Meaning of HIGH in English


high above the ground

1. a long way above the ground

2. a high building/mountain/tree etc

3. how high something is

4. to be much higher than other things

5. a surface that is higher than the area around it

6. fear of being in high places

a high sound or voice

7. a high sound or voice

a high temperature/level/cost

8. a high temperature/level/cost




see also



↑ UP


1. a long way above the ground

▷ high /haɪ/ [adjective/adverb]

▪ The shelf’s too high for me to reach.

▪ Cowles Mountain is the highest peak in the city of San Diego.

▪ The plane flew higher to avoid the storm.

high up

▪ We stayed in a cabin high up in the mountains.

▪ You’re awfully high up there - be careful.

high in/into/above

▪ He let go and watched the balloon float high above the trees.

▪ Lava from the volcano was sent high into the air.

▷ upper /ˈʌpəʳ/ [adjective only before noun]

upper room/floor/deck etc

the highest room etc when there are two or more :

▪ People had climbed into the upper branches of the tree to escape the rising waters.

▪ Gunmen were firing machine guns from the upper floor of the hospital.

▷ up in/into the air /ˌʌp ɪn, ɪntə ði ˈeəʳ/ [adverb]

a long way or to a long way above the ground without being on any surface :

▪ The force of the explosion blew the boxes straight up into the air.

▪ Once the plane is up in the air, I’ll let you try using the controls.

high up in the air

▪ The ride shot high up in the air and then plunged back down toward the earth.

2. a high building/mountain/tree etc

▷ high /haɪ/ [adjective]

measuring a long distance from top to bottom - use this about mountains, walls, or buildings :

▪ The castle was surrounded by high walls.

▪ Mt. McKinley is the highest mountain in North America.

▪ A couple of boys had climbed the high chain-link fence to get into the park.

▷ tall /tɔːl/ [adjective]

high and narrow or long - use this about trees and plants or about buildings and parts of buildings :

▪ Two tall marble columns stood at either side of the entrance.

▪ The twin towers of the World Trade Center were the highest buildings in New York.

▪ The cat was hiding in the tall grass in the backyard.

▷ towering /ˈtaʊ ə rɪŋ/ [adjective only before noun]

very high especially in a way that seems frightening or impressive :

▪ The building seems out of place among the towering redwood trees.

▪ The towering Cliffs of Dover loomed in front of them.

▷ skyscraper /ˈskaɪˌskreɪpəʳ/ [countable noun]

a very tall modern city building, especially one used for offices :

▪ His office looked out on the other skyscrapers of downtown Dallas.

▷ high-rise /ˈhaɪ raɪz/ [adjective only before noun]

a high-rise building is a tall modern building, used either for apartments or for offices :

▪ High-rise apartment buildings now stood where his childhood home had been.

high-rise [countable noun]

▪ A new high-rise is going up downtown.

3. how high something is

▷ how high /haʊ ˈhaɪ/

use this to ask about or say what the height of something is :

▪ ‘How high is Mount Fuji?’ ‘It’s almost 4000 metres.’

▪ I’m not sure how high the ceiling is.

▷ 30 metres/100 feet etc high /ˌθɜːʳti miːtəʳz ˈhaɪ/ [adjective phrase]

if something is 30 metres, 100 feet etc high, the distance from its base to its top is 30 metres, 100 feet etc :

▪ The highest mountain in Scotland is over 4000 feet high.

▪ The stone fireplace was at least ten feet wide and 12 feet high.

▪ He’s built a 3-metre high fence between the two gardens.

shoulder-/waist-/knee- etc high

as high as your shoulder, waist, knee etc

▪ The corn was already knee-high and growing fast.

▷ height /haɪt/ [countable/uncountable noun]

the distance between the top and the bottom of something, or the distance that something is above the ground :

▪ My brother and I are nearly the same height.

height of

▪ What’s the height of the average banana tree?

200 feet/30 metres etc in height

▪ Some of the pyramids are over 200 feet in height.

a height of 25 metres/100 feet etc

▪ One of the climbers fell from a height of 25 metres.

▷ altitude /ˈæltɪtjuːd, ˈæltətjuːdǁ-tuːd/ [countable noun] formal

the distance that something is above the ground - use this especially to talk about planes or about places in the mountains or high areas :

altitude of

▪ The altitude of Addis Ababa is eight thousand feet.

an altitude of 10,000 metres/30,000 feet etc

▪ The plane is now flying at an altitude of 30,000 feet.

high/low altitude

▪ It’s very difficult to breathe at high altitudes.

▷ level /ˈlev ə l/ [countable/uncountable noun]

how high something is - use this especially about the height of something in relation to something else :

▪ The apartment is split into two different levels with a bedroom on each.

level of

▪ Hang the picture just below the level of the window.

eye level

▪ Posters line the walls at eye level.

sea level

the height of the surface of the sea, used for measuring the height of mountains, hills etc

▪ The village is about 1500 metres above sea level.

4. to be much higher than other things

▷ tower over/above /ˈtaʊəʳ əʊvəʳ, əbʌv/ [transitive phrasal verb]

▪ The great cathedral towers over the rest of the main square.

▪ Life-size dinosaur models tower above visitors to the Prehistoric Park.

▷ dwarf /dwɔːʳf/ [transitive verb not usually in progressive]

if something dwarfs other things, it is so big that it makes the other things around it seem very small :

▪ The ship came slowly into the harbour, dwarfing all the surrounding boats.

▪ The smaller, older houses are dwarfed by the new apartment blocks and hotels.

▷ dominate /ˈdɒmɪneɪt, ˈdɒməneɪtǁˈdɑː-/ [transitive verb not usually in progressive]

if a particular building, structure, or tree dominates an area or place, it is much higher and much easier to see than everything else, so that it seems to be the most important thing :

▪ The fortress on top of the hill still dominates Barcelona harbour.

▪ A giant Ferris wheel dominates the skyline.

5. a surface that is higher than the area around it

▷ raised /reɪzd/ [adjective]

▪ There was a raised platform and a blackboard at the far end of the room.

▪ His name had been put on a bronze plaque in raised letters.

▷ elevated /ˈelɪveɪtəd, ˈeləveɪtəd/ [adjective]

a surface that is elevated has been deliberately put in a place that is higher than everything else, for example in order to protect it or to make it easier to see :

▪ The train runs on an elevated track above the city street.

▪ The judge’s bench is well elevated and covered by a walnut canopy.

6. fear of being in high places

▷ fear of heights /ˌfɪər əv ˈhaɪts/ [noun phrase]

▪ He refused to climb the ladder because of his fear of heights.

▪ She overcame her fear of heights and did a parachute jump for charity.

▷ be afraid/scared of heights /biː əˌfreɪd, ˌskeəʳd əv ˈhaɪts/ [adjective]

to feel frightened when you are in high places :

▪ Hiking this trail is not recommended for people who are afraid of heights.

▪ She’s so scared of heights we couldn’t get her to go parasailing.

▷ vertigo /ˈvɜːʳtɪgəʊ/ [uncountable noun] formal

a feeling that things are moving and that you are going to fall, that you get especially when you are on or in a high place :

▪ Just the thought of standing on the balcony gave her vertigo.

7. a high sound or voice

▷ high /haɪ/ [adjective]

near the top range of sounds that humans can hear - use this about sounds, voices, or musical notes :

▪ Dogs respond to sounds that are too high for humans to hear.

▪ I was amazed that he could sing such high notes.

▪ He mocked her by repeating what she said in a high, childish voice.

▷ high-pitched /ˌhaɪ ˈpɪtʃt◂/ [adjective usually before noun]

a high-pitched sound or voice is very high, and often unpleasant or annoying to listen to :

▪ Above the music on the radio was an annoying, high-pitched whistle.

▪ I could hear high-pitched laughter coming from the girls’ bedroom.

▷ piercing /ˈpɪəʳsɪŋ/ [adjective usually before noun]

a piercing sound or voice is very high and loud, often with the result that it is unpleasant or painful to listen to :

▪ Sammy put his finger and thumb in his mouth and gave a piercing whistle.

▪ Maggie let out a piercing scream as she saw the truck speeding toward her.

▷ shrill /ʃrɪl/ [adjective]

very high, loud, and unexpectedly sharp, often giving the person who hears it a sudden shock :

▪ I was suddenly woken up by the shrill ringing of the telephone.

▪ As Sophie became angry her voice got shriller.

▷ squeaky /ˈskwiːki/ [adjective]

a squeaky sound or voice makes short high sounds, especially because there is something wrong with it :

▪ This door needs oiling - it’s very squeaky.

▪ If you have a squeaky little voice, people tend not to listen to your ideas.

▷ tinny /ˈtɪni/ [adjective]

music that is tinny is high and unpleasant, especially because it comes from a low quality radio or musical instrument :

▪ The music sounded tinny through the old speakers.

▪ As he neared the park he could hear the tinny music from Joey’s radio.

8. a high temperature/level/cost

▷ high /haɪ/ [adjective]

▪ In summer, the temperatures can be as high as 40°C.

▪ The city has one of the highest crime rates in the world.

▪ Analysts are concerned about the high level of consumer debt.

▪ Gas prices are much higher here than in other parts of the country.

▷ rising /ˈraɪzɪŋ/ [adjective]

getting higher than before :

▪ Many families are struggling to keep up with the rising costs of education.

rapidly rising

▪ Despite rapidly rising incomes, few in the country are able to afford cable TV.

▷ soaring /ˈsɔːrɪŋ/ [adjective]

getting very high, especially suddenly and quickly :

▪ Congress seems unable or unwilling to control soaring medical costs.

▪ A soaring 77% of college-educated women between 30 and 44 hope to have both children and a career.

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