point ( points plural & 3rd person present) ( pointing present participle) ( pointed past tense & past participle )
1 n-count You use point to refer to something that someone has said or written.
We disagree with every point Mr Blunkett makes..., The following tale will clearly illustrate this point.
2 n-sing If you say that someone has a point, or if you take their point, you mean that you accept that what they have said is important and should be considered.
a N, poss N
`If he'd already killed once, surely he'd have killed Sarah?' She had a point there...
3 n-sing The point of what you are saying or discussing is the most important part that provides a reason or explanation for the rest.
`Did I ask you to talk to me?'<emdash10001`That's not the point.'..., The American Congress and media mostly missed the point about all this.
4 n-sing If you ask what thepointof something is, or say that there is no pointin it, you are indicating that a particular action has no purpose or would not be useful.
usu N of/in n/-ing
What was the point of thinking about him?..., There was no point in staying any longer.
5 n-count A point is a detail, aspect, or quality of something or someone.
usu with supp
The most interesting point about the village was its religion..., Science was never my strong point at school.
6 n-count A point is a particular place or position where something happens.
The pain originated from a point in his right thigh.
7 n-sing You use point to refer to a particular time, or to a particular stage in the development of something.
with supp, oft at N
We're all going to die at some point..., At this point Diana arrived..., It got to the point where he had to leave.
8 n-count The point of something such as a pin, needle, or knife is the thin, sharp end of it.
oft N of n
9 In spoken English, you use point to refer to the dot or mark in a decimal number that separates the whole numbers from the fractions.
Inflation at nine point four percent is the worst for eight years.
10 n-count In some sports, competitions, and games, a point is one of the single marks that are added together to give the total score.
They lost the 1977 World Cup final to Australia by a single point...
11 n-count The points of the compass are directions such as North, South, East, and West.
usu with supp
Sightseers arrived from all points of the compass.
12 n-plural On a railway track, the points are the levers and rails at a place where two tracks join or separate. The points enable a train to move from one track to another.
...the rattle of the wheels across the points.
in AM, use switches
13 n-count A point is an electric socket.
(BRIT) usu supp N
...too far away from the nearest electrical point.
14 verb If you point at a person or thing, you hold out your finger towards them in order to make someone notice them.
I pointed at the boy sitting nearest me... V at n
He pointed to a chair, signalling for her to sit. V to n
15 verb If you point something at someone, you aim the tip or end of it towards them.
David Khan pointed his finger at Mary... V n at n
A man pointed a gun at them and pulled the trigger. V n at n
16 verb If something pointsto a place or points in a particular direction, it shows where that place is or it faces in that direction.
An arrow pointed to the toilets... V prep/adv
You can go anywhere and still the compass points north or south... V prep/adv
17 verb If something points to a particular situation, it suggests that the situation exists or is likely to occur.
Private polls and embassy reports pointed to a no vote. V to n
18 verb If you point to something that has happened or that is happening, you are using it as proof that a particular situation exists.
George Fodor points to other weaknesses in the way the campaign has progressed... V to n
19 verb When builders point a wall, they put a substance such as cement into the gaps between the bricks or stones in order to make the wall stronger and seal it.
point of sale
point of view
21 If you say that something is beside the point, you mean that it is not relevant to the subject that you are discussing.
beside the point phrase v-link PHR
Brian didn't like it, but that was beside the point.
22 When someone comes to the point or gets to the point, they start talking about the thing that is most important to them.
come/get to the point phrase V inflects
Was she ever going to get to the point?
23 If you make your point or prove your point, you prove that something is true, either by arguing about it or by your actions or behaviour.
make/prove one's point phrase V inflects
I think you've made your point, dear..., The tie-break proved the point.
24 If you make a point of doing something, you do it in a very deliberate or obvious way.
make a point of phrase V inflects, PHR -ing
She made a point of spending as much time as possible away from Osborne House.
25 If you are on the point of doing something, you are about to do it.
on the point of phrase v-link PHR n/-ing
He was on the point of saying something when the phone rang..., She looked on the point of tears.
26 Something that is to the point is relevant to the subject that you are discussing, or expressed neatly without wasting words or time.
to the point phrase v-link PHR
The description which he had been given was brief and to the point.
27 If you say that something is true up to a point, you mean that it is partly but not completely true.
up to a point phrase PHR with cl
`Was she good?'<emdash>`Mmm. Up to a point.'
a case in point
in point of fact
to point the finger at someone
a sore point
sore point out
1 phrasal verb If you point out an object or place, you make people look at it or show them where it is.
They kept standing up to take pictures and point things out to each other... V n P
They'd already driven along the wharf so that she could point out her father's boat. V P n (not pron)
2 phrasal verb If you point out a fact or mistake, you tell someone about it or draw their attention to it. I should point out that these estimates cover just the hospital expenditures... V P that We all too easily point out our mothers' failings. V P n (not pron)
basis point ( basis points plural ) In finance, a basis point is one hundredth of a per cent (.01%). (BUSINESS) n-count usu pl
boiling point , boiling-point
1 n-uncount The boiling point of a liquid is the temperature at which it starts to change into steam or vapour. For example, the boiling point of water is 100<degree> centigrade.
The boiling point of water is 373 K..., Heat the cream to boiling point and pour three quarters of it over the chocolate.
2 n-uncount If a situation reaches boiling point, the people involved have become so angry that they can no longer remain calm and in control of themselves.
The situation is rapidly reaching boiling point, and the army has been put on stand-by...
When a company reaches break-even point, the money it makes from the sale of goods or services is just enough to cover the cost of supplying those goods or services, but not enough to make a profit. (BUSINESS) n-sing
`Terminator 2' finally made $200 million, which was considered to be the break-even point for the picture.
If something or someone has reached breaking point, they have so many problems or difficulties that they can no longer cope with them, and may soon collapse or be unable to continue. n-uncount also the/a N
The report on the riot exposed a prison system stretched to breaking point...
brownie point ( brownie points plural ) If someone does something to score brownie points, they do it because they think they will be praised for it. n-count usu pl (disapproval)
They're just trying to score brownie points with politicians.
bullet point ( bullet points plural ) A bullet point is one of a series of important items for discussion or action in a document, usually marked by a square or round symbol. n-count
Use bold type for headings and bullet points for noteworthy achievements.
cardinal point ( cardinal points plural ) The cardinal points are the four main points of the compass, north, south, east, and west. n-count
compass point ( compass points plural ) A compass point is one of the 32 marks on the dial of a compass that show direction, for example north, south, east, and west. n-count
decimal point ( decimal points plural ) A decimal point is the dot in front of a decimal fraction. n-count
focal point ( focal points plural ) The focal point of something is the thing that people concentrate on or pay most attention to. n-count
...the focal point for the town's many visitors<endash>the Royal Shakespeare Theatre.
freezing point ( freezing points plural ) , freezing-point
1 n-uncount Freezing point is 0<degree> Celsius, the temperature at which water freezes. Freezing point is often used when talking about the weather.
usu above/below/to N
The temperature remained below freezing point throughout the day.
2 n-count The freezing point of a particular substance is the temperature at which it freezes.
usu with poss
high point ( high points plural ) Thehigh point of an event or period of time is the most exciting or enjoyable part of it. n-count usu with supp, oft N of/in n
The high point of this trip was a day at the races in Balgriffin.
A jumping-off point or a jumping-off place is a place, situation, or occasion which you use as the starting point for something. n-sing
Lectoure is a bustling market town and the best jumping-off point for a first visit to Le Gers.
match point ( match points plural ) In a game of tennis, match point is the situation when the player who is in the lead can win the whole match if they win the next point. n-var
melting point ( melting points plural ) The melting point of a substance is the temperature at which it melts when you heat it. n-count oft with poss
1 adv If you say something point-blank, you say it very directly or rudely, without explaining or apologizing.
ADV after v
The army apparently refused point blank to do what was required of them...
Point-blank is also an adjective., adj ADJ n
...a point-blank refusal.
2 adv If someone or something is shot point-blank, they are shot when the gun is touching them or extremely close to them.
ADV after v
He fired point-blank at Bernadette.
Point-blank is also an adjective., adj ADJ n
He had been shot at point-blank range in the back of the head.
point of order ( points of order plural ) In a formal debate, a point of order is an official complaint that someone makes because the rules about how the debate is meant to be organized have been broken.
FORMAL n-count usu sing
A point of order was raised in parliament by Mr Ben Morris...
point of reference ( points of reference plural ) A point of reference is something which you use to help you understand a situation or communicate with someone. n-count
Do we still have any fixed point of reference in the teaching of English?
point of sale ( points of sale plural )
1 n-count The point of sale is the place in a shop where a product is passed from the seller to the customer. The abbreviation POS is also used. (BUSINESS)
2 n-uncount Point of sale is used to describe things which occur or are located or used at the place where you buy something. The abbreviation POS is also used. (BUSINESS) usu N n
point of view ( points of view plural )
1 n-count You can refer to the opinions or attitudes that you have about something as your point of view.
oft with poss
Thanks for your point of view, John..., Try to look at this from my point of view.
2 n-count If you consider something from a particular point of view, you are using one aspect of a situation in order to judge that situation.
usu sing, usu from N with poss
Do you think that, from the point of view of results, this exercise was worth the cost?...
power point ( power points plural ) A power point is a place in a wall where you can connect electrical equipment to the electricity supply.
in AM, usually use outlet, wall socket
price point ( price points plural ) The price point of a product is the price that it sells for. (BUSINESS) n-count
No price point exists for the machine yet..., The big companies dominate the lower price points.
rallying point ( rallying points plural ) A rallying point is a place, event, or person that people are attracted to as a symbol of a political group or ideal. n-count
Students used the death of political activists as a rallying point for anti-government protests.
selling point ( selling points plural ) A selling point is a desirable quality or feature that something has which makes it likely that people will want to buy it. (BUSINESS) n-count
starting point ( starting points plural ) , starting-point
1 n-count Something that is a starting pointfor a discussion or process can be used to begin it or act as a basis for it.
oft N for n
These proposals represent a realistic starting point for negotiation...
2 n-count When you make a journey, your starting point is the place from which you start.
usu with supp
They had already walked a couple of miles or more from their starting point.
sticking point ( sticking points plural ) , sticking-point A sticking point in a discussion or series of negotiations is a point on which the people involved cannot agree and which may delay or stop the talks. A sticking point is also one aspect of a problem which you have trouble dealing with. n-count usu sing
The main sticking point was the question of taxes.
talking point ( talking points plural ) A talking point is an interesting subject for discussion or argument. n-count
It's bound to be the main talking point during discussions between the Prime Minister and the President.
three-point turn ( three-point turns plural ) When the driver of a vehicle does a three-point turn, he or she turns the vehicle by driving forwards in a curve, then backwards in a curve, and then forwards in a curve. n-count
turning point ( turning points plural ) A turning point is a time at which an important change takes place which affects the future of a person or thing. n-count usu sing, oft N in/for n
The vote yesterday appears to mark something of a turning point in the war...
vanishing point ( vanishing points plural )
1 n-count The vanishing point is the point in the distance where parallel lines seem to meet.
The highway stretched out ahead of me until it narrowed to a vanishing point some miles away.
2 n-uncount If you say that something has reached vanishing point, you mean it has become very small or unimportant.
By 1973, this gap had narrowed almost to vanishing point...
vantage point ( vantage points plural )
1 n-count A vantage point is a place from which you can see a lot of things.
From a concealed vantage point, he saw a car arrive...
2 n-count If you view a situation from a particular vantage point, you have a clear understanding of it because of the particular period of time you are in.
oft with poss
From today's vantage point, the 1987 crash seems just a blip in the upward progress of the market...