bite off more than you can chew meaning, bite off more than you can chew definition | English Cobuild dictionary

Collins

chew

  
  ( chews    plural & 3rd person present)   ( chewing    present participle)   ( chewed    past tense & past participle  )
1       verb   When you chew food, you use your teeth to break it up in your mouth so that it becomes easier to swallow.  
Be certain to eat slowly and chew your food extremely well...      V n  
Daniel leaned back on the sofa, still chewing on his apple.      V at/on n  
...the sound of his mother chewing and swallowing.      V  
2       verb   If you chew gum or tobacco, you keep biting it and moving it around your mouth to taste the flavour of it. You do not swallow it.  
One girl was chewing gum...      V n  
3       verb   If you chew your lips or your fingernails, you keep biting them because you are nervous.  
He chewed his lower lip nervously.      V n  
4       verb   If a person or animal chews an object, they bite it with their teeth.   (=bite)  
They pause and chew their pencils...      V n  
One owner left his pet under the stairs where the animal chewed through electric cables.      V prep  
5    If you say that someone has bitten off more than they can chew, you mean that they are trying to do something which is too difficult for them.  
bite off more than you can chew             phrase   bite inflects  
Micky is used to handling dodgy deals but this time fears he may have bitten off more than he can chew.     
6   
    to chew the cud  
    cud   chew up  
1       phrasal verb   If you chew food up, you chew it until it is completely crushed or soft.  
I took one of the pills and chewed it up.      V n P, Also V P n (not pron)  
2       phrasal verb   If something is chewed up, it has been destroyed or damaged in some way.  
INFORMAL   Every spring the ozone is chewed up, and the hole appears.      be V-ed P  
...rebels who are now chewing up Government-held territory...      V P n (not pron)  
This town is notorious for chewing people up and spitting them out.      V n P  
Translation English - Cobuild Collins Dictionary  
Collins
bite     ( bites    plural & 3rd person present)   ( biting    present participle)   ( bit    past tense)   ( bitten    past participle  )
1       verb   If you bite something, you use your teeth to cut into it, for example in order to eat it or break it. If an animal or person bites you, they use their teeth to hurt or injure you.  
Both sisters bit their nails as children...      V n  
He bit into his sandwich...      V into n  
He had bitten the cigarette in two...      V n adv/prep  
Llamas won't bite or kick.      V  
2       n-count   A bite of something, especially food, is the action of biting it.  
oft N of n  
He took another bite of apple..., You cannot eat a bun in one bite.     
      A bite is also the amount of food you take into your mouth when you bite it., n-count  
Look forward to eating the food and enjoy every bite.     
3       n-sing   If you have a bite to eat, you have a small meal or a snack.  
INFORMAL   a N, usu N to-inf  
It was time to go home for a little rest and a bite to eat.     
4       verb   If a snake or a small insect bites you, it makes a mark or hole in your skin, and often causes the surrounding area of your skin to become painful or itchy.  
We were all badly bitten by mosquitoes.      V n, Also V  
5       n-count   A bite is an injury or a mark on your body where an animal, snake, or small insect has bitten you.  
oft n N  
Any dog bite, no matter how small, needs immediate medical attention.     
6       verb   When an action or policy begins to bite, it begins to have a serious or harmful effect.  
As the sanctions begin to bite there will be more political difficulties ahead...      V  
The recession started biting deeply into British industry.      V prep/adv  
7       verb   If an object bites into a surface, it presses hard against it or cuts into it.  
There may even be some wire or nylon biting into the flesh...      V prep/adv, Also V, V n  
8       n-uncount   If you say that a food or drink has bite, you like it because it has a strong or sharp taste.,   (approval)    ...the addition of tartaric acid to give the wine some bite.     
9       n-sing   If the air or the wind has a bite, it feels very cold.  
a N  
There was a bite in the air, a smell perhaps of snow.     
10       verb   If a fish bites when you are fishing, it takes the hook or bait at the end of your fishing line in its mouth.  
After half an hour, the fish stopped biting and we moved on.      V  
      Bite is also a noun., n-count  
If I don't get a bite in a few minutes I lift the rod and twitch the bait.     
11   
    love bite  
    nail-biting  
12    If someone bites the hand that feeds them, they behave badly or in an ungrateful way towards someone who they depend on.  
bite the hand that feeds you      phrase   Vs inflect  
She may be cynical about the film industry, but ultimately she has no intention of biting the hand that feeds her.     
13    If you bite your lip or your tongue, you stop yourself from saying something that you want to say, because it would be the wrong thing to say in the circumstances.  
bite one's lip/tongue      phrase   V and N inflect  
I must learn to bite my lip..., He bit his tongue as he found himself on the point of saying `follow that car'.     
14    If something takes a bite out of a sum of money, part of the money is spent or taken away in order to pay for it.  
take a bite out of      phrase   V inflects, PHR n  
Local taxes are going to be taking a bigger bite out of people's income than they ever have before.     
15   
    someone's bark is worse than their bite  
    bark  
    to bite the bullet  
    bullet  
    to bite off more than one can chew  
    chew  
    to bite the dust  
    dust  


bite-sized   , bite-size  
1       adj   Bite-sized pieces of food are small enough to fit easily in your mouth.  
usu ADJ n  
...bite-sized pieces of cheese.     
2       adj   If you describe something as bite-sized, you like it because it is small enough to be considered or dealt with easily.  
usu ADJ n     (approval)    ...bite-size newspaper items.     
love bite        ( love bites    plural  ) , lovebite   A love bite is a mark which someone has on their body as a result of being bitten by their partner when they were kissing or making love.      n-count  

Translation English - Cobuild Collins Dictionary  

Collins

bite

  

      vb  
1    champ, chew, clamp, crunch, crush, cut, gnaw, grip, hold, masticate, nibble, nip, pierce, pinch, rend, seize, snap, tear, wound  
2    burn, corrode, eat away, eat into, erode, smart, sting, tingle, wear away  
      n  
3    itch, nip, pinch, prick, smarting, sting, tooth marks, wound  
4    food, light meal, morsel, mouthful, piece, refreshment, snack, taste  
5    edge, kick     (informal)   piquancy, punch     (informal)   pungency, spice  

English Collins Dictionary - English synonyms & Thesaurus  

Collaborative Dictionary     English Cobuild
id.
expression used to show full agreement on smth.
exp.
The actual say is: "You can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar" This means that it is easier to persuade people if you use polite arguments and flattery than if you are confrontational.
id.
At a point where you know you have to make a decision that not only effects your life, not only the life of the objects you love but the ones that you consider as well. More than one crux will certainly cause an individual to have a dilemma or two.
n.
(in neomarxist thought) the second main exploitive social class: The bourgeoisie of formation. The members of the formoisie have human capital, receive high wages (the most frequently thanks to their diplomas) and consume more than the world GDP. (neologism 1993 Yanick Toutain)
[Hum. Sc.] The formoisie is the social class that created social-democracy and stalinism.
n.
(in neomarxist thought) the third main exploitive social class: The bourgeoisie of innovation. The members of the innovoisie have usually human innovating capital. They receive (as individuals) copyrights or patent rights and consume more than the world GDP. (neologism 1996 Yanick Toutain)
adj.
having a single dominating theme; esp : having a theme continuing through more than one movement of a musical composition
n.
an ambitious woman who thinks her career really matters more than many things and is not willing to compromise on it
n.
a single place where you can find everything you need, usually found in different places
exp.
do something which puts you in a very difficult situation and limits the way that you can act
n.
a person you can go to for help, advice or information
id.
the carrot is more effective than the stick
v.
wave hand as a sign of rejection, disapproval or lack of interest
v.
to depend on something or on someone to cover the basic expenses
E.g.: He lived off the money he inherited from his father while he had been working as a volunteer.
exp.
A thing which ought to be perfectly vertical but which through fault is slanting is said to be off plumb.
exp.
expression meaning that a situation is no longer certain or predictable and that anything can happen
originating from horse racing where "all bets are off" indicated that bets already made were null due to various unpredicted factors
exp.
live without being connected to one of more public utilities (such as water, electric power)
n.
very imposing or impressive
[Bus.];
adv.
maximum; no more (or later) than; at the most
E.g.: You have to be back at 11 o'clock tops; The show lasted one hour tops
adj.
a person with more power or authority than others
Eg.: Your father is one of the dominant man in his section because he is boss.
exp.
laughing my fucking ass off
[Slang];[Arg.]
exp.
mislead someone; deliberately provide wrong information to forbid someone from knowing the truth
E.g.: They are no longer in town, but hey left their car in front of the house just to put everybody off the scent.
exp.
get well with someone from the very beginning of the relationship
used when referring to romantic relationship, but also in a larger meaning: He hit it off with his teacher; he will continue taking classes with her.
exp.
to become more serious
exp.
take an action that will complicate things; do something with a negative impact
exp.
love you loads
"je t'aime beaucoup" in French
exp.
what about you
Slang; written abbreviation
exp.
go away idiot, fool ; leave me alone idiot, fool ; fuck you idiot, fool ; fuck off idiot, fool.
[Slang];[Vulg.]
exp.
it's said when someone has done things in the wrong order

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"Collins Cobuild English Dictionary for Advanced Learners 4th edition published in 2003 © HarperCollins Publishers 1987, 1995, 2001, 2003 and Collins A-Z Thesaurus 1st edition first published in 1995 © HarperCollins Publishers 1995"
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