Definition of bottle in English:



  • 1A glass or plastic container with a narrow neck, used for storing drinks or other liquids.

    ‘he opened the bottle of beer’
    • ‘For the rest of the year, the beach is a disgrace, covered in plastic bottles, broken glass, old tyres and all sorts of unmentionables.’
    • ‘There's been a lot of talk about whether it's safe to drink out of plastic bottles.’
    • ‘Glass and plastic bottles now speed along conveyor belts as creams and liquids are pumped and squirted before lids are fixed and tightened.’
    • ‘The Manchester Evening News launched a campaign three years ago to promote the use of toughened glass and plastic bottles in nightspots.’
    • ‘Fans inside the Arena had started pelting each other with plastic beer glasses and bottles, and the concert was temporarily halted.’
    • ‘The bag ripped open and glass beer bottles began rolling into the street.’
    • ‘Do not store poisons in drink bottles, glasses, or jars.’
    • ‘She did as she was told and trotted off into the kitchen and she looked around for a glass bottle containing a colorless liquid.’
    • ‘Mr Short says Barnfield accepts Christmas trees, cardboard boxes and electrical appliances, along with glass bottles and drink cans.’
    • ‘However, in recent years more and more shops have started selling drinks in plastic bottles instead of cans.’
    • ‘The ban will make it a criminal offence to drink from bottles and glasses outside licensed premises and will come into force from Thursday, April 17, the day before Good Friday.’
    • ‘He sits down behind a desk and takes a drink of pink liquid from his plastic bottle.’
    • ‘Councillors are expect to give the green light to increasing the number of properties from which it collects plastic bottles, glass, cans and paper, in a fortnightly collection.’
    • ‘Rinse out drink cans and plastic bottles before putting them in recycling bin instead of burying them under a load of old newspapers.’
    • ‘The reason for this change in procedure is that the council is now able to send glass and plastic bottles and aluminium and steel cans to a plant in Darwen where they are mechanically separated.’
    • ‘Then there's the matter of plastic bottles and glass bottles.’
    • ‘A field of Glasgow's finest waiters had to make two laps of the square while carrying a tray, two bottles and glasses.’
    • ‘The cleaned sand is stored in labelled glass bottles identifying the location where it was found.’
    • ‘Now, only my glass and plastic bottles are collected while the other items with the recycling logo are left behind with a yellow sticker telling me these items are not recyclable.’
    • ‘This means that all newspapers, cardboard and plastic drinks bottles can now be easily disposed of, instead of having these items dumped in landfill sites.’
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1The contents of a bottle.
      ‘she managed to get through a bottle of wine’
      • ‘We got through a bottle of St Emellion, which doesn't really go with Indian food, but fortified us for the drama ahead.’
      • ‘After consuming almost everything there the hall bar's stocks of Bacardi Breezers, Smirnoff Ices and a bottle of Jack Daniels were also raided.’
      • ‘She is a self-hating woman who is desperate for the love of her husband, and when it is not returned, she turns to a bottle of whiskey for consolation.’
      • ‘It being the longest day of the year, I suppose I should have been celebrating some arcane shamanic ritual, but I just put my foot up and finished the remains of a bottle of schnapps.’
      • ‘He made the announcement this morning, saying he made the decision over a bottle of Chardonnay at the weekend after he and wife Helena had decided his time had come to move on.’
      • ‘For a while we sat on tree stumps next to the grain storage barn, talking with her parents and passing around a bottle of her father's homemade rakia to keep our blood flowing.’
      • ‘At the end of my experiment, I sat back and nursed a battered palate with a bottle of Spanish cava in an attempt to drive out the demons which had possessed my mouth a short time ago.’
      • ‘We chose a bottle of Chablis to accompany, finding its medium texture to work with both the white and red meat.’
      • ‘I just remembered, I've got a bottle of Johnnie Walker Red label to sink tonight.’
      • ‘We've got a bottle of 12-year malt just begging to be tested if you'd like to join us.’
      • ‘For example, the alcoholic content of a bottle of wine must be indicated and also its origin and where the wine was bottled.’
      • ‘You can check this by sampling a bottle of Bollinger's Vieilles Vignes (ungrafted old vines) against a bottle made from their grafted vines.’
      • ‘And I did exactly what any teenager would do after several pints of yokel-strength scrumpy and half a bottle of Russian paint-stripper.’
    2. 1.2informal Used in reference to the heavy drinking of alcohol.
      ‘more women are taking to the bottle’
      • ‘As a result, the villagers turn to the bottle, drinking to forget how dreary their lives are.’
      • ‘Fans and family of Mr Howson should take heart; far from seeking solace in the bottle, the strongest stuff he is currently imbibing is tea.’
      • ‘More Britons than ever are 'turning to the bottle' to relieve stress - and half the nation isn't sleeping or is grumpy due to stress.’
      • ‘Reading the Government's plans to liberalise the licensing laws could be enough to make anybody turn to the bottle.’
      • ‘The minimum age of boys taking to the bottle in The State has fallen to as low as 13.5 years.’
    3. 1.3A bottle fitted with a teat for giving milk or other drinks to babies and very young children.
      • ‘Spending extra on a bottle and nipples in order to get the correct mouthfeel and traces of rubber would be out of the question.’
      • ‘I fumbled in his baby bag for his bottle and formula before asking a flight attendant for a cup of warm water.’
      • ‘She no longer had to be guided to the bottle's nipple, grabbing it expertly and with gusto.’
      • ‘Sadly, Andre seems to be sick and won't even drink milk from a bottle.’
      • ‘Do not add sugar or put sugary drinks in a baby's bottle.’
      • ‘Who knew drinking out of a baby bottle could be so much fun?’
      • ‘Chris sat on the leg rest in front of me and watched as I gave Caitlyn the nipple of the bottle.’
      • ‘Rubbing the bottle's nipple temptingly against his mouth didn't help.’
      • ‘The illustration on the formula can depicted one scoop being added to one baby bottle - which is just what the parents did!’
      • ‘The baby was dressed in a clean shirt and a fresh diaper and there was a bottle of baby's milk nearby.’
      • ‘As you introduce the bottle's nipple to the Shih Tzu puppy's mouth, move your legs slightly, jiggling your lap.’
      • ‘But they fed her milk from a baby's bottle and she has blossomed.’
      • ‘She's putting on weight like a normal baby and taking milk from a bottle.’
      • ‘Babies who go to bed with a bottle of milk, formula or juice are more likely to get tooth decay.’
      • ‘I had only just stopped weaning my baby off bottle milk and this has left us all very shocked.’
      • ‘Remember to give young children a bottle, a lollipop, or a piece of gum when the plane takes off and lands.’
      • ‘It's not harmful, unless you attach a nipple to the bottle of solution and force feed it to your pet.’
      • ‘They will generally signal an interest in solid foods by biting the bottle nipple or showing an interest in licking milk or formula from a finger.’
      • ‘Her theory is that the patient must wear diapers, suck his thumb and drink from a baby bottle to be cured.’
      • ‘That's because Manas is only two years old and still drinks milk from a bottle.’
    4. 1.4A large metal cylinder holding liquefied gas.
      • ‘We were in a metal box with gas bottles, connected to an electrical hook-up point.’
  • 2British informal [mass noun] The courage or confidence needed to do something difficult or dangerous.

    ‘I lost my bottle completely and ran’
    • ‘Keepers in this country aren't given quite as much protection as those on the continent and he will have to show some bottle to come and collect high balls.’
    • ‘He can hit the ball, pass, score goals, has tremendous bottle and he's got vision.’
    • ‘Some said he lost his bottle, others said he was bought off.’
    • ‘But these figures do seem to seriously undermine the slur that the Spaniards lost their bottle after the bombs.’
    • ‘So he lost his bottle in the end, and postponed the general election before he had even called it.’
    • ‘But time and again, his greatest triumphs were achieved because he simply had more bottle than anyone else.’
    • ‘What impressed me most was his bravery and his bottle.’
    • ‘We started slowly, but we wore them down and they lost their bottle when we were 8-3 up.’
    • ‘‘I just think he is a wonderful dog, he's got a lot of bottle,’ said Mr Marsh as he ruffled the ears of his faithful companion.’
    • ‘England re-established a bit of credibility over the autumn series, with the performance against the All Blacks showing that they had a bit of bottle.’
    courage, courageousness, bravery, valour, intrepidity, boldness, nerve, confidence, daring, audacity, pluck, pluckiness, spirit, mettle, spine, backbone, steel, fibre, stout-heartedness
    View synonyms


  • 1Place (drinks or other liquid) in bottles for storage.

    ‘the wine was bottled in 1997’
    • ‘As required by Vietnamese law, the soft drink giants would have to enter into joint ventures in order to bottle soft drinks locally.’
    • ‘It cannot be detected until the wine has been bottled and the liquid comes into contact with the cork.’
    • ‘If you are a wine drinker looking for a change, try bottled beer rather than canned.’
    • ‘Up until that point, the business owners made and bottled their drinks after hours at a friend's restaurant.’
    • ‘I met former farmers bottling mineral water, felling trees, selling cigarettes to Angola and manufacturing cooking oil.’
    • ‘But the star attraction - cask beer and bottled ale at sensible prices - had never changed.’
    • ‘He's president of a company that bottles water and cooking oil.’
    • ‘Avis had never seen Jeff drink anything besides bottled domestic beer.’
    • ‘Even today many no longer drink tap water; bottled mineral water is the fashion.’
    • ‘Only water that has been properly treated with chlorine and other disinfectants should be consumed and to be on safer side bottled water is highly recommended.’
    • ‘It seems the 18-to - 30 age group is switching its allegiance to bottled beer and whisky.’
    • ‘Children who drink bottled water may be putting their teeth at risk because they are missing out on fluoride in their tap water, researchers claim.’
    • ‘Put on a pot of spiced cider for drinks and have bottled water in the fridge.’
    • ‘In Athy, he traded in tea, groceries, fuel, wine and spirits, as well as bottling his own stout, bonding his own whiskey and manufacturing and bottling mineral water.’
    • ‘Only children living in nonfluoridated areas or children who drink only nonfluoridated bottled water should receive supplements.’
    • ‘People gather to drink both traditional and bottled beer.’
    • ‘My aunt was not home and just as we were turning to leave, her neighbour helped us out by letting us in and bottling mineral water for us from her home.’
    • ‘In the ice chips lay several types of canned and bottled beverages: water, fruit juice, soda and wine for any adults.’
    • ‘However, the largest producers of those are hotels and bars, because the great majority of drinks are bottled.’
    • ‘If circumstances allow, at a party or ceremony, grilled chicken, soft drinks, and bottled beer are served and consumed in liberal amounts.’
    1. 1.1British Place (fruit or vegetables) in glass jars with other ingredients in order to preserve them.
      ‘Angela bottled fruit and jam and chutneys’
      • ‘The other she would bottle in a preserving jar and keep as a treat for one of the children's birthdays.’
      • ‘Recipes for bottling vegetables and making chutneys bring on the Little House on the Prairie spirit.’
      • ‘His love of life was bubbly and his chirpy, outgoing personality was the very stuff that needs to be bottled and preserved in today's trying world.’
      • ‘But company chiefs reassured its 500-strong workforce that the sauce and pickle bottling factory would re-open and their jobs were safe.’
      • ‘We used to bottle surplus plums, and pears, dry apple rings on baking trays in a very slow oven, and layer runner beans in salt, putting them all up on the shelf to gleam in the autumn and winter lamplight.’
      • ‘Nick Sandler and Johnny Acton are here to promote their very timely new book, Preserved, and to teach me the new and fashionable relevance of pickling, bottling and salting.’
      • ‘They are sometimes preserved by bottling but lose much of their evanescent flavour.’
    2. 1.2Store (gas) in a container in liquefied form.
      ‘she set about connecting the bottled gas to the stove’
      • ‘It contained air bottled on the breezy slopes of Helvellyn.’
      • ‘At the time, most physicians and climbers accepted that humans could not survive above 8,600m without bottled oxygen.’
      • ‘And air is not something that can be packaged or bottled.’
      • ‘Jackson and three companions plan to climb K2 without bottled oxygen, but it is the descent that is most tricky.’
      • ‘The company is run from premises on Tennyson Street, where the gas is bottled and distributed.’
      • ‘Energy Minister Fran Logan says the price of bottled gas dropped when an inquiry into pricing in regional areas was taking place.’
      • ‘So, the Leader of the Opposition, V.S. Achutanandan, may have hit the nail on the head when he said that we might even see air being bottled and sold eventually.’
      • ‘In order to safely move bottled oxygen and other supplies up to high camps, Sherpas put in fixed ropes.’
      • ‘Here the air is so thin that bottled oxygen is at hand in case construction workers faint.’
      • ‘With holds up to 35 feet off the deck, Iowa residents may want to consider bottled oxygen.’
  • 2informal Throw a glass bottle at (someone)

    ‘he was bottled offstage at a club’
    • ‘A TEENAGER, scarred for life when she was bottled in the face in a nightclub row, is pleading for witnesses to come forward.’
    • ‘He was bottled during last November's attack and needed eight stitches to repair a head wound.’
    • ‘By popular demand, because lots of people are searching for one and I got my pictures back the other day… a picture of Kelly Osbourne before she got bottled at the Dome on Sunday.’
    • ‘But, seriously, there are some huge questions that need to be addressed here - claims of police over-reaction, stewards bottling customers, fears of explosions.’
    • ‘The teenager was assaulted at Southend Victoria Station at around 8pm by a gang of male yobs who bottled him in the hand with a smashed glass.’
    • ‘The 37-year-old was unable to work after the first assault in July 2003 in which he was bottled, repeatedly kicked and left for dead in the town centre.’
  • 3British informal Lose one's nerve and decide not to do (something)

    ‘the leader had completely bottled his confrontation with them’
    ‘one terrified contestant bottles it and scarpers’
    • ‘I eventually decided that they hadn't bottled the biggest decision of the week.’
    • ‘The decision to take only four strikers backfired disastrously, and we bottled the penalty shoot-out.’
    • ‘They had the programme made before the local elections but they bottled out from airing it.’
    • ‘This is not the first time, when faced with a difficult decision, he has bottled out.’
    • ‘I completely froze when I was handed the microphone and very nearly bottled it, but I managed to get the words out.’
    • ‘When I bottled out they called me a "wuss" and said that I've "got no spontaneity".’
    • ‘He accused him of bottling a referendum for the same reason that he decided against an early election: because he knows he would lose.’
    • ‘The coach maintained after the game that some of his players had "bottled it" when it came to taking penalties.’
    • ‘He got so far up and then he just bottled it.’
    • ‘I do wish we hadn't bottled out and set off the flare we found on the beach.’


  • bottle and glass

    • rhyming slang Arse.

  • be full bottle on

    • informal Be very knowledgeable about.

      ‘they are full bottle on the tricks the industry gets up to’
      • ‘Want to sound like a full bottle on foreign policy?’
      • ‘We go to the man who should be full bottle on these strange products.’
      • ‘It's true I'm not the full bottle on food trends, but for many years I believed that fondues were something we'd all been into long ago but unlikely ever to stage a comeback.’
      • ‘No doubt some of us are full bottle on revisionist history since the fall of the wall but not, alas, me.’
      • ‘We were a full bottle on anything that might cause our respective broadcasters or publishers any embarrassment or worse—legal action.’
  • hit the bottle

    • informal Start to drink alcohol heavily.

      ‘his marriage broke up and he hit the bottle’
      • ‘And I've been hitting the bottle in the evenings to help me get by.’
      • ‘She suffered from manic depression, and when she died after a long illness, Bellany - always fond of the drink - hit the bottle with venom.’
      • ‘The star has had a troubled time in the last few months after reportedly hitting the bottle again.’
      • ‘The significant jump in the number of women who are dying from alcohol-related illness proves that more and more women are hitting the bottle.’
      • ‘Gerald soon finds himself driven back to his old habits, hitting the bottle and using sleazy journalistic tactics in a desperate search for the answers surrounding his ill-fated apartment building.’
      • ‘She was also hitting the bottle enthusiastically, believing she had been ‘misdiagnosed’ by the Priory.’
      • ‘Will Jackson lose his chance at regaining the trust of his family, or will he go back to hitting the bottle?’
      • ‘‘It was like an alcoholic hitting the bottle again,’ Raihala said.’
      • ‘Word had reached me that he was going through a bad patch, hitting the bottle and living in a hostel for the homeless.’
      • ‘Barton Peveril's students are putting across a message which they hope will make other teenagers sit up and think about the perils of hitting the bottle.’
      drink, swallow, guzzle, slurp, attack, down, drink down, drink up, force down, get down, finish off, polish off, drain, empty, imbibe, have, take, partake of, ingest, consume, sup, sip, lap
      View synonyms
  • in bottle

    • (of wine) having been aged for a specified number of years in its bottle.

      ‘the wine can be drunk after eight years in bottle’
      • ‘Whilst tasty, these wines are rarely subtle or sufficiently well balanced for ageing and further development in bottle.’
      • ‘Despite this perception, experience shows many wines which age in bottle with substantial ullage exhibit no signs of oxidation.’
      • ‘The final feature of our old pal acid is helping fine wines in the process of aging - without sufficient acidity wines are unable to make the long journey in bottle.’
      • ‘This wine spends two or three years in barrel after which it is then cellared in bottle for ten to 50 years.’
      • ‘Maybe this is an age thing, too - maybe that slight herbaceousness will factor out after the wine rests a few months in bottle.’
      • ‘It is also fairly tannic, and right now the wine is a bit disjointed, indicating it could use another one to three years in bottle.’
      • ‘Hard, tannic and even stern in youth, these reds need many years in bottle to show their best.’

Phrasal Verbs

  • bottle out

    • Lose one's nerve and decide not to do something.

      ‘I bottled out and was homesick and I came home’
      ‘the Minister has bottled out of real reforms’
  • bottle something up

    • Repress or conceal feelings over time.

      ‘his anger and frustration had been bottled up for years’
      • ‘He had been a normal, healthy, happy young man, but afterwards he did not seek help for his mental problems and bottled things up.’
      • ‘Venting feelings is better than bottling them up.’
      • ‘It's often a huge relief to children to have this silence broken and able to share their thoughts and feelings instead of bottling them up.’
      • ‘When he was irritated, he swallowed it down and bottled it up, and even when he had little reason to be so, he would still always be polite to those who didn't deserve it.’
      • ‘You know how self-criticism and bottling things up affects your well-being, so be kind and gentle to yourself this week.’
      • ‘She said of her husband: ‘He would sometimes discuss problems and sometimes bottle them up.’’
      • ‘I wanted him to tell me when he was upset and talk about it, instead of bottling it up and getting withdrawn and treating me like a distant relative or seriously platonic friend.’
      • ‘You can't hide your true feelings, because if you bottle them up then they will get out somehow.’
      • ‘I mean, venting is better than bottling it up, right?’
      • ‘You can't bottle them up inside, because they explode like a volcano.’
      suppress, repress, restrain, withhold, keep back, keep in check, keep in, hold in, rein in, bite back, choke back, swallow, fight back, curb, inhibit, smother, stifle, contain, shut in, conceal, hide
      keep a lid on, cork up, button up
      View synonyms
  • bottle someone/thing up

    • Keep someone or something trapped or contained.

      ‘he had to stay bottled up in New York’
      • ‘Instead, let's actually spend some money (rather than bottling it up in committee) on research, because you never know what you'll find.’
      • ‘I do not recall how many of Clinton's nominees were bottled up in committee or blue slipped, but I am quite confident that none of them were filibustered.’
      • ‘Alongside him, Denis Glennon drifted outfield but Dublin bottled him up wherever he went, limiting him to just a point.’
      • ‘Your friendly neighborhood multilateralist thinks it can be bottled up, buried in bureaucracy, bogged down in red tape.’
      • ‘Labour-hungry commercial farmers would benefit, as workers would be bottled up in the rural areas.’
      • ‘They've bottled us up so that when the forces of the walled city arrive, we'll have no escape.’
      • ‘But Mnguni is not taking chances with the wayward fighter and has bottled him up at his home in Vincent to monitor him.’
      • ‘David Brennan was bottled up in the right corner but managed to get the ball back across the goal.’
      • ‘Not only did the injury keep him out of five games, it also forced him to take on too many offensive linemen when making plays, and he was bottled up in the process.’
      • ‘What about those little regional department stores that have been bought up and bottled up?’


Late Middle English: from Old French boteille, from medieval Latin butticula, diminutive of late Latin buttis cask, wineskin (see butt).