Meaning of “advance” in the English Dictionary

"advance" in English

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uk /ədˈvɑːns/ us /ədˈvæns/

advance verb (MOVE FORWARD)

[ I or T ] to go or move something forward, or to develop or improve something:

The fire advanced steadily through the forest.
The troops advanced on the city (= approached it, ready to attack).
We have advanced greatly in our knowledge of the universe.
Her study has considerably advanced (= helped) the cause of equal rights.
He's just trying to advance (= improve) his own career.

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advance verb (INCREASE)

[ I ] If something such as a share price advances, it increases in value:

On the New York Stock Exchange 1,228 issues advanced and 1,157 declined .


uk /ədˈvɑːns/ us /ədˈvæns/

advance noun (MOVEMENT)

B2 [ C or U ] the forward movement of something, or an improvement or development in something:

Nothing could stop the advance of the floodwaters.
Recent advances in medical science mean that this illness can now be cured.

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advance noun (MONEY)

money paid to someone before the regular time:

She asked for a £300 advance on her salary.

advance noun (SEX)

[ C usually plural ] an attempt to start a sexual or romantic relationship with someone:

She rejected his unwelcome advances.

advance noun (PRICE)

[ C ] something such as a share price that increases in value:

Declining stocks easily defeated advances 413 to 302.

advanceadjective [ before noun ]

uk /ədˈvɑːns/ us /ədˈvæns/

(Definition of “advance” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"advance" in American English

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advanceverb [ I/T ]

us /ədˈvæns, æd-/

advance verb [ I/T ] (MOVE FORWARD)

to go or move something forward, or to develop or improve something:

[ T ] Research has advanced our understanding of the virus.
[ I ] Tonight’s winner advances to the semifinals.
noun [ U ] us /ədˈvæns·mənt, æd-/

They did nothing for the advancement of women.



us /ədˈvæns, æd-/

advance adjective (HAPPENING EARLY)

happening before an event:

We got no advance warning of the changes.


us /ədˈvæns, æd-/

advance noun (HAPPENING EARLY)

[ C ] money paid before something happens:

Most authors get an advance on royalties they’ll earn later.

advance noun (MOVING FORWARD)

[ C/U ] an act of moving something forward or improving something:

[ C ] Technological advances have changed TV news.
[ U ] The army’s advance was halted.
[ C ] fig. She rejected his unwelcome advances (= attempts to make her interested in him).

(Definition of “advance” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"advance" in Business English

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uk /ədˈvɑːns/ us

[ C or U ] an improvement relating to a particular activity or area of knowledge:

Doctors believe that the findings represent a major advance in treating heart disease.
The government's White Paper embodies the hopes of those who believe in the advance of the digital age.
technological/medical/economic advances What has been the impact of technological advances on the securities markets?
advances in sth Advances in drilling and production technologies have significantly reduced the risk of a major oil spill.

[ C ] FINANCE money that is paid to a person or organization before the usual time or before a piece of work is finished:

Loans and advances usually represent the single largest asset of most banks.
Publishers generally pay an advance once the author finishes the manuscript.
The US singer will receive a $17.5m cash advance on signing the 10-year contract.

[ C ] FINANCE, STOCK MARKET an increase in the price or value of something such as a share or a currency:

Declining stocks easily defeated advances 413 to 302.
advance in sth Every one yen advance in the Japanese currency's value against the dollar could reduce current profits by as much as five billion yen.
in advance (of sth)

before something else happens or is done:

Ticket prices are cheaper if bought in advance.
Rating agencies issued statements of the city's financial condition in advance of this week's sale of $500 million in bonds.
See also


uk /ədˈvɑːns/ us

[ I or T ] to develop and become successful, or to make something do this:

Biotechnology continues to advance at a rapid pace.
advance to sth She eventually advanced to vice-chairman of the bank.
advance your career/interests/position Some employees decide to study for an MBA in order to advance their careers.

[ I ] FINANCE, STOCK MARKET to increase in value:

On the New York Stock Exchange 1,128 issues advanced and 1,057 declined .
advance 5.5 cents/8p/10.9 points, etc. The general stock index advanced 1.94 points, or 0.04%, to 5291.45.
advance against sth The dollar advanced against the Japanese yen.

[ I ] to increase in number, amount, or value:

Overall, consumer prices are advancing at a modest rate.
Pre-tax profits advanced 10% to €252m.

to suggest a new idea or plan to a group of people:

Measures advanced by the General Assembly included reducing vehicle carbon-dioxide emissions.
advance a plan/proposal/theory Several proposals for reform were advanced by members of Congress.

[ T ] FINANCE to give someone money before the usual time or before a piece of work is finished:

advance sb sth Two weeks ago I hired him, and advanced him $10,000.
advance sth to sb Evidence shows that lenders are becoming more discriminating in advancing loans to borrowers.

[ T ] to change the date or time of an event to an earlier one:

No plans were made to advance the board meeting.

advanceadjective [ before noun ]

uk /ədˈvɑːns/ us

done or made before something else happens:

Critics argue that advance planning would have little impact on final policy decisions.
advance knowledge/information Having advance information can be a powerful tool to negotiating a rate on a loan.
advance bookings/sales/subscriptions Advance sales are down by about 3%.
advance notice/warning Federal laws require companies to provide advance notice when laying off workers.
Russell has been offered an advance payment of $450,000 for her next novel.

(Definition of “advance” from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)