I. but ‧ ton 1 S2 /ˈbʌtn/ BrE AmE noun [countable]
[ Date: 1300-1400 ; Language: Old French ; Origin: boton , from boter ; ⇨ ↑ butt 2 ]
1 . a small round flat object on your shirt, coat etc that you pass through a hole to fasten it:
small pearl buttons
A button was missing from his shirt.
She undid (=unfastened) the buttons of her blouse.
do up a button British English (=fasten a button)
2 . a small part or area of a machine that you press to make it do something:
Press the pause button.
Click on the icon with the right mouse button.
⇨ ↑ push-button
3 . a small area on a computer screen, especially on a website, that you ↑ click on in order to perform an action
4 . American English a small metal or plastic pin with a message or picture on it SYN badge British English :
presidential campaign buttons
5 . button nose/eyes a nose or eyes that are small and round
6 . on the button especially American English informal exactly right, or at exactly the right time:
She got to our house at two, on the button.
7 . press/push (all) the right buttons to get what you want by behaving in a clever way:
She seemed to push all the right buttons.
8 . press/push sb’s buttons to make someone angry by doing or saying something that annoys them:
He really knows how to push Dad’s buttons.
9 . at/with the push/touch of a button used to emphasize how easy a machine is to use because it is controlled by pushing a button:
The instrument can gauge a distance with the push of a button.
⇨ as bright as a button at ↑ bright (7)
• • •
▪ fasten a button
Small children can't fasten their own buttons.
▪ do up a button (=fasten it)
He quickly did up the buttons on his shirt.
▪ unfasten a button
Can you unfasten this button for me?
▪ undo a button (=unfasten it)
I can't undo the buttons on the back of this dress.
▪ a button is missing
Two of the buttons on the jacket were missing.
▪ a button comes off something
A button has come off my skirt.
▪ something has lost a button
His favourite shirt had lost a button.
▪ sew on a button
It doesn't take a minute to sew on a button.
■ ADJECTIVES/NOUN + button
▪ the top/bottom button
He was wearing a white shirt with the top button undone.
▪ a shirt/skirt/coat etc button
Is this your coat button?
II. button 2 BrE AmE verb [intransitive and transitive]
1 . ( also button up ) to fasten clothes with buttons, or to be fastened with buttons:
Sam, make sure Nina buttons up her jacket.
2 . button it! British English , button your lip/mouth! American English spoken used to tell someone in a rude way to stop talking