Definition of call in English:

call

verb

  • 1[with object and complement] Give (a baby or animal) a specified name:

    ‘they called their daughter Hannah’
    • ‘The winning name was provided by John from New Norfolk who suggested calling the bird ‘Reggie’.’
    • ‘After being stunned by the spring flowers she saw in the park while she was pregnant, she decided to call her daughter Bluebell.’
    • ‘The angel who appeared to both Mary and Joseph told them to call their son Jesus.’
    • ‘Morel gives birth to their third child, whom she calls Paul.’
    • ‘They called the baby Joseph Patrick and he was christened in the Holy Family Church.’
    • ‘When my husband and I were first married we had a cat we called Wanda.’
    • ‘Daisy, as we called the goat, would hate to be separated from her lambs and it was woe betide any dog that came near them.’
    1. 1.1be called Have a specified name:
      ‘her companion was called Ethel’
      ‘a book called Street Life in London’
      • ‘Perhaps the most well known type of Venezuelan music is a rhythm called the joropo.’
      • ‘"No," said Sally, "she's called Vicky."’
      • ‘There is an extremely popular family restaurant in Bandra called Papa Pancho.’
      • ‘His last book was called, "The Death of Outrage."’
      • ‘What worked best for us was a book called Choosing Colours by Kevin McCloud, of Grand Designs fame.’
      • ‘The other piece of equipment is a device called a hydrometer, which measures alcoholic strength.’
      • ‘One of my favourite games is called Hangman.’
      • ‘The criteria that SRI funds use to make socially responsible investments are called screens.’
      • ‘The French system combining sports and studies is called "sport etude."’
      • ‘The two gentlemen of Verona are best friends called Valentine and Proteus.’
      • ‘The most common allergen in soy is called trypsin inhibitor.’
      • ‘Performance poetry of this kind is called dub poetry.’
      • ‘Nowadays, little would be thought of such a situation, but in the 1940's, "living in sin" as it was called, was looked on askance.’
      • ‘In the mid-1700s, when it was first recognized in sheep, the disease was called scrapie, because suffering animals tended to rub their skins raw.’
      • ‘It was not until 1978 that individuals in the United States started showing signs of what would later be called AIDS.’
      • ‘Grant aided, or publicly funded, housing used to be called council housing.’
      • ‘I did write an article for the Pleasantville High School newspaper, which I think was called The Panther.’
      • ‘This game is called "Mighty No.9".’
      • ‘This method is called the shareholder value approach.’
    2. 1.2 Address or refer to (someone) by a specified name, title, etc.:
      ‘please call me Bob’
      ‘if he remains quiet she calls him a wimp’
      • ‘The reporter called her a "good-looking, smart, gin-drinking suburbanite."’
      • ‘One of my co-workers still calls me the wrong name almost every time he sees me.’
      • ‘I heard one girl called her a 'tomboy'.’
      • ‘Well, my name is Katrina Chestler, but everyone calls me Katie.’
      • ‘What would Kris think if he'd heard her calling him that?’
      • ‘I have no idea what his Christian name was and he called me Master Charles.’
      • ‘She continues, calling me by my first name again… ‘I have a favour to ask you, but am not sure how you will react.’’
      • ‘He almost never calls me by my name, and when he does it's Nicolas.’
      • ‘It is a good idea to call people by names they recognise and find acceptable.’
      • ‘The name he calls me is actually not that different from my own.’
      • ‘She and Dennis had talked around the checkout counter and she'd gotten Dennis's last name wrong, calling him Lewis, and it stuck for some reason.’
      • ‘The chancellor of the exchequer calls the prime minister a liar.’
      • ‘I never wanted to have that prefix attached to my name and have everyone calling me Sir Edward, so I went to university and became a professor.’
      • ‘It immediately caught my attention that she had called my mother by her maiden name.’
      • ‘Let's analyze the stupidity of your comment to Jack below, where you called him a loser.’
      • ‘He developed an adorable habit of calling me by my name in every sentence, which was somehow madly endearing.’
      • ‘Though Rebekah is my name, everybody calls me Bekah.’
      • ‘She calls him brother and chastises him for speaking so sternly to her.’
      • ‘One hasn't bothered to learn my name and just calls me ‘Rooney’.’
    3. 1.3 Refer to or consider (someone or something) as being:
      ‘he's the only person I would call a friend’
      • ‘To the north, in Baltimore, officials are calling this the worst flood in recent memory.’
      • ‘I'm not very good at what you might call the real world, the business world.’
      • ‘The Ancient Greeks called that hubris and considered it a flaw of human character.’
      • ‘U.S. officials are calling this a success.’
      • ‘For five nights, we were on what you might call a floating hotel.’
      • ‘Call me crazy, but this doesn't seem like a tough question.’
      • ‘Airline officials are calling the attack a suicide attempt.’
      • ‘They have argued that the amendments should not be considered, calling them new complaints that violate the one-year ban.’
      • ‘It's all part of what the American ambassador here calls the pope's moral megaphone.’
      • ‘It was the kind of love that people often call unconditional, and I know what they mean.’
      • ‘Since then, he has entered what you might call a rough patch.’
      • ‘‘Keep up the fight,’ fellow fans urged in their e-mails, calling the boy an inspiration.’
      • ‘One diplomat calls it probably the poorest and most corrupt country in Europe.’
      • ‘Whether it is what you might call professional misconduct may be another matter.’
      • ‘Call it crazy but I remember that first time you smiled at me.’
      • ‘That's one of the reasons why I get so angry when people call all this ‘right-wing’.’
      • ‘Museum officials are calling this the largest cultural project in the city's history.’
      • ‘The organisation is said to be pinning its hopes on the House of Lords intervening and calling the strike ‘unlawful’.’
      • ‘My book has inspired some people to call me a socialist or communist or un-American.’
      • ‘But a senior U.S. defense official calls the peace plan a face-saving gesture for everybody.’
      describe as, regard as, look on as, consider to be, judge to be, think of as, class as, categorize as
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  • 2[with object] Cry out (a word or words):

    ‘he heard an insistent voice calling his name’
    ‘Meredith was already calling out a greeting’
    • ‘Madison makes her way out the door, calling goodbye to Robert over her shoulder.’
    • ‘You might think I have a lot of nerve calling out this word.’
    • ‘Looking around into the darkness she could still hear the voice calling out her name.’
    • ‘One day I found myself running home from the bus stop, calling out goodbyes to Tracy and Brian.’
    • ‘He didn't hear the bright, girlish voice calling out his name again and again until his caller stood right before him.’
    • ‘A voice broke through the silence, calling out her name.’
    • ‘As we followed the hostess to our table, I heard a familiar voice from the kitchen calling out orders.’
    • ‘Standing up, I cupped my hands around my mouth, raising my voice before calling out his name.’
    • ‘People with clipboards buzzed among them, calling out names, ticking off lists, leading them inside one by one to consulting rooms.’
    • ‘Jennifer blew kisses to visiting reporters and called out "hi, hi."’
    • ‘He then scrambled down to the rudder to steer from there, but not before calling out a kind word to the deck below.’
    • ‘He started screaming his head off, calling out horrible words.’
    • ‘Kyra smiled and noticed everyone, pointing and waving at her, while calling out words of good luck.’
    • ‘There was banging in the background and angry voices calling out her name.’
    • ‘Instead of calling the words, I read them the letter.’
    • ‘I made out the voice of the PA announcer calling out the name of a batter.’
    • ‘She turned to face the ranks behind her and called words she had been waiting to speak for a very long time.’
    • ‘Rina dropped to her knees and cradled her older sister in her arms, calling out her name in a pained voice.’
    cry out, cry, shout, yell, sing out, whoop, bellow, roar, halloo, bawl, scream, shriek, screech
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    1. 2.1 Cry out to (someone) in order to summon them or attract their attention:
      ‘she heard Terry calling her’
      [no object] ‘I distinctly heard you call’
      • ‘As she started to leave the office, Max called after her.’
      • ‘Camped in the hills not far from her own house last summer, she even heard her uncle's voice calling out for her.’
      • ‘Suddenly, a voice was calling out to him, coming from below.’
      • ‘She looked round to catch the bartender's attention, but didn't call him over.’
      • ‘One afternoon in 1999, I was dozing when I heard my maternal grandmother calling me.’
      • ‘After all, she had managed well enough the previous night, and calling a servant may draw attention to her presence.’
      • ‘Another very old man was heard, calling the young boy back.’
      • ‘Estelle drifted off into an uneasy slumber and was awakened sometime during the late night by a low voice calling out to her.’
      • ‘As Natalie and I went into the lobby, we heard someone calling us.’
      • ‘We waited in silence and fear for a huge customs agent to call us over.’
      • ‘Rose could hear Laurie calling her, but she didn't turn back.’
      • ‘I turned around and ran, but stopped on the stairs when he called after me.’
      • ‘As they were walking, Brooke heard someone calling her, and paused to see who it was.’
      • ‘The cat heard me call and ran up to me.’
      • ‘The old gal called me over to the director's chair they always had for her on the set.’
      cry out, cry, shout, yell, sing out, whoop, bellow, roar, halloo, bawl, scream, shriek, screech
      View synonyms
    2. 2.2[no object] (of an animal, especially a bird) make its characteristic cry:
      ‘overhead, a skylark called’
      • ‘Parents and kids alike will enjoy the sounds of a crackling campfire at dusk and of birds calling as the sun rises.’
      • ‘For one instant, he thought it was another monkey calling from one of the many trees nearby.’
      • ‘The large, long-billed birds returned, calling loudly.’
      • ‘An owl called from down near the river.’
      • ‘When you hear a pack of wolves calling, you don't pay attention to anything else.’
      • ‘So next time the sun is shining and the birds are calling, go outside to broaden your exercise routine.’
      • ‘At one exciting moment, several kiwis were calling loudly only a few feet above us on a hillside, but they never came into view.’
      • ‘As she lies in bed one night, she is overjoyed to hear the monkeys call from the young forest.’
      • ‘The birds all took flight calling in panic and monkeys leapt and ran screaming in every direction.’
      • ‘Birds called to each other from all around, and she felt her heart swell in return.’
      • ‘He heard his own breathing, and the birds calling from one of the distant jungles.’
      • ‘The horses in the paddocks were whinnying and nickering, and our mares called out in response.’
      • ‘He enjoyed the way the wind swept over his head and the birds called out in song.’
      • ‘Crossing the gate, I could hear a sheep calling from behind some bushes.’
      • ‘Here, the air vibrates with the sound of booming waves and dancing, swooping birds calling to each other through the eddying gusts of Atlantic wind.’
      • ‘The birds kept calling as they shuffled about, and I tried my best to let the sound sink into my brain.’
      • ‘The wolves were calling again, at about 4:45 a.m.’
      • ‘A cuckoo called from faraway, a greater spotted woodpecker hammered out an urgent tattoo.’
    3. 2.3 Shout out or chant (the steps and figures) to people performing a square dance or country dance.
      • ‘The caller walks everyone through the dance moves, and continues calling the steps until they are familiar enough so that the dancers do not need to have them repeated.’
      • ‘The Squire leads the side and calls the figures of the dances from within the set.’
      • ‘Listen to the music and of course, listen to the leader calling the steps.’
      • ‘Calling the figures as the dance progressed was not an American invention as is often claimed.’
      • ‘One lady in our group said that she would be traveling all the way to Fremont, Ohio in large part because Karen will be calling the dance there.’
    4. 2.4Bridge Make (a particular bid) during the auction:
      ‘her partner called 6♠’
      • ‘Then the next player calls, and so on until all cards have been called.’
      • ‘So the bidding is won by whoever is prepared to call the lowest card.’
      • ‘A bid can only be overcalled by calling a lower card of the same suit as the original bid.’
      • ‘Betting then commences in a poker style manner, until the bet has been called.’
      • ‘If a joker is turned up the dealer may pick it up and call anything trump.’
    5. 2.5North American informal Claim (a specified privilege) for oneself, typically by shouting out a particular word or set phrase:
      ‘I call first dibs on the bathroom’
      • ‘Let the creative juices flow when you pick out your props; I call dibs on the unicorn horn.’
      • ‘Meet us at the jump ropes. Delores and I call first up!’
      • ‘“I call front seat,” one of the kids will shout out.’
      • ‘Let's go play kickball. I call first up!’
      • ‘To be honest, I'm stunned that Ned didn't call dibs first.’
      • ‘When we were picked for the same team, I was quick to call shortstop.’
      • ‘"I call front seat by the window," he yelled to Simon as they raced toward the car.’
  • 3[with object] Contact or attempt to contact (a person or number) by phone:

    ‘could I call you back?’
    ‘he called her on Monday but her phone was switched off’
    ‘the driver called 999’
    • ‘So I had to go find a telephone and call the director so that she would come down and escort me in.’
    • ‘To avoid giving himself away, he used public telephones and telephones at work to call the old couple.’
    • ‘And if that's not bad enough, now I've got telephone solicitors calling me for charity donations.’
    • ‘I pride myself in either taking the call or calling the person back within an hour.’
    • ‘To the caller, it is no different to calling any other telephone number.’
    • ‘I have never met my father and finally called him on the telephone about two years ago for the first time.’
    • ‘I could have just called him back by dialing the number on the call ID on my cell phone.’
    • ‘I think about 90% of the time I know who's calling me when the phone rings.’
    • ‘The member of the family who has accompanied her is shown how to use the dial phone to call us.’
    • ‘I picked up the phone this evening and called him; we chatted for over an hour and it was like we'd last spoken yesterday.’
    • ‘He just gave us his personal number and we called him when we needed him.’
    • ‘I snapped out of it, and picked up the old fashioned telephone to call my sister.’
    • ‘I'll call you back soon.’
    • ‘Already angered, Dawes becomes furious all the more when Clara calls Paul on the telephone.’
    • ‘I'll call you tonight via telephone and we can decide where we're eating for dinner.’
    • ‘People, like the man whose apartment didn't have a door, can call the 800 number for help at any time.’
    • ‘Two weeks later I hadn't heard back so I called her but she'd changed her mind.’
    • ‘I miss calling you to hear the latest in your life.’
    • ‘Actually, I know a lot of people who are apprehensive about calling people they don't know on the telephone.’
    • ‘When I called the number on the company's website, the CEO picked up the phone.’
    phone, telephone, get on the phone to, get someone on the phone, dial, make a call to, place a call to, get, reach
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    1. 3.1 Use a phone to summon (someone or something, especially an emergency service or a taxi):
      ‘her husband called an ambulance’
      • ‘If you are on your own, make other arrangements, such as calling a taxi.’
      • ‘Around eight police cars were called to one of the drinking establishments to what must have been a major incident.’
      • ‘The woman in the museum reception was kind enough to call a cab.’
      • ‘Officers from Greater Manchester Police and British Transport Police were both called to the scene.’
      • ‘Police and ambulance were called to the scene where the cyclist was treated for multiple injuries.’
      • ‘Do not allow yourself or anyone else to become dangerously ill before calling a doctor or going to a hospital.’
      • ‘He said the Essex Air Ambulance was called but was unable to attend.’
      • ‘The Welsh Air Ambulance was called to the scene, but was unable to land nearby because of woodland in the area.’
      • ‘Bessie tells Jane that she fell sick and was crying, and that was why the doctor was called.’
      • ‘We called a cab to take us to the club.’
      • ‘He attacked his father's car, and police who were called to the scene had to use CS spray to overcome him.’
      • ‘You can help stamp out damage to our buses by calling Lewisham police if you recognise these two youths.’
      • ‘The ambulance was called immediately but the police were not aware of the death until 3pm.’
      • ‘Students are advised to ‘arrange a lift or call a taxi if possible’ when travelling home in the evening.’
      • ‘The Group Leader called the Ambulance Service who took him to the Hospital.’
      • ‘Police, who were called in by the ambulance service, said no-one had been arrested.’
      • ‘In both cases these are criminal offences and the police should be called.’
      • ‘He went to a telephone box and called an ambulance.’
      • ‘She said she ran down to the station and made the report and the police called the ambulance that took him to the hospital.’
      • ‘At one stage a police van was called to the street to attend to a different property.’
      summon, send for, ask for
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  • 4[with object] Order or request the attendance of:

    ‘representatives of all three teams have been called to appear before the Monaco stewards’
    ‘I got a letter calling me for an interview’
    • ‘Investigators called three people before a fact-finding grand jury two weeks ago.’
    • ‘He served briefly as a Private First Class in the Marines before being called back for a secret position with the CIA.’
    • ‘This latest spat will be the third time London has called in the Spanish ambassador since the government was formed in 2011.’
    • ‘The director called him to his office on Thursday at 10.30 am to review his suspension.’
    • ‘Maybe they'll call me in to have a little chat.’
    • ‘He was called before the committee, and questioned on his motivations for these dismissals.’
    • ‘Research has shown that people with high Positive Affect were more likely to get called back for second interviews.’
    • ‘If the patients switch physicians, record-keepers send patients simple questionnaires or call them for interviews.’
    • ‘She picked holes in every article I wrote, and eventually moved me to head office where she could call me in for regular dressings-down.’
    • ‘The next workshop will be held on September where educational institutions will be called upon to attend.’
    • ‘Now they've backtracked and said they may call them to a disciplinary hearing.’
    • ‘She was also called to attend counseling on June 18.’
    • ‘The father took custody of the infant after police called him to the scene.’
    1. 4.1 Bring (a witness) into court to give evidence:
      ‘four expert witnesses were called’
      • ‘He was a major player in the story put before the court but was not called as a witness.’
      • ‘Well… if you are concerned about that there is of course a process whereby the court can call a witness.’
      • ‘Where the informant is a witness, then he or she must be called to give evidence.’
      • ‘He is one of up to 18 expert witnesses called to the hearing to support the council's case.’
      • ‘In this case, the person to whom statements were made out of Court was not called as a witness.’
      • ‘The allegations hung over the couple, who were not called to give evidence in court, for more than a fortnight.’
      • ‘Officials are still deciding which former employees will be called to give evidence.’
      • ‘First of all, it is I, and I alone, who will decide what witnesses will be called.’
      • ‘He has not given evidence or called any witnesses on his behalf.’
      • ‘Judge Anderson ruled he could not be called as an expert witness.’
      • ‘The Crown then called the two witnesses on whom they had relied at the trial.’
      • ‘Two Indiana State Police forensic scientists were also called to testify.’
      • ‘The pretext for the refusal was that the defendant may abscond and could threaten key witnesses yet to be called.’
      • ‘Within a week, the witnesses had all been called, the cases for the prosecution and defence delivered.’
      • ‘Once the parties have responded, witnesses will be called to give evidence at public hearings likely to begin next month.’
      • ‘Some of them - or others like them - might conceivably have to be called as witnesses.’
      • ‘The defense has one more witness, one more expert witness, to call to the stand on Thursday.’
      • ‘There is also the question of why this primary witness was not called to give evidence.’
      • ‘Furthermore, it is rare for such experts to be called to give evidence or for their views to be tested.’
      • ‘He pointed out that it would also be an inconvenience to anyone that was called as a witness.’
    2. 4.2 Cause (someone) to have a strong urge to choose a particular way of life or career:
      ‘he was called to the priesthood’
      [with infinitive] ‘I think teachers, really good teachers, are called to teach’
      • ‘I was 19 years old when I first heard God calling me to religious life.’
      • ‘When he is called to follow the Lord, she turns her back on both the man and his God.’
      • ‘He felt called to make the world a better place by becoming a minister.’
      • ‘They have been called to be witnesses for God.’
      • ‘I personally find joy in the work I have been called to do.’
      • ‘I believe that God called me to be a Bishop.’
      • ‘Are you despairing over the size of the task that God is calling you to do?’
  • 5[with object] Announce or decide that (an event, especially a meeting, election, or strike) is to happen:

    ‘there appeared to be no alternative but to call a general election’
    ‘he called an emergency meeting to discuss the matter with councillors and residents’
    ‘the Allied forces called a ceasefire’
    • ‘The findings were quickly taken up by Gov. Pat McCrory, who called a press conference on the issue.’
    • ‘The special meeting had been called as a member had to be appointed before the deadline of July 5.’
    • ‘He said the union would call a special general meeting with the workers to inform them of the ruling.’
    • ‘Annan said the first attempt to call a truce on April 12 had failed.’
    • ‘I could not believe that there was no time limit from the date of calling the meeting to the date it was finally held.’
    • ‘He lacks the authority to call an ‘extraordinary meeting’ of the member clubs.’
    • ‘Another parish meeting can be called by the mayor, two councillors or six residents.’
    • ‘The findings were quickly taken up by Governor McCrory, who called a press conference on the issue.’
    • ‘The next day they called a general strike, and roadblocks appeared everywhere.’
    • ‘No mass meetings have been called, and no strikes or industrial action have taken place.’
    • ‘She was called back to Britain from Australia when a general election was called suddenly.’
    • ‘The parish council chairman called a special public meeting on Tuesday night in the hall.’
    • ‘Union leaders called a general strike for tomorrow if the leader was not released.’
    • ‘Postal vote applications can only be made within 17 days after the general election is called.’
    • ‘So we will have to ask the Labour Party when it intends to call the next election.’
    • ‘Griffith had not asked for me at all; he had called a press conference.’
    • ‘A week ago a national rail strike was called off at the eleventh hour when the management backed down over pensions.’
    • ‘The scaled down ceremony is due to take place ahead of a special meeting called by opposition councillors.’
    • ‘Today's political leaders study long and hard which date to call a General Election.’
    convene, summon, call together, order, assemble
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  • 6British [no object] (of a person) pay a brief visit:

    ‘I've got to call at the bank to get some cash’
    ‘he had promised Celia he would call in at the clinic’
    ‘do call round if you're ever in the area’
    • ‘Neighbours called to visit her on a regular basis and she enjoyed their company.’
    • ‘I obviously couldn't wait for another week, so my daughter called in at the local shop to buy some, after school.’
    • ‘So my Dad calls in after a trip to visit Aunty Wilma, who's recovering from a stroke.’
    • ‘His old schoolmaster called by and launched into an analysis of American politics.’
    • ‘Then we will be told that one of their people will call to see us, and if there are any days or times that we are not at home or unavailable.’
    • ‘He rang her constantly, called round unexpectedly and even entered the house uninvited.’
    • ‘Firefighters are urging people interested in their plight to call at the station and express an interest.’
    • ‘At one point, Karen's neighbour calls by to complain that work on the beach is "bringing all sorts to the area".’
    • ‘It is not clear if they are worried about the prospect of some of their friends calling in for a visit.’
    • ‘The woman let them in, but luckily a male friend called in and distracted the men and they fled empty handed.’
    • ‘You can call in at our home - you can phone first if you want an appointment.’
    • ‘On the way home we called in at the bird centre.’
    • ‘When he arrived in Settle, he called at the police station and told officers what had happened.’
    • ‘Mom had often complained that nobody was calling in at Grandma's house much and would ask me to make an extra visit.’
    • ‘And if you like, you can call in at the office on a Friday evening to hand in your timesheet, and you get a beer and some crisps.’
    • ‘An inspector called round and was shown through the house to the garden where there was a garden area with a shed.’
    • ‘Indeed, Ray called around to us for a visit the Sunday before the dinner dance in Sligo.’
    • ‘When his friends call at the house, she says he is sleeping, or in the bathroom, or cannot be disturbed.’
    • ‘A woman with the boy called upon at least six houses in Watson Close at about 5.30 pm on Saturday.’
    • ‘I have people calling in every day at my hospital room, asking what is going on.’
    pay a visit to, pay a brief visit to, visit, pay a call on, call in on, look in on
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    1. 6.1call at (of a train or coach) stop at (a specified station or stations) on a particular route:
      ‘the 8.15 service to Paddington, calling at Reading’
      • ‘Services affected include the York to Blackpool North service, which calls at Burnley Manchester Road and Accrington.’
      • ‘But rail users say any plans to stop trains calling at Oxenholme are unacceptable.’
      • ‘The service also calls at Waterloo pier near to the Saatchi Gallery and London Eye, thus providing a direct river link to 3 major art galleries in London.’
      • ‘Buses will run between New Addington and East Croydon, calling at all tram stops to Lloyd Park then non-stop to East Croydon.’
      • ‘This Saturday and Sunday, engineering work in the Stockport area will prevent trains to and from Manchester Piccadilly from calling at Stockport.’
      • ‘Regular trains to Leeds also call at some local stops such as Garforth and New Pudsey.’
      • ‘This was a much faster route than the line calling at Bradford Exchange, Halifax and Rochdale, among a host of other stations.’
      • ‘Most York bus services call at either the Station or Pavement / Piccadilly.’
      • ‘Travellers were warned that several South West train services are not calling at certain stations along several routes.’
      • ‘Some trains were diverted into Liverpool Street calling at Stratford, while others terminated and started at West Ham or Barking.’
      • ‘In addition to that, there will be a half-hourly service between Ipswich and London, calling at intermediate stations including Colchester.’
      • ‘Commuters face more disruption following Midland Mainlines decision to stop one of its trains calling at Bedford.’
      • ‘It calls at Cross Roads, Haworth Brow, Oxenhope and Haworth before returning to Keighley one minute before the hour.’
      • ‘Now, no train calls at the station, which wears a deserted look.’
      • ‘A replacement bus service was in operation from 7.30 am calling at all stops between Altrincham and Old Trafford.’
      • ‘The train I am on does not call at Crewe, and the colour drains from my face at the thought of getting lost in the suburbs south of Manchester.’
      • ‘The coach will leave at 8.00am, calling at Castlebar at 8.25am and will return to Westport at about 7pm.’
      • ‘Anyone who usually takes a train calling at Stockport will have to use a replacement bus service.’
      • ‘Buses replaced trains from Hayes to Lewisham, calling at all stations along the route except Ladywell.’
      • ‘The weekly route calls at Belize, Costa Maya, Grand Cayman, and Cozumel.’
  • 7[with object and complement] (of an umpire or other official in a game) pronounce (a ball, stroke, etc.) to be the thing specified:

    ‘the linesman called the ball wide’
    • ‘It was in a tennis match in Rome, the chair umpire called it out but the player saw it otherwise.’
    • ‘The umpire called the ball out.’
    • ‘The ball went in and out of the seats in such a way that the umpire called it a double rather than a homer.’
    • ‘To me, the worst thing in baseball is when the pitcher is scared to throw the ball over the plate, and then the umpire calls it a strike when it's a foot outside!’
    • ‘Wood's high fastball is tough to catch up to, and if umpires call it a strike, hitters must chase it.’
    1. 7.1Cricket [with object] (of an umpire) declare (a bowler) to have bowled a no-ball:
      ‘he was called for throwing in the match against Hampshire’
      • ‘And they called bowlers for throwing as soon as the bending and straightening of the arm became obvious to the naked eye.’
      • ‘I am one of those rare people who supports the umpire's action of calling him for throwing.’
      • ‘Jones was first called for throwing against England at Melbourne in 1897-8.’
      • ‘He would have got called for throwing 50 years ago and they wouldn't have changed the rules for him back then.’
    2. 7.2[with object] Predict the result of (a future event, especially an election or a vote):
      ‘in the Midlands the race remains too close to call’
      ‘few pundits risked calling the election for either Bush or Kerry’
      • ‘Again, the return leg is too close to call with both teams capable of making of it through to the final in Mustangs.’
      • ‘With just a few days until Thursday's meeting at the Gresham in Dublin, few analysts are calling the outcome.’
      • ‘Hats off to you, Miguel, because on May 5 you called it - you said it was a shoo-in.’
      • ‘Irrespective of how the pundits call this one - I suspect they may install Longford as slight favourites - the ordinary Sligo fan will expect a win.’
      • ‘Election statisticians often need to get their hands on actual vote counts from test precincts to call a race.’
      • ‘Until the recent scandals, I was calling this election as a shoo-in for the Republicans.’
      • ‘Election officials have also cautioned against calling the vote too soon.’
      • ‘The result is too close to call.’
      • ‘The message that the competition between the two is too close to call came over loud and clear.’
      • ‘The personalised nature of the bid battle makes the outcome hard to call, analysts said.’
      • ‘This election is too close to call.’
      • ‘We have to call her vote 50/50, which means, according to our calculations, that the whole appeal is essentially a coin toss.’
      • ‘The current government seems to think they have a mandate to end hunting, yet the issue is too close to call in opinion polls.’
      • ‘Still, analysts call the race dead even.’
      • ‘They are opposed by Conservatives and Liberal Democrats, making the final result of the vote too close to call.’
      • ‘Well, the networks are going to be calling the race in a much different way this time than they did in 2000.’
      • ‘Your votes are flooding in every day in their hundreds but, with many categories still too close to call, every vote really does count.’
      • ‘In 2000, NBC was the first network to predict the result - calling Florida for Al Gore at 1949 EST.’
    3. 7.3[with object] Guess (the outcome) of tossing a coin:
      ‘Burnley called heads and won the toss’
      [no object] ‘‘You call,’ he said. ‘Heads or tails?’’
      • ‘The captain who calls correctly on the toss of a coin will decide whether it's league or union in the first half.’
      • ‘The captain was hoping for some luck with the toss, and after calling correctly he had no hesitation in reaching for his bowling boots.’
      • ‘The rest of the team wanted me to call "tails".’
      • ‘More importantly, though, that winner would have correctly called the toss something like 16 times in a row.’
      • ‘The players in the group then establish a playing order by calling coin tosses, chipping toward a tee marker, or any other simple method.’
      • ‘Ask the other person to call the coin toss before you toss the coin.’
      • ‘But he never found out about what the best option to call during a toss is.’
      • ‘There was even a cheer and a bout of fist-clenching when Burnley called heads and won the toss to decide who went first.’
      • ‘Goldsmith calls it tails—and wins.’
      • ‘I'm going to toss a coin and ask you to call heads or tails.’
  • 8Computing
    [with object] Cause (a subroutine) to be executed:

    ‘one subroutine may call another subroutine (or itself)’
    • ‘Metadata that is generated establishes a mapping of interface parameters to the routine parameters of the called routine.’
    • ‘Before you could call a subroutine, you had to calculate its address.’
    • ‘A shared library delays the binding of a routine name to its executable function until the routine is first called when your program runs.’
    • ‘The connection goes both ways; SISAL can call C and Fortran routines, and C and Fortran can call SISAL routines.’
    • ‘A unit test would directly call the subroutine I want to test, and it would rely as little as possible on other subroutines in the program.’
    • ‘Every time the subroutine calls itself, a few bytes are pushed on to the stack to store the return address.’
    • ‘To call C routines from a Fortran program, you will have to write some C code.’

noun

  • 1A cry made as a summons or to attract someone's attention:

    ‘a nearby fisherman heard their calls for help’
    ‘in response to the call, a figure appeared’
    • ‘They were yelling, their calls reverberating down the hall.’
    • ‘Mary went to her pew and sat silently, listening to the calls and yells of the other kids going home outside.’
    • ‘My feet abruptly started walking faster after I heard Yori's call.’
    • ‘Everyone else was already in there and he was greeted with loud calls and hellos as he entered the dressing room.’
    • ‘I had just about made it out the door when a call from behind me drew my attention.’
    • ‘She ignored anybody else on the street, not paying attention to the calls she was getting.’
    • ‘The woman ran as the guys chased after her, yelling wild calls.’
    • ‘I heard her muffled call from the car.’
    • ‘Suddenly, the once somber and silent pressroom erupted in a cacophony of calls vying for the president's attention.’
    • ‘Rescue workers moved in, picking over debris and listening for calls for help.’
    cry, shout, yell, whoop, roar, scream, shriek
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1[with modifier] A series of notes sounded on a brass instrument as a signal to do something:
      ‘a bugle call to rise at 8.30’
      • ‘The bugle call sounded at retreat was first used in the French Army and dates back to the crusades.’
      • ‘Toward the end of one song, David Johnson busted out a cavalry call on the trumpet.’
      • ‘His greatest music was made at a time of optimism in America, when the roar of the plains and the dissonant buzz of the cities still felt like the bugle calls of the new frontier.’
      • ‘Like any ex-civilian, raw recruit Elvis Presley, the king of rock 'n' roll will be keeping time to ordinary bugle calls.’
      • ‘Performing the poignant trumpet call is the 92-year-old's way of honouring those who made the ultimate sacrifice for Queen and country.’
    2. 1.2 A direction in a square dance given by the caller.
      • ‘In traditional square dancing the timing of a call is fitted to the music.’
      • ‘Square dances, with many of the calls in French, also became popular in the twentieth century.’
      • ‘If the dancers do not know who is the lead couple or who is the inside couple, they will not be able to perform the call.’
      • ‘Wilma said the calls make square dancing easy to learn.’
      • ‘Any given call might be modified by an instruction specifying which dancers should do this particular call.’
    3. 1.3Bridge A bid, response, or double:
      ‘the alternative call of 2♠ would be quite unsound’
      • ‘Then betting commences with raises, calls and folds as usual.’
      • ‘Since each call adds two cards to a player's hand, you can check how many calls you have made by counting the cards in your hand.’
      • ‘Five and six are no longer available, as this player has already used all his opportunities for these calls.’
      • ‘Each player is allowed a maximum of three calls per game.’
      • ‘In some schedules a solo is worth more if you bid it over a previous call of misère or piek.’
  • 2The characteristic cry of a bird or other animal:

    ‘it is best distinguished by its call, a loud ‘pwit’’
    cry, song, sound
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1 A device used to imitate the cry of a particular bird or other animal:
      ‘turkeys in the wild don't sound like most turkey calls’
      ‘he bought a duck call at the store’
      ‘most hunters I know have at least one call tucked away in a pocket’
  • 3An instance of speaking to someone on the phone or attempting to contact someone by phone:

    ‘I'll give you a call at around five’
    ‘he stopped returning her calls’
    ‘a ten-minute call to the emergency services’
    • ‘My phone was ringing with calls from all over the country.’
    • ‘She told the court that she left her boyfriend at the flat briefly to make a call from a nearby telephone box.’
    • ‘Unhappily this perception was reinforced by reports of police failing to respond to emergency calls.’
    • ‘The dish is used to connect calls from landline telephones to mobiles and vice versa without the need for cables.’
    • ‘She works by herself on the floor and is constantly interrupted by calls on her mobile and fixed-line phones.’
    • ‘Some residents, such as Mr Pilkington, had opted to have their incoming calls diverted to mobile telephones, she said.’
    • ‘Last year the emotional support charity had to deal with in excess of half a million calls to its telephone helpline.’
    • ‘She claimed she can't get her mortgage representative to return her calls.’
    • ‘The best approach is not to answer the call in the first place.’
    • ‘The Department of Agriculture has received calls from consumers worried about whether they consumed some of the recalled beef.’
    • ‘It is best to make such calls from public phones, using telephone cards.’
    • ‘Inmates are given phone cards to be used with conventional telephones and calls are monitored.’
    • ‘Brian, who lives in the Costa Brava, will not be at the party, but the pair will be waiting by the telephone for his call.’
    • ‘Police sent three squad cars and a helicopter in response to an emergency call.’
    • ‘If they experience an emergency, they should still telephone 999 as their call will be answered.’
    • ‘The spokesman declined to release further information, including a tape of the 911 call.’
    • ‘My late afternoon siesta was interrupted by a call from Graham.’
    • ‘Another bit of cell phone company insanity - we pay for incoming calls but those telephone numbers are not recorded on the bill.’
    • ‘According to some villagers, they could not make calls from their mobile telephones during the incident.’
    • ‘In the case of international calls, communication from a computer to a telephone abroad is allowed.’
    phone call, telephone call
    View synonyms
  • 4A brief visit, especially one made for social reasons:

    ‘we paid a call on Ben and his family’
    • ‘The video shows the first port call of the world's largest ship in the port of Busan in South Korea.’
    • ‘A routine delivery task turned into an adventure when she made a call on the village.’
    • ‘People who have been out drinking make a final call at the kebab house before returning home.’
    • ‘There are moments of humor, such as a scene where a sales representative makes a call on Blake, who is nodding out in a spaghetti-strap dress.’
    • ‘Lisbon is the first of our calls around the Iberian peninsula.’
    • ‘I paid some calls to old friends in Manhattan.’
    • ‘As Vettel was making his first pit call on lap 14, the Finn was seen leaving the circuit.’
    • ‘She will make a courtesy call on the Russian president during her stay in Moscow.’
    • ‘He pays a call on his friend and we take off on a journey discovering the life of one of the most important British artists of modern times.’
    • ‘Francis paid a call on his predecessor at a monastery on the Vatican's grounds to offer Christmas greetings.’
    • ‘The Graphic published a picture of a lady bountiful making her charitable calls around the estate with a friend, accompanied by two police constables.’
    visit, social call
    View synonyms
    1. 4.1 A visit or journey made by a doctor or other professional in response to a request for help, especially in an emergency situtation:
      ‘the ambulance is out on a call’
      ‘the district nurse for the local villages used to make her calls on a bicycle’
      • ‘At this time, all available vehicles were on other emergency calls and it was not possible to activate a crew.’
      • ‘Unless you know a psychologist that does home calls it will be difficult to get her help that she knows she needs but refuses to get.’
      • ‘Another element in the exercise will be an emergency call to Church island to attend to campers who are in difficulty.’
      • ‘The television show hostess followed firefighters out on a call that goes horribly wrong.’
      • ‘When a physiotherapist made one of her regular calls at the family home. she noticed Zoe was unwell, and asked if she had been taking her antibiotics.’
      • ‘The police warning is reported to have initiated the desired effect, forcing some to walk their dogs in secluded areas and ask for home calls by vets.’
      • ‘Amherst firefighters were called in to assist Belchertown firefighters, who were already on a call to vent propane from a home at the time.’
      • ‘She said that the nurse had been called away to another part of the home on an emergency call.’
      • ‘One of the most common home repair calls in Florida is for fascia damage, which is particularly susceptible to water damage.’
      • ‘He was told by many practice management groups that the personal call from the doctor would bring the patients back and help to support growth in his practice.’
      • ‘In many city fire departments, firefighters are sent home after two calls.’
  • 5An appeal or demand for something to happen or be done:

    ‘the call for action was welcomed’
    ‘a call to all sides to remain calm and refrain from violence’
    ‘there are more and more calls on his time’
    • ‘He begins by discussing calls in the 1870s for reform of the property tax, the backbone of state and local finance.’
    • ‘He said he does not intend staying in office beyond his term, but rejected calls to resign before that.’
    • ‘Set out what money you have coming in on one side and your outgoings on the other (rent/mortgage, food, clothing, and any other calls on your income).’
    • ‘There are also widespread calls here for our government to intervene and ‘cap’ prices in Ireland.’
    • ‘United Nations emergency officials have repeated their urgent call for more international assistance.’
    • ‘The mayor has rejected widespread calls to resign.’
    • ‘If you are a researcher, you have many calls on your time.’
    • ‘There have been calls to ban helium balloons, thanks to the scarcity of the gas which keeps them airborne’
    • ‘There were calls for a tourist boycott, but nobody paid much attention to it.’
    • ‘I don't earn nearly what my husband does, because I simply have too many other calls on my time.’
    • ‘The threat comes amid calls on the Government to build on our Olympic success by reversing funding cuts to school sports.’
    • ‘There was also more than one call for him to resign.’
    • ‘Mr O'Farrell has acknowledged she acted badly but doesn't seem to be heeding the opposition's call to sack her.’
    • ‘And calls are growing for the government to relax its anti-inflationary policies.’
    • ‘The country has branded the poet "persona non grata", amid calls he be stripped of his Nobel Prize.’
    • ‘But she did not endorse calls to ban home breeding, instead focusing her concern on commercial breeders who keep five or more dogs.’
    • ‘Fifty-eight percent disapprove, only 35 percent support the president's calls for reform.’
    • ‘She issues a clarion call for accountability at the top of corporations and better corporate governance.’
    appeal, request, plea, entreaty
    View synonyms
    1. 5.1call for[mass noun], [usually with negative] Demand, need, or reason for:
      ‘there is little call for antique furniture’
      ‘there's no call for secrecy anywhere in a free government’
      • ‘We have no call for herbal or fruit tea around here.’
      • ‘When allowed to, he can be much funnier than Johnson, but there's not much call for a wise-cracking foreign secretary.’
      • ‘There's quite a good market for recycled tyre materials, but there's little call for recycled electronics waste.’
      • ‘The team is still under strength but there is some call for optimism.’
      • ‘At the secondary level there was hardly any call for history teaching.’
      • ‘There's never any call for resorting to insults and name-calling.’
      • ‘There was little call for healthfood at the Olympic Village as the games came to an end.’
      • ‘Some GPs said they had already surveyed their patients and found there was little call for evening and weekend appointments.’
      • ‘Many superhero enthusiasts may have been disheartened by the Superman Returns version and there was not much call for a sequel.’
      • ‘There is no call for that type of behavior ever!’
      • ‘There isn't much call for investment bankers in Whistler, so John decided he'd better start a small business.’
      • ‘There's no call for any of this nonsense really.’
      need, necessity, occasion, reason, justification, grounds, excuse, pretext
      demand, desire, want, requirement, need
      View synonyms
  • 6[usually in singular] An order or request for someone to be present:

    ‘he was delighted that so many former players had heeded the call to attend the conference’
    • ‘85% of the workforce there did not heed a call to return to work, in spite of an interdict by the Labour Court declaring their strike unprotected.’
    • ‘The call to return to the battlefield is one heeded by many veterans through the ages.’
    • ‘I thank God that I heeded my wife's call to attend our church's vigil in Ebute Meta.’
    • ‘It was a shaking in the very depths of the earth, and it was a call to battle.’
    • ‘Once again, the United States and United Kingdom chose to heed the call to arms together.’
    • ‘Each day the calls to prayer are broadcast over loudspeakers for everyone to hear.’
    • ‘He'd been contracted to start in February, but answered a Jockey Club call to come earlier when injuries brought the club to the edge of a jockey shortage.’
    • ‘He will start the year at AAA, and at some point in the season will get the call to come to Chicago, if he pitches well enough.’
    • ‘We had only completed two laborious circuits when the call to night prayers sounded.’
    • ‘They're likely to ignore any call to a negotiating table.’
    • ‘Dawn commences with the morning call to prayer - broadcast over a loud speaker.’
    • ‘Christian faith teaches that such a call will not summon us to some vague eternity.’
    • ‘The government then jumped into the fray with an unofficial call to arms.’
    summons, request
    View synonyms
    1. 6.1 A vocation:
      ‘feeling the call to ministry, I started looking for a Bible college’
      • ‘Peter, an idealistic young Yale graduate, worked as a journalist covering the war in Paris when he felt the call to serve.’
      • ‘People say I could have gone professional because of my love for football but I believe that in life, each person has his call and vocation.’
      • ‘Our call to be an informal educator involves commitments to growth and change.’
      • ‘His call to a culinary career began at a young age.’
      • ‘She trained as an Infant School Teacher and it was while she was on a retreat for teachers that she felt the call to the religious life.’
      • ‘From his first days as Pope he had a strong inner call to be a missionary.’
      vocation, mission
      View synonyms
    2. 6.2 A powerful force of attraction:
      ‘walkers can't resist the call of the Cairngorms’
      • ‘She accepted, but it was not long before the call of the great outdoors became irresistible once more.’
      • ‘In the end the call of comedy was too great, and he forged a name for himself on the circuit.’
      • ‘Samantha felt the call of the ocean from her earliest days.’
      • ‘This government needs the guts to resist the call of the past, and govern for the future.’
      • ‘Even in an age of mobility, families do their best to gather as extended clans, drawn by the call of Christmas.’
      • ‘They could barely resist the call of the forbidden, and the urge was overpowering.’
      • ‘Today a new generation has taken charge of Labour, a new generation that understands the call of change.’
      attraction, appeal, lure, allure, allurement, fascination, seductiveness
      View synonyms
  • 7(in sport) a decision or ruling made by an umpire or other official, traditionally conveyed by a shout, that the ball has gone out of play or that a rule has been breached:

    ‘he was visibly irritated with the umpire's calls’
    • ‘For the first time in his career, he is getting the benefit of the doubt from officials on questionable calls.’
    • ‘The South Africans were at the receiving end of at least two bad calls.’
    • ‘They know the home team expects favorable judgments, that they are expected to neutralize bad calls with makeup calls.’
    • ‘Referees are not going to stop the game to look at foul calls or out-of-bounds rulings.’
    • ‘It's good for the game when bad calls can be corrected on the field.’
    • ‘We all want the calls to be right, and the officials have to feel better knowing they have a safety net beneath them.’
    • ‘The NBA reviews game videos to determine whether officials' calls are correct.’
    • ‘This baseball team has benefited from more bad calls than any team in memory.’
    • ‘Hockey very rarely has a glaring officiating error, and the calls made are almost always supported by replay.’
    • ‘Officials have come under heavy fire the last few weeks in the wake of a couple of controversial calls in the playoffs.’
    • ‘Refs are only human, and they do make calls within the flow of a game.’
    • ‘Some like to see the game played without many calls; some like to call the penalties.’
    • ‘There have been controversial late-game calls in the last two games.’
    • ‘Consistency in the calls from one game to the next should improve.’
    • ‘We had some calls go against us, we weren't shooting the ball really well, even though we were getting great shots.’
    • ‘There is no shortage of bad calls during the season, but in the playoffs the importance is magnified.’
    • ‘Why can't each manager have the opportunity to have three close plays reviewed per game in order to have the right calls made?’
    • ‘In fact, according to coaches, officials are deciding games with reckless calls.’
    • ‘Not having replay is bad, considering the number of botched calls in the average game.’
    • ‘Whereas bad weather, bad calls, and bad luck are completely uncoachable, a lack of discipline can be solved.’
    1. 7.1 A decision, judgement, or prediction:
      ‘personally, I'm all in favour, but it's your call’
      ‘that entrepreneurial instinct may account for his ability to make tough calls when profits are at stake’
      ‘the two old foes are so evenly matched that it's anyone's call’
      • ‘The organization said selecting Los Angeles as their first-ever City of the Year was a pretty easy call.’
      • ‘Once you know what to look for, making the right call will start to come naturally.’
      • ‘Before you start complaining about why other recruiting services aren't used, that's not my call.’
      • ‘Whether you sell early to cash in on the frenzy or sell later based on concrete information, it's your call, so don't give in to panic.’
      • ‘Your and your spouse's plans for your estate can be identical or entirely dissimilar; it's your call.’
      • ‘No wonder the company didn't invest into 3D, great call.’
      • ‘Become fully informed consumers, knowledgeable enough to challenge doctors who make questionable diagnostic calls.’
      • ‘They have to make a call in a split second.’
      • ‘I can use the help, but this is my call to make.’
      • ‘The PM will make her call on that in her own way.’
      • ‘The first elimination is always a very tough call.’
      • ‘Like so many others after a few drinks, he made a bad judgment call.’
  • 8Computing
    A command to execute a subroutine:

    ‘parameter values may be changed by calls to a special purpose input specification subroutine’
    • ‘One direct method to utilize the kernel is for a process to execute a system call.’
    • ‘As shown in the figure, there is a value pushed for each call to the routine.’
    • ‘To be safe you can use the keyword before any subroutine call even if the subroutine is already defined.’
    • ‘That means, the call to a subroutine must be on its program line rather than somewhere in an expression.’
    • ‘A code element issues a call to the first routine.’
  • 9Finance
    A demand for payment of lent or unpaid capital.

    • ‘The bank could issue the contingent capital component of its planned £7.8 billion capital call as early as this summer, according to debt bankers.’
    • ‘With potential bank losses barely covered by the European Stability Mechanism's 60 billion euros of bank rescue funds, what might happen when banks admit this can't continue, and loan losses trigger new capital calls?’
    • ‘Conceptually, an overdraft is repayable at call or on demand, whereas a loan is granted for a fixed period of time.’
    1. 9.1Stock Market
      short for call option
      • ‘Option traders use calls and puts to hedge risks and exploit volatility.’
      • ‘By tracking the daily and weekly volume of puts and calls in the U.S. stock market, we can gauge the feelings of traders.’
      • ‘Shareholders are still suing Wall Street firms for too-bullish calls.’
      • ‘The rule for creating synthetics is that the strike price and expiration date of the calls and puts must be identical.’
      • ‘Put options should increase in value and calls should drop as the stock price falls.’
  • 10US [as modifier] (in a bar, club, etc.) denoting or made with relatively expensive brands of alcohol which customers request by name.

    ‘try wines by the glass for $5, beer for $3, and call drinks for $8’
    Compare with well
    • ‘Drinks are pricy for the area, but then I can't remember purchasing a call drink for $6 so I suppose $9-$10 is reasonable?’
    • ‘You can upgrade to call drinks for an additional $10.’
    • ‘Some caterers will offer Jim Beam Bourbon as a house/well brand and Jack Daniel's as a call brand.’
    • ‘The call liquors are the name brand booze that sit up on a shelf for everyone to see.’
    • ‘Call brand liquors include Absolut Vodka, Seagrams Gin, and Jim Beam.’
    • ‘These different vodka brands can be grouped by their price into three categories: well (the cheapest), call, and premium.’

Phrases

  • at call

  • call attention to

    • Cause people to notice:

      ‘he is seeking to call attention to himself by his crimes’
      • ‘But I think the part I admire the most is that he did it without really announcing it or calling attention to it.’
      • ‘Feminist voices critically called attention to the relationship between sexism and male violence.’
      • ‘They also preferred to use behavioral strategies that redirected, rather than called attention to, problem behaviors.’
      • ‘I yelled out to call attention to what was going on (at the same time wondering how smart I was to get involved).’
      • ‘Too often in the longer book, the writing calls attention to itself and distracts from the story.’
      • ‘Sleeveless, short or cap sleeves or tight sleeves call attention to, and display, the arms.’
      • ‘Don't say or do anything to call attention to it, and Matt might not even notice.’
      • ‘In my opinion, it called attention to what Allied forces were up against and might well have inspired them to renewed efforts against a worthy opponent.’
      • ‘He rarely calls attention to himself, rarely grandstands, but usually does it what it takes to get the job done.’
      • ‘The way they sell new dictionaries is by calling attention to all the new words they've located.’
      publicize, make public, make known, give publicity to, bill, post, announce, broadcast, proclaim, trumpet, shout from the rooftops, give notice of, call attention to, promulgate
      View synonyms
  • call someone's bluff

    • 1Challenge someone to carry out a stated intention, in the expectation of being able to expose it as a pretence:

      ‘she was tempted to call his bluff, hardly believing he'd carry out his threat’
      • ‘And it's about time someone from the conservative side of politics called their bluff.’
      • ‘I think furiously, she's calling my bluff, I'll push even further’
      • ‘Or, what if we called their bluff and didn't give them the money and see what happens then?’
      • ‘Over the past few weeks, the president has called their bluff.’
      • ‘In this case, the concerned students have called the publication 's bluff, pointing out that consideration for the larger community was not taken when the ‘back door’ article was produced.’
      • ‘Right or wrong, some of the guards called their bluff, and we can learn from that.’
      • ‘And should it respond by accommodating its demands, or by calling its bluff?’
      • ‘He had called her bluff, and she had met his challenge head on.’
      • ‘When anybody calls their bluff and punctures this self-delusion, they can only cope by insulting and vilifying their critics.’
      • ‘But now that we know people are doing this, it's time for us to start calling their bluff: You aren't really talking to anyone are you?’
      • ‘Transfolk, increasingly numerous, loud and proud, are calling our bluff.’
      • ‘I called his bluff, expecting him to laugh - to turn around and leave.’
      • ‘Just as the sailor will bring lively tales of adventure, he may also be able to ferret out falsehoods and call deceivers' bluffs, because he has gained wisdom from life's challenges and insights into human nature.’
      • ‘For these emotions to work, they must have a kind of inevitability built into them, such that, when someone calls your bluff, you cannot avoid carrying out your promise or threat.’
      • ‘His premise is that Democrats are ‘aghast’ at the president's ‘new’ Social Security proposal because he ‘has finally called their bluff.’’
      • ‘If you gave because you liked the site, or even just wanted to humiliate me by calling my bluff, you're free to leave it - but believe me, I would not fault you in the slightest for asking for your money back.’
      • ‘Two idealistic activists, however, called his bluff.’
      • ‘The bluff was called and it was game back on as players hastily deserted favourite watering holes.’
      • ‘In a very real sense, I think the big commercial publishers now are clearly calling our bluff.’
      • ‘In effect, where polluters had previously argued that emission control was too expensive, the new system called their bluff.’
    • 2(in poker or brag) make an opponent show their hand in order to reveal that its value is weaker than their heavy betting suggests.

      • ‘I called his bluff correctly though and I ended up getting all the chips back off him and knocking him out so was all good in the end.’
      • ‘There were two reasons why I called his bluff.’
      • ‘I'm just a little disappointed that it went this far to play poker and to have someone call your bluff.’
      • ‘One company has called the other's bluff and laid down on the table four Kings - four of a kind.’
      • ‘When not daring an opponent to call his bluff, he seduced them.’
  • call collect

    • Make a phone call reversing the charges.

      • ‘A prison social worker said that prisoners may call collect on pay telephones inside the prison.’
      • ‘Don't accept gifts from strangers or call someone, even if they invite you to call collect.’
      • ‘You will also have your own phone from which long distance calls can be made by calling collect or using a charge card.’
      • ‘They charge extra money to inmates who call collect to their families.’
      • ‘You called collect to tell us about your new dog?’
      • ‘What do you mean, ‘Why don't I just call collect?‘’
      • ‘I'm sorry I had to call collect, but I have news.’
      • ‘From countries where toll-free calls are not available, customers are able to call collect.’
      • ‘You could call collect but you had to pay for your calls, either way.’
      • ‘My arrangement with this aunt is that she calls me or if I need to call her I call collect and then she calls me back.’
  • call something into (or in) question

    • Cast doubt on something:

      ‘these findings call into question the legitimacy of the proceedings’
      • ‘Integrity is one of the cornerstones upon which reliable journalism is based, and, when it is called into question, we begin to doubt everything we read in newspapers and magazines and see on television.’
      • ‘The sanity of the captain is called into question.’
      • ‘He is furious that his good name has been called into question.’
      • ‘Yet in recent years this victory has been called into question.’
      • ‘It was the second time that her victory was called into question.’
      • ‘She has filed a civil lawsuit which, of course, calls her motives into question.’
      • ‘Apparently, these concerns had been raised before, even by an outfit whose reliability as a watchdog has been called into question recently.’
      • ‘My honesty has been called into question and it has made me look like a criminal.’
      • ‘People are very much offended that their patriotism has been called into question.’
      • ‘But in recent months, the future of the project has been called into question.’
      doubt, distrust, mistrust, suspect, lack confidence in, have doubts about, be suspicious of, have suspicions about, have misgivings about, feel uneasy about, feel apprehensive about, cast doubt on, query, question, challenge, dispute, have reservations about
      misdoubt
      View synonyms
  • call it a day

    • Decide or agree to stop doing something:

      ‘after three marriages, many men would have been more than ready to call it a day’
      • ‘However, at 52 he has decided to call it a day and let his colleagues carry on the work.’
      • ‘After a few more takes Stanley wisely decided to call it a day.’
      • ‘After two years of getting up at 6am he decided to call it a day.’
      • ‘An hour or so of being battered by wind and rain, with only one small fish each, we decided to call it a day.’
      • ‘It's not a fun job, scanning negatives, and I decided to call it a day when I'd finished the first film.’
      • ‘Our legs were beginning to ache so we decided to call it a day.’
      • ‘With the wind increasing, the heavy rain being blown in my face I decided to call it a day.’
      • ‘After half a century of haircutting, an Amesbury salon owner has decided to hang up his scissors and call it a day.’
      • ‘But what is certain is that when these two great champions do decide to call it a day, the game of tennis will be all the poorer for it.’
      • ‘But poorish health and frustration with the constant squabbling at the academy made him decide to call it a day.’
      • ‘She has spent over forty years looking after the people of Kildavin and decided to call it a day.’
      • ‘At this point, late in the afternoon, I decided to call it a day and head back to camp.’
      • ‘Worn out by years of struggling for proper financing, she decided to call it a day.’
      • ‘The group called it a day after Charlie Simpson decided to leave.’
      • ‘We were late arrivals and calling it a day, we decided just after midnight to put our heads down for the night.’
      • ‘We decided to call it a day and wend our way back to York by as many country lanes as possible.’
      • ‘And at 60 for two, with 13 overs of play still scheduled, both sides agreed to call it a day.’
      • ‘The shopkeepers also downed their shutters and the other establishments also decided to call it a day.’
      • ‘An hour or so later, Kelley and Eben had decided to call it a day and get to bed.’
      • ‘It was when Alvar hit his head on a low branch that overhung the trail that they decided to call it a day.’
      admit defeat, concede defeat, stop trying, give up, give in, surrender, capitulate, be beaten
      despair, lose heart, abandon hope, give up hope
      throw in the sponge, throw in the towel
      drop one's bundle
      View synonyms
  • call someone names

    • Insult someone verbally:

      ‘a lot of people called him names and I was one of them’
      • ‘She called me names, insulted me in front of my face, talked about me constantly, got her new friends to do the same as well.’
      • ‘I use the analogy that if you come to stay in another's house, you do not turn round and abuse their hospitality and call them names.’
      • ‘It hurts every time I am called names and insulted by virtual strangers.’
      • ‘The way he would tease her, call her names and insult the fact that she was Indian.’
      • ‘Some people might make fun of them, or call them names, or even hurt them.’
      • ‘A school bully might push you out of your seat, kick you when your back is turned, demand lunch money, threaten or insult you, call you names, or make jokes about you.’
      • ‘It's ok to call them names and insult every one of them.’
      • ‘You ignored me, you called me names, you gave me the cold shoulder, remember?’
      • ‘Bullying can be mental like completely ignoring and excluding someone and can also be verbal like calling someone names.’
      • ‘Yet I don't care what names I call him cause I don't feel any remorse in calling him names or insulting him.’
      offend, cause offence to, give offence to, affront, abuse, be rude to, call someone names, slight, disparage, discredit, libel, slander, malign, defame, denigrate, cast aspersions on, impugn, slur, revile, calumniate
      View synonyms
  • call of nature

  • call the shots (or tune)

    • Take the initiative in deciding how something should be done:

      ‘we believe in parents and teachers calling the shots’
      • ‘The car sales staff can chat away all they like to the man about brake, horsepower and top speeds but it's really the woman who calls the shots.’
      • ‘The taxpayer pays the piper, but the sponsor calls the tune.’
      • ‘Early on it was unclear who was really calling the shots.’
      • ‘In the economy, however, it is always big capital that calls the shots.’
      • ‘Increasingly in shaping our foreign policy priorities it is the media which calls the shots.’
      • ‘We would love to know, Mr. Prime Minister, since for all practical purposes your Government still calls the shots on this supposedly autonomous corporation.’
      • ‘In return, the new recruits are willing to do anything for the man who calls the shots.’
      • ‘Interview those who own or manage the media and they will tell you that today it's the readership or viewership that calls the shots.’
      • ‘It's all about getting the initiative and being in a position to call the shots.’
      • ‘He quoted the proverb ‘He who pays the piper, calls the tune, ‘but noted, ‘I think we are very strong on the issue that they mustn't tell us what is good for us.’
      be in charge, be in control, be in command, be the boss, be at the helm, be in the driving seat, be at the wheel, be in the saddle, pull the strings, hold the purse strings
      run the show, rule the roost
      wear the trousers
      View synonyms
  • call a spade a spade

    • Speak plainly without avoiding unpleasant or embarrassing issues:

      ‘it is time to name names and call a spade a spade’
      • ‘She has people rooting for her in this country simply because she calls a spade a spade.’
      • ‘And the president should not be criticized for being a straight shooter and calling a spade a spade.’
      • ‘A source described him as extremely straightforward, somebody who calls a spade a spade and has no hidden agenda.’
      • ‘Finally a report that calls a spade a spade on the country's dangerous love affair with the demon drink.’
      • ‘It's high time people started calling a spade a spade.’
      • ‘He called a spade a spade and in many ways was an archetypal Yorkshireman - blunt and straight to the point.’
      • ‘Given the enormous amount of evidence that supports that conclusion, I just don't think it's reasonable to say that calling a spade a spade in this case is ‘hackneyed, inappropriate and immature.’’
      • ‘After a while, we started to talk and I began to like him, because he's funny and he's straightforward and he calls a spade a spade.’
      • ‘They had the greatest difficulty in calling a spade a spade or a killing a killing: rather it was ‘expressing violence’.’
      • ‘So at one level this is an issue of clarity; the simple business of calling a spade a spade.’
      insensitive, inconsiderate, thoughtless, unthinking, indelicate, undiplomatic, impolitic, indiscreet, unsubtle, clumsy, heavy-handed, graceless, awkward, unpolished, inept, bungling, maladroit, gauche, undiscerning, unsophisticated
      View synonyms
  • call someone to account

  • call someone/thing to mind

    • 1Cause one to think of someone or something, especially through similarity:

      ‘the still lifes call to mind certain of Cézanne's works’
      • ‘But some of the weird writing calls that composer to mind, especially in the more reflective moments of the second movement.’
      • ‘It's not about these people, but there are things in it that call them to mind.’
      • ‘Her work conjures up such a non-factual set of moments that altered states, or dream states are called to mind.’
      • ‘At other points his guitar work briefly calls organs to mind.’
      evoke, put one in mind of, recall, bring to mind, call up, summon up, conjure up
      View synonyms
      1. 1.1[with negative]Remember someone or something:
        [with clause] ‘I cannot call to mind where I have seen you’
        • ‘There's doubtless an equally irritating homily about spring-cleaning in the garden, too, but fortunately I can't call it to mind.’
        • ‘‘Honourable Sirs, I have early this morning witnessed a crime of revolting sort’ he paused trying to call the rest to mind.’
        • ‘All of us have done things in our lives we'd rather not have done, things that flood us with remorse or pain or embarrassment whenever we call them to mind.’
        • ‘Draco looked pensive as his previous behaviour was called to mind.’
        • ‘Modest, common country garden perennial flowers, both of them, and I'm ashamed to say I simply cannot call their names to mind.’
        • ‘There's another old adage there, too, but I can't call it to mind just now.’
        • ‘If you think about somebody you know who's very generous, even if they haven't given to you directly, what does it feel like if you call this person to mind?’
        • ‘As we call our lifetime to mind we recognize no unbroken sequence of events, but rather episodes that chart our memory with the markers of ‘before’ and ‘after.’’
        • ‘As Sigmund Freud suggested long ago, memories are themselves recast every time they are called to mind.’
        • ‘She did not know how long she had been fighting, nor did she wish to call it to mind.’
        remember, recall, recollect, think
        View synonyms
  • call someone/thing to order

    • Ask those present at a meeting to be silent so that business may proceed:

      ‘Randy McGill called the large gathering to order’
      • ‘The town crier called the proceedings to order.’
      • ‘Scott is now taking the podium to call the audience to order.’
      • ‘I remember nervously calling the meeting to order, wondering what our full day of dialogue would bring.’
      • ‘Alex called the board to order, and everyone fell silent.’
      • ‘He looked around the room to ensure all his key players were present, then called the meeting to order.’
      • ‘I have called the members to order, and I ask them to desist.’
      • ‘She sat stiffly in the office chair, like an executive calling a boardroom to order.’
      • ‘The clang of a gong calls the bilingual sessions to order, and proceedings operate according to a precise set of rules adapted from those of the British Parliament.’
      • ‘Imagine that the CEO of a major corporation has just called a meeting to order, and one of the board members makes a motion to discuss a proposed acquisition.’
      • ‘The public hearing for the road closure was called to order although no members of the public had shown up.’
  • don't call us, we'll call you

    • informal Used as a dismissive way of saying that someone has not been successful in an audition or job application.

      • ‘His e-mail read like a ‘thank you for your interest, but don't call us, we'll call you,’ form letter.’
      • ‘After the first audition there was a two-week period when it was a case of don't call us, we'll call you.’
      • ‘Thank you, thank you, I've got the picture: don't call us, we'll call you.’
      • ‘You can't walk five meters in a straight line… don't call us, we'll call you.’
  • good call (or bad call)

    • informal Used to express approval (or criticism) of a person's decision or suggestion:

      ‘So you asked her to leave? Good call’
      • ‘He admitted he was wrong - that he made a bad call.’
      • ‘Deservedly they both received posthumous Medals of Honor, but the question has to be asked whether it was a good call by their leaders to send two men to almost certain death without being able to provide follow-up support.’
      • ‘The decision to keep interest rates unchanged looks like a good call.’
      • ‘Medical staff deal with a constant flow of difficult decisions and, occasionally, they make what appears to be a bad call.’
      • ‘The authorities may have made a bad call on some of the cases, but that doesn't give those tenants a constitutional case.’
      • ‘They made a choice to not do that and to take the big fire engine which shaved off a lot of time and it was a good call because they were able to get to me that much sooner.’
      • ‘We think it would be a bad call politically for her to run in 2004, but what a difference it would make in the race.’
      • ‘We skipped the D & D 30th Anniversary party in favor of sleep, which was a good call.’
      • ‘He was very agitated and concerned, and on several occasions he said to me it was a very bad call and he obviously realised he had made a very significant error.’
      • ‘We made a good call early on by not pitting on that first stop and it paid-off.’
  • on call

    • 1(of a person) able to be contacted in order to provide a professional service if necessary, but not formally on duty:

      ‘your local GP may be on call round the clock’
      • ‘Generally, these caregivers work year round with no vacation and are on call 24 hours a day.’
      • ‘If she is not on duty, she is on call so that she can respond around the clock to patients' needs.’
      • ‘If a physical exam is to be done the physician on call will be contacted.’
      • ‘There is an emergency ski patrol service on call 24 hours a day.’
      • ‘The team is on call 24 hours-a-day, and is trained in resuscitation techniques and how to use live-saving defibrillators.’
      • ‘Top marks also to all who remained on duty, or on call, over the festive period.’
      • ‘I am on call today and went in to do my ward round earlier.’
      • ‘The physicians can work fewer hours, both in the office and on call, and as they are able to delegate many tasks they can provide better services.’
      • ‘You have to get up in the middle of the night if you're on call.’
      • ‘If you work in a global organization, you might be on call 24 hours a day for troubleshooting or consulting.’
      on duty, on standby, standing by, ready, available
      View synonyms
    • 2(of money lent) repayable on demand.

      • ‘Keep your loan on call and simply pay off the 3% minimum each month.’
      • ‘High cost options such as recalling the loan and converting a term loan to an on-call loan are less preferred choices.’
  • to call one's own

    • Used to describe something that one can genuinely feel belongs to one:

      ‘I had not an item to call my own’
      • ‘The teenagers simply wanted a space to call their own.’
      • ‘We don't have a sofa, a coffee table, a mirror, a desk - not a stick of furniture to call our own.’
      • ‘There were hundreds of people living along the coastline who suddenly did not have anything to call their own.’
      • ‘On the most frigid day of this year, the restaurant overflows with penniless customers who make a cup of coffee last all day because they don't have a job to go to or a home to call their own.’
      • ‘The club is for the youth of the area and the youth group will endeavour to provide a safe environment for them, where they can have fun and a venue to call their own.’
      • ‘While this dispute continues, Isobel can only wrap up her children up as best she can, and hope that they will soon have a home to call their own.’
      • ‘Ideally the Youth Club would love to have a place to call their own where they could store equipment and project work.’
      • ‘Numerous extensions and conversions later, they now have a substantial seven-bedroom home, so everyone has a room to call their own.’
      • ‘Village youths could be given a place to call their own and to hang out with their friends.’
      • ‘The group desperately need premises to call their own, somewhere to store all their equipment, to have freedom of rehearsal times and a place to feel comfortable in.’
  • within call

    • Near enough to be summoned by calling:

      ‘she moved into the guest room, within call of her father's room’
      • ‘He had retired discreetly to the doorway, ready within call should Master need anything.’
      • ‘How many people may there be in London, who, if we had brought them deviously and blindfolded, to this street, fifty paces from the Station House, and within call of St. Giles's church, would know it for a not remote part of the city in which their lives are passed?’
      • ‘She might call for help if he attempted again as neighbors lived within call.’

Phrasal Verbs

  • call someone/thing down

    • 1Cause or provoke someone or something to appear or occur:

      ‘nothing called down the wrath of Nemesis quicker’
      • ‘The poems were gathered together in a volume called The British Album, and they were deemed disturbing enough to call down several satirical attacks.’
      • ‘The murder of a stranger who entered somebody's house for shelter would call down the anger of the gods.’
      • ‘His Religion within the Boundaries of Pure Reason (1793) called down on him the censure of the government.’
      • ‘In some cases, you'll find yourself in the midst of a pitched battle from which you can call down any number of WMDs.’
      • ‘For many of the villagers, if Allah can be called down into the human world, so can the spirits of the dead.’
      • ‘It was a way of calling down the judgment of God if the words spoken were false.’
      • ‘All I can think about is what a failure I am and that I am disobeying God and calling his wrath down on me.’
      • ‘The best architects have always understood that we can call down divine fire, focus community, make a place for home.’
    • 2Reprimand someone:

      ‘he called down Clarence Drum about being so high and mighty’
      • ‘They sat down and everyone started asking Katrina what she was called down for.’
      • ‘She was a good student, and she couldn't figure out why she was called down.’
      • ‘When she got carried away and started to show genuine anger and aggression, the Captain called her down.’
      • ‘Who do these holier-than-thou types think they are, calling me down?’
      • ‘When Joyce gets paranoid about his talent as a writer, he takes it out on Nora, throwing her past in her face and calling her down for being married before.’
      reprimand, rebuke, admonish, chastise, chide, upbraid, reprove, reproach, scold, remonstrate with, berate, take to task, pull up, castigate, lambaste, read someone the riot act, give someone a piece of one's mind, haul over the coals, lecture, criticize, censure
      View synonyms
  • call for

    • 1Make necessary:

      ‘desperate times call for desperate measures’
      • ‘It does not necessarily call for a large investment to implement it.’
      • ‘Desperate times such as these call for the celebration of small victories such as this.’
      • ‘Where safety calls for drastic measures such as bollards to be installed, then fixed bollards should be the method used.’
      • ‘It calls for tough and focussed decisions and no soft and vague measures.’
      • ‘This condition calls for urgent medical attention at any time of the day or night.’
      • ‘The alleged plan called for the two men to pretend that he was a hostage.’
      • ‘The production schedule would call for filming a total of 100 episodes in just two years.’
      • ‘This is a sensitive area which I must draw to your attention and feel it calls for some action before it causes more distress.’
      • ‘I think a sense of proportion is called for here.’
      • ‘FBI policy calls for an investigation whenever an agent fires a weapon.’
      require, need, necessitate, make necessary, demand
      View synonyms
    • 2Publicly ask for or demand:

      ‘the report calls for an audit of endangered species’
      • ‘Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch issued separate statements calling for more government action to protect lives.’
      • ‘The basic issues were all spelled out, even before the Security Council resolution calling for a land-for-peace settlement.’
      • ‘The US way is to call for stricter laws, harsher conditions and longer sentences.’
      • ‘The companies also called for more transparency and for limits on surveillance.’
      • ‘The President called for $10 million to be spent on researching violent media as well as its correlation to gun violence.’
      • ‘Councilman Kenney, among others, called for a review of the city's demolition application and inspection process.’
      • ‘The report calls for a dramatic restructuring of how aid is allotted in the region.’
      • ‘Senate Democrats also pointed out that they had been calling for a bipartisan conference for months, a request that had been brushed off by House Republicans.’
      • ‘The report also called for more research on fluoride and the implications for child health.’
      • ‘It calls for the National Audit Office to conduct an urgent scrutiny of the value for money tests.’
      require, need, necessitate, make necessary, demand
      View synonyms
    • 3Stop to collect (someone) at the place where they are living or working:

      ‘I'll call for you around seven’
      • ‘I will call for you at three.’
      • ‘When her friends knocked at the door to call for her, her mum became frantic with worry.’
      • ‘A new house and a new friend: he called for me and said he would show me around.’
      • ‘A car would call for her at four o'clock on Friday.’
      • ‘I will call for you tonight at 6.30.’
      • ‘She was discovered by a neighbour who called for her on the way to Sunday Mass.’
      • ‘He had a friend call for him at his office and together they walked to the coffee house.’
      • ‘I called for you so we could meet the man that Karl referred to as his friend.’
      • ‘He called for me at my hotel and took me to the beach after dawn next morning.’
      pick up, collect, fetch, come to get, go to get, come for
      View synonyms
    • 4Predict or describe (the likely weather conditions) for a period of time in the future:

      ‘the forecast is calling for more rain’
      ‘they're calling for temperatures in the 80s for the rest of the week’
      • ‘Here in Chicago, they are calling for some cold temperatures and snow for the next two days, all of which has me making plans to stay inside all weekend long.’
      • ‘The forecast called for more rain through the day Sunday, which could hamper rescuers trying to reach all of the far-flung areas that have been affected.’
      • ‘Weather forecasts called for heavy rains July 12 in Indianapolis, thanks to the remnants of Hurricane Dennis.’
      • ‘Egads … the weather forecast for Friday is calling for snow.’
      • ‘Although the weather forecast called for rain, the weather was great throughout the whole race.’
      • ‘After a few weeks, with the weather outlook not calling for any snow for the foreseeable future, I went ahead and swapped back to the summer tires.’
      • ‘Forecasters are calling for a storm surge of between 6 and 14 feet for Eleuthera and Grand Bahama Islands.’
      • ‘They're calling for a high of 43 in Park City and 50 in Salt Lake.’
      • ‘They're calling for a wintry mix, which should be just lovely!’
      • ‘They are calling for 6-12 inches total by tomorrow morning in the far northern Chicago suburbs.’
      • ‘The weather in Banff unexpectedly changed to warm, but the forecast is calling for cold and snow for the weekend.’
  • call something forth

    • Elicit a specified response:

      ‘few things call forth more compassion’
      • ‘Lower manning levels have called forth the need for more flexible job descriptions so that fewer employees can cover all the previous jobs.’
      • ‘The rise of essentially trivial pastimes should not call forth a moral panic.’
      • ‘This was the use of psychology in economics that, when it was employed by Proudhon, called forth a rebuke from Marx!’
      • ‘The situations she chooses make for dramatic scenarios that call forth genuine emotional responses.’
      • ‘Her memory is astounding, calling forth an endless stream of anecdotes.’
      • ‘Sometimes even the most harmless remark about America would call forth very sharp replies from him.’
      • ‘To any professional pianist the name Maurice Hinson calls forth a number of images: meticulous scholar, prolific author, inspiring lecturer.’
      • ‘A meal high in carbs calls forth a rush of insulin which can overshoot the required amount, lowering blood glucose too much, making you hungry again.’
      • ‘Today, many of the jokes are dated, but the raucous satirical tone still hits a nerve and calls forth countless contemporary associations.’
      • ‘The setting and circumstances on the island call forth the ideas of departure, regret, and the allure of the superficial.’
  • call someone in

    • Enlist someone's aid or services:

      ‘you can either do the work yourself or call in a local builder to help you’
      • ‘When the government needs them at times like this, they pick up the phone and they call them in.’
      • ‘Law enforcement authorities discovered lab equipment and other "suspicious" material in the house, and then called in the FBI.’
      • ‘She's called in the government to do more to stop unscrupulous companies selling prescription drugs on the Internet.’
      • ‘Normally we are called in to provide an emergency service.’
      • ‘A company can call her in for a morning to measure up its sales staff, or a group of colleagues can book her for a couple of hours.’
      • ‘Lt. Murphy calls him in on cases that don't seem to make any sense.’
      • ‘Said James, the policewoman assigned to the case promised to call on them late Sunday afternoon.’
      • ‘Experts from The Pigeon Control Advisory Service were called in two years ago and visited the town again just before Christmas.’
      • ‘The National Criminal Intelligence Service has been called in, along with a Metropolitan Police team specialising in tracking down fugitives.’
      • ‘Extra firefighters were called in as the fire spread.’
      • ‘A local referee was called in to inspect the pitch at 12.30 pm and deemed it unplayable.’
      call, call for, call in, summon, ask to come, request, request the attendance of, request the presence of, order, contact, fetch
      View synonyms
  • call something in

    • Require payment of a loan or promise of money:

      ‘the bank would call in loans and foreign donations’
      • ‘His employer, hearing of his speeches, sacked him as his steward and called in unpaid debts.’
      • ‘Such a loss, it is argued, would prompt America's creditors to start calling in the debt.’
      • ‘Our social club owed the brewery money and they were calling it in.’
      • ‘Workers who took out preferential loans to buy cars will be badly hit if their loans are called in by the firm's liquidators.’
      • ‘The bank was on the brink of calling in the debt.’
      • ‘Others blame the owners of established resorts, who may have pressed banks to call in loans to their red-hot competitor.’
      • ‘The only circumstances in which they could call in all outstanding debts would be in the event of their own disbandment.’
      • ‘Bolivia was told that if coca production didn't cease entirely by 2000, aid packages would stop and the loans would be called in.’
      • ‘His biggest lender had just called in its loan.’
      • ‘Our losses were so high that our loans were called in.’
  • call someone/thing off

    • Order a person or dog to stop attacking someone:

      ‘Gunda pleaded with him to call the dog off’
      • ‘The dogs wanted to follow, but Maria called them off.’
      • ‘The hounds were called off, regrouped and the oldest hunt in England set off on a new trail.’
      • ‘Its owners were watching my dog attack their horse, while I was trying to call her off.’
      • ‘‘Call your dog off,’ Lucy said calmly.’
      • ‘She grabbed my throat, but before she could act further, the woman behind her called her off with a harsh, ‘Stop!’’
      • ‘The Italian attack was called off, and it was time to move against France, so I resumed control of my unit and ordered it to Burgundy.’
      • ‘He stood and watched while the dogs attacked and made no attempt to call them off.’
      • ‘He called off the attackers.’
      • ‘The government called off helicopters sent to attack the rebel militia, averting a threatened rebel offensive.’
  • call something off

    • Cancel an event or agreement:

      ‘they held a ballot on whether to call off industrial action’
      • ‘Unfortunately, we had a lot of bad weather recently and an extraordinary amount of games were called off.’
      • ‘The firm called off takeover talks last November because the price discussed was not satisfactory.’
      • ‘Within hours of calling off the deal, however, he was working to make the same idea happen, this time as a private company.’
      • ‘Just four days before the event was due to take place the Village Business Association called it off.’
      • ‘But their protest was called off while they waited on the results of negotiations with the union representative at Fawley.’
      • ‘As the friends argue, other problems surface: Ian's doubts about his impending wedding, which his friends urge him to call off.’
      • ‘Jack momentarily considers calling off the wedding but eventually slinks back to LA with his tail between his legs.’
      • ‘They were surprised to find that the strike had been called off and that an agreement had been struck supporting a two-tier wage.’
      • ‘But the final deal was never done and last month negotiations were called off.’
      • ‘An Army spokesman said that due to ‘unforeseen circumstances’ the event had been called off indefinitely.’
      cancel, abandon, shelve, scrap, drop, mothball
      axe, scrub, scratch, nix
      redline
      View synonyms
  • call on

    • 1Pay a visit to (someone):

      ‘he's planning to call on Katherine today’
      • ‘Anyone visiting a friend or acquaintance is expected to call on everyone they know in the same neighborhood.’
      • ‘The policewoman assigned to the case promised to call on them late Sunday afternoon.’
      • ‘She also called on her legislator during her brief visit to capital.’
      • ‘He then calls on Eustacia, asking her to marry him.’
      • ‘He visited a Kyoto temple, called on a professor from his alma mater in Kyoto and paid tribute to a Japanese author.’
      • ‘We were living in Switzerland, and Toni would call on us whenever he visited the country.’
      • ‘John calls on Mrs. Jennings, and after his visit, he goes on a walk with Elinor.’
      • ‘Thereafter I made it a point to call on him on all my visits to Delhi.’
      • ‘Half a dozen or so guests are coming to call on me and maybe extend it to a visit in a few day's time.’
      • ‘He called on me during his last visit to Accra and we discussed varied issues relating to Africa.’
      visit, pay a visit to, pay a call on, go and see, look in on
      View synonyms
    • 2Have recourse to:

      ‘we are able to call on academic staff with a wide variety of expertise’
      • ‘He'll be calling on those hard-earned inner resources often in this sport.’
      • ‘Under the proposals, a senior nurse would then be able to call on more staff at short notice than is possible at present.’
      • ‘A great many collectors from the upper aristocracy or rich middle classes called on her skill.’
      • ‘The largest part of the market remains untapped since most companies prefer to handle their own security issues, rather than calling on external forces.’
      • ‘But Kelvin will be able to call on some family history to help him play the role.’
      • ‘It was all very new to us all and called on all our skills.’
      • ‘Now her dad is calling on her musical talents to keep his customers in good spirits on December 11.’
      • ‘Schools that need a helping hand will be able to call on volunteers to help in their activities.’
      • ‘He will be able to call on the multinational forces, if he deems it necessary to have them deal with a problem.’
      • ‘United called on all their reserves of energy and battled back to equalise just before full time.’
      have recourse to, avail oneself of, turn to, draw on, look to, make use of, use, utilize, bring into play
      View synonyms
      1. 2.1[with infinitive]Demand that (someone) do something:
        ‘he called on the government to hold a vote’
        • ‘Bosses are calling on their staff to get fit and healthy.’
        • ‘It does not advocate cash hand-outs to farmers, but instead calls on the Government to adopt a more understanding approach to agriculture.’
        • ‘I call on you to stop any protest against progress in the peace process.’
        • ‘Tenants have called on their neighbours and staff to write to their local MP voicing their concerns.’
        • ‘Many of them had called on him to step down.’
        • ‘She called on the council to employ someone, even for two or three days a week, to look after the cemetery.’
        • ‘She is calling on those in power to stop preaching hatred.’
        • ‘Farmers are urging the public to sign a petition calling on the Government to tighten controls on illegal imports.’
        • ‘Now residents are calling on local representatives to demand that ramps should be installed on the road.’
        • ‘PC Hopson, who is spearheading the scheme to educate drinkers in the city, called on them to take sensible precautions.’
        appeal to, ask, request, apply to, petition
        View synonyms
  • call someone out

    • 1Summon someone to deal with an emergency or to do repairs:

      ‘patients are to be told to stop calling doctors out unnecessarily at night’
      • ‘The emergency doctor was called out at 2.15am.’
      • ‘Any time there was an emergency, Gus could be called out and his wife and daughters had to fend for themselves.’
      • ‘When veterinarian Gail McCarthy is called out to the scene there isn't much she can do.’
      • ‘So, to beat the system, I've requested that we call the electrician out again.’
      • ‘The cracks were discovered last month after the gas company was called out to deal with an emergency pipe leak.’
      • ‘The school would make headlines six years later, when the Governor called out the Arkansas National Guard to prevent its integration.’
      • ‘I've had to call the police out a couple of times, and the problem has been and gone over the years, depending on her medication.’
      • ‘No need to call out the royal guard; all parties are declared not guilty and are free to go.’
      • ‘Last month we had to call the doctor out because the stress of all this had sent Hilary's muscles into spasm.’
      • ‘The police call out their elite strike force and the fuzz tour the resort for a little evidence tampering.’
    • 2Order or advise workers to strike.

      • ‘We urge the CWU not to call our people out on strike action, which can only hurt our customers.’
      • ‘Unison members in colleges were in disbelief that they had not been called out alongside members of other unions.’
      • ‘Nevertheless many of these workers did come out on the national days of action or when local unions called them out, and they solidarised with those who were on strike.’
      • ‘About 10,000 members at the bank's branches and call centers around the UK had been called out, a spokesman for the union said.’
      • ‘The rank and file have been 100 percent solid whenever they have been called out.’
      • ‘Union members in London are now demanding that they are called out to join the selective action within the next two weeks.’
      • ‘The Fire Brigades Union called its 50,000 members out on strikes last November.’
      • ‘Workers on London's Docklands Light Railway were called out on strike for 24 hours from 6.30 pm on March 25.’
      • ‘Splinter groups of communists and Trotskyists fought for supremacy on the shop floor, calling workers out on strike and typifying the industrial travails of the time.’
      • ‘‘We'd have torn up our NUJ cards if they called us out on strike,’ said another.’
    • 3Draw critical attention to someone's unacceptable actions or behaviour:

      ‘people were calling him out for his negative comments’
      ‘Dan had called her out on a couple of contradictions in her story’
      ‘she called him on his claim that the media were doing a bad job of covering the economy’
      • ‘She gets the whole house riled up, then walks away like nothing happened, and nobody calls her on it.’
      • ‘You are the one that keeps twisting what you're saying whenever you are called out on it.’
      • ‘Larry didn't call her out on anything during the interview either.’
      • ‘I'm one of those moms that will question their children about things that don't make sense, and call them out on their lies.’
      • ‘It's time for audiences to call them out on their hypocrisy and demand better representations of diversity.’
      • ‘The 84-year-old stopped short of apologising for calling Katy out for being late, but said she was sorry if it made her more upset during that sad time.’
      • ‘These bystanders can help mitigate abuse by calling out bullies.’
      • ‘He essentially just called the team out for being lazy.’
      • ‘The pay's good, and hardly anyone will call you on your decisions when you're wrong.’
      • ‘Rip the cloak of secrecy off abuse and openly call out every abuser by name; perhaps some real change would begin.’
    • 4Challenge someone to a duel.

      • ‘Your princess was well within her rights to call him out to duel.’
      • ‘I'll call him out and we'll settle this once and for all.’
      • ‘I'm pretty sure they each would have stepped up to the challenge if the other had called them out.’
      • ‘Steve told Clarence that I called him out, but that he wouldn't fight me.’
      • ‘When he is called out to fight a duel, Boris cannot pull the trigger.’
  • call something over

    • Read out a list of names to determine those present:

      ‘a gentleman proceeded to call over the names of the jury’
      • ‘In calling over the list every name is repeated, although three-fourths or more of the boys, whose names are called over, are present.’
      • ‘Charles Mansfield, our third lieutenant, came on deck, and called the list over.’
      • ‘Under the new Act for regulating the trial of controverted elections, you will, in the discharge of your duty, call over the names in the alphabetical list of Members.’
      • ‘It has been the practice of the House of Commons, on occasions of sufficient importance, to order that the House be called over at a future day.’
  • call someone up

    • 1Phone someone:

      ‘I have a list of people to call up in the morning’
      • ‘I'd found her number in the phone book and called her up on the chance that she'd meet me.’
      • ‘The phone hasn't stopped ringing with people calling me up to say how wonderful it looks.’
      • ‘I called up Customer Care again and they promised me a free replacement by tomorrow evening.’
      • ‘A pollster selects a random sample of voters, calls them up on the telephone, and asks who the respondent would vote for if the election were being held today.’
      • ‘He stalks her, following her to the church where she does volunteer work, and even calls her up anonymously on the telephone.’
      • ‘When I can't get my email, I call them up on the phone and they explain exactly what's wrong and when they expect it to be fixed.’
      • ‘Sensing the rarity of the animal, Meshram closed the door and immediately called up fire brigade personnel.’
      • ‘When you call up Customer Care, you just get pathetic responses which won't take you anywhere.’
      • ‘He may have even called up Katy to help console him, but that doesn't mean they hooked up.’
      • ‘I called Liv up on the phone, and we agreed to meet down by the lake.’
      phone, telephone, call, get on the phone to, get someone on the phone, dial, make a call to, place a call to, get, reach
      phone, telephone, get on the phone to, get someone on the phone, dial, make a call to, place a call to, get, reach
      View synonyms
    • 2Summon someone to serve in the army:

      ‘they have called up more than 20,000 reservists’
      • ‘Then the government started conscription and I was called up.’
      • ‘Before becoming a teacher he was called up to do National Service and served in Germany.’
      • ‘While fishing, Fred asks the bartender if he will go to war when they call up the old men.’
      • ‘When World War 1 broke out he was called up for the army.’
      • ‘He was called up for the Army in 1939 and served in France during the war, and later in the Middle East.’
      • ‘What if there were a reinstatement of the draft and you were called up?’
      • ‘Only a year later Doug was called up to serve in the Royal Marines, while Betty went on to serve in the Army.’
      • ‘Chuck receives a letter calling him up to the army and refuses to serve.’
      • ‘His 19-year-old brother Aidan is also in the army and is currently waiting to see if he is called up to serve in the Gulf.’
      • ‘She was a member of the Territorial Army when she was called up to serve in the last conflict.’
      enlist, recruit, sign up
      View synonyms
      1. 2.1Select someone to play in a team, especially at a higher level of competition:
        ‘he was called up for the international against Turkey’
        • ‘My point is, the Rays aren't afraid to call up their young guys.’
        • ‘Though she lost her debut matches, the tennis player hopes she will be called up to play for the senior team in the future.’
        • ‘‘We called him up as the 17th player,’ the team manager said.’
        • ‘If he doesn't make the Olympic team, there's a good chance the Cubs will call him up in September.’
        • ‘The worst-case scenario with Crosby is that the organization calls him up anyway, and the Tigers lose lots of games.’
        • ‘In all honesty I hope the FO doesn't call up Bryant or Baez next season.’
        • ‘Romario knows that if Brazil do not find a consistent goalscorer soon, then the pressure to call him up will mount.’
        • ‘Ainsworth is the best of the three, and if he mows down Pacific Coast League hitters, the team will be tempted to call him up.’
        • ‘He was called up and scored a century on his debut.’
        • ‘After a stint in Hartford, he is called up to the big team.’
        select, pick, choose
        View synonyms
  • call something up

    • 1Summon for use something that is stored or kept available:

      ‘icons which allow you to call up a graphic’
      • ‘Detailed maps can be called up on screens and geographical intelligence deployed to officers.’
      • ‘Onscreen icons launch programs with a click, and a movable tool bar calls up menus listing everyday programs.’
      • ‘She calls up the XML version of the document in a structured editor on the left of the browser window.’
      • ‘Its details are logged on a card which the user takes away and the horse's details can be called up to be raced when the card is inserted into a machine.’
      • ‘Once the customer has made a decision, the salesman calls up a three-dimensional image on his computer screen.’
      • ‘To make matters worse, online links to sites offering more information simply called up error pages.’
      • ‘It predicts what data the program is going to need next and calls it up ahead of time, storing the received but as-yet-unrequired data in main memory.’
      • ‘Digitally-enabled sports fans can select particular camera angles, or call up on-screen menus containing all kinds of background nuggets.’
      • ‘Greg calls up the webpage and gets the tech support number.’
      • ‘So I called up my credit file and went through all 40 pages of it.’
      1. 1.1Evoke something:
        ‘the imaginative intensity with which he called up the Devon landscape’
        • ‘Kearney began now to call up a vision in the future, as a moment before he had called up one of the past.’
        • ‘The proposal is steeped in the language of agricultural protection, calling up images of an agriculture frozen in time.’
        • ‘The vegan diet usually calls up images of austerity and abstention.’
        • ‘Nostalgia sells; people love to listen to music that calls those memories up.’
        • ‘While no, I can't say that I've seen this exact storyline unfold before, I can say that it never stops calling up memories of other shows.’
        • ‘The metaphor calls up a vision of the artist's studio as the site of learning and experimentation.’
        • ‘‘Home for the holidays’ is an often-used phrase this time of year, calling up images of friends and family gathered together to celebrate old traditions.’
        • ‘The opening movement, for flute and strings, calls up the lonely hills.’

Origin

Late Old English ceallian, from Old Norse kalla summon loudly.

Pronunciation:

call

/kɔːl/