Meaning of “finish” in the English Dictionary

"finish" in British English

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finishverb

uk /ˈfɪn.ɪʃ/ us /ˈfɪn.ɪʃ/

finish verb (COMPLETE/END)

A1 [ I or T ] to complete something or come to the end of an activity:

I'll call you when I've finished my homework.
Please place your questionnaire in the box when you're finished.
She finished (the concert) with a song from her first album.
She finished second (= in second place) in the finals.
[ + -ing verb ] Have you finished reading that magazine?
They've already run out of money and the building isn't even half-finished (= half of it has not been completed).

A1 [ I ] to end:

The meeting should finish around four o'clock.
The play finishes with a wedding.

B1 [ T ] to eat, drink, or use something completely so that none remains:

Make sure she finishes her dinner.
He finished his drink and left.
We finished (= ate all of) the pie last night.

More examples

  • We've got two clear weeks in which to finish the decorating.
  • Did you finish your essay in the allotted time?
  • School starts at 9 a.m. and finishes at 3.30 p.m.
  • I'll be with you directly I've finished this letter.
  • When do you envisage finishing the project?

finish verb (WOOD)

[ T ] If you finish something made of wood, you give it a last covering of paint, polish, or varnish so that it is ready to be used.

finishnoun [ C ]

uk /ˈfɪn.ɪʃ/ us /ˈfɪn.ɪʃ/

finish noun [ C ] (COMPLETE/END)

B1 the end of a race, or the last part of something:

a close finish
They replayed the finish in slow motion.

More examples

  • The runner collapsed just a few paces from the finish.
  • I'm a realist - I knew there was no way I could win, so I swam for a good finish, for points.
  • John left early, but we stayed until the finish.
  • It was one of the most exciting finishes I've ever seen.
  • There was a very close finish in the men's 100 metres.

finish noun [ C ] (WOOD)

the condition of the surface of a material such as wood:

Look at the beautiful shiny finish on that piano.

the last covering of varnish, polish, or paint, that is put onto something:

Even a clear finish will alter the colour of wood slightly.

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

"finish" in American English

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finishverb [ I/T ]

us /ˈfɪn·ɪʃ/

to come to an end:

[ I ] The meeting should finish at four o’clock.
[ T ] If you’ll let me finish my sentence, I’ll explain it to you.

To finish can also mean to complete something:

[ I ] She didn’t win but she did finish second.
[ T ] Have you finished that magazine?

To finish can also mean to use completely:

[ T ] We may as well finish the rest of this pasta.

finishnoun [ C ]

us /ˈfɪn·ɪʃ/

the end of a race, or the last part of something:

Both candidates are predicting a close finish in this election.

A finish is the appearance of the surface of something or the last covering, as of paint, put onto it:

a glossy finish

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

"finish" in Business English

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finishverb [ I or T ]

uk /ˈfɪnɪʃ/ us

STOCK MARKET to end at a particular level or price at the end of a period of trading on a financial market:

finish down/up The FTSE 100 finished down 4.1 at 4,468.7.
finish above/below sth The Dow Jones industrial average finished below 13,000 for the first time since April.
finish at sth Its stock finished at $39.08, up 25 percent from a 52-week low of $31.15.
Headline shares finished the day higher after a positive start to the week.
See also

to be in a particular position at the end of a period of time:

The company finished the financial year £56 million in deficit.

finishnoun

uk /ˈfɪnɪʃ/ us

[ S ] STOCK MARKET the end of a period of trading on a financial market:

The markets ended the week with a strong finish.

[ S ] the fact of being in a particular position at the end of a period of time:

There were signs of a positive finish to the year for the tourist industry.

[ C ] the way that something looks when it is complete:

The use of good-quality paper and an attractive folder will add a professional finish to your printed presentation.

[ C ] the last covering of paint, etc. that is put onto a surface:

All these items are available in a range of finishes.

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