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English definition of “help”

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help

verb uk   /help/ us  

help verb (MAKE EASIER)

A1 [I or T] to make it possible or easier for someone to do something, by doing part of the work yourself or by providing advice, money, support, etc.: How can I help you? I wonder if you could help me - I'd like some information about flights to New Zealand. My dad said he would help with the costs of (= give part of the cost of) buying a house. [+ obj + (to) infinitive ] The $10,000 loan from the bank helped her (to) start her own business. I feel that learning English will help (= improve) my chances of promotion at work. Nothing can help her now (= her situation is too bad for anyone to be able to improve it).
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B2 [I or T] If something helps a difficult or painful situation, it improves it or makes it easier or less painful: The morphine didn't seem to help (the pain). [+ (to) infinitive] If something or someone helps to do something, that thing or person is one of several reasons for it happening: The drought has helped (to) make this a disastrous year for Somalia.
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help verb (STOP YOURSELF)

can't/couldn't help B1 If you can't/couldn't help something, such as acting in a particular way or making a particular remark, you are/were not able to control or stop it: It was awful, but I couldn't help laughing. "Stop giggling!" "I can't help it!" I can't help thinking (= my true feeling is that) she'd be better off without him.

help verb (GIVE/TAKE)

B1 [T] to give something to someone: Can I help you to some more soup?
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help yourself B1 to take something for yourself: "Might I have some more bread?" "Please, help yourself!"
Phrasal verbs

help

noun uk   /help/ us  
A2 [U] the act of helping another person: Do you need any help with those boxes? Her parents gave her some help with her bank loan (= paid some of it).B2 [S] something or someone that helps: Having a satnav would be a help. He was a great help (to me) while my husband was away. [C] UK old-fashioned someone who is employed to clean and do other small jobs: a home helpthe help old-fashioned a person or the people employed to work in someone's home doing cleaning, cooking, caring for children, etc.
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help

exclamation uk   /help/ us  
help!
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A2 shouted by a person who is asking for someone to come and save them from a dangerous situation
(Definition of help from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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