Meaning of “buttonhole” in the English Dictionary

"buttonhole" in British English

See all translations

buttonholenoun [ C ]

uk /ˈbʌt.ən.həʊl/ us /ˈbʌt̬.ən.hoʊl/

buttonholeverb [ T ]

uk /ˈbʌt.ən.həʊl/ us /ˈbʌt̬.ən.hoʊl/

to stop someone and make them listen to you:

Greg buttonholed me about sales figures when I came out of the meeting.

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

"buttonhole" in American English

See all translations

buttonholenoun [ C ]

us /ˈbʌt·ənˌhoʊl/

buttonhole noun [ C ] (HOLE FOR BUTTON)

a narrow hole that a button is pushed through to fasten a shirt, coat, etc.

buttonholeverb [ T ]

us /ˈbʌt·ənˌhoʊl/

buttonhole verb [ T ] (MAKE SOMEONE LISTEN)

to stop someone and make the person listen to you:

They took out newspaper ads and buttonholed politicians to lobby for the change.

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