dear meaning, dear definition | English Cobuild dictionary

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  ( dearer    comparative)   ( dearest    superlative)   ( dears    plural  )
1       adj   You use dear to describe someone or something that you feel affection for.  
ADJ n  
Mrs Cavendish is a dear friend of mine...     
2       adj   If something is dear to you or dear to your heart, you care deeply about it.  
v-link ADJ to n  
This is a subject very dear to the hearts of academics up and down the country.     
3       adj   You use dear in expressions such as `my dear fellow', `dear girl', or `my dear Richard' when you are addressing someone whom you know and are fond of. You can also use expressions like this in a rude way to indicate that you think you are superior to the person you are addressing.  
  (BRIT)   ADJ n     (feelings)    Of course, Toby, my dear fellow, of course...     
4       adj   Dear is written at the beginning of a letter, followed by the name or title of the person you are writing to.  
ADJ n  
Dear Peter, I have been thinking about you so much during the past few days...     
5       convention   In British English, you begin formal letters with `Dear Sir' or `Dear Madam'. In American English, you begin them with `Sir' or `Madam'.  
WRITTEN   `Dear sir,' she began.     
6       n-voc   You can call someone dear as a sign of affection.,   (feelings)    You're a lot like me, dear...     
7       exclam   You can use dear in expressions such as `oh dear', `dear me', and `dear, dear' when you are sad, disappointed, or surprised about something.,   (feelings)    `Oh dear, oh dear.' McKinnon sighed. `You, too.'     
8       adj   If you say that something is dear, you mean that it costs a lot of money, usually more than you can afford or more than you think it should cost.  
  (mainly BRIT)  
INFORMAL   usu v-link ADJ     (disapproval)    (=expensive)     (Antonym: cheap)    CDs here are much dearer than in the States...     
9    If something that someone does costs them dear, they suffer a lot as a result of it.  
cost sb dear      phrase   V inflects  
Such complacency is costing the company dear.     
Translation English Cobuild Collins Dictionary  



1    beloved, cherished, close, darling, esteemed, familiar, favourite, intimate, precious, prized, respected, treasured  
2    at a premium, costly, expensive, high-priced, overpriced, pricey     (informal)  
3    angel, beloved, darling, loved one, precious, treasure  
4    at a heavy cost, at a high price, at great cost, dearly  
1    disliked, hated  
2    cheap, common, inexpensive, worthless  

English Collins Dictionary - English synonyms & Thesaurus  

! it is not what is beautiful which is dear; it is what is dear which is beautiful n.
ce n'est pas ce qui est beau qui est cher; c'est ce qui est cher qui est beau

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Collaborative Dictionary     English Cobuild
person who is very important and dear without formally being the spouse
expression used for pointing out that, if you love someone, you accept also things and people dear to the person you love
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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"