Meaning of LINE in English

LINE

/ laɪn; NAmE / noun , verb

■ noun

LONG THIN MARK

1.

[ C ] a long thin mark on a surface :

a straight / wavy / dotted / diagonal line

a vertical / horizontal line

parallel lines

Draw a thick black line across the page.

2.

[ C ] a long thin mark on the ground to show the limit or border of sth, especially of a playing area in some sports :

The ball went over the line .

Be careful not to cross the line (= the broken line painted down the middle of the road) .

Your feet must be behind the line when you serve (= in tennis ) .

They were all waiting on the starting line .

—see also finishing line , goal line , sideline , touchline

3.

[ C ] a mark like a line on sb's skin that people usually get as they get older

SYN wrinkle :

He has fine lines around his eyes.

DIVISION

4.

[ C ] an imaginary limit or border between one place or thing and another :

He was convicted of illegally importing weapons across state lines .

a district / county line

lines of longitude and latitude

—see also coastline , dateline , dividing line , picket line , treeline , waterline ➡ note at border

5.

[ C ] the division between one area of thought or behaviour and another :

We want to cut across lines of race, sex and religion.

There is a fine line between showing interest in what someone is doing and interfering in it.

—see also red line

SHAPE

6.

[ C ] the edge, outline or shape of sb/sth :

He traced the line of her jaw with his finger.

a beautiful sports car with sleek lines

—see also bikini line

ROW OF PEOPLE / THINGS

7.

[ C ] a row of people or things next to each other or behind each other :

a long line of trees

The children all stood in a line .

They were stuck in a line of traffic.

8.

[ C ] ( NAmE ) a queue of people :

to stand / wait in line for sth

A line formed at each teller window.

IN FACTORY

9.

[ C ] a system of making sth, in which the product moves from one worker to the next until it is finished

—see also assembly line , production line

SERIES

10.

[ C , usually sing. ] a series of people, things or events that follow one another in time :

She came from a long line of doctors.

to pass sth down through the male / female line

This novel is the latest of a long line of thrillers that he has written.

11.

[ C , usually sing. ] a series of people in order of importance :

Orders came down the line from the very top.

a line of command

He is second in line to the chairman.

to be next in line to the throne

—see also line manager

WORDS

12.

[ C ] ( abbr. l ) a row of words on a page or the empty space where they can be written; the words of a song or poem :

Look at line 5 of the text.

Write the title of your essay on the top line.

I can only remember the first two lines of that song.

—see also bottom line

13.

[ C ] the words spoken by an actor in a play or film / movie :

to learn your lines

a line from the film 'Casablanca'

14.

lines [ pl. ] ( BrE ) (in some schools) a punishment in which a child has to write out a particular sentence a number of times

15.

[ C ] ( informal ) a remark, especially when sb says it to achieve a particular purpose :

Don't give me that line about having to work late again.

( BrE )

That's the worst chat-up line I've ever heard.

ROPE / WIRE / PIPE

16.

[ C ] a long piece of rope, thread, etc., especially when it is used for a particular purpose :

a fishing line

He hung the towels out on the line (= clothes line) .

They dropped the sails and threw a line to a man on the dock.

—see also lifeline

17.

[ C ] a pipe or thick wire that carries water, gas or electricity from one place to another

—see also power line

TELEPHONE

18.

[ C ] a telephone connection; a particular telephone number :

Your bill includes line rental.

The company's lines have been jammed (= busy) all day with people making complaints.

I was talking to John when the line suddenly went dead .

If you hold the line (= stay on the telephone and wait) , I'll see if she is available.

—see also helpline , hotline , landline , offline , online

RAILWAY / RAILROAD

19.

[ C ] a railway / railroad track; a section of a railway / railroad system :

The train was delayed because a tree had fallen across the line.

a branch line

the East Coast line

—see also main line

ROUTE / DIRECTION

20.

[ C , usually sing. ] the direction that sb/sth is moving or located in :

Just keep going in a straight line ; you can't miss it.

The town is in a direct line between London and the coast.

Please move; you're right in my line of vision (= the direction I am looking in) .

They followed the line of the river for three miles.

Be careful to stay out of the line of fire (= the direction sb is shooting in) .

21.

[ C ] a route from one place to another especially when it is used for a particular purpose :

Their aim was to block guerrilla supply lines .

ATTITUDE / ARGUMENT

22.

[ C , usually sing. ] an attitude or a belief, especially one that sb states publicly :

The government is taking a firm line on terrorism.

He supported the official line on education.

—see also hard line , party line

23.

[ C ] a method or way of doing or thinking about sth :

I don't follow your line of reasoning .

She decided to try a different line of argument (= way of persuading sb of sth) .

sb's first line of attack / defence

The police are pursuing a new line of enquiry / inquiry (= way of finding out information) .

ACTIVITY

24.

[ sing. ] a type or area of business, activity or interest :

My line of work pays pretty well.

You can't do much in the art line without training.

—see also sideline

PRODUCT

25.

[ C ] a type of product :

We are starting a new line in casual clothes.

Some lines sell better than others.

TRANSPORT

26.

[ C ] (often used in names) a company that provides transport for people or goods :

a shipping / bus line

—see also airline

SOLDIERS

27.

[ C ] a row or series of military defences where the soldiers are fighting during a war :

The regiment was sent to fight in the front line (= the position nearest the enemy) .

They were trapped behind enemy lines (= in the area controlled by the enemy) .

DRUGS

28.

[ C ] ( slang ) an amount of cocaine that is spread out in a thin line, ready to take

IDIOMS

- along / down the line

- along / on (the) ... lines

- be, come, etc. on line

- bring sb/sth, come, get, fall, etc. into line (with sb/sth)

- in (a) line (with sth)

- in line for sth

- in the line of duty

- in line with sth

- lay it on the line

- (choose, follow, take, etc.) the line of least resistance

- (put sth) on the line

- out of line (with sb/sth)

- walk / tread a fine / thin line

—more at battle noun , draw verb , end noun , firing line , front line , hard adjective , hook noun , jump verb , overstep , pitch verb , read verb , sign verb , step verb , toe verb

■ verb

[ vn ]

COVER INSIDE

1.

[ often passive ] line sth (with sth) to cover the inside of sth with a layer of another material to keep it clean, make it stronger, etc. :

Line the pan with greaseproof paper.

2.

to form a layer on the inside of sth :

the membranes that line the nose

FORM ROWS

3.

[ often passive ] line sth (with sth) to form lines or rows along sth :

Crowds of people lined the streets to watch the race.

The walls were lined with books.

—see also lined

IDIOMS

- line your (own) / sb's pockets

PHRASAL VERBS

- line up

- line sb/sth up

- line sth up (with sth)

••

WORD ORIGIN

verb sense 3 and noun Old English līne rope, series , probably of Germanic origin, from Latin linea (fibra) flax (fibre), from Latin linum flax, reinforced in Middle English by Old French ligne , based on Latin linea .

verb senses 1 to 2 late Middle English : from obsolete line flax , with reference to the common use of linen for linings.

Oxford Advanced Learner's English Dictionary.      Оксфордский английский словарь для изучающик язык на продвинутом уровне.