Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “try”

See all translations

try

verb uk   /traɪ/ us  

try verb (ATTEMPT)

A2 [I or T] to attempt to do something: Keep trying and you'll find a job eventually. If I don't get into the academy this year, I'll try again next year. I've tried really hard but I can't persuade him to come. I'm trying my best/hardest, but I just can't do it. [+ to infinitive] I tried to open the window. [+ -ing verb] Perhaps you should try getting up (= you should get up) earlier.
More examples

try verb (TEST)

B1 [T] to test something to see if it is suitable or useful or if it works: I tried that recipe you gave me last night. I'm afraid we don't sell newspapers - have you tried the shop on the corner? [+ -ing verb] Try using a different shampoo. I thought I might try parachuting. I've forgotten my door-keys - we'd better try the window (= test it to see if it is open).tried and tested/trusted ( US tried and true) used by many people and proved to be effective: Most people would prefer to stick to tried and tested methods of birth control.

try verb (LAW)

C2 [T] to examine a person accused of committing a crime in a law court by asking them questions and considering known facts, and then decide if they are guilty: Because of security implications the officers were tried in secret. They are being tried for murder.
See also

try verb (WORRY)

[T] to worry or annoy someone or upset a person's patience with many, often slight, difficulties: The demands of the job have tried him sorely. He's been trying my patience all morning with his constant questions. Her endless demands would try the patience of a saint (= are very annoying).

try

noun uk   /traɪ/ us  

try noun (ATTEMPT)

B2 [C usually singular] an attempt to do something: They might just have a place left on the course - why don't you give it/have a try? This will be her third try at jumping the bar. You could ask him if he's willing - it's worth a try.
More examples

try noun (SPORT)

[C] (in the game of rugby) the act of a player putting the ball on the ground behind the opposing team's goal line, which scores points for the player's team
(Definition of try from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of try?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “try” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

derivative

If something is derivative, it is not the result of new ideas, but has been developed from or copies something else.

Word of the Day

Euphemisms (Words used to Avoid Offending People)

by Kate Woodford,
March 04, 2015
​​​ We recently looked at the language that we use to describe lies and lying. One area of lying that we considered was ‘being slightly dishonest, or not speaking the complete truth’. One reason for not speaking the complete truth is to avoid saying something that might upset or offend people. Words and

Read More 

snapchat verb

March 02, 2015
to send someone a message using the photomessaging application Snapchat We used to have a thing until he got a girlfriend. now

Read More