[ lawng, long ]
/ lɔŋ, lɒŋ /
adjective, long·er [lawng-ger, long-] /ˈlɔŋ gər, ˈlɒŋ-/, long·est [lawng-gist, long-] /ˈlɔŋ gɪst, ˈlɒŋ-/.
having considerable linear extent in space: a long distance; a long handle.
having considerable duration in time: a long conversation; a long while.
extending, lasting, or totaling a number of specified units: eight miles long; eight hours long.
containing many items or units: a long list.
requiring a considerable time to relate, read, etc.: a long story.
extending beyond normal or moderate limits: a long, boring speech.
experienced as passing slowly, because of the difficulty, tedium, or unpleasantness involved: long years of study.
reaching well into the past: a long memory.
the longer of two or the longest of several: the long way home; a brick with the long side exposed.
taking a long time; slow: He's certainly long getting here.
forward-looking or considering all aspects; broad: to take a long view of life.
intense, thorough, or critical; seriously appraising: a long look at one's past mistakes.
having an ample supply or endowment of something (often followed by on): to be long on advice; to be long on brains.
having a considerable time to run, as a promissory note.
Chiefly Law. distant or remote in time: a long date.
extending relatively far: a man with a long reach.
being higher or taller than usual: long casement windows.
being against great odds; unlikely: a long chance.
(of beverages) mixed or diluted with a large amount of soda, seltzer, etc.: highballs, collinses, and other long drinks.
(of the head or skull) of more than ordinary length from front to back.
- lasting a relatively long time: “Feed” has a longer sound than “feet” or “fit.”
- belonging to a class of sounds considered as usually longer in duration than another class, as the vowel of bought as compared to that of but, and in many languages serving as a distinctive feature of phonemes, as the ah in German Bahn in contrast with the a in Bann, or the tt in Italian fatto in contrast with the t in fato (opposed to short).
- having the sound of the English vowels in mate, meet, mite, mote, moot, and mute, historically descended from vowels that were long in duration.
Prosody. (of a syllable in quantitative verse) lasting a longer time than a short syllable.
Finance. holding or accumulating stocks, futures, commodities, etc., with the expectation of a rise in prices: a long position in chemicals.
- marked by a large difference in the numbers of the given betting ratio or in the amounts wagered: long odds.
- of or relating to the larger amount bet.
Ceramics. (of clay) very plastic; fat.
a comparatively long time: They haven't been gone for long. Will it take long?
something that is long: The signal was two longs and a short.
a size of garment for men who are taller than average.
a garment, as a suit or overcoat, in this size: The shorts and the longs are hung separately.
Finance. a person who accumulates or holds stocks or commodities with the expectation of a rise in prices.
for or through a great extent of space or, especially, time: a reform long advocated.
for or throughout a specified extent, especially of time: How long did he stay?
(used elliptically in referring to the length of an absence, delay, etc.): Will she be long?
throughout a specified period of time (usually used to emphasize a preceding noun): It's been muggy all summer long.
at a point of time far distant from the time indicated: long before.
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Question 1 of 10
Idioms for long
- provided that: As long as you can come by six, I'll be here.
- seeing that; since: As long as you're going to the grocery anyway, buy me a pint of ice cream.
- Also so long as. during the time that; through the period that: As long as we were neighbors, they never invited us inside their house.
as long as,
before long, soon: We should have news of her whereabouts before long.
the long and the short of, the point or gist of; substance of: The long and the short of it is that they will be forced to sell all their holdings.Also the long and short of.
Origin of long1
before 900; (adj.) Middle English longe, Old English lang, long; cognate with Dutch, German lang, Old Norse langr, Gothic langs, Latin longus; (noun) late Middle English, derivative of the adj.; (adv.) Middle English long(e), lange, Old English longe, lange, cognate with Old Saxon, Old High German lango
OTHER WORDS FROM longlong·ly, adverblong·ness, noun
Words nearby long
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020
British Dictionary definitions for before long (1 of 5)
/ (lɒŋ) /
Crawford Williamson. 1815–78, US surgeon. He was the first to use ether as an anaesthetic
British Dictionary definitions for before long (2 of 5)
/ (lɒŋ) /
having relatively great extent in space on a horizontal plane
having relatively great duration in time
- (postpositive) of a specified number of units in extent or durationthree hours long
- (in combination)a two-foot-long line
having or consisting of a relatively large number of items or partsa long list
having greater than the average or expected rangea long memory
being the longer or longest of alternativesthe long way to the bank
having more than the average or usual quantity, extent, or durationa long match
seeming to occupy a greater time than is really soshe spent a long afternoon waiting in the departure lounge
intense or thorough (esp in the phrase a long look)
(of drinks) containing a large quantity of nonalcoholic beverage
(of a garment) reaching to the wearer's ankles
informal (foll by on) plentifully supplied or endowed (with)long on good ideas
phonetics (of a speech sound, esp a vowel)
- of relatively considerable duration
- classified as long, as distinguished from the quality of other vowels
- (in popular usage) denoting the qualities of the five English vowels in such words as mate, mete, mite, moat, moot, and mute
from end to end; lengthwise
unlikely to win, happen, succeed, etca long chance
- denoting a vowel of relatively great duration or (esp in classical verse) followed by more than one consonant
- denoting a syllable containing such a vowel
- (in verse that is not quantitative) carrying the emphasis or ictus
finance having or characterized by large holdings of securities or commodities in anticipation of rising pricesa long position
cricket (of a fielding position) near the boundarylong leg
informal (of people) tall and slender
in the long run See run (def. 82)
long in the tooth informal old or ageing
for a certain time or periodhow long will it last?
for or during an extensive period of timelong into the next year
at a distant time; quite a bit of timelong before I met you; long ago
finance into a position with more security or commodity holdings than are required by sale contracts and therefore dependent on rising prices for profitto go long
as long as or so long as
- for or during just the length of time that
- inasmuch as; since
- provided that; if
no longer not any more; formerly but not now
a long time (esp in the phrase for long)
a relatively long thing, such as a signal in Morse code
a clothing size for tall people, esp in trousers
phonetics a long vowel or syllable
finance a person with large holdings of a security or commodity in expectation of a rise in its price; bull
music a note common in medieval music but now obsolete, having the time value of two breves
before long soon
the long and the short of it the essential points or facts
See also longs
Word Origin for long
Old English lang; related to Old High German lang, Old Norse langr, Latin longus
British Dictionary definitions for before long (3 of 5)
/ (lɒŋ) /
(intr; foll by for or an infinitive) to have a strong desire
Word Origin for long
Old English langian; related to long 1
British Dictionary definitions for before long (4 of 5)
/ (lɒŋ) /
(intr) archaic to belong, appertain, or be appropriate
Word Origin for long
Old English langian to belong, from gelang at hand, belonging to; compare along
British Dictionary definitions for before long (5 of 5)
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
Medical definitions for before long
Crawford Williamson 1815-1878
[ lông ]
American surgeon and pioneer anesthetist who was among the first (1842) to use ether as an anesthetic.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Idioms and Phrases with before long (1 of 2)
Soon, in the near future, as in The baby will be teething before long. This idiom was first recorded in 1865.
Idioms and Phrases with before long (2 of 2)
In addition to the idioms beginning with long
- long ago
- long and short of it, the
- long arm of the law, the
- long face
- long haul
- long in the tooth
- long shot, a
- long suit
- long time no see
- as long as
- at (long) last
- before long
- come a long way
- (long) drawn out
- go a long way toward
- happy as the day is long
- in the long run
- make a long story short
- so long
Also see underlonger.
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.