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English definition of “handicap”

handicap

noun uk   /ˈhæn.dɪ.kæp/ us  

handicap noun (CONDITION)

[C or U] old-fashioned something that is wrong with your mind or body permanently. This word is now considered offensive by many people, who prefer the word disability: a physical handicap In cases of severe mental handicap, constant supervision is recommended.

handicap noun (DIFFICULTY)

[C] something that makes it difficult for you to do something: I found not having a car quite a handicap in the country.

handicap noun (COMPETITION)

[C] a disadvantage given to a person taking part in a game or competition in order to reduce their chances of winning, or a sports event in which such disadvantages are given: Handicaps give people with different abilities an equal chance of winning. My current golf handicap is nine.

handicap

verb [T] uk   /ˈhæn.dɪ.kæp/ (-pp-) us  
to make something more difficult to do: Rescue efforts have been handicapped by rough seas and hurricane-force winds.
(Definition of handicap from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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