Meaning of LOT in English


I. lot 1 S1 W1 /lɒt $ lɑːt/ BrE AmE pronoun , adverb

1 . a lot ( also lots informal ) a large amount or number:

We’ve spent a lot on the children’s education.

‘How many CDs have you got?’ ‘Lots.’

a lot of

They paid a lot of money for that house.

I eat a lot of vegetables.

There were lots of people at the party.

an awful lot (also a whole lot informal) (=a very large amount or number)

He spends an awful lot of time on the computer.

a lot to do/learn/say etc

I still have a lot to learn.

It’s a great city, with lots to see and do.


Use a singular verb if you are using a lot of or lots of before an uncountable noun, and a plural verb if you are using it before a plural noun:

A lot of money was spent on it.

A lot of people were killed.

► Do not say 'lot of' or 'a lots of'.

► Do not use a lot of with 'years’ or 'days’. Say many years/days or a long time .


A lot is fairly informal and lots is informal. In written English, use many followed by a plural noun, or a large amount followed by an uncountable noun:

▪ This was unpopular for a lot of reasons. ➔ This was unpopular for many reasons.

▪ | They spent a lot of money. ➔ They spent a large amount of money.

2 . a lot ( also lots informal ) if someone or something is a lot better, faster, easier etc, they are much better, faster etc SYN much :

My headache’s lots better, thanks.

She has a lot more contact with clients these days.

You’ll get there a lot quicker if you take the motorway.

The house is a lot tidier now Chris has left home.

3 . a lot used to say that something happens to a great degree or often:

Things have changed a lot since I was a child.

Paul travels a lot on business.

I’ve been worrying a lot about my health.

She likes you a lot.

4 . have a lot on your plate informal to have a large number of problems to deal with or a large amount of work to do

5 . have a lot on your mind to have a lot of problems that you are worried about:

‘You’re quiet today.’ ‘I’ve got a lot on my mind.’

6 . have a lot on British English to be very busy, with a large number of things to do in a short time:

I can’t help you now – I’ve got rather a lot on.

⇨ thanks a lot at ↑ thanks 1 (1), ⇨ a fat lot of good/use at ↑ fat 1 (5), ⇨ have a lot to answer for at ANSWER FOR (2)

II. lot 2 S2 BrE AmE noun

[ Language: Old English ; Origin: hlot 'object used for making a choice by chance' ]

1 . GROUP OF PEOPLE/THINGS [countable] a group of people or things considered together:

Could you help me carry this lot upstairs?

lot of

The last lot of people offered £70,000.

I did three lots of exams last summer.

Come on, you lot, hurry up!

His friends are a strange lot.

2 . the lot especially British English the whole of an amount or number of things, people etc:

We’ll do everything – cooking, washing, ironing – the lot.

I can’t believe you ate the whole lot.

I think that’s the lot (=everything is included) .

the lot of you/them/us (=all of you, them, or us)

Shut up, the lot of you!

3 . SB’S SITUATION [singular] your lot is your work, duties, social position etc, especially when they could be better:

She seems happy enough with her lot.

The unions have always tried to improve the lot of their members.

4 . LAND [countable] especially American English an area of land used for building on or for another purpose:

the vacant lot (=empty land) behind the Commercial Hotel

a used-car lot

⇨ ↑ parking lot

5 . FILM [countable] a building and the land surrounding it where films are made SYN studio :

the Universal Studios lot

6 . THING TO BE SOLD [countable] something, or a group of things, that is sold at an ↑ auction :

Lot 54 is a Victorian lamp.


a) by lot if someone is chosen by lot, several people each take a piece of paper or an object from a container, and the person who is chosen is the one who gets a particular marked paper or object:

In Athens at that time, judges were chosen by lot.

b) draw/cast lots to choose something or someone by lot:

We drew lots to decide who should go first.

8 . throw in/cast your lot with somebody/something to join or support someone or something, and accept that what happens to them will affect what happens to you:

In 1915 Italy threw in her lot with the Allies.

⇨ bad lot at ↑ bad 1 (21), ⇨ a job lot at ↑ job (17)

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