[ eys ]
See synonyms for ace on
  1. a playing card or die marked with or having the value indicated by a single spot: He dealt me four aces in the first hand.

  2. a single spot or mark on a playing card or die.

  1. (in tennis, badminton, handball, etc.)

    • Also called serv·ice ace . a placement made on a service.

    • any placement.

    • a serve that the opponent fails to touch.

    • the point thus scored.

  2. a fighter pilot credited with destroying a prescribed number or more of enemy aircraft, usually five, in combat.

  3. a very skilled person; expert; adept: an ace at tap dancing.

  4. Slang. a one-dollar bill.

  5. Slang. a close friend.

  6. Golf.

    • Also called hole in one . a shot in which the ball is driven from the tee into the hole in one stroke: He hit a 225-yard ace on the first hole.

    • a score of one stroke made on such a shot: to card an ace.

  7. Slang. a barbiturate or amphetamine capsule or pill.

  8. a very small quantity, amount, or degree; a particle: not worth an ace.

  9. Slang. a grade of A; the highest grade or score.

verb (used with object),aced, ac·ing.
  1. (in tennis, badminton, handball, etc.) to win a point against (one's opponent) by an ace.

  2. Golf. to make an ace on (a hole).

  1. Slang. to cheat, defraud, or take advantage of (often followed by out): to be aced out of one's inheritance;friend who aced me out of a good job.

  2. Slang.

    • to receive a grade of A, as on a test or in a course (sometimes followed by out).

    • to complete easily and successfully: He aced every physical fitness test they gave him.

  1. Sometimes aces . excellent; first-rate; outstanding.

Verb Phrases
  1. ace it, Slang. to accomplish something with complete success: a champion who could ace it every time.

Idioms about ace

  1. ace up one's sleeve, an important, effective, or decisive argument, resource, or advantage kept in reserve until needed.

  2. be aces with, Slang. to be highly regarded by: The boss says you're aces with him.

  1. easy aces, Auction Bridge. aces equally divided between opponents.

  2. within an ace of, within a narrow margin of; close to: He came within an ace of winning.

Origin of ace

First recorded in 1250–1300, in 1795–1800 for def. 5; from Middle English as, aas, ais, from Old French as, from Latin ass- (stem of as ) “a copper coin (originally weighing one pound), unit (of money, weight)”; sense 4 was taken directly from French as in World War I, and sense 5 developed from sense 4; see origin at as2

Words Nearby ace

Other definitions for ace (2 of 3)

[ eys ]

  1. a person who experiences little or no sexual attraction to other people; asexual: She's an ace, but she's had a couple of romantic relationships.

  1. experiencing little or no sexual attraction to other people: As someone who identifies as ace, this article gave me much food for thought.

Origin of ace

First recorded in 2005–10; shortening of asexual

Other definitions for ACE (3 of 3)


  1. American Council on Education.

  2. Army Corps of Engineers. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use ace in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for ace (1 of 2)


/ (eɪs) /

  1. any die, domino, or any of four playing cards with one spot

  2. a single spot or pip on a playing card, die, etc

  1. tennis a winning serve that the opponent fails to reach

  2. golf, mainly US a hole in one

  3. a fighter pilot accredited with destroying several enemy aircraft

  4. informal an expert or highly skilled person: an ace at driving

  5. an ace up one's sleeve or an ace in the hole a hidden and powerful advantage

  6. hold all the aces to have all the advantages or power

  7. play one's ace to use one's best weapon or resource

  8. within an ace of almost to the point of: he came within an ace of winning

  1. informal superb; excellent

  1. tennis to serve an ace against

  2. golf, mainly US to play (a hole) in one stroke

  1. US and Canadian to perform extremely well or score very highly in (an examination, etc)

Origin of ace

C13: via Old French from Latin as a unit, perhaps from a Greek variant of heis one

British Dictionary definitions for ACE (2 of 2)


/ (eɪs) /

n acronym for
  1. (in Britain) Advisory Centre for Education; a private organization offering advice on schools to parents

  2. Allied Command Europe

  1. angiotensin-converting enzyme: See ACE inhibitor

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 ace


In addition to the idioms beginning with ace

  • ace in the hole
  • ace it
  • ace out

also see:

  • hold all the aces
  • within an ace of

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.