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
So when it was revealed he would instead be showing in New York, it quickly became one of the most buzzed-about shows of the week.Gareth Pugh's Fashion Show Lacked Fashion, But Not Passion | Justin Jones | September 5, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
These stories by a round-about way, gathering in circumstantial detail as they travelled, had reached his sister.The Wave | Algernon Blackwood
A few carbine and musket shots, from the knoll and house, soon brought them to a halt, and sent them to the right-about.
A commotion, a squeal, a thrashing-about near at hand caused both to turn suddenly.Blazed Trail Stories | Stewart Edward White
I've seen the night when Brocken would be tame beside the pandemonium round-about.The Adventures of Kathlyn | Harold MacGrath
I soon found he was a regular millstone round my neck—particularly when we were on the “walk-about.”The Adventures of Louis de Rougemont | Louis de Rougemont
British Dictionary definitions for about
relating to; concerning; on the subject of
near or close to (in space or time)
carried on: I haven't any money about me
on every side of; all the way around
active in or engaged in: she is about her business
on the point of; intending to: she was about to jump
(with a negative) determined not to: nobody is about to miss it
approximately; near in number, time, degree, etc: about 50 years old
here and there; from place to place; in no particular direction: walk about to keep warm
all around; on every side
in or to the opposite direction: he turned about and came back
in rotation or revolution: turn and turn about
used in informal phrases to indicate understatement: I've had just about enough of your insults; it's about time you stopped
archaic in circumference; around
(predicative) active; astir after sleep: up and about
(predicative) in existence, current, or in circulation: there aren't many about nowadays
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Other Idioms and Phrases with about
In addition to the idioms beginning with about
- about time
- about to
- at about
- beat about the bush
- bring about
- cast about
- come about
- do an about-face
- get about
- go about (one's business)
- how about (that)
- just about
- knock about
- lay about
- man about town
- nose about (around)
- no two ways about it
- order someone about
- out and about
- see about
- send someone about someone's business
- set about
- that's about the size of it
- up and about
- what about someone (something)
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.