[ air ]
/ ɛər /
a mixture of nitrogen, oxygen, and minute amounts of other gases that surrounds the earth and forms its atmosphere.
a stir in the atmosphere; a light breeze.
overhead space; sky: The planes filled the air.
circulation; publication; publicity: to give air to one's theories.
the general character or complexion of anything; appearance: His early work had an air of freshness and originality.
the peculiar look, appearance, and bearing of a person: There is an air of mystery about him.
airs, affected or unnatural manner; manifestation of pride or vanity; assumed haughtiness: He acquired airs that were insufferable to his friends.
aircraft as a means of transportation: to arrive by air; to ship goods by air.
Informal. air conditioning or an air-conditioning system: The price includes tires, radio, and air.
- (during an airborne stunt) the height between the ground and an athlete or an athlete with his or her equipment: The BMX course was designed for riders to get good air.
- such a jump or other airborne stunt: The snowboarder took first place with four clean airs.
Radio. the medium through which radio waves are transmitted.
verb (used with object)
to expose to the air; give access to the open air; ventilate (often followed by out): We air the bedrooms every day.
to expose ostentatiously; bring to public notice; display: to air one's opinions; to air one's theories.
to broadcast or televise.
verb (used without object)
to be exposed to the open air (often followed by out): Open the window and let the room air out.
to be broadcast or televised.
Quotes On The Importance Of Your MindRead more in this article about some frequently asked questions and fun facts related to our definitions.
- to take a break from an unpleasant encounter or stifling environment: She walked away from the argument to get some air.
- to take a short rest.
clear the air, to eliminate dissension, ambiguity, or tension from a discussion, situation, etc.: The staff meeting was intended to help clear the air.
get some air,
- to be rejected, as by a lover.
- to be dismissed, as by an employer: He had worked only a few days when he got the air.
- to reject, as a lover: He was bitter because she gave him the air.
- to dismiss, as an employee.
- not broadcasting: The station goes off the air at midnight.
- not broadcast; out of operation as a broadcast: The program went off the air years ago.
- to go out-of-doors; take a short walk or ride.
- Slang. to leave, especially hurriedly.
- to begin broadcasting.
- Also in the air. undecided or unsettled: The contract is still up in the air.
- Informal. angry; perturbed: There is no need to get up in the air over a simple mistake.
get the air, Informal.
give (someone) the air, Informal.
in the air, in circulation; current: There's a rumor in the air that we're moving to a new location.
into thin air, completely out of sight or reach: He vanished into thin air.
off the air,
on the air, in the act of broadcasting; being broadcast: The program will be going on the air in a few seconds.
put on airs, to assume an affected or haughty manner: As their fortune increased, they began to put on airs.
take the air,
up in the air,
walk/tread on air, to feel very happy; be elated.
Origin of air1
1150–1200; Middle English eir < Old French air < Latin āēr- (accusative āerem) < Greek āer- (stem of āḗr) the lower atmosphere; conflated with (especially for defs 4, 5) French air, Old French aire nature, character < Latin ager field (cf. acre) and ārea threshing floor, clearing, area; and with (for def 7) French air < Italian aria aria
Related formsair·like, adjectiveun·aired, adjectivewell-aired, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
British Dictionary definitions for on the air (1 of 3)
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British Dictionary definitions for on the air (2 of 3)
/ (ɛə) /
the mixture of gases that forms the earth's atmosphere. At sea level dry air has a density of 1.226 kilograms per cubic metre and consists of 78.08 per cent nitrogen, 20.95 per cent oxygen, 0.93 per cent argon, 0.03 per cent carbon dioxide, with smaller quantities of ozone and inert gases; water vapour varies between 0 and 4 per cent and in industrial areas sulphur gases may be present as pollutants
the space above and around the earth; skyRelated adjective: aerial
breeze; slight wind
public expression; utteranceto give air to one's complaints
a distinctive qualityan air of mystery
a person's distinctive appearance, manner, or bearing
- a simple tune for either vocal or instrumental performance
- another word for aria
transportation in aircraft (esp in the phrase by air)
Australian informal the height gained when getting airborne in surfing, snowboarding, etc
clear the air to rid a situation of tension or discord by settling misunderstandings, etc
give someone the air slang to reject or dismiss someone
in the air
- in circulation; current
- in the process of being decided; unsettled
into thin air leaving no trace behind
off the air not in the act of broadcasting or being broadcast on radio or television
on the air in the act of broadcasting or being broadcast on radio or television
out of thin air or from thin air suddenly and unexpectedly
take the air to go out of doors, as for a short walk or ride
up in the air
- informal agitated or excited
walk on air to feel elated or exhilarated
to expose or be exposed to the air so as to cool or freshen; ventilateto air a room
to expose or be exposed to warm or heated air so as to dryto air linen
(tr) to make known publicly; display; publicizeto air one's opinions
(intr) (of a television or radio programme) to be broadcast
See also airs
Word Origin for air
C13: via Old French and Latin from Greek aēr the lower atmosphere
British Dictionary definitions for on the air (3 of 3)
/ (ˈɑːɪə) /
a mountainous region of N central Niger, in the Sahara, rising to 1500 m (5000 ft): a former native kingdom. Area: about 77 700 sq km (30 000 sq miles)Also called: Azbine, Asben
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
Medicine definitions for on the air
[ âr ]
A colorless, odorless, tasteless, gaseous mixture, approximately 78 percent nitrogen and approximately 21 percent oxygen with lesser amounts of argon, carbon dioxide, hydrogen, neon, helium, and other gases.
This mixture, with varying amounts of moisture and particulate matter, enveloping Earth; the atmosphere.
Any of various respiratory gases. No longer in technical use.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Science definitions for on the air
[ âr ]
The colorless, odorless, tasteless mixture of gases that surrounds the Earth. Air consists of about 78 percent nitrogen and 21 percent oxygen, with the remaining part made up mainly of argon, carbon dioxide, neon, helium, methane, and krypton in decreasing order of volume. Air also contains varying amounts of water vapor, particulate matter such as dust and soot, and chemical pollutants.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Idioms and Phrases with on the air (1 of 2)
on the air
see under off the air.
Idioms and Phrases with on the air (2 of 2)
In addition to the idiom beginning with air
- air one's grievances
- breath of fresh air
- castles in the air
- clear the air
- give someone the air
- hot air
- in the air
- into (out of) thin air
- nose in the air
- off the air
- put on airs
- up in the air
- walk on air
- wash (air) one's dirty linen
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.