Meaning of OLD in English


transcription, транскрипция: [ oʊld ]

( older, oldest)

Frequency: The word is one of the 700 most common words in English.


Someone who is old has lived for many years and is no longer young.

...a white-haired old man...

He was considered too old for the job.

= elderly

≠ young


The old are people who are old.

...providing a caring response for the needs of the old and the handicapped.

N-PLURAL : the N


You use old to talk about how many days, weeks, months, or years someone or something has lived or existed.

He was abandoned by his father when he was three months old...

The paintings in the chapel were perhaps a thousand years old...

How old are you now?...

Bill was six years older than David.

ADJ : amount ADJ , how ADJ , as ADJ as , ADJ-compar than


Something that is old has existed for a long time.

She loved the big old house...

These books must be very old. old Arab proverb.

≠ new



Something that is old is no longer in good condition because of its age or because it has been used a lot.

He took a bunch of keys from the pocket of his old corduroy trousers. old toothbrush.

≠ new

ADJ : usu ADJ n


You use old to refer to something that is no longer used, that no longer exists, or that has been replaced by something else.

The old road had disappeared under grass and heather...

Although the old secret police have been abolished, the military police still exist...



You use old to refer to something that used to belong to you, or to a person or thing that used to have a particular role in your life.

I’ll make up the bed in your old room...

Mark was heartbroken when Jane returned to her old boyfriend.

ADJ : poss ADJ n


An old friend, enemy, or rival is someone who has been your friend, enemy, or rival for a long time.

I called my old friend John Horner...

The French and English are old rivals.



You can use old to express affection when talking to or about someone you know. ( INFORMAL )

Are you all right, old chap?...

Good old Bergen would do him the favor.

ADJ : ADJ n [ feelings ]


You use any old to emphasize that the quality or type of something is not important. If you say that a particular thing is not any old thing, you are emphasizing how special or famous it is. ( INFORMAL )

The portraits and sumptuous ornaments, and the gold clock, show that this is not just any old front room.

PHRASE : PHR n [ emphasis ]


In the old days means in the past, before things changed.

In the old days we got a visit from the vet maybe once a year.

PHRASE : PHR with cl


When people refer to the good old days , they are referring to a time in the past when they think that life was better than it is now.

He remembers the good old days when everyone in his village knew him and you could leave your door open at night.



good old: see good

to settle an old score: see score

up to one’s old tricks: see trick

Collins COBUILD Advanced Learner's English Dictionary.      Английский словарь Коллинз COBUILD для изучающих язык на продвинутом уровне.