Meaning of STRONG in English


strong S1 W1 /strɒŋ $ strɒːŋ/ BrE AmE adjective ( comparative stronger , superlative strongest )

[ Word Family: verb : ↑ strengthen ; noun : ↑ strength ; adverb : ↑ strongly ; adjective : ↑ strong ]

[ Language: Old English ; Origin: strang ]

1 . ABLE TO LIFT HEAVY THINGS/DO HARD WORK having a lot of physical power so that you can lift heavy things, do hard physical work etc:

He was a big strong man.

Jack was tall and strong.

strong hands/arms/muscles etc

He picked her up in his big strong arms.

I’m not strong enough to fight him.

⇨ see Thesaurus box on P. 1752

2 . NOT EASILY BROKEN OR DAMAGED not easily broken or damaged:

good strong shoes

The locks on the doors were solid and strong.

3 . ABLE TO DEAL WITH DIFFICULTY determined and able to deal with a difficult or upsetting situation:

I’m not strong enough to take insults and hatred.

Laura had a strong character.

4 . POWERFUL having a lot of power or influence:

The Fifth French Republic was established with a strong president in 1958.

a strong national army

Our party is the strongest as we come up to the election.

5 . FEELINGS/OPINIONS strong emotions, opinions, beliefs etc are ones that you feel or believe a lot and are very serious about:

He had a strong sense of responsibility to his vocation of preaching.

There has been strong support for the strike.

The proposal has met with strong opposition from local people.

strong feelings/views/opinions

Many people have strong feelings about the issue.

6 . AFFECT/INFLUENCE a strong desire, influence etc affects you very much:

He had a strong desire for power.

Such feelings may have a strong influence over your decisions.

The temptation is very strong.

7 . RELATIONSHIP a strong relationship, friendship etc is very loyal and likely to last a long time:

He maintained strong links with the world of the deaf.

She still has a strong relationship with her mother.

I have a strong commitment to the quality of teaching.

8 . ARGUMENT/REASON ETC likely to persuade other people that something is true or the correct thing to do:

There is a strong case for an energy conservation programme.

They need strong evidence to secure a conviction.

a strong argument

9 . LIKELY likely to succeed or happen:

She’s a strong candidate for the party leadership.

strong possibility/chance/probability

A year ago, there was a strong possibility that he wouldn’t live.

10 . HEALTHY healthy, especially after you have been ill:

I don’t think her heart is very strong.

You’ve been blessed with a strong constitution (=you are healthy and do not easily become ill) .

11 . be in a strong position ( also gain a strong position ) to be in a situation where you have power over other people or are likely to get what you want:

The company have gained a strong position in the cheese market.

12 . strong wind/current/tide wind, water etc that moves with great force:

A strong wind was blowing across the lake.

13 . GOOD AT SOMETHING very good at something:

His writing was strong on description.

We beat a team that was much stronger than ourselves.

be sb’s strong point/suit (=the thing that someone is especially good at)

Tact never was my strong point.

14 . TASTE/SMELL having a taste or smell that you notice easily:

strong coffee

This cheese has a very strong flavour.

a strong smell of petrol

15 . ALCOHOL/DRUGS ETC having a lot of a substance, such as alcohol, that gives something its effect:

extra strong beer

strong painkillers

I haven’t touched strong drink (=alcoholic drinks) for years.

16 . LIGHT/COLOUR bright and easy to see:

The light was not very strong.

17 . strong language speech or writing that contains a lot of swearing:

This film is not suitable for children under 12 as it contains strong language.

18 . strong accent the way that someone pronounces words that shows clearly that they come from a particular area or country:

a strong German accent

19 . strong nose/chin/features a nose etc that is large and noticeable, especially in an attractive way:

She has the same strong features as her mother.

20 . MONEY a strong ↑ currency (=the type of money used in a country) does not easily lose its value compared with other currencies

21 . 600/10,000 etc strong [only after number] used to give the number of people in a crowd or organization:

the company’s 2,200 strong workforce

The crowd was 10,000 strong.

22 . be going strong to continue to be active or successful, even after a long time:

He celebrated his ninetieth birthday this month, and he’s still going strong.

⇨ come on strong at ↑ come on (10)

• • •

COLLOCATIONS (for Meanings 5 & 6)

■ nouns

▪ strong views/opinions/ideas

She has strong views on education.

▪ a strong feeling

I have a lot of strong feelings on the issue.

▪ a strong belief

We have a strong belief that everyone has the right to worship freely.

▪ a strong sense of something

There is a strong sense of community here.

▪ strong support

The idea won strong support in rural areas.

▪ strong opposition

There had been strong opposition to the scheme from the national park authority.

▪ a strong interest in something

At 16, he developed a strong interest in archaeology.

▪ a strong commitment to something

Since its establishment in 1945 the College has had a strong commitment to research.

▪ a strong desire for something/to do something

People have a strong desire for personal independence.

▪ a strong influence

The experience of living there had a strong influence on me.

▪ a strong impression

She made a strong impression on me.

▪ a strong temptation

There’s always a strong temptation to put off doing difficult tasks.

• • •


■ having a strong body

▪ strong having a lot of physical strength:

It took four strong men to lift the piano.


You open it – you’re stronger than I am.

▪ powerful very strong – used about someone’s body, arms, muscles etc:

his big powerful shoulders


He was a tall man with a powerful physique.

▪ muscular having big muscles and looking strong:

She liked men who were big and muscular.


He had a firm muscular body.

▪ well-built a well-built man is strong and tall and has a big body:

Police say the man they are looking for is 36 years old, 6 feet tall, and well-built.

▪ hunky informal strong and attractive:

She married hunky Hollywood star Brad Pitt.


He looks hunky, but he’s not really my type.

■ not easily broken or damaged

▪ strong not easily broken or damaged:

The bags are made of strong black plastic.


We need a strong rope for this job.

▪ tough strong – used especially about something that can be used a lot without damaging it or making it weaker:

a pair of tough leather boots


Kitchen floors need to be tough enough to withstand heavy use.

▪ heavy-duty [only before noun] extremely strong – used about materials, tools, machines etc that are made especially to be used a lot without being easily damaged:

heavy-duty rubber gloves


a heavy-duty carpet for the hallway

▪ sturdy strong and often thick, and not likely to fall over or get broken:

a fence made with sturdy wooden posts


The furniture is simple but sturdy.

▪ unbreakable extremely strong and impossible to break:

Babies need to have unbreakable dishes and cups.

▪ indestructible impossible to break, damage, or destroy, and lasting forever:

Gold is virtually indestructible.


The pyramids were built as indestructible tombs for the Pharaohs.

▪ hard-wearing British English , long-wearing American English used about materials and products that will remain in good condition for a long time even when they are used a lot:

Ceramic tiles are easy to keep clean and hard-wearing.


a hard-wearing fabric

▪ durable especially written used about materials and products that will remain in good condition for a long time – often used on product labels:

The jacket has a durable nylon lining.


Varnish is more durable than paint.

▪ robust especially written strongly made – used especially about the structure of something, for example a vehicle or machine:

a mountain bike with a robust frame


The hardware for the computer must be robust and inexpensive.

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