Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “about”

See all translations

about

preposition  /əˈbɑʊt/ us  

about preposition (CONNECTED WITH)

on the subject of; connected with: "What’s that book about?" "It’s about the Civil War." I don’t know what all the fuss is about. There’s something about her attitude that worries me.

about

adverb [not gradable]  /əˈbɑʊt/ us  

about adverb [not gradable] (APPROXIMATELY)

a little more or less than a specific number; approximately: He’s about six feet tall. It happened about two months ago. I’ve had just about enough of your complaining (= I do not want to hear any more).

about

adjective [+ to infinitive; not gradable]  /əˈbɑʊt/ us  

about adjective [+ to infinitive; not gradable] (INTENDING)

almost ready to do something, or intending to do something soon: He looked as if he was about to burst into tears. I’m not about to apologize to him.

about

preposition, adjective, adverb [not gradable]  /əˈbɑʊt/ ( also around) us  

about preposition, adjective, adverb [not gradable] (IN THIS PLACE)

positioned or moving in or near a place: Reporters stood about, waiting for more news.
(Definition of about from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of about?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “about” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

sail

When a boat or a ship sails, it travels on the water.

Word of the Day

Byronic, Orwellian and Darwinian: adjectives from names.

by Liz Walter,
April 15, 2015
Becoming an adjective is a strange kind of memorial, but it is often a sign of a person having had real influence on the world. Science is full of examples, from Hippocrates, the Greek medic born around 460 BC, who gave his name to the Hippocratic Oath still used by doctors today,

Read More 

dumbwalking noun

April 20, 2015
walking slowly, without paying attention to the world around you because you are consulting a smartphone He told me dumbwalking probably wouldn’t be a long-term problem.

Read More