Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “lick”

lick

verb uk   /lɪk/ us  

lick verb (MOVE TONGUE)

B2 [T] to move the tongue across the surface of something: He licked the chocolate off his fingers. She licked the stamps and stuck them on the parcel.Biting, chewing and swallowingEating [T, I + prep] If flames or waves lick something, they pass over it quickly or touch it lightly like a tongue: Within a few seconds flames were licking at the curtains.Touching and feelingShowing affection

lick verb (DEFEAT)

[T] informal to defeat easily in a competition, fight, etc.: We'll lick the other teams.Winning and defeatingScoring, winning and losing in sport

lick

noun uk   /lɪk/ us  

lick noun (HIT)

[C] old-fashioned informal the act of hitting someone with something such as a whipHitting and beatingPunishing by causing pain

lick noun (SPEED)

at a fair, great, etc. lick UK informal at a fast speed: The trains go by at a hell of a lick.Fast and rapidShort in time

lick noun (SMALL AMOUNT)

[C] informal a small amount or thin layer: The living room could do with a lick of paint.Words meaning small pieces and amounts

lick noun (MUSIC)

[C] specialized music in jazz or rock music, a short series of notes played by one musicianMusical pieces

lick noun (TONGUE)

[C] the action of licking something: Can I have a lick of your ice cream?Biting, chewing and swallowingEating
(Definition of lick from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of lick?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “lick” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

innovate

to introduce changes and new ideas

Word of the Day

Blog

Read our blog about how the English language behaves.

Learn More

New Words

Find words and meanings that have just started to be used in English, and let us know what you think of them.

Learn More