Definition of house in English:

house

noun

Pronunciation: /haʊs/
  • 1A building for human habitation, especially one that consists of a ground floor and one or more upper storeys:

    ‘a house of Cotswold stone’
    [as modifier] ‘house prices’
    • ‘Condemning our houses as unfit for human habitation is a surefire way of clearing this area and making the area which they required for the Academy available.’
    • ‘A loft extension in particular creates an instant extra storey to the house.’
    • ‘The ground floor of the house has ramps so that disabled visitors get a chance to see the main rooms.’
    • ‘Following the fire, investigators found traces of an accelerant in the badly damaged ground floor of the house.’
    • ‘I believe that he might later have gone to lodge at a house in Upper Church Street, Bath, with two of his sisters.’
    • ‘This phrase originated in medieval times in Europe when most double storey houses did not have indoor toilets.’
    • ‘One of the proposals, submitted by Joe Costello, proposes to construct 25 semi detached two storey houses.’
    • ‘Then here were a great many houses; human habitations, full of the mysteries of life at every stage of it.’
    • ‘There could not have been more than 50 huts in all and a dozen or so single storey brick and mortar houses, overlooking the fields beyond.’
    • ‘The application was for eight, two storey houses and eight bungalows organised in four clusters.’
    • ‘Most of the houses are two storeys (some three) and would be equivalent to a medium to large sized Queensland home.’
    • ‘Land beside Blue Bridge Lane, currently a redundant building, would have 24 three storey houses built on it.’
    • ‘The residential portion of the building is located to the rear or on the upper floor of the house.’
    • ‘One of the new houses is three storeys high and the other is four, prompting fears that homes nearby will lose their privacy by being overlooked.’
    • ‘Real foxes do, indeed, sometimes make their homes under human houses and, increasingly in this country at any rate, under city homes.’
    • ‘The plaintiffs were required to carry out certain repairs by the local council in order to render houses fit for human habitation.’
    • ‘Inside, the house is on three storeys, with the ground floor including a drawing room, study and dining room.’
    • ‘On the other side of the road are normal, two storey houses.’
    • ‘Prices of houses have soared; building costs are going through the roof.’
    • ‘As you walk down towards it, the sky opens up, for in this rare Manhattan block almost all the buildings are period houses of just five storeys.’
    home, place of residence, homestead, lodging place, a roof over one's head
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 The people living in a house; a household:
      ‘make yourself scarce before you wake the whole house’
      • ‘I would have called you, but I didn't want to wake your entire house at seven on a weekend.’
      • ‘He picked up his cell phone to call her but thought that he would be waking up the whole house.’
      • ‘Boethius was brought up in the house of the aristocratic family of Quintus Aurelius Memmius Symmachus.’
      • ‘It only takes one forgetful person to leave theirs in the bathroom and the whole house would be using it.’
      • ‘Every creak of a floor board or an opening door seems loud enough to wake up the whole house.’
      household, family, family circle, ménage, clan, tribe
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2 A noble, royal, or wealthy family or lineage; a dynasty:
      ‘the power and prestige of the House of Stewart’
      • ‘The Picts also practiced matrilineal descent - thus their royal houses all descended through the female line.’
      • ‘They had already incurred the enmity of the royal houses of Europe, why add that of the bankers?’
      • ‘It is somewhat ironic that the last great monument of the house of Wessex was mainly a product of Norman culture.’
      • ‘This little known renaissance play deals with tragedy which befalls two houses once a lady's honour has been compromised.’
      • ‘There's been a rash circulating around the royal houses of Europe… a rash of engagements and weddings that is.’
      • ‘It is also possible to view Williams as a tragic figure, cursed like the house of Atreus or Kennedy.’
      • ‘Mountbatten was born to a family closely related to the house of Windsor.’
      • ‘The coats of arms of most of the royal houses of Europe incorporate symbols of the 12 Tribes of Lesbos.’
      • ‘These Four royal houses shall be responsible for one of the greatest legends ever told in my homeland of Spain.’
      • ‘The English and Scottish royal houses had become closely connected through marriage.’
      • ‘Starkey goes on to point out it would be hard for the house of Windsor to pull off the same trick.’
      • ‘Problems have beset the house of Versace since its founder was murdered seven years ago.’
      • ‘They were sought after by Europe's royal houses long before many of today's classics were known.’
      • ‘The Blood Royal of this actual Grail lineage persists, via the female line, in the royal houses of Europe to this day.’
      • ‘Mar decided to retaliate by raising the standard for the house of Stuart.’
      • ‘She cut down the servants at the tables, and massacred all in the house of Akhat.’
      • ‘In all honesty, however, I think this is the essence of our attempts to understand and make sense of the complexities of the British and European royal houses.’
      • ‘A bigger wedding event will be probably take place then, but the date is yet to be set between the two royal houses.’
      clan, kindred, family, tribe, race, strain
      View synonyms
    3. 1.3Scottish A dwelling that is one of several in a building.
    4. 1.4[with modifier] A building in which animals live or in which things are kept:
      ‘a hen house’
      • ‘The Reptile House gives visitors an insight into the reptile and amphibian world in its many shapes and sizes.’
      • ‘The majority of the Zoo's birds live in the beautiful, sanctuary-like Bird House but birds are also scattered throughout other exhibits.’
  • 2A building in which people meet for a particular activity:

    ‘a house of prayer’
    • ‘What is not in dispute is that the nation has turned in much greater numbers to houses of worship and organized religion.’
    • ‘What problems are reported in the newspaper or talked about in the houses of worship as community challenges?’
    • ‘As we gather in our houses of worship, let us begin a process of seeking the healing and grace of God.’
    • ‘He also noted that it did not take into account the mosques and Muslim houses of prayer destroyed since 1948.’
    • ‘Six weeks ago many of us did not even notice whether or where the U.S. flag stood in our houses of worship.’
    • ‘Does the Holy Spirit and fire ever need to come down in our houses of worship?’
    • ‘Scalia cited a 1970 Supreme Court case involving tax exemptions for houses of worship in New York.’
    • ‘It is not right to make a fortress of Christ's church, which is a house of prayer.’
    • ‘Jesus, berating the money-changers in the Temple, called the building a house of prayer.’
    1. 2.1 A firm or institution:
      ‘a publishing house’
      • ‘The police and civil administration generally has been ordered to ensure that all shops and business houses remain closed during prayer time.’
      • ‘I know where to go when I absolutely need new news, but the old print cycle is still ruling publishing in many news houses.’
      • ‘Purchase recommendations from all of the major financial houses bejewel the company's stock like diamonds.’
      • ‘He also appealed to business houses to help the institution with the sinking of a borehole since the school has no water supply.’
      • ‘The film board is a Canadian government film production house.’
      • ‘This beneficial film-forming yeast grows naturally on the surface of the wine, although some houses now choose to cultivate their own flor culture.’
      • ‘The items included kites, toiletries, chocolates, biscuits, washing soaps, breakfast cereals and beans which she sourced from various business houses in the capital city.’
      • ‘Banking firms and financial houses announced thousands of job losses in recent weeks.’
      • ‘The central government plans to privatise publishing houses in a bid to open the sector and lure investment.’
      • ‘They range from the traditional activities of the acceptance houses in international trade to all types of capital issues and financial services business.’
      • ‘Most film companies converted to production houses to service the high demand for local content to fill broadcast hours.’
      • ‘In some cases, the wines produced by these houses are lesser in quality today than, let's say, ten years ago.’
      • ‘In larger transactions, a syndicate of venture capital houses or private equity firms might combine to provide the equity finance.’
      • ‘There seemed to be only a half dozen corporate publishing houses left.’
      • ‘There, rather like the men from Del Monte, the port houses would select the wine from the local farmers.’
      firm, business, company, corporation, enterprise, establishment, institution, concern, organization, operation
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    2. 2.2British informal The Stock Exchange.
      • ‘'From the Alley to the House is like a path of ants', said Walpole.’
    3. 2.3 A restaurant or inn:
      ‘help yourself to a drink, compliments of the house!’
      [as modifier] ‘a carafe of house wine’
      • ‘The British education in high-street curry houses will help them find their way around menus, but after that, preconceptions should be discarded.’
      • ‘There are a few trusty pizza houses and French restaurants for those who can't face cooking after a day of strenuous exercise.’
      • ‘He was also part of a small group of young mathematicians who met weekly in a wine house.’
      • ‘I spent the next two hours pouring mineral water, serving glasses of house wine and decanting bottles at the bar.’
      • ‘Food arrives at our table - not food we have asked for, but a small appetiser with the compliments of the house.’
      • ‘You can sip a cup of tea at the tea house and restaurant inside the garden.’
      • ‘If that is true, then what a truly pitiful bunch of lazy, coffee house analysts we are.’
      • ‘With all the gigs, curry houses and general yah-yah activity in Brick Lane now, you'd expect Shoreditch station to be thronging with people.’
      • ‘Get a couple of glasses of house champagne, relax and enjoy the sunset from way up in the sky.’
      • ‘We'll dine at the fanciest and snootiest drive-thru restaurants and waffle houses.’
      • ‘In most reception venues, the house alcohol is always more expensive than if you supply your own.’
      • ‘I'd cook rabbit stuffed with black pudding, which is one of our house specialties in the Lindsey House.’
      • ‘They think it reflects well on them that the wine they choose to be their house wine is a posh one.’
      inn, bar, tavern, hostelry, taproom
      View synonyms
    4. 2.4dated A brothel.
      • ‘In an attempt to create Canada’s first cooperative bawdy house, a sex-work organization will submit a request to Parliament for amnesty from an anti-brothel provision within the next six months.’
    5. 2.5 A theatre:
      ‘a hundred musicians performed in front of a full house’
      • ‘We just played off each other so well and had the best time doing it and the funniest part was, we wound up having packed houses, other people loved it too.’
      • ‘We need a few theatre houses with a congenial atmosphere in tune with the local architecture of the land.’
      • ‘This summer teenagers involved in the project performed to packed houses at Bradford's Alhambra Theatre on two consecutive nights.’
      • ‘Most of the picture houses and theatres carried a lot of publicity from their managers' point of view.’
      • ‘The production enjoyed packed houses at The Gilded Balloon, in Edinburgh 2003, with much critical acclaim.’
      • ‘He has become one of Hull's best known local music stars, and regularly performs to packed houses at the Adelphi Club in west Hull.’
      • ‘The Beatles, Gene Vincent and Buddy Holly were among stars performing to packed houses.’
      • ‘The Jermyn Street Theatre is yet another much needed space for the revival of those gems of the musical theatre that are too small for anything like the major West End houses.’
      • ‘These days, the film plays to packed houses when cinemas screen it at Christmas time, and is in constant demand from video-buyers.’
      • ‘It could have come to Edinburgh with any one of a number of Irish plays from its normal repertoire, performed to packed houses and won critical acclaim.’
      • ‘Since then it has played to packed houses, and after London the production is off to the USA and France.’
      • ‘There's a certain energy in sold-out houses, and an anarchic feeling so late on a weeknight, for an unadvertised event.’
      • ‘The production bemused and beguiled a packed house in which I seemed to be the only person over 22.’
      • ‘THERE ARE at least three of Dileep's films now running to packed houses in the city theatres.’
      • ‘The community responds and you screen in 800 seat theatres to packed houses.’
      • ‘Cinema houses like Nandan screen good films from across the world.’
      • ‘In a small house with a tall actor, the rake and actor's frame easily manage to blot out a lot of the action.’
      • ‘That attendance at theatre houses has dropped can only point to the fact that the quality of productions has not been impressive as has been the investment.’
      audience, crowd, those present, listeners, spectators, viewers, gathering, assembly, assemblage, congregation
      View synonyms
    6. 2.6British A performance in a theatre or cinema:
      ‘tickets for the first house’
      • ‘Since Gyan's return to the North Coast she has been performing to sellout houses.’
      • ‘To date the tour has attracted capacity houses wherever it performs.’
      • ‘Later it performed to packed houses at Andrew's Lane Theatre in Dublin’
      • ‘It played six performances to packed houses at Sydney's Conservatorium, and attracted gratifying media attention.’
      • ‘Other than music, there should be a renewed interest in theatre especially with theatre houses having undergone a renaissance this year.’
      • ‘It was a productive time for both film-makers and playwrights, with houses full and involvement high.’
      show, production, showing, presentation, entertainment, staging, act
      View synonyms
  • 3A religious community that occupies a particular building:

    ‘the Cistercian house at Clairvaux’
    • ‘Joseph II reduced the number of religious houses belonging to the contemplative orders.’
    • ‘There they settled in Bethlehem and established his and hers monastic houses.’
    • ‘Hereward and his family seem to have been the traditional protectors of the religious houses in the area.’
    • ‘During the Middle Ages, the scriptoria and workshops of European religious houses took a strictly instrumental approach.’
    • ‘His first important job was as a visitor of religious houses under Henry, an appointment through which he greatly expanded his father's estate.’
    • ‘By the time of her death in 1581, Teresa had founded more than a dozen monastic houses.’
    • ‘After the dissolution of the religious houses, where the poor used to be relieved, there was for long no settled provision for them.’
    • ‘Recruitment to the parish clergy fell and monastic houses never recovered.’
    • ‘Most Welsh religious houses had in any case always been poorly endowed.’
    • ‘Giberti, like Sadoleto, chose to reside in his see, where he disciplined his clergy, reformed religious houses, and took the cure of souls seriously.’
    • ‘During the last years of Leo XIII's pontificate, religious houses tried to win over the poor for Catholicism.’
    • ‘Monks from the various orders in Europe had flocked to England to set up religious houses.’
    • ‘It could have been commissioned by a religious house, dedicated to the Virgin, for use as the reredos of a high altar.’
    • ‘Throughout the Middle Ages, Suffolk was dominated by the two liberties and the many other religious houses.’
    • ‘In England, for example, there were some fifty religious houses in 1066 and perhaps 1,000 monks and nuns.’
    • ‘In Britain too, there can be no doubt that the major religious houses were the focus of much landed wealth, munificence, and pilgrimage.’
    1. 3.1 A residential building for pupils at a boarding school:
      ‘a house of 45 boarders’
      [as modifier] ‘a house prefect’
      • ‘No parts of the university were closed to the public (of course, the residential fraternity houses were another matter).’
      • ‘In the final chapter, Kiely tells us about his adventures as a master of one of Harvard's residential houses.’
      • ‘Rotherly is a Girls’ Boarding House for the Westgate School in Winchester.’
      • ‘The boarding houses are Grange Court, Sandon Lodge, and Hainault House.’
    2. 3.2British Each of a number of groups into which pupils at a day school are divided for games or competition.
      • ‘There were eight houses or forms that divided up the pupils at Bishop Luffa and Sherbourne had now become the odd one out, the unlucky one.’
      • ‘The winners are now putting final plans together for six colour-coded houses in time for competition in the school sports day next month.’
      • ‘There are four houses and they compete at sport, but there's no lacrosse and Lily said there was much less competition than in the Potter books.’
      • ‘From the very start, competition between the houses is encouraged.’
      • ‘The six houses competed with each other for the first position.’
      • ‘Each activity involved two competing homerooms from different houses and at the end of the day a champion house was announced.’
      • ‘Students are divided into houses based on their special needs or interests.’
      • ‘All houses competed aggressively, and even the last race made a difference in the rankings.’
    3. 3.3British formal A college of a university.
      • ‘College House is New Zealand’s oldest and most traditional University College, and is home to 152 students at the University of Canterbury.’
      • ‘He studied at the Castle, one of four teaching houses of the university which offered two year Arts degrees based almost entirely on the teachings of Aristotle.’
  • 4A legislative or deliberative assembly:

    ‘the sixty-member National Council, the country's upper house’
    • ‘What I don't understand is why they don't just have elections for two houses of parliament.’
    • ‘Unless both houses of parliament expressly disapprove within 12 months, the marriage may proceed.’
    • ‘The legislature has two houses, the house of senators and the house of deputies.’
    • ‘It would be the first time since 1981 that a government has controlled both houses of Australia's parliament.’
    • ‘At the state level, some of the legislatures are bicameral, patterned after the two houses of the national parliament.’
    • ‘The bill had been passed by both the houses of parliament before being signed by acting president Mian Mohammad Soomro.’
    • ‘Amendments must be approved by two-thirds of both houses of parliament and a majority of voters in a national referendum.’
    • ‘Few commentators have noted the provision for women's seats in both houses of parliament.’
    • ‘The referendum has been widely adopted to protect key aspects of state constitutions, such as the governor and the two houses of parliament.’
    • ‘Ireland has two houses of Parliament, the Upper House known as the Seanad and the Lower House known as the Dáil.’
    • ‘On Wednesday, opposition parties disrupted proceedings of both houses of parliament, demanding the minister quit.’
    • ‘Democratic leaders in both houses say they'll bring it up for a vote and they expect it to pass.’
    • ‘A provision for leases to be approved by both houses of parliament would safeguard against a sale by stealth, he said.’
    • ‘That, according to Parliamentary legal adviser Eshaam Palmer, can be done only by both houses of Parliament sitting together.’
    • ‘The king, however, will appoint one of the houses of the bicameral legislature, allowing him to control lawmaking.’
    • ‘The government won not only re-election, but control of both houses of parliament.’
    • ‘I would recommend a tour of the houses of parliament to anyone.’
    • ‘This introduced a national parliament with two houses for India.’
    • ‘Under the constitution, the Czech president is elected by a majority in both houses of parliament.’
    • ‘An independent candidate also has to obtain an additional 20 backers from the two parliamentary houses or local councils.’
    legislative assembly, legislative body, chamber, council, parliament, diet, congress, senate
    View synonyms
    1. 4.1 (in the UK) the House of Commons or Lords; (in the US) the House of Representatives:
      ‘the government commanded an overall majority in the House’
      • ‘They also altered the rules to make it harder to initiate an ethics investigation of a House member.’
      • ‘And in the 1994 elections they went on to win a House majority.’
      • ‘This was confirmed by a House Select Committee on Assassinations report in 1979 and recently by a US Department of Justice investigation.’
      • ‘Ideally, the president of the GMC would present the annual report in public, before a committee of both houses of parliament.’
      • ‘Oldfield spoke in the House two other times.’
      • ‘Thus, with a cosy majority of 196 in a House of 234, her position remains unassailable.’
      • ‘It's a tragic reminder of the reality which all of us in this House, and in the Lords, have to deal with in considering these matters.’
      • ‘I turn immediately to the decision of this House in Hedley Byrne & Co Ltd v Heller & Partners Ltd.’
      • ‘As they walked through the halls of a House office building, interns noticed the office of Mary Kaptur (D-Ohio).’
      • ‘‘It is a fig leaf of a token element of elected peers designed to mask the design of the Prime Minister and his cronies to keep their grip on this House,’ he said.’
      • ‘He called for a House investigation into his actions and was cleared the following year of any wrongdoing.’
      • ‘We accept that a time will come when the houses of parliament and the government will have to agree a final form of the bill that is less than ideal.’
      • ‘She couldn't produce her promised list of 272 supporters in a House of 543.’
      • ‘The oldest member of parliament, he served as speaker of the house when it first met.’
      • ‘I came in 1976, when I had gotten an advance copy of a report of a House committee investigating CIA misdeeds.’
      • ‘However, a House subcommittee has scheduled hearings later this month to investigate the FCC's record of enforcing decency standards.’
      • ‘Brown's ethics problems have included a House investigation of her connection with a jailed African businessman.’
      • ‘When I spoke in the House on this subject on 8 December, I quoted similar stories from the police forces of Cambridgeshire, Essex, and Greater Manchester.’
    2. 4.2 Used in formal debates that mimic the procedures of a legislative assembly:
      ‘a debate on the motion ‘This house would legalize cannabis’’
      • ‘This house would privatise Britain's universities.’
      • ‘This House Would Under No Circumstances Fight For Queen And Country.’
      audience, crowd, those present, listeners, spectators, viewers, gathering, assembly, assemblage, congregation
      View synonyms
  • 5[mass noun] A style of electronic dance music typically having sparse, repetitive vocals and a fast beat:

    ‘DJs specializing in techno, garage, and house’
    • ‘We were influenced by electro, hip-hop, house music, jazz-funk, reggae, everything really.’
    • ‘He moved to the USA to teach in the Eighties, but hip hop and house passed him by, as he immersed himself in world music.’
    • ‘I mainly listen to minimal techno house, mostly because that's what I play out.’
    • ‘Next door, was a cafe run by a former ska musician with a love for house and techno.’
    • ‘Dance music, and especially house music, has an uncanny power to turn the most earnest honor student into a frenetic dance machine.’
  • 6Astrology
    A twelfth division of the celestial sphere, based on the positions of the ascendant and midheaven at a given time and place, and determined by any of a number of methods.

    • ‘A horoscope needs to be drawn and studied and the meaning of aspects as well as the positioning of houses and planets have to be understood.’
    • ‘Also your boyfriend is represented by Saturn in the seventh house, which for you is the house of a husband or boyfriend.’
    • ‘His seventh house contains Mars while Libra is at the Ascendant containing Uranus.’
    • ‘It is also good to have the ruler of the Ascendant and the 2nd house in mutual reception.’
    • ‘When a planet is placed in an angular house, it is performing more powerfully.’
    1. 6.1 A twelfth division of the celestial sphere represented as a sector on an astrological chart, used in allocating elements of character and circumstance to different spheres of human life.
      • ‘I look further along and I see the Moon is at the top of the chart in the ninth house at 14 degrees of Virgo.’
      • ‘Many planets of one person's chart fall into the angular houses of the other's natal chart.’
      • ‘Every astrology chart is divided into houses, starting with the Ascendant line and working anti-clockwise around the rest of the chart.’
      • ‘The angular houses represent our own ‘seats of power’, places of familiarity and control.’
      • ‘It is conjunct Jupiter and opposite Mars at 15 degrees of Pisces in the third house.’
  • 7British

    old-fashioned term for bingo
    1. 7.1[as exclamation] Used by a bingo player to announce that they have won.
      • ‘In every game of bingo the tickets will be only 5p or 10p so you could be shouting house for just 5p.’
      • ‘I made the cardinal bingo greenhorn's mistake of calling house when I hadn't filled my card.’

adjective

  • 1(of an animal or plant) kept in, frequenting, or infesting buildings.

    • ‘They had to make their own bread and their own butter with cream from the house cow.’
    • ‘Clare has been interested in house rabbits for a year and has found a growing network of enthusiasts.’
    • ‘From the tops of these rats the size of house cats watched them with unblinking eyes.’
    • ‘Lounging around the family home, the Dane's good house manners make it a good house pet.’
    • ‘I couldn't keep my room clean and barely knew how to take care of two house cats.’
    • ‘He has no more weight to him then a house cat, but a small scar runs across the right part of his lips.’
    • ‘The study also showed that rather than living in hutches, four out of 10 pet rabbits were house rabbits.’
    • ‘It was so small, about the size of a house cat, and Evy figured it to be just a foal.’
    • ‘Members of the family say the eel is an agreeable house pet, that eats twice a day and is fond of strips of raw chicken or fish.’
    • ‘We tried to see if we could find a house cat for the family, that would not go out, but we couldn't guarantee it wouldn't escape.’
    • ‘She met no one along the way and only had one brief scare when she ran into a house cat, yet she made it to the library quietly unnoticed.’
    • ‘Its beautiful appearance and devotion to its owners make it a well-loved house pet.’
    • ‘It was a paddock for the grazing of house cows and the Governor's horses.’
    • ‘The cougar reportedly snatched a house cat and ran off into the bush with it.’
    • ‘Shampoos are not residual as they are rinsed off, and it is not much fun washing the average house cat.’
    • ‘She was almost like a house cat as she rubbed up against our legs and purred loudly.’
    • ‘They sneak up on their prey just like a house cat sneaks up on a bird or toy one slow step at a time.’
    • ‘He's just a house pet and is given quite a lot of freedom to move abut the place.’
    • ‘However, most dog lovers do not intend to leash their house pets indefinitely.’
    • ‘Anise kneels down beside me, touching my hair in her right hand and stroking it like a house cat.’
  • 2Relating to a firm, institution, or society:

    ‘a house journal’
    • ‘The main purpose of an external house journal is to promote the organization, its products, and its services.’
    • ‘It was house policy to serve all-comers but equally to bar anyone who was abusive or aggressive.’
    • ‘Business Week, which wants to be the house journal for Web 2.0 badgers, has no doubts.’
    • ‘A set of house rules may be accepted as valid by a group of players wherever they play.’
    • ‘This section looks firstly at factors concerned with the fund manager's organisational structure and secondly at matters relating to the implementation of the house policy.’
    1. 2.1 (of a band or group) resident or regularly performing in a club or other venue:
      ‘the house band’
      • ‘He takes his place near the back of the house band, playing the spoons in perfect tempo.’
      • ‘Accompanying this was a sound and light show that would match any of the big pop concerts as well as a fantastic house band.’
      • ‘The fare was a mixture of jazz and blues standards, but the house band did not play it safe.’
      • ‘Jim Bridges and Cory Papirny are the house band rhythm section this time around.’
      • ‘As always, the house band will be in residence with all the usual suspects!’

verb

[WITH OBJECT]
Pronunciation: /haʊz/
  • 1Provide with shelter or accommodation:

    ‘they converted a disused cinema to house twelve employees’
    • ‘The literally tens of thousands of dollars spent on pets in this country could be much better spent on feeding the hungry and housing the poor.’
    • ‘Possible ideas include creating halfway houses, or transitional care areas, where patients could be housed until appropriate accommodation is arranged.’
    • ‘The obstacles in the U.S. to housing the poor adequately are profound.’
    • ‘They prodded authorities to raze the hundreds of alley shantytowns housing the city's poor and destitute.’
    • ‘That intent has changed from housing for workers, to housing for war vets, to housing the poor.’
    • ‘Bates is initially expected to be housed in Probation Service accommodation in Yorkshire when he is released.’
    • ‘More than 500 students and nurses will be housed in a huge new accommodation block situated in the heart of the city centre.’
    • ‘Elderly residents from sheltered accommodation blocks are being temporarily housed in a day care centre.’
    • ‘An estimated 300,000 people were left homeless in Mumbai, India when authorities bulldozed acres of slums that were housing the city's poor.’
    • ‘A few large blocks had arcaded courtyards like Italian Renaissance palaces; for these blocks housed both rich and poor.’
    • ‘As a country, we have long forgotten that the model we use for housing the poor in state-built houses is that of the first mining township, Kimberley, well over a century ago.’
    • ‘The women and children cited by Coleman in the column appear to be housed in shelters.’
    • ‘On the one hand, the state has, through its Reconstruction and Development Programme, prioritised housing the poor.’
    • ‘They will consider whether the family should be rehoused or housed in accommodation provided by the local authority.’
    • ‘Fears drug users and ex-offenders could be housed in an old people's sheltered complex in Leigh have been dismissed by council chiefs.’
    • ‘If an asylum-seeker turned up with his family I am sure they would be housed in far better accommodation than these poor people have to live in.’
    • ‘They now provide funds for the voluntary groups to help in the retaining and re-education of homeless people who will be housed in permanent accommodation.’
    • ‘Some 500 homeless victims of the quake were being housed in relief tents and others were sheltering from the freezing cold winds in buses.’
    • ‘It enables vulnerable people to be housed in suitable accommodation so that they can try and turn their lives around.’
    • ‘About 30 people have been treated for minor injuries and a hundred are being housed in emergency accommodations.’
    accommodate, provide accommodation for, provide with accommodation, give accommodation to, make space for, make room for, give someone a roof over their head, provide a roof over someone's head, provide with a place to work, harbour
    View synonyms
  • 2Provide space for; contain or accommodate:

    ‘the museum houses a collection of Roman sculpture’
    • ‘In the meantime the Fire Station will be temporarily housed in alternative accommodation until the new premises are ready.’
    • ‘The experience of being inside the David and Peggy Rockefeller Building, which houses the museum's new galleries, is uplifting.’
    • ‘That building now houses all its activities most of which, as the respondents agree, are charitable in nature.’
    • ‘Indeed, this fascinating piece might be better housed in a gallery space.’
    • ‘The network could not operate without the electrical equipment which was housed in the shelter and that is included in the determination.’
    • ‘A good diversity of coral life on the reef houses equally diverse marine animals.’
    • ‘It has since been renamed Balnahowan and now houses the Central Fisheries Board.’
    • ‘Members of staff will be housed in the current accommodation until completion of the new development.’
    • ‘The Golden Plaza Tower, which also houses shops and a school, is crowned by the revolving restaurant.’
    • ‘The Van Gogh museum houses the largest collection of this troubled man's masterpieces, and is definitely worth a look.’
    • ‘The top half of the structure houses Lum's wholesale restaurant supply business.’
    • ‘A storeroom on the ground floor houses 12 cylinders, each with a capacity of 35 kg.’
    • ‘The Lower East Side Tenement Museum is housed in one such building, at 97 Orchard Street.’
    • ‘During the construction work, nursery school children and staff will be housed in temporary accommodation opposite the existing building.’
    • ‘Previously they have been separated from us and housed in poor accommodation with a lack of IT facilities.’
    • ‘The market houses about six organic merchants including Robert.’
    • ‘The Fifth Avenue building houses galleries, administrative offices and the museum's school.’
    • ‘The Amida hall, blending the secular with the religious, houses one or more Buddha images within a structure resembling the mansions of the nobility.’
    • ‘The new grant will be used to refurbish the east wing which will house the main residential accommodation.’
    • ‘The Mountbatten building houses labs and offices for the Optoelectronics research centre and the School of Electronics and Computer Science.’
    contain, hold, store, cover
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1 Fix (something) in a socket or mortise.
      • ‘A socket for receiving the wedge base electric lamp houses socket terminals serving to retain the electric lamp and to provide contact with lead wires of the electric lamp.’
      • ‘The joinery not only meets the requirements of modern engineering, it is the classic housed mortise and tenon joinery that has withstood the test of time.’

Phrases

  • as safe as houses

    • Completely safe.

      • ‘In comparison Ricardo, the Portuguese goalkeeper, was as safe as houses, and can consider himself unfortunate not to have parried away the Larsson effort, which gave Celtic their winning goal.’
      • ‘A second great myth is that property is literally as safe as houses while the stock market is the investment equivalent of Dodge City.’
      • ‘One man said we were as safe as houses but it unnerves you.’
      • ‘As a result, most Japanese banks naturally thought that land was as safe as houses.’
      • ‘James says the belief that our personal finances are as safe as houses has fuelled an impressive consumer boom.’
      • ‘Sedbergh full back Richard Egan looked as safe as houses under a barrage of high kicks, and stand-off Darren Collins narrowly pulled his penalty attempt wide when the hosts were caught holding down.’
      • ‘Whilst the opposition parties and various independent bodies warned of the risk of increased electoral fraud, the government pressed on, claiming that the new postal votes were as safe as houses.’
  • get on (or along) like a house on fire

    • informal Have a very good and friendly relationship:

      ‘Gav and my Aunt Janice got on like a house on fire’
      • ‘‘Right from the word go we got on like a house on fire,’ Rafferty recalls.’
      • ‘‘We got on like a house on fire,’ she said of her relationship with Chris.’
      • ‘If we did get our hands on her, we'd probably get on like a house on fire.’
      • ‘Obviously working with Max was very important, and as soon as I met him at the read through, we got on like a house on fire, he's just a wonderful, wonderful kid, and a great actor.’
      • ‘Mr Carter said: ‘They got on like a house on fire and were sorry to leave.’’
      • ‘The two of them had got on like a house on fire though, as they shared the same sense of humour, though they didn't have much else in common.’
      • ‘A source revealed: ‘Robbie and Nicole met up last week and got on like a house on fire.’’
      • ‘And I was half expecting everyone to be their normal selves, and instantly get along like a house on fire.’
      • ‘My friend M went to see this guy and they got on like a house on fire.’
      • ‘But sometimes, as I said, you do find someone decent to chat with, and you get on like a house on fire.’
      get on well, get on, get along, be on good terms, be friends, be friendly, be compatible, relate well to each other, feel a rapport, see eye to eye, take to each other, warm to each other, find things in common
      View synonyms
  • go (all) round the houses

    • 1Take a circuitous route to one's destination.

      • ‘I tried again this morning, and still couldn't access Broadband, yet the status message was saying that there were no problems, so I started going round the houses, only to be told that my migration happened yesterday.’
      • ‘‘If nobody takes personal responsibility for the claim it will just go round the houses,’ she warns.’
      • ‘Was he your first choice from the moment you wrote the script, or did you have to go round the houses a little before you came to that conclusion?’
      • ‘Well, Andy, our feature writer Stephen Lewis went all round the houses trying to find working telephone numbers for Loadbikes and Cyclone.’
      1. 1.1Take an unnecessarily long time to get to the point:
        ‘a partner is likely to go all round the houses today, when it's obvious what they are hinting at’
        • ‘As my husband says I'm can't say yes I have to go round the houses first and then give an answer which means yes but doesn't feature the word yes.’
        • ‘If you would just like to ask your solicitor, otherwise it will be a lot of going round the houses to achieve nothing except for saving the defendant having to pay something.’
        • ‘Experts in language learning recognise the value of going round the houses a bit to avoid those aspects of a language that you have problems with.’
        • ‘Politicians have a penchant for going round the houses when answering tough questions.’
  • house and home

    • A person's home (used for emphasis):

      ‘some people sell house and home to sit in a boat writing books’
      • ‘You certainly love her, but don't forget about all those times when her brother invited himself over for dinner, unannounced of course, eating the two of you out of house and home.’
      • ‘I'm so sorry, I'll probably eat you both out of house and home!’
      • ‘The book gives a fantastic insight into the city as it follows themes such as house and home, working for a living and entertainment through almost two millennia.’
      • ‘What better way to make a quick buck than to sell off the government subsidized apartments and turf the 23,000 residents out of house and home?’
      • ‘But those boys have stolen everything I have in life and have now driven me out of my house and home.’
      • ‘If the trend continued they would be put out of house and home.’
      • ‘I know grown women who, when they don't get their own way, go on a rampage, nearly destroying house and home.’
      • ‘At the same time, he postulated that ‘a woman's duty is to see to house and home.’’
      • ‘Our point of view was we were attacked by an aggressive military and in fact we were just defending house and home.’
      • ‘Also if you get too many deer in one place they can eat themselves out of house and home,’ Mr Cubby added.’
  • a house divided cannot stand

    • proverb A group or organization weakened by internal dissensions will be unable to withstand external pressures.

      • ‘Every politician knows that a house that is divided against itself cannot stand.’
      • ‘It was Jesus, and much later Abraham Lincoln, that pointed out that a house divided cannot stand.’
      • ‘A great man once said that a house divided cannot stand.’
      • ‘Just the strains in the Anglican Communion Show that a house divided cannot stand.’
      • ‘‘The church of Jesus Christ has been divided and a house divided cannot stand.’’
      • ‘In Arizona, the party of Lincoln should heed Lincoln's advice: ‘… a house divided cannot stand.’’
  • house of cards

    • 1A structure built out of playing cards precariously balanced together.

      • ‘They show the transience of childhood through the representation of a house of cards lovingly built by two girls that is just about to be flattened by their boisterous brother as he waves a flag in mock military manner.’
      • ‘Hustvedt is an excellent writer but the structure of the book seems as flimsy as a house of cards, and the resolution at the end highly unsatisfactory.’
      • ‘It will fall like a house of cards when the trump of truth is pulled out.’
      • ‘Similarly, our connectedness, our human compact, is sandwiched together like the floors in a house of cards that is easier to knock down than we might think.’
      • ‘The building collapsed like a house of cards burying its residents.’
      • ‘When they opened the door, the draft blew over Jan's house of cards.’
      • ‘A false man, a man who did not earn his place where he is, is like a house of cards.’
      • ‘Like a precariously balanced house of cards, the McCartney team collapsed on the eve of a high-profile 2001 launch, due to be held in Trafalgar Square.’
      • ‘Most ranchers deal with this by sticking to traditional practice - recognizing that a mistake would require them to change, and change could topple the whole operation like a house of cards.’
      • ‘He likened the relationship to a house of cards: Remove one species or habitat type in the system, and the whole thing comes tumbling down.’
      1. 1.1Used to refer to an insubstantial or insecure situation or scheme:
        ‘the special constitutional arrangement collapsed like a house of cards’
        • ‘But as the more perceptive economic commentators have noted, the rosy economic statistics and apparent buoyancy of the Australian economy rest on a house of cards.’
        • ‘It may be a house of cards or window dressing to those of us who understand security, but the vast majority of the population does not understand security.’
        • ‘Her husband was at the top, the head joker in the house of cards.’
        • ‘As events conspire to topple the rather precarious house of cards that Murdock has built for himself, he comes to realise that he is trapped in an ever-worsening cycle of despair.’
        • ‘At that moment, I was grateful that I had squandered all the money I had been underpaid over the years and had nothing in the market, because I knew it was a house of cards.’
        • ‘This is meant not just knock down the conspiracy theorist's house of cards, but also to destroy the notion that possibly, maybe, there could be some unnecessary and compromising complications here.’
        • ‘However to make this house of cards work, the casino has to be pumping out as much money as it can.’
        • ‘But this is a house of cards, built on dreams and delusions, which will topple, not because of a renewal of the husband's past infidelity, but because of the wife's ineradicable distrust.’
        • ‘These tactics protect the military's house of cards for a while but it collapses the moment the principal actor is removed.’
        • ‘But the pyramid of evidence-based medicine is not solid-it's a house of cards.’
  • keep (or make) a house

    • Secure the presence of enough members for a quorum in the House of Commons.

      • ‘Keep a House in case of a vote.’
      • ‘They could hardly get Members to make a House before 10 o'clock.’
  • keep house

    • Do the cooking, cleaning, and other tasks involved in the running of a household:

      ‘a young girl named Roxie came over to keep house for him’
      • ‘His kinswoman, the daughter of his half-sister, kept house for a painter who preferred his familiar environment, his familiar accessories and his familiar models, and used them again and again.’
      • ‘I have been instructing her in all the basic cooking and keeping house ways.’
      • ‘My mother kept house economically and cooked all the meals herself.’
      • ‘She cooks, keeps house, dispenses food and kindness and runs the Lodge single-handed.’
      • ‘All he said was that he was brought up to believe that the man went to work and the woman kept house.’
      • ‘Girls learned how to cook and clean and keep house against the day that they might someday be wed to a wealthy man.’
      • ‘So the one who had attended private school kept house while the one who could barely read ruled it.’
      • ‘She keeps house for all of them and bears their children too.’
      • ‘Well, our kids were grown and I was really tired of keeping house.’
      • ‘The beneficiary of all this motorized magic was nearly every American who cleans or keeps house.’
  • on the house

    • (of a drink or meal in a bar or restaurant) at the management's expense; free:

      ‘our first rounds always came on the house’
      • ‘As we were about to pay up and leave, the barman brought us a last round on the house.’
      • ‘The Cretans almost always give you a drink on the house at the start or end of a meal.’
      • ‘I'm guessing he didn't spend it on handguns or blasting caps, maybe just a few drinks on the house.’
      • ‘We are invited by the hotel to a special, celebratory buffet - on the house.’
      • ‘Lunch and refreshments will also be on the house, on both days of the festival.’
      • ‘During the meal, the chef may send out one or two little taste treats for diners to enjoy on the house.’
      • ‘It's the landlord's last night, so the final rounds of drinks are on the house.’
      • ‘Ramsay told Hatton he was welcome any time to a meal on the house at his place in London.’
      • ‘As a peace offering, Rewpert told Gordon to bring over a couple of drinks on the house.’
      • ‘I then informed her that as she was so nice, and this was her first visit to this bar, her drink was on the house.’
      free, free of charge, without payment, without charge, at no cost, for nothing, gratis
      courtesy, complimentary
      for free
      comp
      View synonyms
  • play house

    • (of a child) play at being a family in its home:

      ‘I suggested exploring the woods or playing house’
      • ‘Living in the cottage in the early days felt like we were playing house.’
      • ‘Mum and Dad have gone off on an epic trip north for a couple of weeks leaving us here to play house.’
      • ‘She loves mermaids, playing house, and it also came with lots of little things: a flower shower, a little boat, a tiny slide.’
      • ‘When children play house, doctor-nurse or police-thief, they are not looking for an audience.’
      • ‘A favorite game for her was simply to take the broom out into the dusty front ‘yard,’ sweep out lines to form rooms, and play house.’
      • ‘They make a joke of it, and look like little kids playing house by calling it a marriage.’
      • ‘When my friends' 4-year-old wants to play house, I cheerfully pretend to drink tea from her little cup.’
      • ‘I am a responsible member of society, but I still feel like a kid playing house, expecting the real world to catch up with me any second.’
      • ‘But I'm sure if you nicely explain your feelings, your folks would agree with you that playing house as kids means little when it comes to having a real boyfriend.’
      • ‘She hated playing house in the first place anyways, but Auntie insisted that she played with the girls on the street and made friends.’
  • put (or set) one's house in order

    • Make necessary reforms:

      ‘the Americans need to put their own economic house in order’
      • ‘They bounced back, put their house in order and became a paradigm of how it can all work out.’
      • ‘We don't have much time to put our house in order if we are to be hit again,’ he said.’
      • ‘Let us first set our house in order before showing it off to others through the Net.’
      • ‘Mr Fernandes said that his client had a poor record before 2000 but since then had tried to put his house in order.’
      • ‘Will you become a true Christian and set your house in order?’
      • ‘And the overall message to the arbiters of the city's destiny is blunt and clear - set your house in order or else people will start looking elsewhere when they consider a location for their next round of investment.’
      • ‘The corporate governance inspection report said we had to put our house in order.’
      • ‘They have been told to put their house in order and have so far failed and even refused to do so.’
      • ‘Especially on long train trips, there is time to think, to mull over one's troubles, to put one's house in order, to ponder.’
      • ‘It is time that we in this country put our house in order.’
  • set up house

    • Make one's home in a specified place:

      ‘he moved to Manhattan and set up house on 54th Street’
      • ‘Abi and I got married in 1993, and we set up house in Edinburgh.’
      • ‘But, a practical man, he set up house with a blacksmith's daughter who had been his housekeeper, and to underline her promotion sent her off to finishing school in Eastbourne.’
      • ‘He set up house and started a family in Stratford, but he didn't stay there long: throughout his career he lived in London, travelling back to visit his family now and then.’
      • ‘It wasn't until I started making a list of things I needed to buy that I realised how many accoutrements are involved in setting up house.’
      • ‘He had set up house in Paris with his American wife.’
      • ‘We do not see him begin his work or even set up house with his new wife.’
      • ‘In 1751 John Home married, and David and his sister set up house in Edinburgh, moving to slightly more luxurious quarters as his fortunes improved.’
      • ‘They are even being prevented from setting up house in one place.’
      • ‘Given that a 16-year-old can legally get married and set up house, an in-between stage which lets them learn to cope with short periods of independence seems like a good idea.’
      • ‘He moved to London in 1964, set up house with schoolteacher Brian Taylor, and worked his way through London and local theatre.’

Origin

Old English hūs (noun), hūsian (verb), of Germanic origin; related to Dutch huis, German Haus (nouns), and Dutch huizen, German hausen (verbs).

Pronunciation:

house

Noun/haʊs/

house

Verb/haʊz/