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English definition of “ask”

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ask

verb
 
 
/ɑːsk/
QUESTION [I, T] A1 to say something to someone as a question that you want them to answer: [+ two objects] Can I ask you a few questions? I asked him about his hobbies. [+ question word] I asked why the plane was so late.Questioning people and asking questions in generalCuriositySuspecting and questioning
WANT SOMETHING [I, T] B1 to say something to someone because you want them to give you something: He's asked for a bike for his birthday.Making appeals and requests
REQUEST [I, T] B1 to say something to someone because you want them to do something: [+ to do sth] They've asked me to look after their dog while they're away.Making appeals and requests
INVITE [T] A2 to invite someone to do something: She asked him out to lunch the next day.Inviting and summoning
WANT PERMISSION [I, T] B1 to say something to someone because you want to know if you can do something: Bruce asked if he could stay with us for a few days. [+ to do sth] She asked to leave early.Making appeals and requests
PRICE [T] to want a particular amount of money for something that you sell: How much are you asking for it?Buying and selling in general
ask yourself sth to think about something carefully: You've got to ask yourself whether it's what you really want.Thinking and contemplating
ask for it/trouble informal to behave in a way that is likely to make something unpleasant happen to you or to cause you problems: His wife left him, but it seems to me he was asking for it. Drinking and driving is asking for trouble.Behaving in a silly wayCausing difficulties for oneself or others
don't ask me informal B2 used to tell someone that you do not know the answer to a question and that you are surprised they have asked you: Don't ask me why you left your last job!Questioning people and asking questions in generalCuriositySuspecting and questioning
you may well ask said to someone who has asked you a question that would be difficult or interesting to answerQuestioning people and asking questions in generalCuriositySuspecting and questioning
(Definition of ask from the Cambridge Learners Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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