verb (used with object), closed, clos·ing.
verb (used without object), closed, clos·ing.
adjective, clos·er, clos·est.
- the closing price on a stock.
- the closing prices on an exchange market.
- a narrow entry or alley terminating in a dead end.
- a courtyard enclosed except for one narrow entrance.
- to terminate the operation of; discontinue: to close down an air base because of budget cuts.
- to attempt to control or eliminate: The city must close down drug traffic.
- to approach so as to capture, attack, arrest, etc.: The hoodlums closed in on their victim.
- to surround or envelop so as to entrap: a feeling that the room was closing in upon her.
- to reduce the price of (merchandise) for quick sale: That store is closing out its stock of men's clothing.
- to liquidate or dispose of finally and completely: They closed out their interests after many years in this city.
- to come together in close array; converge: The enemy was closing up on us from both flanks.
- to bring to an end; cease: The company is closing up its overseas operations.
- to become silent or uncommunicative.
- to reduce or eliminate spacing material between (units of set type).
- from close range; in a detailed manner; intimately.
- Nautical. fully raised; at the top of the halyard: an answering pennant flown close up.Compare dip1(def 37).
Origin of close
British Dictionary definitions for close ranks (1 of 2)
Word Origin for close
British Dictionary definitions for close ranks (2 of 2)
- euphemistic to die
- (often foll by to) to ignore
Word Origin and History for close ranks (1 of 4)
c.1200, "to shut, cover in," from Old French clos- (past participle stem of clore "to shut, to cut off from"), 12c., from Latin clausus, past participle of claudere "to shut, close; to block up, make inaccessible; put an end to; shut in, enclose, confine" (always -clusus, -cludere in compounds).
The Latin word might be from the possible PIE root *klau- "hook, peg, crooked or forked branch" (used as a bar or bolt in primitive structures); cf. Latin clavis "key," clavus "nail," claustrum "bar, bolt, barrier," claustra "dam, wall, barricade, stronghold;" Greek kleidos (genitive) "bar, bolt, key," klobos "cage;" Old Irish clo "nail," Middle Irish clithar "hedge, fence;" Old Church Slavonic ključi "hook, key," ključiti "shut;" Lithuanian kliuti "to catch, be caught on," kliaudziu "check, hinder," kliuvu "clasp, hang;" Old High German sliozan "shut," German schließen "to shut," Schlüssel "key."
Also partly from Old English beclysan "close in, shut up." Intransitive sense "become shut" is from late 14c. Meaning "draw near to" is from 1520s. Intransitive meaning "draw together, come together" is from 1550s, hence the idea in military verbal phrase close ranks (mid-17c.), later with figurative extensions. Meaning "bring to an end, finish" is from c.1400; intransitive sense "come to an end" is from 1826. Of stock prices, from 1860. Meaning "bring together the parts of" (a book, etc.) is from 1560s. Related: Closed; closing.
Word Origin and History for close ranks (1 of 4)
late 14c., "strictly confined," also "secret," from Old French clos "confined; concealed, secret; taciturn" (12c.), from Latin clausus "close, reserved," past participle adjective from claudere "stop up, fasten, shut" (see close (v.)); main sense shifting to "near" (late 15c.) by way of "closing the gap between two things." Related: Closely.
Meaning "narrowly confined, pent up" is late 14c. Meaning "near" in a figurative sense, of persons, from 1560s. Meaning "full of attention to detail" is from 1660s. Of contests, from 1855. Close call is from 1866, in a quotation in an anecdote from 1863, possibly a term from the American Civil War; close shave in the figurative sense is 1820, American English. Close range is from 1814. Close-minded is attested from 1818. Close-fisted "penurious, miserly" is from c.1600.
Word Origin and History for close ranks (2 of 4)
late 14c., "act of closing, conclusion, termination," from close (v.). Also in early use "enclosure, enclosed space" (late 13c.), from Old French clos, noun use of past participle.
Word Origin and History for close ranks (3 of 4)
"tightly, with no opening or space between," from close (adj.).
Idioms and Phrases with close ranks (1 of 2)
Unite, work together, as in The members decided to close ranks and confront the president. This expression, dating from the late 1700s, comes from the military, where it denotes bringing troops into close order so there are no gaps in the fighting line. (A slightly earlier form was close lines.) It has been used figuratively since the mid-1800s.
Idioms and Phrases with close ranks (2 of 2)
In addition to the idioms beginning with close
- close at hand
- close but no cigar
- close call
- closed book, a
- closed door
- close down
- close in
- close one's eyes to
- close out
- close ranks
- close shave
- close the books
- close the door on
- close the sale
- close to home
- close up
- at close quarters
- at close range
- behind closed doors
- keep (a close) watch
- near (close) to one's heart
- play one's cards close to one's chest
- sail close to the wind
- too close for comfort
- too close to call