Main definitions of basic in English

: basic1BASIC2

basic1

adjective

  • 1Forming an essential foundation or starting point; fundamental.

    ‘certain basic rules must be obeyed’
    ‘the laying down of arms is basic to the agreement’
    • ‘A more flexible labour market is basic to our recent economic success.’
    • ‘This mix of a legume and grass is basic to pasture in New Zealand.’
    • ‘He claimed that outstanding scientific collections were basic to first-rate scientific work.’
    • ‘Cheap labor and materials are basic to postwar industry and finances.’
    • ‘Abundance and the variety and quality of raw ingredients have been basic to American cookery from the beginning.’
    • ‘Throughout the day they constantly freshened their makeup and adjusted their hair ornaments, and a mirror was of course basic to these tasks.’
    • ‘It is basic to our sense of security, stability, educational success and health.’
    • ‘The question you have asked is basic to much of modern-day science activity.’
    • ‘Differentiation, diversity and thus complexity are basic to the beauty of creation.’
    • ‘Digital imaging standardization is basic to all image decision support systems.’
    • ‘This kind of scepticism is basic to the English political tradition, whose truths force themselves upon all governments.’
    • ‘Worship, silence and manual labour were basic to the regime of communities which later provided educational and medical services.’
    • ‘Reciprocity was basic to all forms of social interaction in ancient Mediterranean society.’
    • ‘I take this to be basic to poetry and to art in general, though I realize that this is not true for many poets, at the moment.’
    • ‘Design and craft fulfil practical needs, but they are elevated from the absolute basic to an interactive experience.’
    • ‘Place the things that are most important and functionally basic to the site's purpose at the forefront.’
    • ‘Access to information is basic to the democratic way of life.’
    • ‘Principles generally accepted as basic to democracy are those of political equality and popular control of government.’
    • ‘Readers' support is no doubt very basic to the survival of any periodical.’
    • ‘Writing about the environment and about how science affects people is as basic to the trade as writing about money or politics.’
    fundamental, rudimentary, primary, principal, cardinal, chief, elementary, elemental, root
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    1. 1.1 Offering or constituting the minimum required without elaboration or luxury.
      ‘the food was good, if a bit basic’
      • ‘Shopping carts range from basic to those with more advanced options.’
      • ‘This should lead to a form that requires families to list their basic contact information.’
      • ‘You'll find the most basic offerings are the healthiest ones as well.’
      • ‘Though we found them to be tasty enough, it would be difficult for such basic offerings to be made truly impressive.’
      • ‘His product has the advantage of being faster than most rivals' basic broadband offerings.’
      • ‘Keep your potatoes basic to make them a beneficial part of your diet.’
      • ‘We are not talking about luxury extras, but basic programmed repairs.’
      • ‘Forest dwelling hunter-gatherer communities are never very large, but they need a basic minimum area for subsistence.’
      • ‘The question seems almost too basic: What constitutes successful treatment?’
      • ‘We will illustrate this in several conservative portfolios running from basic to fully developed.’
      • ‘It has some really fun recipes, ranging from very basic to quite advanced.’
      • ‘But, in general the musical tastes of the kids in Wales was basic to say the least.’
      • ‘Let's take a look at several different toplogies, from basic to more advanced.’
      • ‘I know it seems kinda basic to be writing this, I mean, we're all skiers here right?’
      • ‘What are the basic minimum requirements for one to set up a restaurant and do these so called restaurants meet the standards?’
      • ‘The following list is a minimum basic guide as to what you will need.’
      • ‘Accommodation on safari varies from basic camping to luxury lodges and tented camps.’
      • ‘The business jet also comes with a choice of interior decoration ranging from the basic to sumptuous.’
      • ‘Contestants will have limited food and are only allowed to take with them two basic luxury items.’
      • ‘Almost any operating system can meet the basic task requirements you listed.’
      lowest, bottom, starting, ground, undermost
      plain, simple, unsophisticated, straightforward, adequate, unadorned, undecorated, unornamented, without frills
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    2. 1.2 Common to or required by everyone; primary and ineradicable or inalienable.
      ‘basic human rights’
      • ‘We treat food as a marketable commodity, instead of as a basic human necessity.’
      • ‘Being a week of Remembrance, we all need to observe that everyone has the basic human right to freedom of speech.’
      • ‘I agree that substantial freedoms are a vital component of basic human dignity.’
      • ‘Revenge is a basic human emotion, but revenge only becomes justice if carried out by the State.’
      • ‘Best of all, his choreography speaks unabashedly from and to basic human emotions.’
      • ‘That philosophy is that there is a basic human right of health for everyone.’
      • ‘Many constitutions require that basic rights can be curtailed only if less onerous measures are not available.’
      • ‘The business is still profitable as everyone needs basic commodities regardless of price or financial standing.’
      • ‘The meeting would help to raise awareness that everyone should enjoy the basic human right of freedom of choice in marriage, she said.’
      • ‘This bill shows the government's disrespect for basic human rights and established legal principles.’
      • ‘And the shortest road to equality is to provide for everyone's basic human needs free of charge.’
      • ‘Asylum and immigration issues have at their heart the fundamental principles of basic human rights.’
      • ‘How many of those elements are set forth in or necessarily implied by the basic human rights instruments?’
      • ‘It seems a process of alienation has taken place that has undermined common sense and basic human decency.’
      • ‘The four fundamental interests are embodied in an authoritative code of basic human rights.’
      • ‘Leaving a small child alone at home defies basic, fundamental common sense.’
      • ‘It has to do with the basic human repertoire of emotions, cognitive capabilities and even longevity of life.’
      • ‘Literacy is both an essential skill and a basic human right.’
      • ‘As we hear today what the year may bring forth, I think it is wise to remind ourselves of these three basic human requirements.’
      • ‘Everyone accepts that freedom of speech is a basic human right.’
    3. 1.3North American derogatory, informal Having tastes, interests, or attitudes regarded as mainstream or conventional (typically used of a woman)
      ‘if your date orders vegetable tempura you know she is totally basic’
  • 2Chemistry
    Having the properties of a base, or containing a base; having a pH above 7.

    ‘these salts yield basic solutions comparable in strength with the mineral alkalis’
    Often contrasted with acidic and alkaline
    • ‘A water solution of soda ash has a basic pH and a strong alkaline taste.’
    • ‘Compounds that react with water to form hydroxide ions are called basic anhydrides.’
    • ‘In the presence of a basic solution, litmus will lose hydronium ions and turn blue.’
    • ‘Values between 7 and 14 are found in basic or alkaline solutions such as caustic or washing soda.’
    • ‘Blue litmus paper turns red in acidic solution, and red litmus paper turns blue in basic solution.’
    1. 2.1Geology (of rock, especially lava) relatively poor in silica.
      ‘a coarse-grained, basic, plutonic rock’
      • ‘The Liva Member includes parts of the formation composed of basic lavas and tuffs with only minor interbedded sediments.’
      • ‘Quarzitic gneiss, low-grade metamorphic basic rocks, phyllites and dark chert can be abundant in some layers.’
      • ‘All the Gardar basic rocks are inferred to have been derived from the mantle, with relatively little crustal contamination.’
      • ‘It appears that basic magmas across the Gardar Province were derived from a heterogeneous, enriched lithospheric mantle reservoir.’
      • ‘Enstatite occurs in plutonic basic and ultrabasic rocks such as peridotite and norite, and also in some high-grade metamorphic rocks.’
    2. 2.2Metallurgy Relating to or denoting steel-making processes involving lime-rich refractories and slags.
      • ‘Accounting for 60% of the world's total output of crude steel, the Basic Oxygen Steelmaking (BOS) process is the dominant steelmaking technology.’
      • ‘I moved to the open hearth to explore the use of basic refractories-magnesite, chrome-magnesite and chrome brick-for furnace linings.’
      • ‘Refractory bricks for steel production include Basic refractory bricks and High-Alumina refractory bricks.’
      • ‘The refractories for casting a basic substance are used for ladles, tundishes, vacuum degasing furnaces, mixers, and the like.’
      • ‘The lining must resist high temperature, oxidized basic slag and liquid metal.’

noun

basics
informal
  • 1The essential facts or principles of a subject or skill.

    ‘I learnt the basics of programming on a course’
    ‘teachers are going back to basics to encourage pupils to learn English’
    • ‘It's quite alright to start within your comfort zone to help you build confidence and get the basics down pat.’
    • ‘I'm thinking it'll be necessary to go right back to basics.’
    • ‘What really bothers me is that people seem to have an incomplete foundation in the basics of language skills.’
    • ‘Most of the suffering due to sickness could be avoided if we knew the basics of health, exercise and nutrition.’
    • ‘But once the bubble has burst they turn back to basics and begin studying exactly what companies and their profits are up to.’
    • ‘More importantly though, it reminded me to get back to basics as far as parenting skills go, and dig out some of the books out of the boxes.’
    • ‘Under the program, nutrition educators taught students the basics about healthy eating.’
    • ‘A It's all too easy sometimes to forget the healthcare basics.’
    • ‘Players do the equivalent of tying a piece of string around their finger to remember the basics.’
    • ‘Instead we should return to core food values, back to nutritional basics and revert to the heritage school dinners of old.’
    • ‘This explains why one of the basics of food hygiene is to keep raw or cold food cold, and cooked or hot food, piping hot.’
    • ‘Beth ran her through the basics, softly explaining how the gun functioned.’
    • ‘It is time to take a good hard look at our daily routines and re-learn the basics that are essential for health and longevity.’
    • ‘He felt that the best way to go back to basics was to start teaching.’
    • ‘Most Mothering readers know the basics of a healthy parent-child relationship.’
    • ‘Until you understand the basics of functions and algebra, the thought that a number can be predicted is a surprising one.’
    • ‘And surely they're old enough to learn the basics of critical thinking skills and skeptical analysis.’
    • ‘By now you might have taken some of my words to heart, and so here are the basics in buying and owning a scooter’
    • ‘Once you're comfortable with the tai chi basics, you can do it by yourself.’
    • ‘Hence, the need of the hour is a school for our youth and talented players to congregate and learn the basics and the skills of the sport.’
    fundamentals, essentials, rudiments, principles, first principles, foundations, preliminaries, groundwork
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Essential food and other supplies.
      ‘people are facing a shortage of basics like flour’
      • ‘Restrict yourself to the basics, like a barley soup and some canned vegetables.’
      • ‘When it comes down to basics it is really nothing more than an amalgam of sugar, salt, herbs, spices and vitamins with brewer's yeast.’
      • ‘It is not an addiction, it is simply that good cheese is as high on my list of basics for a decent life as good bread, strong coffee and leafy green salad.’
      • ‘In my shopping basket I always have vegetable basics like carrots, broccoli and spinach in a bag.’
      • ‘These people are not even afforded the very basics of health care, like vaccines or antibiotics.’
      • ‘Aid agencies on the ground continued to warn that millions across the region were without the basics of food and clean water.’
      • ‘Grain farming became less popular - this, again, kept towns and cities short of such basics as bread.’
      • ‘Customers could still buy basics like salt, vinegar, tobacco, soap and candles.’
      • ‘Here are a few ways to make the most of your party basics without skimping on style or comfort’
      • ‘Upon chancing a nibble, however, I felt that it could have done with a little bit more of the basics, namely salt and pepper.’
      • ‘After surviving such an event, people need basics - food, shelter, medical care, and consolation.’
      • ‘The seniors identified a need for basics such as food, water and shelter.’
      • ‘Lentils and a few spices and other basics can lead to unexpected winter delights on a budget.’
      • ‘A $24,000 income leaves no room to purchase basics such as health insurance or new clothing.’
      • ‘Many people appear to be saving their spare cash after paying out more for basics such as food, transport and health.’
      • ‘Rule one is stick to basics: Order baked or broiled meat dishes, without breading or sauces.’
      • ‘On other occasions, the candidate had promised a nation where people do not have to choose between basics, such as food and medicine.’
      • ‘Even the animals' access to basics such as water, food and veterinary care is often severely limited.’
      • ‘They are concerned with getting the basics for survival; shelter, food, water.’
      • ‘Families crowd into tiny, ramshackle homes and scrounge for food as well as soap, paper and other basics.’

Origin

Mid 19th century: from base + -ic.

Pronunciation

basic

/ˈbeɪsɪk/

Main definitions of basic in English

: basic1BASIC2

BASIC2

noun

mass noun
  • A simple high-level computer programming language that uses familiar English words, designed for beginners and formerly used widely.

Origin

1960s: acronym from Beginners' All-purpose Symbolic Instruction Code.

Pronunciation

BASIC

/ˈbeɪsɪk/