- 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.
- anything that excites to action; stimulus.
- a hint; intimation; guiding suggestion.
- the part a person is to play; a prescribed or necessary course of action.
- a sensory signal used to identify experiences, facilitate memory, or organize responses.
- Archaic. frame of mind; mood.
- to provide with a cue or indication; give a cue to; prompt: Will you cue me on my lines?
- 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.
- to search for and reach (a specific track on a recording) (sometimes followed by up).
- cue (someone) in, Informal. to inform; give instructions, information, news, etc., to: Cue him in on the plans for the dance.
- 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 cue1
SynonymsSee more synonyms for cue on Thesaurus.com
- a long, tapering rod, tipped with a soft leather pad, used to strike the ball in billiards, pool, etc.
- a long, usually wooden stick with a concave head, used to propel the disks in shuffleboard.
- a queue of hair.
- a queue or file, as of persons awaiting their turn.
- to tie into a queue.
- to strike with a cue.
Origin of cue2
- the letter Q, q.
Origin of cue3
Examples from the Web for cues
Television and film are enormously influential in our culture, particularly for the cues they send about health and sexuality.Planned Parenthood: Why NBC's Abortion Ad Snafu Matters
June 25, 2014
Jay Z should perhaps take some cues from his wife, Beyoncé, who has just done the exact opposite with great éclat.He’s A Businessman, Man: Jay Z’s Pursuit of Profit and Why We Don’t Trust Him
January 10, 2014
On Friday morning, take some cues from around the world—if you can stomach it.The Wildest Hangover Cures From Around the World
November 29, 2013
Taking your cues from Koons is like singing inside a balloon.From Lady Gaga To Jay-Z, “Serious” Art Is Ruining Pop Music
November 24, 2013
Instead, they pay attention to signals and cues about what matters most to a president.Be More Like Teddy
August 26, 2009
I knew nothing of all this, and wondered who was to give me the cues for Agns.
I looked round for my partner who was to give me my cues, and together we made our entry.
A dozen cues stood upright in a military position on a stand.Love at Paddington
W. Pett Ridge
But, while we have time, tell me my cues, for I share your opinion of the Duke of Alva.The Ghost Breaker
Cues had to be given him to distinguish this among his crowded memories.The Goose Man
- (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 cueat the right moment
- a signal or reminder to do something
- psychol the part of any sensory pattern that is identified as the signal for a response
- the part, function, or action assigned to or expected of a person
- (tr) to give a cue or cues to (an actor)
- (usually foll by in or into) to signal (to something or somebody) at a specific moment in a musical or dramatic performanceto cue in a flourish of trumpets
- (tr) to give information or a reminder to (someone)
- (intr) to signal the commencement of filming, as with the word "Action!"
- billiards snooker a long tapered shaft with a leather tip, used to drive the balls
- hair caught at the back forming a tail or braid
- US a variant spelling of queue
- to drive (a ball) with a cue
- (tr) to twist or tie (the hair) into a cue
Word Origin and History for cues
"stage direction," 1550s, from Q, which was used 16c., 17c. in stage plays to indicate actors' entrances, probably as an abbreviation of Latin quando "when" (see quandary) or a similar Latin adverb. Shakespeare has it as both Q and cue.
"billiard stick," 1749, variant of queue (n.). Cue ball first recorded 1881.
1928, from cue (n.1). Related: Cued, cueing.