about


about
a|bout [ ə`baut ] function word ***
About can be used in the following ways:
as a preposition (followed by a noun):
He told me about your problem.
as an adverb (without a following noun):
Stop rushing about.
followed by an infinitive with to :
I was just about to explain.
1. ) concerning a particular subject
a ) used for stating who or what you are discussing, considering, describing, forgetting, etc.:
Think about what I've told you.
She kept saying horrible things about my mother.
jokes about the president
all about: They'd forgotten all about poor Harry.
b ) used for stating who or what your feelings and attitudes are directed toward:
I'm worried about Dad.
There's nothing to get excited about.
c ) SPOKEN used for introducing a subject that you want to discuss:
About that money I owe you I can pay you back next week.
It's about Jack he's been so depressed lately.
2. ) not exactly a particular amount or number
a ) used for showing that you are guessing at an amount or number:
About 250 people were killed in the explosion.
Ann must be about the same age as you.
b ) used for referring to a time that is not exact:
I woke up at about 3 a.m.
3. ) almost or probably used when you are making an extreme statement that you think is almost completely true or is probably true:
Pam's about the only person that I can trust.
On this continent, Redmond is about as far west as you can go.
He's offended just about everybody.
4. ) in someone's/something's character used when referring to qualities that someone or something has:
One thing I like about Tony, he always says exactly what he thinks.
There was something about her tone of voice that made him uneasy.
5. ) used for showing movement MAINLY BRITISH
a ) moving to many different parts or areas, or in different directions:
The girls were dancing about the room in high spirits.
Abe was tired of wandering about on his own.
b ) LITERARY moving so that you face in the opposite direction:
Diana turned about and marched out of the room.
6. ) used for saying where someone/something is MAINLY BRITISH
a ) used for saying that things are in many different parts or areas, especially because they have been left there carelessly:
Don't leave important papers lying about on your desk.
There were articles of clothing scattered about the room.
b ) in or close to an area:
You shouldn't have been spraying weedkiller while there were children about.
c ) LITERARY surrounding or enclosing someone or something:
Rhonda wore a garland of flowers about her neck.
The prophet had gathered about him a band of faithful followers.
7. ) how someone is spending their time BRITISH
a ) spending time in a place and not leaving it or not doing much:
Dad was puttering about in the garden.
b ) wasting time and behaving in a stupid way:
Stop messing about. We've got a job to do.
8. ) existing or available now BRITISH MAINLY SPOKEN used for saying that a particular type of person or thing exists or is available at this time:
There's a lot of illness about.
9. ) searching, looking, or trying to find someone/something
a ) BRITISH used for saying that someone looks in different places to find someone or something:
George was groping about in the dark, trying to find the light switch.
b ) MAINLY LITERARY used for saying that someone looks in all directions to see who or what is there:
Looking about me, I could see no sign of the others.
be about something
used for saying what the most basic or important aspect of a particular job, activity, or relationship is:
Loving and sharing that's what marriage is about.
all about: Good management is all about motivating your staff.
be about to do something
to be going to happen or do something very soon:
I was about to get undressed when there was a knock on the door.
We arrived just as the ceremony was about to begin.
be quick/slow about it
to be quick/slow in the way you do something:
Bring me a towel and be quick about it.
Our lawyers are dealing with the matter, but they're being very slow about it.
do something/nothing/anything about something
to do something/nothing/anything in order to deal with a problem:
Can't you do something about the noise? It's driving me crazy.
Government officials know the system isn't working, but they do nothing about it.
=> HOW, WHAT

Usage of the words and phrases in modern English. 2013.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • About: — About: About: (« à propos de » en anglais) est un préfixe utilisé dans une série de navigateurs pour accéder, via l interface même du navigateur (par la barre d adresses), à des pages très particulières. Les URIs saisies affichent donc… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • About: — about: Saltar a navegación, búsqueda about: es un esquema interno URI (también conocido como régimen URL o, erróneamente, protocolo ) en distintos navegadores web para mostrar ciertas funciones incorporadas. No es un sistema oficialmente… …   Wikipedia Español

  • about: — about: es un esquema interno URI (también conocido como régimen URL o, erróneamente, protocolo ) en distintos navegadores web para mostrar ciertas funciones incorporadas. No es un sistema oficialmente registrado, y no tiene la sintaxis estándar.… …   Wikipedia Español

  • about: — about: (« à propos de » en anglais) est un schéma d URI utilisé dans une série de navigateurs pour accéder, via l interface même du navigateur (par la barre d adresses), à des pages très particulières. Les URIs saisies affichent donc –… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • about — 1. as a preposition. In the meaning ‘roughly, approximately’ (eg. It took about ten minutes, about is the usual BrE word; around is also used, and is much more common in AmE. Round about is more informal, and is largely confined to BrE. 2.… …   Modern English usage

  • about — [ə bout′] adv. [ME aboute(n) < OE onbūtan, around < on, ON + be, BY + ūtan, outside < ūt, OUT: all senses develop from the sense of “around”] 1. on every side; all around [look about] 2. here and there; in all directions [travel abou …   English World dictionary

  • About — A*bout , adv. 1. On all sides; around. [1913 Webster] Tis time to look about. Shak. [1913 Webster] 2. In circuit; circularly; by a circuitous way; around the outside; as, a mile about, and a third of a mile across. [1913 Webster] 3. Here and… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • about — [ abu ] n. m. • 1213; de abouter ♦ Techn. Extrémité d une pièce de bois, de métal, préparée pour se joindre à une autre. Pièce métallique que l on fixe à une seringue pour y adapter l aiguille. ⇒ embout. Extrémité (d un rail). ● about nom… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • About.me — About.me …   Википедия

  • About — A*bout , prep. [OE. aboute, abouten, abuten; AS. [=a]butan, onbutan; on + butan, which is from be by + utan outward, from ut out. See {But}, {Out}.] [1913 Webster] 1. Around; all round; on every side of. Look about you. Shak. Bind them about thy… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • About — can refer to:*About box, a dialog box displaying credits for a piece of computer software * About.com, a website offering consumer related advice * abOUT , an LGBT magazine * About (musical artist), a music project * , an internal URI scheme… …   Wikipedia