Definition of easy in English:

easy

adjective

  • 1Achieved without great effort; presenting few difficulties:

    ‘an easy way of retrieving information’
    • ‘However, working in the film industry is no easy task, confesses Rocky.’
    • ‘With so many people to choose from, booking several dates in a short amount of time is easy.’
    • ‘We hear a lot about how it has become too easy to get into university these days.’
    • ‘We found this unit relatively easy to use.’
    • ‘That seems to be the easy way out - and just what many of the far right would like to see happen.’
    • ‘Reivin was dodging using very little effort, as if this was all far too easy for him.’
    • ‘I encountered no glitches in my testing, and found it fairly easy to use.’
    • ‘He said it was easy for politicians to make spending promises but more difficult to find the money.’
    • ‘It is easy to tell who is really serious about the profession.’
    • ‘But it is surprisingly easy to forget what you spend in a day.’
    • ‘The real difficulty is that it's very easy for someone to mess up these predictions.’
    • ‘Capturing and holding the attention of a classroom for an entire lecture period is no easy task.’
    • ‘Butterflies are attracted to brightly colored, sweet-smelling flowers that allow them easy access.’
    • ‘It will not be easy for Lin to achieve his aim, but setbacks just seem to spur him on.’
    • ‘The recovery environment will boot and present a menu system that is fairly easy to navigate.’
    • ‘While finding a partner or date is hard, maintaining the relationship should be easy.’
    • ‘The upper half of the deck is placed within easy reach of all players.’
    • ‘Usually, I find it fairly easy to find a representative sample of a photographer's work.’
    • ‘The pages will be ordered by category to allow easy access by the user.’
    • ‘It's easy to see why the candidates are so eager talk about anything other than marriage.’
    uncomplicated, not difficult, undemanding, unexacting, unchallenging, effortless, painless, trouble-free, facile, simple, straightforward, elementary, idiot-proof, plain sailing
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  • 2(of a period of time or way of life) free from worries or problems:

    ‘promises of an easy life in the New World’
    • ‘We found ourselves standing on a threshold one easy summer evening, looking at the stars.’
    • ‘Monaco is a special race on the Formula One calendar and Schumacher does not expect an easy weekend ahead.’
    • ‘It has not been an easy year and can only be described as a ‘roller coaster’ of emotion.’
    • ‘And things aren't always easy for famous people like my dad.’
    • ‘It hasn't been an easy day for the governors, so great to see you here.’
    • ‘Life has not always been easy for the 41-year-old, who was born in Bolton but grew up in Edinburgh.’
    • ‘These are not easy days, for sitting shiva is emotionally and physically draining.’
    • ‘The house in the suburbs, the sense of life being easy and calm, it was a little dull but fulfilling.’
    • ‘It won't be an easy summer for Ridsdale, but unlike the next manager, he can be sure he'll be there this time next year.’
    • ‘In many ways, life is too easy for those American developers.’
    • ‘Those first few years weren't easy, but I kept the club up in difficult circumstances.’
    • ‘Mr Heavens said it had not been an easy year from that point of view.’
    • ‘Fourteen is not an easy age and getting your children into the right frame of mind for these tests can be difficult.’
    • ‘He swears life was easy until he headed out into the world to make it by just being himself.’
    • ‘The second day we had an easy day to let us get accustomed to the eight hour time difference.’
    • ‘Bristol is an easy weekend trip from Scotland, and city-centre hotels at the right price do not come much better than this one.’
    • ‘Now that competition has been introduced into the tertiary system, the easy days are over.’
    • ‘He looked set for an easy season after early domination, but a slump in his form mid-season made a race of it.’
    • ‘Law is not expecting an easy season, though, despite Lancashire's drop in status.’
    • ‘The rally was a new event for everyone and it's not been an easy weekend.’
    calm, tranquil, serene, quiet, peaceful, trouble-free, untroubled, undisturbed, unworried, contented, relaxed, comfortable, secure, safe
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    1. 2.1 (of a person) lacking anxiety or awkwardness; relaxed:
      ‘her easy and agreeable manner’
      ‘he never felt easy with her’
      • ‘He is so easy with it that like a general who has always won battles, he has won loud applause from the audience after each show.’
      • ‘I'm easy, either way, just so long as we don't have to go back and live in Wales again.’
      • ‘There are kids riding horses and dogs chasing sticks yet we're all easy like Sunday morning.’
      natural, casual, informal, unceremonious, unreserved, uninhibited, unconstrained, unforced, unaffected, free and easy, easy-going, familiar, amiable, affable, genial, congenial, agreeable, good-humoured
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  • 3[attributive] (of an object of attack or criticism) having no defence; vulnerable:

    ‘as a taxi driver he was an easy target’
    • ‘It is an easy point of criticism Larry, but the problem with family violence is the hidden nature of it.’
    • ‘Part of the reason is that the lunch programs are an easy target for political special interests.’
    • ‘Mr Weston, a lifelong biker, said: " Bikers are easy pickings.’
    • ‘Thanks to harassed arts writers looking for easy targets, mime traditionally gets a bit of a kicking at the festival.’
    • ‘I know as I've done it in other big games on the world stage, but referees always have been, and always will be, easy targets.’
    • ‘They concluded that the generators would be an easy target for a terrorist attack of enormous consequence.’
    • ‘It is thought that the attacker preyed on him because he thought he was an easy target.’
    • ‘Being slow does make them easy targets and one RAAF aircraft has come under attack in Baghdad.’
    • ‘Police had also warned candidates not to extend election meetings late into the night as it would make them easy targets for assassins.’
    • ‘Orkney has become a possible easy target for smugglers because of the lack of permanent Customs cover in the islands’
    • ‘You searched for premises which were comparatively easy targets.’
    • ‘His step mum believes his condition could make him an easy target.’
    • ‘I look like easy pickings for the local bullies, but I'm not.’
    • ‘It is this false sense of security that makes them such easy targets.’
    • ‘The stretch of 62 kilometers of the outer ring road has been a haunt for criminals who find easy targets.’
    • ‘Everyone who has played them has regarded them as an easy target.’
    • ‘He's an easy target and they all laid into him with predictable criticism for being out of touch and old fashioned.’
    • ‘So often the local authorities are an easy target for criticism, sometimes unfair and unjustified.’
    • ‘During WWII, neon was ordered off, for fear it would make easy bombing targets.’
    • ‘Pedigree dogs worth hundreds of pounds are being seen as an easy target by criminals who sell them on at bargain prices to new owners.’
    vulnerable, susceptible, exploitable, defenceless, naive, gullible, trusting, credulous, impressionable
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    1. 3.1informal, derogatory (of a woman) very receptive to sexual advances:
      ‘her reputation at school for being easy’
      • ‘They thought she was easy, that they could buy her a drink and then get into her pants at the end of the night.’
      • ‘Just ‘cause I'm pregnant doesn't mean I'm easy!’’
      • ‘I can't believe how harsh some people are about me trying to get it on with Daniel just because I'd had a little too much to drink doesn't mean that I'm easy.’
      • ‘I think I'm funny, smart, attractive, vivacious; does that mean guys automatically think I'm easy?’
      • ‘Nobody is going to think you're easy, in fact they will probably think you are sensible and cautious.’
      • ‘Yet she wasn't easy like some of the girls hanging out around Soho at that time.’
      • ‘He must think I'm such a slut, that I'm easy white trash.’
      promiscuous, sexually indiscriminate, free with one's favours, of easy virtue, unchaste, loose, wanton, abandoned, licentious, dissolute, dissipated, debauched
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adverb

US
informal, archaic
  • Without difficulty or effort:

    ‘we all scared real easy in those days’
    • ‘It was the first time she ever gave me a real compliment, and I was surprised how easy it came to her lips.’
    • ‘We were playing basketball just dribbling it easy along the graffiti lot.’
    • ‘He found the looking glass easy enough, though why it was intact he couldn't say.’

exclamation

  • Be careful:

    ‘easy, girl—you'll knock me over!’

Phrases

  • be easier said than done

    • Be more easily talked about than put into practice:

      ‘going on an economy drive is easier said than done’
      • ‘The problem is that growing protein crystals is a lot easier said than done - at least on terra firma.’
      • ‘This is often easier said than done because it takes practice and commitment.’
      • ‘Forty years' experience has shown this is easier said than done, but surely it's possible.’
      • ‘At the other end the Westport forwards will have to step up to the plate in a big way but that's easier said than done against the Nallens and company.’
      • ‘I know, it's easier said than done, but it is something to aim for.’
      • ‘The etiquette rule is to use the furthest outside one as the different courses are served, but that is easier said than done.’
      • ‘Though I know that is easier said than done, I can support that goal as an ideal.’
      • ‘Because inactivity weakens the back muscles, pain sufferers should stay active, but it is sometimes easier said than done.’
      • ‘Putting quality on to the nation's screens (and into the nation's radio speakers) is easier said than done.’
      • ‘Indeed, to cultivate altruism is easier said than done and to do away with time-honoured beliefs is almost hopeless.’
  • (as) easy as pie

  • easy come, easy go

    • Used especially in spoken English to indicate that a relationship or possession acquired without effort may be abandoned or lost without regret.

      • ‘A job, a relationship, my savings account: It was easy come, easy go.’
      • ‘They've won fame rather than worked for it, and they've treated it pretty much like Viv Nicholson handled her pools win - easy come, easy go.’
      • ‘For him, allegations are easy come, easy go.’
      • ‘They nick them too, but I think easy come, easy go.’
  • easy does it

    • Used to advise someone to approach a task carefully and slowly:

      ‘with father's wine in the back I mustn't drive too fast, so easy does it’
      • ‘Easy, easy does it, not too much, just a little bit more.’
      • ‘Whether your sending out a quick ‘hello’ or ‘meet us here later’, it's easy does it all the way.’
      • ‘So easy does it with the imagery from now on, I promise.’
      • ‘Carter shushed her, ‘Hey, easy does it there, Laura.’’
      • ‘‘Whoa, easy does it,’ stated the man Jasper had so uncharacteristically bashed into.’
  • easy on the eye (or ear)

    • informal Pleasant to look at (or listen to):

      ‘a charming village that is easy on the eye’
      • ‘The teenage appeal doubtless springs from the fact that all of the boys are pretty easy on the eye, but that's as far as the similarities go.’
      • ‘Manicured lawns, weeded borders and pruned shrubs may be easy on the eye, but they're not necessarily great for encouraging wildlife.’
      • ‘We wanted people who are easy on the eye, who are really good actors, who are still in their 20s and who were available.’
      • ‘The paintings are easy on the eye and very pleasant but we think that the artist is stopping short of something quite extraordinary.’
      • ‘Neighbours of two new futuristic ‘solar dwellings’ have been warned that the environmentally-friendly properties may not be so easy on the eye.’
      • ‘Both the cut scenes and in-game animation are quite smooth and generally pretty easy on the eye.’
      • ‘Thankfully, there was a diving team on hand to make sure none of us drowned - and they were all pretty easy on the eye.’
      • ‘My two nearest neighbours are rather nice chaps who also happen to be exceptionally easy on the eye.’
      • ‘Clean lines punctuated with specimen plants are ideal not only because they are easy on the eye, but they also have the practical benefit of aiding security.’
      • ‘Invested with 16 years of research, the trainers are not only easy on the eye but they're also alleged to help you exercise more efficiently.’
      good-looking, attractive, nice-looking, handsome, lovely, beautiful, pretty, as pretty as a picture, stunning, striking, arresting, prepossessing, winning, fetching, captivating, bewitching, beguiling, engaging, charming, charismatic, enchanting, appealing, delightful, irresistible
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  • go (or be) easy on

    • 1informal Refrain from being harsh with or critical of (someone):

      ‘go easy on him, Rory, he's only little’
      • ‘I think the press wants a good story, and they don't sit and think about who we're going to be easy on, who we're going to be hard on.’
      • ‘I don't know why I went easy on them in my previous posts, as I wanted to share all the things they do poorly when I posted recaps.’
      • ‘I was easy on him the week before the race and he was a good bit off full fitness.’
      • ‘‘Don't you play games with me, now tell me and we'll go easy on you… well easier,’ Toby growled.’
      • ‘For what it's worth, I don't think Jay has gone easy on Arnold in the monologues but he has certainly left himself wide open to the charge.’
      • ‘Good leadership isn't about pandering to your troops and going easy on them - it's about training them to standard so they come alive from combat.’
      • ‘She's still nice and went easy on all the amateur performers.’
      • ‘Authorities will most likely resist any deal which may create a perception that they've gone easy on a person convicted for drug trafficking.’
      • ‘The students were polite and went easy on the coach who was sacked earlier this season.’
      • ‘Jack was livid but went easy on him as Frank bursts into tears quite readily now after the rough handling he got on the culture review.’
    • 2informal Be sparing in one's use or consumption of:

      ‘go easy on fatty foods’
      • ‘Also, go easy on how much protein you eat, since large amounts can block calcium absorption.’
      • ‘Club heroes watch what they eat, go easy on the drink and refrain from cigarettes.’
      • ‘Counterintuitive though this may seem, many individuals get good control over cholesterol by going easy on their consumption of bread, potatoes, rice and pasta.’
      • ‘In fact, the traditional English favorite, Yorkshire Pudding, was the way that farmers wives filled the family up on a wad of bread so that they went easy on the expensive meat.’
      • ‘Snuggle if you can, and go easy on the drink - don't give him an excuse to say it was a mistake.’
      • ‘Considering I was supposed to be going easy on the carbs this week, this is bad.’
  • have it easy

    • informal Have no difficulties; be fortunate:

      ‘they have had it easy for too long and have become complacent’
      • ‘My guess is that throughout the early to mid 1990s Labour had it easy.’
      • ‘By comparison with my days of school report writing (all had to be written by hand, in permanent ink), teachers of today have it easy.’
      • ‘But for the life of me, I can't see how anybody in their right mind could possibly think she's had it easy.’
      • ‘There is no single country that is having it easy.’
      • ‘Blige, who grew up in the projects, has never had it easy, and the tough times remain embedded in her lyrics.’
      • ‘Despite the expected traffic jams, potential electrical brown-outs and terrorist threats, modern Olympians and spectators have it easy, compared to their ancient counterparts.’
      • ‘They didn't have it easy because I am quite an impatient person when it comes to training, I just want to do as much as I can.’
      • ‘The Bay Area is a fortunate place with plentiful resources so we kind of have it easy.’
      • ‘A sense of failure is a horrible feeling, especially to someone like me who's always had it easy, and never really failed a subject at school.’
      • ‘The girls who walked the ramp on Monday had to answer questions about every thing from history, philosophy to music and clearly they did not have it easy.’
  • i'm easy

    • informal Said by someone when offered a choice to indicate that they have no particular preference.

      • ‘I enjoy producing things people like and can play in… I get a kick out of it and as long as I can break even, I'm easy.’
      • ‘If you don't want it to work, that's ok, I'm easy, I don't mind.’
      • ‘There are a lot of good ways to do so - I'm easy like that.’
  • of easy virtue

    • dated, humorous (of a woman) sexually promiscuous:

      ‘she's cheap, a woman of easy virtue’
      • ‘There is a woman of easy virtue, also gleefully played by Jane Nash, who tries to entrap Bob and the usual subplot of the squire's nephew trying to anticipate his inheritance.’
      • ‘She speaks of a woman of easy virtue and outstanding beauty who, when painters went to her to take her portrait, ‘showed as much of her person as she could with propriety’.’
      • ‘Piercings were sometimes worn by women, but only those of easy virtue.’
      • ‘He has been brought up by a lady of easy virtue in the bazaar.’
      • ‘‘Most of the money was spent on booze and women of easy virtue - whores in other words,’ he told me in an interview.’
      • ‘In Shanghai Express, probably her finest film, she was a woman of easy virtue, mouthing the famous line.’
      • ‘In this case a lady reputed to be of easy virtue and a girlfriend of one of the local policemen, had made statements intimidating the men for trial.’
      • ‘They looked gorgeous and portrayed, - and I hope they will not take this amiss - ladies of easy virtue decoratively and to the life.’
      • ‘Beautiful and well-bred, she suffered the hostile treatment of critics who believed that as a painter she must be a woman of easy virtue.’
      • ‘He is promptly thrown into the seamy world of Montreal's nightlife - its clubs, its cabarets, its women of easy virtue.’
      promiscuous, sexually indiscriminate, free with one's favours, of easy virtue, unchaste, loose, wanton, abandoned, licentious, dissolute, dissipated, debauched
      View synonyms
  • sleep (or rest) easy

    • Go to sleep without (or be untroubled by) worries:

      ‘this insurance policy will let you rest easy’
      • ‘The Home Secretary can rest easy in his bed tonight.’
      • ‘Now you can sleep easy, safe in the knowledge that someone in a position of power is promoting your agenda.’
      • ‘If you were worried that the band had lost their touch, that they just weren't capable of making a good album, you can rest easy.’
      • ‘They can sleep easy at night, burying thoughts that intruders may compromise their privacy.’
      • ‘But on the basis of present evidence we can rest easy.’
      • ‘Regardless of what the polls might indicate, citizens are no longer resting easy in the belief that their government can be trusted to protect their interests.’
      • ‘How this person can sleep easy at night is beyond me.’
      • ‘Can we sleep easy at nights knowing that people are being paid sweatshop wages for our benefit?’
      • ‘That's not my fight, and I'll sleep easy tonight knowing that I've answered the call of duty with an extra topping of usefulness.’
      • ‘A Ladbrokes spokesman said: ‘It looks like all the bookies will be sleeping easy in their beds on Christmas morning.’’
  • stand easy!

    • Used to instruct soldiers standing at ease that they may relax their attitude further.

  • take the easy way out

    • Extricate oneself from a difficult situation by choosing the simplest rather than the most honourable course of action:

      ‘she had taken the easy way out by returning the keys without a message’
      • ‘To take the easy way out, one might just chalk both up to blatant stupidity, but there are always other reasons as well.’
      • ‘We should ensure that the government does that work, rather than taking the easy way out and sacrificing justice to expediency.’
      • ‘It is just not true, as his critics assert, that he always took the easy way out.’
      • ‘As finance minister, Ng never took the easy way out.’
      • ‘There is a sense of entitlement that I think has caused many to take the easy way out.’
      • ‘As the economy plods along, many of us are choosing to take the easy way out.’
      • ‘He chose to take the easy way out and slam the council.’
      • ‘I took the easy way out and did the very unsporting thing of hiding my assigned fabric inside the pockets as a lining.’
      • ‘Too often, the scripts choose to take the easy way out.’
      • ‘In most science exhibitions, there are student groups that take the easy way out and opt for a project that can be put together using easily available material.’
  • take it easy

    • 1Proceed in a calm and relaxed manner.

      • ‘It forces me to calm down, take it easy, and take every shot at a time, and forget the bad ones, which of course there are many.’
      • ‘The little question mark at the end was left in the air to imply that we are relaxed about this, so take it easy, take it easy.’
      • ‘You need to be comfortable and relaxed, so take it easy.’
      • ‘How can I take it easy when Mark is off sneaking around with God knows who?’
      • ‘Larry, I think everyone should just kind of relax, take it easy.’
      • ‘At one point in my career, I started to realise that I should take it easy, I should calm down.’
      • ‘‘Hey wow, calm down, take it easy girl,’ I said holding my hands up in self-defence.’
      • ‘Well, in any case, you've got another few weeks around him, so I say take it easy.’
      • ‘‘Dude, take it easy, I was just messing around,’ Ryan wiped a little blood from his nose.’
      • ‘He said just, you know, be calm, take it easy.’
    • 2Make little effort; rest.

      • ‘I've been relaxing around Madrid, taking it easy, enjoying the lie-ins and the food, not to mention the one or two drinks at night.’
      • ‘The application of aspirin and bed rest pulled him through it by midday today and he took it easy for the rest of the day, getting better by the hour.’
      • ‘I rose at 8:30 and am here loafing around taking it easy with my cup of tea and reading the newspaper.’
      • ‘Since Christmas Day - just two days ago - I've been ‘chilling out’, relaxing and taking it easy.’
      • ‘Basically, it's been a day and a half of taking it easy and ambling around in the heat.’
      • ‘Clearly both players preferred to take it easy and rest for their semi-finals.’
      • ‘Having done all the hard work, the time before kick-off on Saturday is a case of taking it easy, eating, resting and sleeping.’
      • ‘He was clearly still taking it easy and trying to relax.’
      • ‘Work was pretty busy this past week and then Thursday I got sick and have been mostly taking it easy around the house since then.’
      • ‘I decided to just relax and I took it easy all weekend long.’

Origin

Middle English (also in the sense ‘comfortable, tranquil’): from Old French aisie, past participle of aisier put at ease, facilitate (see ease).

Pronunciation:

easy

/ˈiːzi/