cut Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary Cambridge dictionaries logo

Meaning of “cut” in the English Dictionary

"cut" in British English

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uk   us   /kʌt/ (present participle cutting, past tense and past participle cut)
  • cut verb (USE KNIFE)

A2 [I or T] to ​break the ​surface of something, or to ​divide or make something ​smaller, using a ​sharptool, ​especially a ​knife: to cut a ​slice of ​bread I cut myself/my ​hand on that ​glass/with that ​knife. Cut the ​meat up into ​smallpieces. This ​knife doesn't cut very well. Where did you haveyourhair cut? [+ obj + adj ] Firefighters had to cut the ​trappeddriver loose/​free (= cut the ​metal to ​allow the ​driver to get out of the ​car) using ​specialequipment. He ​fell off the ​swing and cut his ​head open (= got a ​deep cut in his ​head). He cut the ​cake in/into six (​pieces) and gave each ​child a ​slice.

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  • cut verb (REDUCE)

B2 [T] to make something ​shorter, ​lower, ​smaller, etc.: to cut ​prices/​costs to cut ​overtime/​wages

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  • cut verb (REMOVE)

B2 [T] to ​remove something from something ​else: The ​sexscenes had been cut out of the TV ​version of the ​film.cut and paste to ​move words or ​pictures from one ​place to another in a ​computerdocumentcut sb out of your will to ​decide not to ​leave someone any of ​yourmoney or possessions when you ​die

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  • cut verb (STOP)

[I or T] to ​stop or ​interrupt something: to cut an ​engine/a ​motor "Cut! (= ​stopfilming!)" ​shouted the ​director.cut sb short to ​stop someone from ​talking before they have ​finished what they were saying: He ​started to ​explain, but she cut him ​short.cut it/that out! informal used to ​tell someone to ​stoptalking or ​stopbehaving in an ​annoying way: Just cut it out! I've had enough of ​yourtimewasting.
  • cut verb (TAKE SHORT WAY)

[I usually + adv/prep] to go through or ​across a ​place, ​especially in ​order to get ​somewherequickly: to cut through a ​passagecut a corner UK to ​fail to ​keep to ​your own ​side of the ​road when going round a ​corner
  • cut verb (CARDS)

[I or T] to ​choose a ​playingcard by ​dividing a ​pile of ​cards into two ​parts: Who's going to cut the ​cards?


uk   us   /kʌt/
  • cut noun (PASSAGE)

US (UK cutting) a ​deep, ​narrowpassage made through a ​hill for a ​road, ​railway, or canal
(Definition of cut from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"cut" in American English

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 us   /kʌt/ (present participle cutting, past tense and past participle cut)
  • cut verb (DIVIDE)

[I/T] to use a ​sharptool such as a ​knife to ​break the ​surface of something, ​divide something, or make something ​smaller: [T] Cut the ​apple in ​half. [T] She ​wanted to have her ​hair cut (= made ​shorter). [M] We had to cut two ​trees down (= ​remove them) to make ​room for the ​swimmingpool. [M] The ​children cut the ​pictures out (= ​removed them by cutting) and ​stuck them in ​theirscrapbooks. [I/T] A ​person who is cut is ​injured by something ​sharp that ​breaks the ​skin and ​causesbleeding: [T] I ​stepped on a ​piece of ​glass and cut my ​foot.
  • cut verb (REDUCE)

[T] to make less in ​size, ​amount, ​length, etc.: We’ve got to cut ​costs. The ​originalmovie was ​almost four ​hourslong, but it was ​later cut to two ​hours.
  • cut verb (MISS)

[T] to ​stay away from a ​class, ​talk, ​performance, etc., that you have a duty to go to: He was cutting ​classes and getting ​failinggrades.
  • cut verb (STOP)

[I/T] to ​stop or ​interrupt something, or to ​stopworkingsuddenly or ​cause this to ​happen: [I always + adv/prep] Since his ​illness he’s cut out ​eatingsweetsaltogether. [T] Because of ​failinggrades, he was cut (= ​released) from the ​team. [I] “Cut! (= Stop ​filming!)” ​shouted the ​director.
  • cut verb (GROW TEETH)

[T] to ​grow a new ​tooth: The ​baby was ​cranky last ​night because she’s cutting a ​tooth.
  • cut verb (CROSS)

[I always + adv/prep] to go through or ​across a ​place, esp. in ​order to get ​somewherequickly: To get to ​school I cut through the ​field.
  • cut verb (CARDS)

[I/T] to ​divide a ​pile of ​cards into two ​parts: [I/T] Who’s going to cut (the ​cards)?
  • cut verb (RECORD)

[T] to make a ​recording of ​music or ​speech on a ​record: When did Elvis cut his first ​record?
cut across something phrasal verb
to ​include several things that usually are separated from each other: Iron ​deficiency in women cuts ​across all ​socioeconomiclevels.
cut back (something) phrasal verb [M]
to ​reduce or ​stop: He was ​advised to cut back on sugary ​sodas. Cancel the ​service, or cut it back to “​basic.”
cut down (something) phrasal verb [M]
to ​reduce something in ​amount, ​size, or ​number of ​timesrepeated: I’ve ​decided to cut down on ​snacks. Seat ​belts have cut down the ​number of ​injuries in ​caraccidents.
cut in phrasal verb
  • cut verb (INTERRUPT)

to ​interrupt someone who is ​talking: I was ​talking to Jeff when Amy cut in.
cut someone in phrasal verb [M]
to ​include someone in a ​plan, ​activity, or ​process: Next ​time you get ​freeconcerttickets, cut me in.
cut off something/someone phrasal verb [M]
  • cut verb (STOP)

to ​stop or ​interrupt something ​suddenly, or to ​stop someone from ​speaking: We were cut off in the ​middle of ​ourphoneconversation.
cut off someone/something phrasal verb [M]
  • cut verb (DRIVE)

(of a ​driver or ​vehicle) to move ​suddenly in ​front of another ​driver or ​vehicle, ​leaving too little ​space: He ​claimed that a ​truck had cut him off just before the ​accident.
cut someone out phrasal verb [M]
to ​keep someone from taking ​part in a ​plan, ​activity, or ​process: Some ​critics say the ​proposedamendment is ​effectively cutting ​others out of the ​planningprocess.
cut out for something phrasal verb
to be the ​righttype of ​person for a ​particularjob or ​activity: He’s just not cut out for ​politics.
cut something short phrasal verb [M]
to ​stop something ​suddenly before it is ​completed: We cut ​shortourvacation when we ​learned of my mother’s ​illness.
cut through something phrasal verb
to ​understand something that is not ​easy to ​understand: She can cut through the ​confusingstatistics and get at the ​importantfacts.

cutnoun [C]

 us   /kʌt/
  • cut noun [C] (REDUCTION)

a reduction in the ​size, ​amount, ​length, etc., of something: Many ​workers had to take a cut in ​pay. For the TV ​version, they made several cuts in the ​movie.
  • cut noun [C] (SOMETHING DIVIDED)

something made by cutting: She went to the butcher’s to get a good cut of ​meat. A cut is an ​injury to the ​skin made by a ​sharpobject: She had a ​nasty cut on her ​hand. A cut is also the ​particular way ​clothinglooks: the cut of a ​suit infml A cut is also a ​share: I was part-owner of the ​business, and when my ​sistersold it, I said I ​wanted my cut.

cutadjective [not gradable]

 us   /kʌt/
(of ​flowers) ​removed from ​theirroots by being cut through ​theirstems so they can be used for ​decoration: These cut ​flowers will last three ​days in ​freshwater.
(Definition of cut from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"cut" in Business English

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cutverb [T]

uk   us   /kʌt/ (cutting, cut, cut)
to make something ​lower, ​smaller, ​shorter, etc.: cut sth (from sth) (to sth) We have cut our ​wagebill from £12,000 to £8,000 ​per week.cut sth (from sth) We need to cut 50% from our ​advertisingbudget.cut sth (by sth) The ​manufacturinggroupaims to cut its ​carbonemissions by 20% over the next five ​years. cut jobs/staff/the workforce Schmitz Chemicals ​plans to cut 20,000 ​jobsworldwide. cut ​borrowing/​costs/​spending cut ​output/​production
See also
to ​remove something from a ​document, especially from a ​document on a ​computerscreen: The ​report is too ​long – I need to cut 500 words. I'll cut and ​paste some photos from our ​onlinecatalogue into my ​presentation.
cut a deal to ​reach an ​agreement: The carmaker has cut a ​deal withunions to ​limitpayrises.
cut both/two ways to ​work in two ways, or to have two ​oppositeeffects: Setting ​prices high cuts both ways – it could ​lose some ​customers, but it also suggests high-quality.
cut corners to do something in a way that ​savestime or ​money, but that ​reducesquality: If a ​restaurant cuts corners on ​ingredients, it will ​losecustomers.
cut it informal to successfully do what you are ​asked to do: Some ​peoplework well under ​pressure; others can't cut it. For ​heavyoffice use, this ​printer just doesn't cut it.
cut it/things fine informal to ​leave very little, or not enough, ​time to do something: It's two o'clock now, so you're cutting it ​fine if you need to be at the ​airport by three.
cut your losses to ​avoidlosing any more ​money than you have already ​lost: The ​manufacturer has decided to cut its ​losses and ​sell its ​unprofitabledivisions.

cutnoun [C]

uk   us   /kʌt/
a ​reduction in the ​amount or ​level of something: a 0.25% cut ininterestrates The ​supermarket is expected to make ​drasticjob cuts to its 9,000-strong ​workforce.big/deep/swingeing, etc. cuts There will need to be ​big cuts in ​publicspending. price/​spending/​tax, etc. cuts job/​pay/​wage, etc. cutsmake/propose/threaten, etc. cuts The ​industryregulator announced that it is ​proposingprice cuts of at least 7%.
informal a ​share in an ​amount of ​money: If you make a ​profit on the ​deal, I'll expect a cut.
(Definition of cut from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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“cut” in Business English

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