Meaning of PAST in English
Frequency: The word is one of the 700 most common words in English.
Note: In addition to the uses shown below, '~' is used in the phrasal verb ‘run ~’.
The ~ is the time before the present, and the things that have happened.
In the ~, about a third of the babies born to women with diabetes were lost...
He should learn from the mistakes of the ~. We have been here before...
? future, present
N-SING: the N
If you accuse someone of living in the ~, you mean that they think too much about the ~ or believe that things are the same as they were in the ~.
What was the point in living in the ~, thinking about what had or had not happened?
PHRASE: V inflects disapproval
Your ~ consists of all the things that you have done or that have happened to you.
...revelations about his ~.
...Germany’s recent ~.
N-COUNT: usu sing, usu with supp
Past events and things happened or existed before the present time.
I knew from ~ experience that alternative therapies could help...
The list of ~ champions includes many British internationals.
ADJ: ADJ n
You use ~ to talk about a period of time that has just finished. For example, if you talk about the ~ five years, you mean the period of five years that has just finished.
Most shops have remained closed for the ~ three days.
ADJ: det ADJ n
If a situation is ~, it has ended and no longer exists. (LITERARY)
Many economists believe the worst of the economic downturn is ~.
...images from years long ~...
ADJ: v-link ADJ
In grammar, the ~ tenses of a verb are the ones used to talk about things that happened at some time before the present. The simple ~ tense uses the ~ form of a verb, which for regular verbs ends in ‘-ed’, as in ‘They walked back to the car’.
ADJ: ADJ n
see also ~ perfect
You use ~ when you are stating a time which is thirty minutes or less after a particular hour. For example, if it is twenty ~ six, it is twenty minutes after six o’clock.
It’s ten ~ eleven...
I arrived at half ~ ten.
PREP: num PREP num
Past is also an adverb.
I have my lunch at half ~.
ADV: num ADV
If it is ~ a particular time, it is later than that time.
It was ~ midnight...
It’s ~ your bedtime.
= gone, after
If you go ~ someone or something, you go near them and keep moving, so that they are then behind you.
I dashed ~ him and out of the door...
A steady procession of people filed ~ the coffin...
Past is also an adverb.
An ambulance drove ~.
If you look or point ~ a person or thing, you look or point at something behind them.
She stared ~ Christine at the bed.
PREP: v PREP n
If something is ~ a place, it is on the other side of it.
Go north on I-15 to the exit just ~ Barstow...
PREP: v-link PREP n
If someone or something is ~ a particular point or stage, they are no longer at that point or stage.
He was well ~ retirement age...
PREP: usu v-link PREP n
If you are ~ doing something, you are no longer able to do it. For example, if you are ~ caring, you do not care about something any more because so many bad things have happened to you.
She was ~ caring about anything by then and just wanted the pain to end...
Often by the time they do accept the truth they are ~ being able to put words to feelings.
PREP: v-link PREP -ing
If you say that someone or something is ~ it, they are no longer able to do what they used to do.
We could do with a new car. The one we’ve got is a bit ~ it.
PHRASE: v-link PHR disapproval
If you say that you would not put it ~ someone to do something bad, you mean that you would not be surprised if they did it because you think their character is bad.
You know what she’s like. I wouldn’t put it ~ her to call the police and say I stole them.
PHRASE: oft PHR to-inf
Collins COBUILD. Толковый словарь английского языка для изучающих язык Коллинз COBUILD (международная база данных языков Бирмингемского университета) . 2012