Meaning of “wide” in the English Dictionary

"wide" in British English

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uk /waɪd/ us /waɪd/

wide adjective (DISTANCE)

A2 having a larger distance from one side to the other than is usual or expected, especially in comparison with the length of something; not narrow:

His eyes were wide (= opened much more than usual) with surprise.
See also

B1 used when describing how long the distance between the two sides of something is or when asking for this information:

The rectangle is 5 cm long and 1.9 cm wide.
The swimming pool is five metres wide.
How wide are your skis?

More examples

  • The wardrobe is 2 m high, 1 m wide and 60 cm deep.
  • The bed is too wide - we'll never get it through the door.
  • Stand with your feet wide apart.
  • Open your mouth wide and say "Ah".
  • Someone had left the window wide open.

wide adjective (AMOUNT)

B1 used to describe something that includes a large amount or many different types of thing, or that covers a large range or area:

They sell a wide range of skin-care products.
She has a wide experience of teaching, in many different schools.
The idea no longer enjoys wide support (= the support of many people).

More examples

  • The evening menu offers a wide choice of dishes.
  • We sell a wide range of cosmetics and toiletries at a very reasonable price.
  • The accessibility of her plays means that she is able to reach a wide audience.
  • She won the presidency by a wide margin.
  • A wide spectrum of opinion was represented at the meeting.


uk /waɪd/ us /waɪd/

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

"wide" in American English

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wideadjective [ -er/-est only ]

us /wɑɪd/

wide adjective [ -er/-est only ] (FAR FROM SIDE TO SIDE)

far from one side to the other, esp. in comparison with length from top to bottom, or being a particular distance across:

a wide window
a wide yard
The bay is 15 miles wide here.

Wide open spaces are land with no buildings on it.

wide adjective [ -er/-est only ] (MANY OR MUCH)

covering a large area, or including many types of things:

They sell a wide range of skin-care products.
The candidate has wide support (= the support of many people).

wideadverb [ -er/-est only ]

us /wɑɪd/

wide adverb [ -er/-est only ] (COMPLETELY)

to the greatest degree possible; completely:

I was wide awake.
The dentist said, "Open wide."

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