Meaning of “runaway” in the English Dictionary

"runaway" in English

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uk /ˈrʌn.ə.weɪ/ us /ˈrʌn.ə.weɪ/

having escaped or run away from somewhere:

a runaway child sleeping on the streets
a runaway bride (= who ran away from her wedding)

out of control:

A runaway bus/horse caused chaos on the streets.
We have to rein in our runaway spending.

Runaway success is surprisingly sudden or great:

Her first novel's runaway success came as a great surprise.
He is the runaway leader at the top of the competition scoreboard.

runawaynoun [ C ]

uk us

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

"runaway" in American English

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runawayadjective [ not gradable ]

us /ˈrʌn·əˌweɪ/

runaway adjective [ not gradable ] (not controlled)

being or seeming to be out of control, or happening suddenly and strongly:

runaway health-care costs
From the moment he launched the Boy Scout movement in 1908, it was a runaway success.

runawaynoun [ C ]

us /ˈrʌn·əˌweɪ/

runaway noun [ C ] (person)

a young person who has left home without permission

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

"runaway" in Business English

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runawayadjective [ before noun ]

also run-away uk /ˈrʌnəˌweɪ/ us

rising quickly in a way that is not under control:

highly successful:

a runaway bestseller/favourite/hit The reality is that a new musical needs to be a runaway hit to survive the economics of Broadway.

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