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English definition of “sting”

sting

verb uk   /stɪŋ/ (stung, stung) us  

sting verb (HURT)

[I or T] If an insect, plant, or animal stings, it produces a small but painful injury, usually with a poison, by brushing against the skin or making a very small hole under the skin: Do all types of bee sting? I got stung by a wasp yesterday. I didn't see the nettles until I was stung by them. [I or T] to cause sharp but usually temporary pain: The soap/smoke/sweat stung my eyes. This type of disinfectant doesn't sting, even if you put it on a fresh cut. [I or T] If someone's unkind remarks sting, they make you feel upset and annoyed: She knew he was right, but his words still stung. He was stung by her criticisms. She managed to give a stinging reply (= an angry answer intended to upset), before slamming down the phone.

sting verb (CHARGE)

[T] informal to charge someone a surprisingly large amount of money for something: The bank stung me for £50 in charges when I went overdrawn.

sting

noun uk   /stɪŋ/ us  

sting noun (HURT)

[C or S] a sudden burning pain in your eyes, on your skin, etc., or the ability to cause such pain: She had several bee stings. the sting of salt in a wound Some types of jellyfish have a powerful sting. [S] the feeling of being upset by something: the sting of defeat [C] UK (US stinger) a pointed part of an insect, plant, or animal that goes through a person's or animal's skin and leaves behind poison

sting noun (GETTING STH)

[C] US a clever and complicated act of stealing: A bank employee was involved in the sting in which $5 million was stolen. [C] mainly US a police action to catch criminals in which the police pretend to be criminals: a sting operation
(Definition of sting from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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