Meaning of “front” in the English Dictionary

"front" in British English

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frontnoun [ C usually singular ]

uk /frʌnt/ us /frʌnt/

front noun [ C usually singular ] (PLACE)

A2 the part of a building, object, or person's body that faces forward or is most often seen or used:

The front of the museum is very impressive.
He spilled soup all down the front of his shirt.
He was lying on his front.
The actor walked out to the front of the stage.
The shop front occupies a very prominent position on the main street.

A2 the part of a vehicle that is nearest to its direction of movement:

Do you want to sit in the front (= next to the driver)?
If we sit near the front of the bus, we'll have a better view.

the outside part or cover of a book, newspaper, or magazine:

There was a picture of the Trevi fountain on the front of the book.

one of the first pages in a book:

There's an inscription in the front of the book.
in front

B1 further forward than someone or something else:

The car in front suddenly stopped and I slammed on the brakes.
She started talking to the man in front of her.

UK winning a game or competition:

By half time the Italians were well in front.
in front of

A2 close to the front part of something:

There's parking space in front of the hotel.

A2 where someone can see or hear you:

Please don't swear in front of the children.
up front

If you give someone an amount of money up front, you pay that person before they do something for you:

He wants all the money up front or he won't do the job.

More examples

  • He elbowed his way to the front of the crowd.
  • There are two entrances - one at the front and one round the back.
  • When the doors opened she barged her way to the front of the queue.
  • This plan shows the front, side and back elevations of the new supermarket.
  • Her name was emblazoned across the front of the theatre.

front noun [ C usually singular ] (APPEARANCE)

[ C usually singular ] the character or qualities that a person or organization appears to have in public that are different from their real character or qualities, and whose purpose is often to deceive people or hide an illegal activity:

Don't be fooled by his kindness and sensitivity - it's just a front.
She presents such a cheerful front that you'd never guess she's ill.
The machinery company was a front operation for arms smuggling.
Several trading companies were set up in the early 1960s to act as fronts for money-laundering operations.

front noun [ C usually singular ] (AREA OF FIGHTING)

the place where fighting takes place in a war:

He was a soldier on the Western front in World War I.

Idiom(s)

frontadjective [ before noun ]

uk /frʌnt/ us /frʌnt/

frontverb

uk /frʌnt/ us /frʌnt/

[ I or T ] also front onto If a building or area fronts (onto) a particular place, it is near it and faces it:

All the apartments front onto the sea.

[ T ] to lead an organization or group of musicians:

She fronts a large IT company.
be fronted with

If a building is fronted with something, its surface is covered with it:

The kitchen has oak cabinets fronted with glass.

Phrasal verb(s)

Frontnoun [ C usually singular ]

uk /frʌnt/ us /frʌnt/ UK

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

"front" in American English

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frontnoun

us /frʌnt/

front noun (PLACE)

[ C ] the most forward position or most important side of an object or surface:

The front of the house faces Peach Street.
My little boy can’t eat ice cream without most of it dripping down the front of his shirt.
You’ll find the date of publication in the front of the book.
I like to sit near the front of the plane so that I can be among the first to get off.
Do you want me to lie on my front (= the side of my body that faces forward) or on my back?
Would you like me to sit in the front (= most forward seat) or the back of the car?
Dad pushed Matthew in the stroller while David and Stephen walked in front (= farther forward than the others) .

[ C ] in a position close to the most forward or most important part:

They chatted for a while in front of the apartment house.
in front of

Someone who is in front of someone else is in a position directly forward of that person:

Carla and Bob were sitting in front of me at the movie.

front noun (AREA OF ACTIVITY)

[ C usually sing ] a particular area of activity:

Now let’s take a look at news on the health front.
I’m not having much luck on the job front.

front noun (APPEARANCE)

[ U ] an appearance that a person chooses to show to others instead of showing his or her true feelings:

Even though he doesn’t like his in-laws, he always puts on a cheerful front when they come to visit.

[ U ] A front can also be a person, group, or thing used to hide the real character of a secret or illegal activity:

The society was a front for making illegal political contributions.

front noun (WEATHER)

earth science [ C ] the advancing edge of a mass of cold or warm air:

a cold/warm front

front noun (POLITICAL GROUP)

[ C usually sing ] an organization of political groups united to put forward ideas or programs that they share:

The Animal Liberation Front promised to continue targeting the company until all animal testing stops.

Idiom(s)

frontverb [ I/T ]

us /frʌnt/

front verb [ I/T ] (PLACE)

to face or be next to something:

[ I/T ] Houses fronting (on) the ocean are the most expensive.

frontadjective [ not gradable ]

us /frʌnt/

front adjective [ not gradable ] (PLACE)

in or at the front of something:

I’d like seats in the front row of the balcony.
Alice designed the front cover of the book.
I always go in through the front door instead of going around to the back.

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

"front" in Business English

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frontnoun

uk /frʌnt/ us

[ C ] the part of a building that faces or is nearest to the street or that is most often seen or used:

shop/store front The shop front occupies a very prominent position on the main street.
at the front of sth The new styles were displayed at the front of the store.

[ S ] used to refer to a particular area of activity:

How are things on the work front?
She's very creative on the design front.

[ S ] behaviour that a person shows in public and that is different from their real character:

Don't be fooled by his apparent sympathy - it's just a front.

[ C, usually singular ] a person or organization that is used to deceive people or to hide an illegal activity:

The trading company was set up in 2001 to act as a front for money-laundering operations.
in front (of sb/sth)

more successful than other people or companies doing the same job or in the same industry:

Major brand leaders got out in front first and have set the pace for other companies.
up front

if you give someone an amount of money up front, you pay them before they do something for you:

He wants all the money up front or he won't do the job.
front of mind also top of mind

MARKETING if a brand, product, or company is front of mind, it is the first one that people think of when they are considering buying something:

We need advertising that will keep the brand front of mind and help reinforce brand values.

considered very important and usually thought of first by people:

Food safety issues affect everyone and are becoming increasingly front of mind with consumers today.

See also

frontadjective

uk /frʌnt/ us
on the front burner

considered very important and to be dealt with or given attention before other things:

keep/put sth on the front burner We need to put this project on the front burner and finish it as soon as possible.

frontverb

uk /frʌnt/ us

[ I or T ] also front on/onto PROPERTY if a building or area fronts or fronts on or onto a particular place, it is near it and faces it:

The store fronts the central square at the mall.

[ T ] to lead an organization, or be the person with the main responsibility for a particular project, etc.:

She fronts a large IT company in Germany.
They appointed him to front the takeover bid.

Phrasal verb(s)

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