cue

1
[ kyoo ]
See synonyms for: cuecuedcuescuing on Thesaurus.com

noun
  1. anything said or done, on or off stage, that is followed by a specific line or action: An off-stage door slam was his cue to enter.

  2. anything that excites to action; stimulus.

  1. a hint; intimation; guiding suggestion.

  2. the part a person is to play; a prescribed or necessary course of action.

  3. a sensory signal used to identify experiences, facilitate memory, or organize responses.

  4. Archaic. frame of mind; mood.

verb (used with object),cued, cu·ing.
  1. to provide with a cue or indication; give a cue to; prompt: Will you cue me on my lines?

  2. to insert, or direct to come in, in a specific place in a musical or dramatic performance (usually followed by in or into): to cue in a lighting effect.

  1. to search for and reach (a specific track on a recording) (sometimes followed by up).

Idioms about cue

  1. cue (someone) in, Informal. to inform; give instructions, information, news, etc., to: Cue him in on the plans for the dance.

  2. miss a cue,

    • to fail to respond to a cue.

    • Informal. to miss the point: You could tell by his expression that he had missed a cue.

Origin of cue

1
First recorded in 1545–55; spelled name of the letter q as an abbreviation (found in acting scripts) of Latin quandō “when”

Other words for cue

Words that may be confused with cue

Words Nearby cue

Other definitions for cue (2 of 3)

cue2
[ kyoo ]

noun
  1. a long, tapering rod, tipped with a soft leather pad, used to strike the ball in billiards, pool, etc.

  2. a long, usually wooden stick with a concave head, used to propel the disks in shuffleboard.

  1. a queue or braid of hair worn behind the head.

  2. a queue or file, as of persons awaiting their turn.

verb (used with object),cued, cu·ing.
  1. to tie into a queue.

  2. to strike with a cue.

Origin of cue

2
First recorded in 1740–50; from French queue “tail,” Old French cöe, coue, from Latin cōda, popular form of cauda “tail”; cf. coward, queue

Other definitions for cue (3 of 3)

cue3
[ kyoo ]

noun
  1. the letter Q, q.

Origin of cue

3
First recorded in 1400–50; late Middle English cu; conventional adaptation in spelling of the letter name

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use cue in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for cue (1 of 2)

cue1

/ (kjuː) /


noun
    • (in the theatre, films, music, etc) anything spoken or done that serves as a signal to an actor, musician, etc, to follow with specific lines or action

    • on cue at the right moment

  1. a signal or reminder to do something

  1. psychol the part of any sensory pattern that is identified as the signal for a response

  2. the part, function, or action assigned to or expected of a person

verbcues, cueing or cued
  1. (tr) to give a cue or cues to (an actor)

  2. (usually foll by in or into) to signal (to something or somebody) at a specific moment in a musical or dramatic performance: to cue in a flourish of trumpets

  1. (tr) to give information or a reminder to (someone)

  2. (intr) to signal the commencement of filming, as with the word "Action!"

Origin of cue

1
C16: probably from name of the letter q, used in an actor's script to represent Latin quando when

British Dictionary definitions for cue (2 of 2)

cue2

/ (kjuː) /


noun
  1. billiards snooker a long tapered shaft with a leather tip, used to drive the balls

  2. hair caught at the back forming a tail or braid

  1. US a variant spelling of queue

verbcues, cueing or cued
  1. to drive (a ball) with a cue

  2. (tr) to twist or tie (the hair) into a cue

Origin of cue

2
C18: variant of queue

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