Meaning of OPEN in English


(~s, ~ing, ~ed)

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


If you ~ something such as a door, window, or lid, or if it ~s, its position is changed so that it no longer covers a hole or gap.

He ~ed the window and looked out...

The church doors would ~ and the crowd would surge out.

? close, shut

VERB: V n, V

Open is also an adjective. ~ window...

A door had been forced ~.



If you ~ something such as a bottle, box, parcel, or envelope, you move, remove, or cut part of it so you can take out what is inside.

The Inspector ~ed the packet of cigarettes...

The capsules are fiddly to ~.

VERB: V n, V n

Open is also an adjective. ~ bottle of milk...

I tore the letter ~.


Open up means the same as ~ .

He ~ed up a cage and lifted out a 6ft python.

PHRASAL VERB: V P n (not pron), also V n P


If you ~ something such as a book, an umbrella, or your hand, or if it ~s, the different parts of it move away from each other so that the inside of it can be seen.

He ~ed the heavy Bible...

The officer’s mouth ~ed, showing white, even teeth.

VERB: V n, V

Open is also an adjective.

Without warning, Bardo smacked his fist into his ~ hand...

His mouth was a little ~, as if he’d started to scream.


Open out means the same as ~ .

Keith took a map from the dashboard and ~ed it out on his knees.

...oval tables which ~ out to become circular.

PHRASAL VERB: V n P, V P, also V P n (not pron)


If you ~ a computer file, you give the computer an instruction to display it on the screen. (COMPUTING)

Double click on the icon to ~ the file.



When you ~ your eyes or your eyes ~, you move your eyelids upwards, for example when you wake up, so that you can see.

When I ~ed my eyes I saw a man with an axe standing at the end of my bed...

His eyes were ~ing wide.

VERB: V n, V

Open is also an adjective.

As soon as he saw that her eyes were ~ he sat up.



If you ~ your arms, you stretch them wide apart in front of you, usually in order to put them round someone.

She ~ed her arms and gave me a big hug.



If you describe a person or their character as ~, you mean they are honest and do not want or try to hide anything or to deceive anyone.

He had always been ~ with her and she always felt she would know if he lied...

She has an ~, trusting nature.



...a relationship based on honesty and ~ness.



If you describe a situation, attitude, or way of behaving as ~, you mean it is not kept hidden or secret.

The action is an ~ violation of the Vienna Convention...

Hearing the case in ~ court is only one part of the judicial process.



...the new climate of political ~ness.



If you are ~ to suggestions or ideas, you are ready and willing to consider or accept them.

They are ~ to suggestions on how working conditions might be improved.

= receptive

ADJ: v-link ADJ to n


If you say that a system, person, or idea is ~ to something such as abuse or criticism, you mean they might receive abuse or criticism because of their qualities, effects, or actions.

The system, though well-meaning, is ~ to abuse...

= susceptible

ADJ: v-link ADJ to n


If you say that a fact or question is ~ to debate, interpretation, or discussion, you mean that people are uncertain whether it is true, what it means, or what the answer is.

It is an ~ question how long that commitment can last.

ADJ: oft v-link ADJ to n


If people ~ something such as a blocked road or a border, or if it ~s, people can then pass along it or through it.

The rebels have ~ed the road from Monrovia to the Ivory Coast...

The solid rank of police officers lining the courtroom ~ed to let them pass.

? close

VERB: V n, V

Open is also an adjective.

We were part of an entire regiment that had nothing else to do but to keep that highway ~.


Open up means the same as ~ .

As rescue workers ~ed up roads today, it became apparent that some small towns were totally devastated...

When the Berlin Wall came down it wasn’t just the roads that ~ed up but the waterways too.

PHRASAL VERB: V P n (not pron), V P, also V n P


If a place ~s into another, larger place, you can move from one directly into the other.

The corridor ~ed into a low smoky room.

VERB: V into/onto/to n

Open out means the same as ~ .

...narrow streets ~ing out into charming squares.

PHRASAL VERB: V P into/onto/to n


An ~ area is a large area that does not have many buildings or trees in it.

Officers will also continue their search of nearby ~ ground.

ADJ: usu ADJ n


An ~ structure or object is not covered or enclosed.

Don’t leave a child alone in a room with an ~ fire.

...~ sandwiches.



An ~ wound is one from which a liquid such as blood is coming.

ADJ: usu ADJ n


If you ~ your shirt or coat, you undo the buttons or pull down the zip.

I ~ed my coat and let him see the belt.


Open is also an adjective.

The top can be worn buttoned up or ~ over a T-shirt.

ADJ: ADJ n, v-link ADJ


When a shop, office, or public building ~s or is ~ed, its doors are unlocked and the public can go in.

Banks closed on Friday afternoon and did not ~ again until Monday morning.

...a gang of three who’d apparently been lying in wait for him to ~ the shop.

...~ing and closing times.

VERB: V, V n, V-ing

Open is also an adjective.

His shop is ~ Monday through Friday, 9am to 6pm.



When a public building, factory, or company ~s or when someone ~s it, it starts operating for the first time.

The original station ~ed in 1754...

The complex ~s to the public tomorrow...

They are planning to ~ a factory in Eastern Europe...

? close, shut

VERB: V, V to n, V n

Open is also an adjective.

...any operating subsidy required to keep the pits ~.

ADJ: v-link ADJ

~ing (~ings)

He was there, though, for the official ~ing.

N-COUNT: usu sing


If something such as a meeting or series of talks ~s, or if someone ~s it, it begins. emergency session of the Russian Parliament due to ~ later this morning...

They are now ready to ~ negotiations.

VERB: V, V n


...a communique issued at the ~ing of the talks.

N-SING: the N of n


If an event such as a meeting or discussion ~s with a particular activity or if a particular activity ~s an event, that activity is the first thing that happens or is dealt with. You can also say that someone such as a speaker or singer ~s by doing a particular thing.

The service ~ed with a hymn...

I ~ed by saying, ‘Honey, you look sensational.’...

Pollard ~ed the conversation with some small talk.

= begin

? end

VERB: V with n, V by -ing, V n with n, also V n by -ing


On the stock exchange, the price at which currencies, shares, or commodities ~ is their value at the start of that day’s trading. (BUSINESS)

Gold declined $2 in Zurich to ~ at 385.50...

In Paris and Milan, the dollar ~ed almost unchanged.

? close

VERB: V prep/adv, V adj


When a film, play, or other public event ~s, it begins to be shown, be performed, or take place for a limited period of time.

A photographic exhibition ~s at the Royal College of Art on Wednesday...



He is due to attend the ~ing of the Asian Games on Saturday.

N-SING: the N of n


If you ~ an account with a bank or a commercial organization, you begin to use their services.

He tried to ~ an account at the branch of his bank nearest to his workplace.



If an opportunity or choice is ~ to you, you are able to do a particular thing if you choose to.

There are a wide range of career opportunities ~ to young people.

ADJ: v-link ADJ to n


To ~ opportunities or possibilities means the same as to ~ them up.

The chief of naval operations wants to ~ opportunities for women in the Navy...

A series of fortunate opportunities ~ed to him.

VERB: V n, V


You can use ~ to describe something that anyone is allowed to take part in or accept.

A recent ~ meeting of College members revealed widespread dissatisfaction...

A portfolio approach would keep entry into the managerial profession ~ and flexible. ~ invitation.



If something such as an offer or job is ~, it is available for someone to accept or apply for.

The offer will remain ~ until further notice.

ADJ: v-link ADJ

see also ~ing 6


If you do something in the ~, you do it out of doors rather than in a house or other building.

Many are sleeping in the ~ because they have no shelter.

PHRASE: PHR after v


If an attitude or situation is in the ~ or out in the ~, people know about it and it is no longer kept secret.

The medical service had advised us to keep it a secret, but we wanted it in the ~.

PHRASE: usu v-link PHR


If something is wide ~, it is ~ to its full extent.

The child had left the inner door wide ~.

PHRASE: PHR after v, v-link PHR


If you say that a competition, race, or election is wide ~, you mean that anyone could win it, because there is no competitor who seems to be much better than the others.

The competition has been thrown wide ~ by the absence of the world champion.

PHRASE: v-link PHR, PHR after v


with ~ arms: see arm

to ~ the door: see door

to keep your eyes ~: see eye

with your eyes ~: see eye

to ~ your eyes: see eye

to ~ fire: see fire

to ~ your heart: see heart

the heavens ~: see heaven

an ~ mind: see mind

to ~ your mind: see mind

to keep your options ~: see option

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