Meaning of PRESS in English

I. press 1 S2 W2 /pres/ BrE AmE noun

[ Word Family: adjective : ↑ pressed , ↑ pressing , ↑ pressurized , ↑ pressured ; verb : ↑ press , ↑ pressure , ↑ pressurize ; noun : ↑ press , ↑ pressure , ↑ pressing ]

1 . NEWS

a) the press [ also + plural verb British English ] people who write reports for newspapers, radio, or television:

the freedom of the press

The press have been very nasty about him.

b) reports in newspapers and on radio and television:

To judge from the press, the concert was a great success.

press reports

The band has received good press coverage (=the reports written about something in newspapers) .

local/national etc press

The story was widely covered in the national press.

tabloid/popular etc press

2 . get/be given a bad press to be criticized in the newspapers or on radio or television:

The government's policy on mental health care is getting an increasingly bad press.

3 . get/have a good press to be praised in the newspapers or on radio or television:

Our recycling policy is getting a good press.

4 . PRINTING [countable]

a) a business that prints and sometimes also sells books:

the Clarendon Press

b) ( also printing press ) a machine that prints books, newspapers, or magazines

5 . MACHINE [countable] a piece of equipment used to put weight on something in order to make it flat or to force liquid out of it:

a trouser press

a flower press

6 . PUSH [countable, usually singular] especially British English a light steady push against something small:

Give the button another press.

7 . go to press if a newspaper, magazine, or book goes to press, it begins to be printed:

All information was correct at the time we went to press.

8 . CROWD [singular + of] especially British English a crowd of people pushing against each other

• • •



▪ the national press

There was very little about the incident in the national press.

▪ the local press

Evening classes are advertised in the local press.

▪ the British/American etc press

The British press have blamed other countries for North Sea pollution.

▪ the foreign press

African countries want the foreign press to report African affairs.

▪ the quality press (=newspapers intended for educated people)

The book received excellent reviews in the quality press.

▪ the tabloid/popular press (=popular newspapers that have a lot of news about famous people etc, rather than serious news)

He regularly appeared in the tabloid press alongside well-known actresses.

▪ the gutter press British English (=newspapers that print shocking stories about people’s private lives)

The gutter press enjoyed printing the sensational story.

▪ a free press (=reporters whose reports are not restricted by the government)

I am glad that we have a free press in this country.

■ verbs

▪ talk/speak to the press

He is reluctant to talk to the press.

▪ tell the press something

‘It was a really tough decision,’ she told the press.

▪ leak something to the press (=give them secret information in an unofficial way)

The confidential report was leaked to the press.

■ press + NOUN

▪ press reports

According to press reports, he was suffering from exhaustion.

▪ press coverage (=articles in newspapers)

The event received a lot of press coverage.

▪ a press photographer

A group of press photographers was waiting for her outside.

II. press 2 S1 W2 BrE AmE verb

[ Word Family: adjective : ↑ pressed , ↑ pressing , ↑ pressurized , ↑ pressured ; verb : ↑ press , ↑ pressure , ↑ pressurize ; noun : ↑ press , ↑ pressure , ↑ pressing ]

[ Date: 1300-1400 ; Language: Old French ; Origin: presser , from Latin pressare , from premere 'to press' ; ⇨ ↑ print 2 ]

1 . AGAINST SOMETHING [transitive always + adverb/preposition] to push something firmly against a surface SYN push :

Manville kept his back pressed flat against the wall.

She pressed the gas pedal and the car leapt forwards.

He pressed a card into her hand before leaving.

2 . BUTTON [transitive] to push a button, switch etc to make a machine start, a bell ring etc SYN push :

Lily pressed the switch and plunged the room into darkness.

Press control, alt, delete to log on to the computer.

3 . CLOTHES [transitive] to make clothes smooth using a hot iron SYN iron :

I’ll need to press my suit.

4 . CROWD [intransitive always + adverb/preposition] to move in a particular direction by pushing:

The car rocked as the crowd pressed hard against it.

5 . PERSUADE [intransitive and transitive] to try hard to persuade someone to do something, especially by asking them many times:

I felt that if I had pressed him he would have lent me the money.

press somebody to do something

The police pressed her to remember all the details.

press somebody for something

The manufacturers are pressing the government for action.

press for

We must continue to press for full equality.

I was pressing my claim for custody of the child.

6 . HEAVY WEIGHT [transitive] to put pressure or a weight on something to make it flat, crush it etc:

pressed flowers

At this stage the grapes have to be pressed.

7 . HOLD SOMEBODY/SOMETHING CLOSE [transitive] to hold someone or something close to you

press somebody/something to you

He reached out and pressed her to him.

8 . press sb’s hand/arm to hold someone’s hand or arm tightly for a short time, to show friendship, sympathy etc:

Sometimes he was too ill to speak, and just pressed my hand.

9 . press charges to say officially that someone has done something illegal and must go to court

10 . be pressed for time/cash etc to not have enough time, money etc:

a government department that is pressed for both time and money

11 . GIVE [transitive] to offer something to someone and try to make them take it

press something on somebody

I pressed money on him, but he refused to take it.

12 . EXERCISE [transitive] to push a weight up from your chest using only your arms, without moving your legs or feet

13 . press somebody/something into service to persuade someone to help you, or to use something to help you do something because of an unexpected problem or need:

The army was pressed into service to fight the fires.

14 . press the flesh to shake hands with a lot of people – used humorously:

The President reached into the crowd to press the flesh.

15 . press something home

a) to push something into its place:

Jane slammed the door and pressed the bolt home.

b) to repeat or emphasize something, so that people remember it:

He decided it was time to press his point home.

16 . press home your advantage to try to succeed completely, using an advantage that you have gained

17 . RECORD [transitive] to make a copy of a record, ↑ CD etc

⇨ be hard pressed to do something at ↑ hard 2 (5)

• • •


▪ press to push something down or against a surface with your fingers or foot:

The doctor gently pressed her stomach.


To move forward, press the accelerator.


I pressed ‘delete’ and started again.

▪ squeeze to press something inwards from both sides:

It’s one of those balls that make a funny noise when you squeeze it.


Squeeze the lemon and add the juice to the sauce.

▪ squash to press something against a surface accidentally and damage it by making it flat:

Don’t squash the tomatoes.


He sat on my hat and squashed it.

▪ crush to press something very hard so that it breaks into very small pieces, or is very badly damaged:

Crush two cloves of garlic.


The front of the car was completely crushed in the crash.

▪ mash to press cooked vegetables or fruit until they are soft and smooth:

Mash the potatoes while they are warm.


Babies love mashed bananas.

▪ grind to press something solid until it becomes a powder, using a machine or tool:

the machine that grinds the corn


freshly ground coffee

press on

( also press ahead ) phrasal verb to continue doing something, especially working, in a determined way:

We’ll talk about your suggestion later – now let’s just press on.

press on with

Shall we press ahead with the minutes of the last meeting?

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