Meaning of CHARGE in English


I. charge 1 S1 W1 /tʃɑːdʒ $ tʃɑːrdʒ/ BrE AmE noun

1 . PRICE [uncountable and countable] the amount of money you have to pay for goods or services

charge of

an admission charge of $5

charge for

There is a charge for the use of the swimming pool.

Guided tours are provided at no charge.

Your order will be sent free of charge (=with no cost) .

2 . CONTROL [uncountable] the position of having control or responsibility for a group of people or an activity

in charge (of something)

He asked to speak to the person in charge.

the officer in charge of the investigation

Stern put Travis in charge of (=gave him control of) the research team.

Owens came in and took charge of (=took control of) the situation.

A commander in each county was to have charge of the local militia.


a) be in/under sb’s charge if someone or something is in your charge, you are responsible for looking after them:

teachers that do their best for the children in their charge

The files were left in your charge.

b) [countable] formal someone that you are responsible for looking after:

Sarah bought some chocolate for her three young charges.

4 . CRIME [countable] an official statement by the police that someone may be guilty of a crime

charge against

He was found guilty of all six charges against him.

charge of

Higgins is facing a charge of armed robbery.

on a charge (of something)

The following morning, he was arrested on a charge of burglary.

5 . BLAME [countable] a written or spoken statement blaming someone for doing something bad or illegal SYN allegation

charge that

the charge that tobacco companies target young people with their ads

charge of

a charge of racial discrimination against the company

deny/counter a charge (=say that a charge is untrue)

Wallace denied charges that he had lied to investigators.

lay/leave yourself open to a charge of something (=be likely to be blamed for something)

The speech laid him open to charges of political bias.

6 . ATTACK [countable] an attack in which soldiers or animals move towards someone or something very quickly

7 . EFFORT lead the charge to make a strong effort to do something:

It was small businesses that led the charge against health care changes.

8 . ELECTRICITY [uncountable] electricity that is put into a piece of electrical equipment such as a ↑ battery

on charge (=taking in a charge of electricity)

Leave the battery on charge all night.

9 . EXPLOSIVE [countable] an explosive put into something such as a bomb or gun

10 . STRENGTH OF FEELINGS [singular] the power of strong feelings:

Cases of child abuse have a strong emotional charge.

11 . get a charge out of something American English spoken to be excited by something and enjoy it very much:

I got a real charge out of seeing my niece take her first steps.

12 . AN ORDER TO DO SOMETHING [countable] formal an order to do something

charge to do something

The old servant fulfilled his master’s charge to care for the children.

⇨ reverse the charges at ↑ reverse 1 (6)

• • •

COLLOCATIONS (for Meaning 1)


▪ a small charge

For a small charge guests can use the hotel sauna.

▪ an extra/additional charge

Breakfast may be served in your bedroom at no extra charge.

▪ free of charge (=with no cost)

Delivery is free of charge.

▪ sb’s charges are high/low (=you have to pay a lot/a little)

His charges are too high.

▪ a fixed charge

There’s a fixed charge for having a dental check.

▪ a nominal charge (=a very small amount of money)

You can use the tennis courts for a nominal charge.

▪ a minimum charge (=an amount that is the least you can pay)

There’s a minimum charge of £10 per person in the Terrace restaurant.

▪ a service charge (=for service in a hotel, restaurant etc)

The restaurant’s prices include a 10% service charge.

▪ an admission charge (=for being allowed to enter a place)

There is no admission charge.

▪ a call-out charge British English (=that you must pay a workman to come to your home)

The electrician said there is a £40 call-out charge.

▪ a cancellation charge

If you change your flight booking, you may have to pay a cancellation charge.

▪ a delivery charge

How much is the store’s delivery charge?

▪ bank charges (=fees charged by a bank for some services)

You will have to pay bank charges if your account is overdrawn.

■ verbs

▪ pay a charge

There will be a small charge to pay.

▪ make a charge (=ask you to pay a charge)

We make no charge for this service.

▪ incur a charge formal (=result in you paying a charge)

All cancellations incur a charge.

▪ introduce/impose a charge

The government introduced a charge for water.

▪ waive a charge (=allow you not to pay it)

I’ve asked the bank to waive the charge this time.

• • •

COLLOCATIONS (for Meaning 4)


▪ a murder/burglary/drugs etc charge

He appeared in court on fraud charges.


Robins was in jail awaiting trial on drugs charges.

▪ criminal charges

The investigation resulted in criminal charges against three police officers.

▪ a serious charge

Drinking and driving is a very serious charge.

▪ a felony charge American English (=for a serious crime)

He pleaded not guilty to a felony charge of cocaine possession.

■ verbs

▪ press/bring charges (=make someone be brought to court for a crime)

Sometimes the victim of an assault does not want to press charges.

▪ face charges (=have been charged with a crime)

A farmer is facing charges of cruelty and neglect.

▪ deny/admit a charge

All three men denied the charge of manslaughter.

▪ plead guilty to a charge (=say formally in court that you are guilty)

The youth pleaded guilty to a charge of arson.

▪ drop the charges (=decide not to go on with a court case)

The prosecution dropped the charges in 2005.

▪ dismiss the charges (=say that a court case should not continue)

If there is insufficient evidence, the court will dismiss the charges.

▪ be released without charge

She had been arrested twice and released without charge.

▪ be convicted of/on a charge (=be judged to be guilty)

McCorley was convicted on a charge of assault.

▪ be acquitted of/on a charge (=be judged to be not guilty)

Both men were acquitted of all charges.

II. charge 2 S1 W2 BrE AmE verb

[ Date: 1100-1200 ; Language: Old French ; Origin: chargier , from Late Latin carricare , from Latin carrus ; ⇨ ↑ car ]


a) [intransitive and transitive] to ask someone for a particular amount of money for something you are selling:

The hotel charges $125 a night.

charge somebody £10/$50 etc (for something)

The restaurant charged us £40 for the wine.

charge something at something

Calls will be charged at 44p per minute.

charge for

We won’t charge for delivery if you pay now.

charge rent/a fee/interest etc

The gallery charges an entrance fee.

b) charge something to sb’s account/room etc to record the cost of something on someone’s account, so that they can pay for it later:

Wilson charged the drinks to his room.

Use a courier and charge it to the department.

c) [transitive] American English to pay for something with a ↑ credit card

charge something on something

I charged the shoes on Visa.

‘How would you like to pay?’ ‘I’ll charge it.’

2 . CRIME [transitive] to state officially that someone may be guilty of a crime

charge somebody with something

Gibbons has been charged with murder.

3 . BLAME SOMEBODY [transitive] formal to say publicly that you think someone has done something wrong

charge that

Demonstrators have charged that the police used excessive force against them.

4 . RUN [intransitive always + adverb/preposition] to deliberately run or walk somewhere quickly

charge around/through/out etc

The boys charged noisily into the water.

5 . ATTACK [intransitive and transitive] to deliberately rush quickly towards someone or something in order to attack them:

Then, with a final effort, our men charged the enemy for the last time.

charge at/towards/into

The bear charged towards her at full speed.

6 . ELECTRICITY [intransitive and transitive] ( also charge up ) if a ↑ battery charges, or if you charge it, it takes in and stores electricity:

The shaver can be charged up.

7 . ORDER SOMEBODY [transitive] formal to order someone to do something or make them responsible for it

charge somebody with doing something

The commission is charged with investigating war crimes.

8 . GUN [transitive] old use to load a gun

9 . GLASS [transitive] British English formal to fill a glass ⇨ ↑ charged

Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English.      Longman - Словарь современного английского языка.