Definition of open in English:



  • 1Allowing access, passage, or a view through an empty space; not closed or blocked.

    ‘he climbed through the open window’
    ‘she was put in a cubicle with the curtains left open’
    ‘the pass is kept open by snowploughs’
    • ‘I spent half the morning lolling around in bed with the windows open, enjoying the sunshine.’
    • ‘We were not far from the wall now, and my eyes were fastened upon the open gate.’
    • ‘When he didn't move to get up she marched over to the curtains and pulled them open.’
    • ‘The front door of the house was open and the smells of the kitchen engulfed them.’
    • ‘The spider trembled and swayed in the sudden gust from the open bathroom window.’
    • ‘I have a bad habit of not closing the blinds properly or forgetting that the curtains are open.’
    • ‘Amy reached the gate and pushed it open from the inside.’
    • ‘Residents found it impossible to sit outside in their gardens or have their windows open because of the racket.’
    • ‘A common occurrence is a child is left alone in a car on a hot day, even with the window slightly open.’
    • ‘He knocks loudly at the door, and it swings open with a ponderous creak.’
    • ‘As he proceeds to end it all, the young man hears a haunting Mozart melody emanating from an open window.’
    • ‘Elsewhere, a cheerful member of staff is sitting at a desk which completely blocks an open doorway.’
    • ‘The sun is up and it's warm enough to have the windows wide open, and you can watch the world waking up.’
    • ‘In the hall, Howard discovered Deirdre and the two boys putting their coats on by the open front door.’
    • ‘He was certain that the loft hatch had been open at the time of the fire.’
    • ‘Finally he managed to get the door unlocked and pulled it open as quickly and quietly as he could.’
    • ‘I am unable to open a window in my house as swarms of blue flies come in just as soon as a window is open.’
    • ‘The door to James' house was open slightly and through the gap you could see the place was in complete darkness.’
    • ‘I sat up in bed, shielding my eyes from the light which came in through the open curtains.’
    • ‘The doors swung fully open to reveal a man sitting behind a mahogany desk, wide arched windows flanking him.’
    not shut, not closed, unlocked, unbolted, unlatched, off the latch, unfastened, unbarred, unsecured
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1(of a container) not fastened or sealed.
      ‘the case burst open and its contents flew all over the place’
      • ‘His duffle bag was open in front of him on the bed, a shoelace dangling over the zipper.’
      • ‘At the funeral they were filing past the open coffin to pay their respects.’
      • ‘He reached across the table and plucked a cigarette from the open packet.’
      • ‘Then he reached for an open bottle of red wine, took a swig from the neck.’
      • ‘First of all, I used mostly milk chocolate chips because I had an open bag to get rid of.’
      • ‘She stepped closer to the bed where the open suitcase lay, picking up a pearl necklace.’
      • ‘Her backpack was open, and I saw a pack of tarot cards, along with an Ouija board in it.’
      • ‘Always reseal open bags to prevent the mix drying out and store it in a cool, dark environment.’
      • ‘She appeared in front of Kate in a moment, setting an open bottle of beer in front of her.’
      • ‘At last, we all got comfortable in the living room, each of us with an open bottle of lager.’
      • ‘An open packet of painkillers and a bladed instrument were found next to the body.’
      • ‘Some reports claim that the hatches to the cargo were broken open and the casks of alcohol broached.’
      • ‘An airport screener smelled alcohol and found an open container of alcohol on the pilot.’
      • ‘All of the overhead lockers flew open and the red cover on the handle of the emergency exit sprang across the cabin.’
      • ‘Her gym bag was open and her makeup and shampoo bottles were scattered on my bed.’
      • ‘One of the men was holding a long open box.’
      • ‘The cleaners picked up an open packet of Jelly Babies from the theatre.’
      • ‘She found my open backpack in the closet and carefully went through all its pockets and compartments.’
      • ‘There were a lot of open bottles left in the office after the Carnival celebration.’
      • ‘Letting out a moan, he grabs at the open bottle of pills, some of which spill onto the carpet.’
    2. 1.2(of a garment or its fastenings) not done up.
      ‘his tie was knotted below the open collar of his shirt’
      • ‘I had my lightweight coat on, and that was open, so the warmth penetrated so deep I felt I was breathing it.’
      • ‘The man was smoking a cigarette, and his shirt was open at the neck.’
      • ‘She tried her best to avert her eyes from the chest that she could plainly see through the open shirt.’
      • ‘But the eyewitness alerted police and they caught him with his trousers half open.’
      • ‘He had also taken off his tie, and the few topmost buttons of his shirt were open.’
      • ‘Her button up shirt was open at the top.’
      • ‘After some hours, he said, they were given gowns that were open at the back.’
      • ‘I find it sexy when a man wears an open collar shirt that reveals the top part of his chest.’
      • ‘He was wearing a dark maroon shirt with an open dark blue jacket over it.’
      • ‘His shirt is open showing his slightly muscular build.’
      • ‘The shirt is open three or so buttons down revealing a lengthy vertical surgical scar.’
      • ‘Olivia notes the direction of his gaze, and realizes her robe has fallen open again.’
      • ‘The maître d' wore a jacket and an open collar shirt.’
      • ‘She was wearing just an open dressing-gown, her lacy cream nightgown showing beneath.’
      • ‘He was dressed simply, in black breeches and a white shirt that was open at the neck.’
      • ‘We met on his enormous yacht, and he wore a captain's cap and an open shirt with epaulets.’
      • ‘He had an open jacket over a black t-shirt.’
      • ‘He was wearing a pinstriped suit and an open shirt, and he had a ponytail.’
      • ‘He wore light brown leather breeches and an open leather jacket.’
      unfastened, not done up, undone, unbuttoned, unzipped, loose
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    3. 1.3(of the mouth or eyes) with lips or lids parted.
      ‘his eyes were open but he could see nothing’
      [as complement] ‘the boy's mouth dropped open in shock’
      • ‘Asked why he was robbing the house, one man wordlessly pointed to his open mouth to indicate he was hungry.’
      • ‘‘She's drunk,’ Matt realized suddenly, his mouth hanging open in disbelief.’
      • ‘I bent down and kissed his cheek, which made his eyes flutter open.’
      • ‘Her glazed eyes were still open, unblinking, staring fixedly at nothing in particular.’
      • ‘Her eyes were open but she was quaking now with a lost look on her face.’
    4. 1.4(of a fabric) loosely knitted or woven.
      • ‘It's usually done with a tack cloth which is an open weave fabric treated with a wax.’
      • ‘It is a poly cotton blend with an open knit.’
      • ‘Fabrics of these fibers often burn easily because of an open fabric weave.’
      • ‘Look for a natural fabric with a loose, open weave such as burlap or some types of cotton and linen.’
    5. 1.5(of the bowels) not constipated.
      • ‘The bowels were not open, and in the evening she had more pain.’
      • ‘The bowels were open, but the stools consisted only of green and black slime.’
      • ‘The nursing record indicates that her bowels were open.’
      • ‘He has a good appetite, and his bowels are open.’
  • 2[attributive] Exposed to the air or to view; not covered.

    ‘an open fire burned in the grate’
    ‘he crossed the ocean in an open boat’
    • ‘Clothes, covers, and hat help to maintain body temperature of newborns when they are nursed in an open cot’
    • ‘At the end of the procedure the wound should be washed with copious quantities of saline and then left open.’
    • ‘Beside me are open sewers and the debris of a house destroyed three years ago.’
    • ‘At least twenty people were on crutches, had parts bandaged, or with open wounds not even covered.’
    • ‘The sewage drains are open and the only sources of water are the borewells that are drying up.’
    • ‘The manhole cover was missing and the open hole was surrounded by long grass and hidden from view.’
    • ‘Some new fireplaces have an integral glass screen, making them safer than conventional open fires.’
    • ‘This waste is usually held in large, open tanks or pits before being spread onto farmer's fields.’
    • ‘These areas are flood prone, and after a big flood the toxic sites are left open and exposed.’
    • ‘In the midst of farmland just to the west of York is a huge open tip.’
    • ‘The dirt and the filthiness of the city and its open drains nauseate her.’
    • ‘Smokers crossing the Irish Sea could find themselves banished to the open decks of all ferries to and from the Republic.’
    • ‘The elegant lounges are made to relax in, with their welcoming open fires and fresh flowers.’
    • ‘The open drain has been covered.’
    • ‘The house had an open courtyard and you could hear the protestors chanting down the street.’
    • ‘They walked up the stairs to the open sun deck, which was already crowded with people.’
    • ‘Like all old houses, many of the rooms had open fires, but dampness and condensation was a problem.’
    • ‘Instead, the food is cooked over open fires, causing serious deforestation.’
    • ‘At the moment, heating comes from open fires or stoves in each room.’
    • ‘This rustic farmhouse offers beef or lamb, roasted on an open log fire.’
    1. 2.1(of land) not covered with buildings or trees.
      ‘the plans allow increasing numbers of new houses in open countryside’
      • ‘Springbok shelter beneath trees and a lone hyena scurries across the open plain.’
      • ‘The riverside, its wildlife, its views, its open spaces and historic features are close to all our hearts.’
      • ‘In the heart of Lanarkshire, just nine miles from the centre of Glasgow, lies a vast expanse of open land.’
      • ‘The animals enjoy wide open spaces, eat natural foods and also enjoy some of the cleanest air in the world.’
      • ‘The scenery is flat and open, lacking in trees and hills but with sweeping vistas across stunning landscapes.’
      • ‘They agreed the mast was in the wrong place and would dominate the landscape in an area of open countryside.’
      • ‘Their adventure has seen them scale high peaks, sail across oceans and cycle across open wilderness and deserts.’
      • ‘Country life benefits from wide open spaces where there is less traffic and room for country walks.’
      • ‘It was our first sight of wide open space, with nothing but mountains and huge gorges on the horizon.’
      • ‘There is a clause in the planning law against building development on open land.’
      • ‘The diversity of its landscape is unique, and includes woodland, open heathland and coastal land.’
      • ‘But the parched ground and warm and sunny temperatures meant a flood of calls to attend fires on open ground.’
      • ‘There are wide open spaces for children, it is safe for them, and we are a crime-free area.’
      • ‘Because many larks nest in open desert areas, chicks are often exposed to sun and heat.’
      • ‘The wide, open plains of Poland were ideally suited to the rapid movement of tanks central to a blitzkrieg attack.’
      • ‘Just north of Gardez is a wide, open plain studded with small villages.’
      • ‘If you crave wide open spaces and big skies, then a place in the country would suit.’
      • ‘They were amazed at the wide open spaces and how green everything was, but less impressed with the distance to the shops.’
      • ‘Winter in particular can provide some dramatic effects across the wide open spaces.’
      • ‘She was fascinated by the country's wide open spaces and vast grassy plains.’
      unenclosed, rolling, sweeping, extensive, wide, wide open, broad, unfenced, exposed, unsheltered
      View synonyms
    2. 2.2[as complement]Damaged by a deep cut in the surface.
      ‘he had his arm slashed open’
      • ‘They also contain rotting rubbish smells and stop the mess caused by cats ripping open bin liners.’
      • ‘They raided her apartment, slashed open her suitcase and stole her mobile phone.’
      • ‘She fell and sliced open her shin.’
      • ‘Rubbish bags in and around the Kennet area have recently been found ripped open.’
      • ‘The animals have been known to make a nuisance of themselves by ripping open rubbish bags after smelling food.’
      • ‘Blood had splattered onto every wall; Williamson's throat had been slashed open.’
      • ‘Their stomachs are ripped out, their chests crushed, their throats ripped open.’
    3. 2.3Likely to suffer from or be affected by; vulnerable or subject to.
      ‘the system is open to abuse’
      • ‘Credit unions are more open to serious bad debt problems than other financial institutions.’
      • ‘How can it be made easier to do business here, without leaving the system open to even more abuse?’
      • ‘There is no evidence postal ballots are more open to fraud than the current system.’
      • ‘Senior electoral officers in the city admit the system could be open to abuse.’
      • ‘She has now withdrawn this claim, leaving her open to possible prosecution for perjury.’
      • ‘It would leave him wide open to the criticism that he has become a liability to the party.’
      • ‘He accepts he used terms in the article that laid him open to criticism.’
      • ‘The scheme remains entirely voluntary and open to abuse.’
      • ‘His general manner and the way he conducts himself does leave him open to criticism.’
      • ‘That could leave the council open to fresh criticism from Government Ministers.’
      • ‘The case left the Scottish justice system open to claims its fingerprint evidence was unsafe.’
      • ‘Indeed as it stands, the postal voting system leaves itself open to fraud.’
      • ‘His suspension leaves him open to possible victimisation by a brigade that is already trying to impose cuts.’
      • ‘The disease attacks bark, leaving it open to infection, and makes brittle branches prone to fall off.’
      • ‘As many people could not read or write, the system was open to abuse and corruption.’
      • ‘The unarticulated aims of the movement are, surely, what leaves it open to criticism.’
      • ‘Because of the delay, the election results in the areas affected could now be open to legal challenge.’
      • ‘You'd have to give him credit for going out and playing because he was open to all kinds of criticism.’
      • ‘This rule needs to be amended as it is currently open to abuse by disgruntled minority groups.’
      • ‘Laws that are open to such obvious abuse are bad laws, however good the intentions behind them.’
      susceptible to, liable to, prone to, vulnerable to, predisposed to, disposed to, apt to suffer from, likely to suffer from, easily affected by, in danger of, at risk of, open to, wide open to
      View synonyms
    4. 2.4(of a goalmouth or other object of attack in a game) unprotected by defenders.
      • ‘He sent the ball wide of the virtually open goal.’
      • ‘The keeper came racing out of his area, but Giggs took the ball round him to leave sight of an open goal.’
      • ‘The big striker saw the goalkeeper off his line and the open goal.’
      • ‘With an open goalmouth in front of him, he put the ball over the cross bar.’
      • ‘Even when offered an open goal, they are both more likely to miss than score.’
      • ‘He lobs the ball over the keeper and watches it bounce towards the open goal.’
      • ‘He seizes on the loose ball and faces an open goal, 16 yards out.’
      • ‘There then followed a period of end to end play when both sides missed open goals but it was City who had the edge.’
    5. 2.5(of a town or city) officially declared to be undefended, and so immune under international law from bombardment.
      • ‘On 13 June Paris was declared an open city, as the French government fled to Bordeaux.’
      • ‘The Belgian army retreated to the town of Antwerp, leaving Brussels an open city.’
      • ‘He proceeded to declare Manila an open city.’
      • ‘However the Soviet Union could not carry out show trials in Berlin, which was an open city.’
      • ‘Picasso's masterpiece articulates the horror and outrage felt by all civilized people at the wanton bombing of an open city.’
  • 3With the outer edges or sides drawn away from each other; unfolded or spread out.

    ‘the trees had buds and a few open flowers’
    • ‘This procedure was repeated on two consecutive days to ensure pollination of open flowers.’
    • ‘Veronica are open, airy flowers which are ideal for arrangements, bringing both shape and a sense of relaxed style.’
    • ‘The entire bolts were cut off at their base when they had produced one open flower.’
    • ‘It looks a bit like an open lotus flower, red and green with edible silver on the outside.’
    • ‘If there was not an open flower under that leaf, the flies rapidly walked down the stem and up another stem, instead of flying.’
    • ‘A few tentative catkins are appearing on the willow and there are several flowers already open on the Japanese quince.’
    • ‘Bags have to be put on early in the season as bract damage can occur at bud stage, as well as when birds feed on the open flowers.’
    • ‘I just stand there, intently examining a fully open rose, not knowing what to say.’
    spread out, unfolded, unfurled, unrolled, straightened out
    View synonyms
    1. 3.1(of a book or file) with the covers parted allowing it to be read.
      ‘she was copying verses from an open Bible’
      • ‘Leaning on a stone parapet overlooking the Seine, a young man loses himself in a book held open in front of him.’
      • ‘Books are open on every surface, and there are many pages of notebooks strewn around.’
      • ‘He gave me a quick nod of his head then carried on reading out loud from the textbook he had open in front of him.’
      • ‘He pulled a heavy, leather bound book off from a high shelf, and cracked it open gently.’
      • ‘Beside it is another copy of the same book, open at Canaletto's view of the Grand Canal of 1746.’
      • ‘She reached over and grabbed the file from the ornate hotel desk and pulled it open.’
      • ‘He stooped to pick up a book from where it lay open and spine-up on the floor and examined the cover.’
      • ‘He was staring down at the diary on the floor, which had fallen open when it had landed.’
      • ‘She quickly scanned the pages of the math book that was open and ready in front of her.’
      • ‘He finally faced her, and smiled as he caught sight of the open record book.’
      • ‘Its a paperback book that doesn't easily sit open on a table where it is likely best used.’
      • ‘The book was open in the middle, and it was ancient and smelled of dust.’
      • ‘He sat hunched forward on the chair, fully focused on the book which lay open on his lap.’
      • ‘There were books lying open at pages that had seemed relevant.’
      • ‘She sat at her desk with her open physics book but could not make sense of a word she was reading.’
      • ‘Her biology book was open in her lap and she was staring at me with an annoyed expression on her face.’
      • ‘She laid the open atlas down on the table and began to dig through kitchen drawers.’
      • ‘Would you like to be caught reading a trashy novel that falls open at the rude bits?’
      • ‘Next to the lute is an open hymn book, identifiable as the work of the great religious reformer Martin Luther.’
      • ‘Erin was poring over a huge book that had been open under the side table under a dim red desk lamp.’
    2. 3.2(of a hand) not clenched into a fist.
      • ‘He glared down at her open palm laying across his chest, and glared back up into her eyes.’
      • ‘The log books show that in those days impertinence was punished by one or two cuts with the cane - or a slap with an open hand.’
      • ‘I propped my elbow on the side of the boat, laid my head in the palm of my open hand, and shut my eyes.’
      • ‘She leaned her chin in her open palm.’
      • ‘Steven slammed his open hand down on the wall beside Darren's head, causing Darren to cringe.’
      • ‘He shuts off the motor and then slams an open hand on the dashboard.’
      • ‘I scratch and hit with open palms at the mosquitoes.’
      • ‘Place your open hand firmly on your chest and rub backwards and forwards then around and around in slow circles.’
      • ‘Jack rummaged in his pocket, produced a fifty pence piece and proffered it in his open palm.’
      • ‘She quickly moved her foot and replaced it with an open hand to help him to his feet.’
      • ‘Pulling something out of his pocket, he thrust it into my open hands before running away, out of sight.’
      • ‘With your hand held loosely open, press the fleshy mound with the index finger of your other hand.’
      • ‘She placed the golden bracelet in her open palm.’
      • ‘He then placed his open hand on the girl's head and began ruffling her hair as if she was his pet.’
      • ‘He sat on the grass and lay down, positioning his hands so that his head was resting on his open palms.’
      • ‘So she lifted one hand away from the other, and there the grasshopper sat on her open palm.’
      • ‘She took his open hand and looked him in the eye - something she found difficult to do with most people.’
      • ‘The girl raises her hands in front of her face with open palms, fingers spread wide.’
      • ‘If his palms are open, carefully bring them together to make his first clapping sounds.’
      • ‘Her leg hung over the arm rest of the couch, her head propped up lazily on an open palm.’
  • 4[predicative] (of a business, place of entertainment, etc.) admitting customers or visitors; available for business.

    ‘the shop stays open until 9 p.m’
    ‘parts of the castle are open to the public’
    • ‘They are usually open seven days a week from early morning to late evening, 365 days a year.’
    • ‘Although footpaths are closed, many of the tourist attractions in the area are open.’
    • ‘The club restaurant is now open for business.’
    • ‘Businesses are open again, subways are running, and classes are being taught at schools and colleges.’
    • ‘The activity centre was open for half-term fun on two days this week.’
    • ‘The centre is open every day and there are daily regular flying displays.’
    • ‘Most shops in the town centre are open on Sunday.’
    • ‘The castle is still a working prison but the historic Shire Hall, including the Crown Court, is open daily for tours.’
    • ‘I like supermarkets, they are convenient and open when I am able to get to them.’
    • ‘Only the unit at Chippenham Hospital stays open around the clock.’
    • ‘The Gardens are open from 8am to 5pm, including weekends and public holidays.’
    • ‘The cellar at The Walnut Tree in the centre of the village was flooded but the pub was able to remain open.’
    • ‘This site is open all year round in daylight hours and is free of charge.’
    • ‘Shops are open late in town, and there was lots to look at, so we just kept browsing.’
    • ‘The landfill will be open from 9am to 5pm, six days a week.’
    • ‘The dress shop has been open for nearly seven months but Eddie still misses the hustle and bustle of the restaurant.’
    • ‘He said the office in Market Place was open all day on Saturday, so the couple could have called with any problems.’
    • ‘The old schoolroom is now open to the public and available for functions and events.’
    • ‘The office is open from 9am to 5pm Mondays to Fridays and the service is confidential.’
    • ‘Entrance to the site is free, although donations are accepted, and the site is always open.’
    open for business, open to the public
    View synonyms
    1. 4.1(of a bank account) available for transactions.
      ‘I withdrew all my money except the minimum required to keep the account open’
      • ‘Many expats want to keep their UK bank accounts open while they are abroad.’
      • ‘Other card issuers ask you to provide this information online or by telephone after your account is open.’
      • ‘I called to tell them that my old checking account was no longer open.’
      • ‘What are the fees to keep the account open and to do transactions?’
      • ‘The Co-op was able to check back to 1981, and found nothing to show the account was open then.’
    2. 4.2(of a telephone line) ready to take calls.
      ‘our free advice line is open from 8.30 to 17.30’
      • ‘Lines are open from 7.30 am to midnight and calls are charged at national rate.’
      • ‘British Gas said its telephone helpline was open 24 hours a day, every day of the year.’
      • ‘Telephone lines will be open from noon on Christmas Eve until midnight on Boxing Day.’
      • ‘Phone lines will be open for viewers to vote for who they believe has put in the best performance.’
      • ‘Lines are open from midnight tonight and will close on Thursday, September 2 at noon.’
      • ‘The phone lines are open and anyone wanting to leave song requests or discuss local issues will be contacted once it hits the air waves.’
      • ‘With the phone lines open until midnight on May 20, there's still all to play for.’
      • ‘So give no one the number to it, for the line needs to be open in case I need to contact you at anytime.’
      • ‘Callers key in a security code and confirm their details, and the line is open round-the-clock.’
      • ‘The lines are open 24 hours a day and the calls won't show up on your phone bill.’
  • 5Freely available or accessible; unrestricted.

    ‘the service is open to all students’
    • ‘The vision is to make the centre an active hub, open full time to everyone who requires its resources.’
    • ‘Booking is open and tickets sales are doing extremely well.’
    • ‘The Government's new stakeholder pension plan is open literally to anyone, working or not.’
    • ‘It may well be the case that free open competition is best for us all in the long term irrespective of creed or colour.’
    • ‘It offers a range of possibilities and support services open to people of all ages.’
    • ‘The long term solution to ending tyranny around the world is free and open trade.’
    • ‘They exist in parallel to the internet and are open, at least potentially, to millions of people around the world.’
    • ‘We simply need to give that kind of assurance, so that we can encourage free and open markets.’
    available, accessible, on hand, obtainable, on offer
    View synonyms
    1. 5.1(of an offer or opportunity) still available.
      ‘the offer is open while stocks last’
      ‘we need to consider what options are left open’
      • ‘Those who want to pamper themselves can head to the spa as the offer is open only till October 31.’
      • ‘This offer is open for acceptance for a period of thirty days from the above date.’
      • ‘We doubled back to the hotel to see if the earlier dinner offer was still open.’
      • ‘The judge granted him bail, but warned him not to read anything into that as all sentencing options were open.’
      • ‘The offer remained open until one minute after the commencement of the trial.’
      • ‘He applied to many schools and my mom read papers from different states to see what jobs were open.’
      • ‘The grant offers remain open until the end of February next year.’
      • ‘It may be difficult to find an open time slot to make appointments at these busy times.’
      • ‘We are just keeping all our options open at the moment.’
      • ‘In return for this I have the full support of the organisation in finding a new job, and I have an open offer of a job here if ever I want it.’
      • ‘He came back to Sofia and bashfully inquired if the offer was still open.’
      • ‘When doctors practising under this new model start work each morning, about half of their appointment slots are open.’
      • ‘On the other hand, it wants to avoid a broader public discussion and keep open all its options.’
    2. 5.2With no restrictions on those allowed to participate.
      ‘open discussion meetings’
      ‘each horse had won two open races’
      • ‘She is so reliable and it is feasible to expect her to make her presence felt in open races such as the King George and Arc.’
      • ‘This will be the first time that two international open squash events will take place at the same time and in the same club.’
      • ‘The competition is open to non-members of Cumbria Tourist Board as well as members.’
      • ‘Jonathan Fullam was also a winner when taking the gold medal for shot putt at the open sports in St Abbans.’
      • ‘Not only did he sweep the junior event but the unassuming youngster also won the open competition.’
      • ‘This is an open competition and we are looking forward to many entries from the public.’
      • ‘The team also won in three other weight classes in open competitions there.’
      • ‘Designed by sculptor John Mills, the design won an open competition judged by experts.’
      • ‘The Diana Group is staging a monthly open golf tournament exclusively for senior and lady golfers.’
      • ‘Meanwhile, the open division final gets under way, sand spraying under nimble feet.’
      • ‘Drew was delighted with, not only his first ever cross win, but his first ever open race win, too.’
      • ‘In parallel, an open public competition for project ideas was launched and this was used to pick our five launch projects.’
      • ‘He promised to come back with a vengeance in the upcoming open competitions in Barbados and Jamaica.’
      • ‘The event this year will be open for all free flyers, that is hang glider and paraglider pilots.’
      • ‘On the open racing scene, the club organised a number of successful races throughout the year.’
      • ‘Overall a thrilling final for the first open tennis tournament at the Royal Garden Spa and Fitness.’
      public, general, unrestricted, non-exclusive, accessible to everyone, non-restrictive
      View synonyms
    3. 5.3(of a victor) having won an open competition.
      ‘an Open champion’
      • ‘Sporting history is littered with unlikely winners but the 750 to 1 Open victor must have a legitimate claim to having produced the biggest one of all.’
      • ‘The 12-times World Champion and 2003 UK Open winner, finished second in the Order of Merit.’
      • ‘She is a former world number three tennis player, French Open champion and Wimbledon semi-finalist.’
      • ‘The current Australian Open champion in his weight division was disappointed with his Bronze medal.’
      • ‘The 2000 U.S. Open champ demolished every women's record imaginable.’
    4. 5.4(of a ticket) not restricted as to day of travel.
      ‘I have an open ticket, so I can travel any day I like’
      • ‘It was always just an open ticket, entitling you to travel certain routes.’
      • ‘An open ticket gives you complete flexibility – travel on any train, at any time of the day!’
      • ‘The business saver ticket will remain a competitive option, which offered many advantages on a standard open ticket.’
      • ‘I had an open ticket to return to Thailand.’
      • ‘You can't buy an open ticket online.’
    5. 5.5British (of a cheque) not crossed.
      • ‘Some banks charged a certain amount of money when one cashed an open cheque with them.’
      • ‘He mistook the open cheque for €50,000 as a personal contribution of €5,000.’
      • ‘It is an open cheque because the Government has no idea what the cost of these new rights and privileges will be.’
      • ‘Moreover, the holder may decide to add a crossing to an open cheque, which is then treated as being crossed.’
    6. 5.6Mathematics (of a set) not containing any of its limit points.
      • ‘Let the point set M be the sum of the open sets Mx, M2.’
      • ‘Open sets have a fundamental importance in the branch of topology.’
      • ‘When combining two open sets the resulting set is again open.’
      • ‘Any metric space is an open subset of itself.’
  • 6Not concealing one's thoughts or feelings; frank and communicative.

    ‘she behaved in an open and cheerful manner’
    ‘I was quite open about my views’
    • ‘Nevertheless, journals might become more open about the basis upon which they select books and reviewers.’
    • ‘The decision to be open about her illness has brought her both solace and stress.’
    • ‘You do not have to worry about showing your notes to anyone, so be free and open.’
    • ‘Max is of a generation who are able to be open about their sexuality with relative impunity.’
    • ‘She's very open about her relationship, and Alice, her partner, is someone we like enormously.’
    • ‘Be open about your worries - it's only by sharing them that the staff can arrange the support that you need.’
    • ‘Personally I find it rather sad that couples aren't more willing to be open about their money.’
    • ‘We must treat everyone fairly, be open and honest and prepared to justify our decisions when challenged.’
    • ‘They were very open about their relationship and their plans for their future life together.’
    • ‘It will make those around you more open and accessible to sharing themselves with you.’
    • ‘The filmmakers are relatively open about their lack of interest in the problem.’
    • ‘If you are open and honest from the beginning a mutually satisfactory agreement can be worked out.’
    • ‘The overriding message from residents was a wish for councillors to be held to account and to be open.’
    • ‘He was frank, open and polite.’
    • ‘It's difficult to be open and honest about deficiencies in your hospital or practice.’
    • ‘I found that older women can be incredibly open about sex, the good and the bad.’
    • ‘The second challenge is how to convince the drug industry to be more open about their ongoing trials.’
    • ‘Up to this time he had been open and free in giving out information and revealing discoveries.’
    • ‘Throughout the interview John is frank and open - except when it comes to money.’
    • ‘I found them to be open and frank about some of the challenges that still lie ahead and I think it this is important.’
    frank, candid, honest, forthright, direct, unreserved, blunt, plain-spoken, outspoken, free-spoken, downright, not afraid to call a spade a spade
    View synonyms
    1. 6.1Not concealed.
      ‘his eyes showed open admiration as they swept over her’
      • ‘Visiting divers will look at you with open admiration when you ask them which part of the wreck they would like to dive on.’
      • ‘We can see his influence in the works of Van Gogh, Cezanne and Matisse, who was open in his admiration.’
      • ‘It was open knowledge that the City had lost confidence in the police chief.’
      • ‘He watched in open admiration as she downed the whole lot in several large gulps.’
      • ‘To push on with the reclamation shows open disregard for these international agreements.’
      • ‘The open admiration in her eyes was hard to bear, but deflating it was even harder.’
      • ‘She interpreted the least amount of kindness from a man as an open declaration of love.’
      • ‘The first part of this argument is an open attack on the freedom of opinion.’
      overt, obvious, patent, manifest, palpable, conspicuous, plain, undisguised, unconcealed, unhidden, clear, noticeable, visible, apparent, evident
      View synonyms
    2. 6.2[attributive](of conflict) fully developed and unconcealed.
      ‘the dispute erupted into open war’
      • ‘In 1244 a golden opportunity appeared when open war broke out between Damascus and Egypt.’
      • ‘Long-handled battle-axes might be used instead of swords, particularly in open combat.’
      • ‘The tensions erupted into open clashes between the two sides last month, leaving two people dead.’
      • ‘Despite the open warfare, officials insist that tourists will be safe.’
      • ‘There had been times of truce but again and again the hostilities became open war once more.’
      • ‘Recent national events helped turn the simmering discord into open conflict.’
      • ‘The massacre of a Roman magistrate and his staff signalled open warfare.’
      • ‘As the stakes rise, open war between these nuclear powers becomes possible.’
      • ‘The issue has led to an open conflict with the leader of the Socialist Party.’
      • ‘The Romans were the masters of open battle.’
      • ‘Many people fear the longer the issue remains unresolved, the greater the possibility of open conflict.’
      • ‘The history of the Virginia colonies is set against a backdrop of the descent into open conflict with Spain.’
      • ‘It is now dawning on her that low intensity warfare is perhaps more damaging than an open war.’
      • ‘At the same time, they carefully avoided an open confrontation with their far more powerful rival.’
      • ‘Now, the open clash of arms would be replaced by a fierce contest of wills and ideas.’
      • ‘Now, however, there is growing agreement that an open conflict will prove inevitable.’
      • ‘Unlike conventional warfare, they are not seeking to take territory or defeat us in open battle.’
      • ‘The difference this time, however, is that the talk is not of open war but of destabilisation.’
      • ‘There is now acknowledged open warfare between the prime minister and the chancellor.’
      • ‘With most of Scotland liberated, they were prepared for an open battle with an English army.’
    3. 6.3Welcoming public discussion, criticism, and enquiry.
      ‘the party's commitment to open government’
      • ‘This was far from the freedom of speech and open democratic discussion I'd imagined.’
      • ‘The answer may lie in a more open approach with both sides being encouraged to submit observations.’
      • ‘New Zealand's Parliament is the most accessible and open in the developed world.’
      • ‘Free and open debate on the Senate floor ensures citizens have a say in their government.’
      • ‘Are there any thoughts on the need for a free and open media?’
      • ‘An open and free media can play an important role in the fight against poverty.’
      • ‘The day that we live in a truly open and free society will be the day that truth is widely known to us all.’
      • ‘That's the least we can ask for in an open, free, democratic society.’
      • ‘If you can encourage your MP to support the resolution then we can at last have an open debate on the matter.’
      • ‘This is a serious problem, for the media is incredibly vital to a free, open, and democratic society.’
      public, general, unrestricted, non-exclusive, accessible to everyone, non-restrictive
      View synonyms
    4. 6.4(of a game or style of play) characterized by action which is spread out over the field.
      ‘both sides played fast, open rugby to produce a high-scoring game’
      • ‘The second half was a more more fluid and open passage of play.’
      • ‘His presence in midfield has proved the catalyst for Saints' exciting open style of play.’
      • ‘Try scoring chances had been few, despite the efforts of both sides to play an open game.’
      • ‘They made great inroads which allowed our backs the room to play some open football.’
      • ‘I like the way they play by heart, the open polo they play, and the way they ride on horseback.’
      • ‘The game then settled down into an engrossing encounter with some excellent passages of open play.’
      • ‘Improved playing surfaces this season have helped the Sharks, a side who like to play fast, open rugby.’
      • ‘The game was a cracker with some fantastic open football and long range scoring from both sides.’
      • ‘It's so much easier to score goals employing a more open style of play.’
      • ‘Both teams made light of atrocious conditions and tried to play open rugby.’
      • ‘Nottingham's open style then paid dividends when their hooker crossed for the first try of the game.’
      • ‘I'd like to see France beat them because they play a more open game.’
      • ‘With both teams willing to play fast open rugby, spectators were treated to a great game.’
      • ‘They played a very open and expansive game with all the players looking to get involved.’
      • ‘Coming into this game, Charlestown's open style of football was the talk of the county.’
      • ‘It was end-to-end, open football and there were a lot of great opportunities in the match.’
      • ‘Both sides play a similar open style of rugby which should produce a fine spectacle.’
      • ‘The two teams played an animated game of open hockey, creating good chances at both ends.’
      • ‘Rugby League is a fast, aggressive, open game.’
      • ‘What I really like about your football is that the games are very open and the teams are very strong and team play is very united.’
  • 7(of a matter or decision) not finally settled; still admitting of debate.

    ‘students' choice of degree can be kept open until the second year’
    • ‘It has not got to the point of an election, although perhaps that argument is open.’
    • ‘Quite how much you'll learn from it is open for debate, but it's an interesting way of preparing yourself for Easter.’
    • ‘Whether or not we blame individual managers or individuals I think is open for debate.’
    • ‘I cannot say if it is necessarily an amendment, but the two matters were open.’
    • ‘Just how much of a geo-political improvement any alternatives would be is open for debate.’
    unresolved, not yet settled, yet to be settled, undecided, unsettled, up in the air
    View synonyms
    1. 7.1(of the mind) accessible to new ideas.
      ‘I'm keeping an open mind about my future’
      • ‘You should keep an open mind while reading any book and adopting any style from these books.’
      • ‘I think the biggest thing I have learned is to always keep an open mind and always look for a new approach.’
      • ‘The more you understand why something has turned out the way it has, the more you can empathise and think with an open mind.’
      • ‘Those who have learnt to approach art with an open mind know that it's rewarding.’
      • ‘I'm just going to go in there with an open mind and try to handle it as appropriately as I can.’
      • ‘Keep an open mind when it comes to exercise and don't be afraid of change.’
      • ‘No one ever said it was going to be easy but with an open mind anything is possible.’
      • ‘They have said that they are still keeping an open mind and would not be drawn on whether it is now a murder or missing person inquiry.’
      • ‘It is about having an open mind, about finding potential solutions.’
      • ‘You want people to go in with an open mind and just enjoy what they see.’
      • ‘Be patient with the people who matter most, and listen to their ideas with an open mind.’
      • ‘At this stage we have an open mind on all the options - that is what the consultation is about.’
      • ‘We are keeping an open mind on what other criminal activities he may have been involved in.’
      • ‘I'd never heard of the guy before, so I approached the movie with an open mind.’
      • ‘There are no qualifications needed other than an open mind and a willingness to listen.’
      • ‘Wander the streets and markets alone, with an open mind, friendly face and polite gestures.’
      • ‘I always come into these things with an open mind, but they need to be justified.’
      • ‘If you go with an open mind and accept it for what it is you can't fail to have a good time.’
      • ‘You have to show yourselves as people with open minds, receptive to the ideas of independent voices in the boardroom.’
      • ‘My father is extremely well read and from him I've learned the value of an open mind.’
      impartial, unbiased, unprejudiced, objective, disinterested, uncommitted, non-partisan, non-discriminatory, neutral, dispassionate, detached
      View synonyms
    2. 7.2Receptive to.
      ‘the union was open to suggestions for improvements’
      • ‘If the property is still available in a month, by then the vendor is likely to be more anxious and more open to offers.’
      • ‘The inquiry is willing to consider other issues and is open to suggestion from readers.’
      • ‘But we need to try new things and be open to wider possibilities of involving more people.’
      • ‘Albert appears, at least on the surface, to be far more open to ideas and possibilities.’
      • ‘She was open to suggestion on how her album should sound.’
      • ‘Albert is quick to point out that he is open to more writer-in-residence positions.’
      • ‘It is important not to take a narrow view on how we work at the track, but to be open to new suggestions.’
      • ‘Nightclubs have realized that crowds are more open to new sounds than most bookers think.’
      • ‘I can't even begin to remember the last time I was so spontaneous and open to suggestion.’
      • ‘She told the audience a lot could be done with the site to the good of the village and the group was open to suggestions.’
      • ‘No group has the total answer and we would certainly be open to any ideas, suggestions and views.’
      • ‘Naturally, we are open to further suggestions to raise the profile of the camera vehicles.’
      • ‘It suggests you are open to constructive criticism and willing to learn from the experience of others.’
      • ‘He has been at pains to make it clear to staff that he is open to suggestions on ways to improve their work.’
      • ‘Be open to suggestions and invitations from people you meet along the way.’
      • ‘Banks respect them and tend to be open to their suggestions.’
      • ‘We are open to suggestions but at this time we would have to study it further.’
      receptive, amenable, disposed to listen, ready to listen, willing to listen, responsive
      View synonyms
    3. 7.3Admitting of; making possible.
      ‘the message is open to different interpretations’
      • ‘Why that should be remains open to a number of different interpretations.’
      • ‘Furthermore, what befalls the body itself may be open to different interpretations.’
      • ‘However, tolerance is a complex and even contentious concept open to several interpretations.’
      • ‘It has been argued, for example, that the decision is open to two possible interpretations.’
      • ‘You tell a story, but leave it open to personal interpretation.’
      • ‘This is so because many of the laws of the game are open to different interpretations by the referee.’
      capable of, admitting of, receptive of, open to, responsive to
      View synonyms
  • 8Phonetics
    (of a vowel) produced with a relatively wide opening of the mouth and the tongue kept low.

    • ‘Then comes the balm of the refrain-couplet with the open vowel sounds in ‘Golden lads, and Gz'rles all.’’
    • ‘The t sounds of ‘coat’ and ‘destitute’ crack sharply amidst the long open vowels and wash of m's and w's.’
    • ‘A closing diphthong ends closer than it begins, while an opening diphthong ends more open than it begins.’
    • ‘Such emphasis on the quality of the open vowels, achieved by years of assiduous practice, was also at the heart of Gregorian chant.’
    • ‘Cockneys have short and open vowels, whereas the Cornish have longer vowels and speak fairly slowly.’
    1. 8.1(of a syllable) ending in a vowel.
      • ‘There is a preference among many world languages for open syllables.’
      • ‘The system consisted mainly of symbols representing open syllables.’
      • ‘All Japanese syllables are open.’
      • ‘In comparison, the long vowels, which can occur in open syllables, show a higher degree of phonological autonomy.’
      • ‘The first syllable is open, has a long vowel, and is not accented.’
  • 9Music
    (of a string) allowed to vibrate along its whole length.

    • ‘Bad technique can cause some players difficulty in playing the bass notes unless it is on an open string.’
    • ‘I am looking for good open string licks in the key of E.’
    • ‘You can learn how to use an open string to give a reference tone when playing the fiddle.’
    1. 9.1(of a pipe) unstopped at each end.
      • ‘There was an open pipe between the two adjoining properties.’
      • ‘Water ran in and out via open pipes and troughs.’
      • ‘Firstly, he unscrews the cap from the toothpaste and lays the open tube to the right of the basin.’
      • ‘If there is a drop outlet or an open gutter at the other end of the run, install an end cap there, too.’
    2. 9.2(of a note) sounded from an open string or pipe.
      • ‘He provides a great deal of hard information about transposing brass instruments, such as hand horns crooked in different keys to give a maximum of open notes.’
      • ‘When an open note is followed by a fretted note on the same string, it is damped when the fretted note is formed.’
      • ‘Alex felt her guitar continuously play the open notes.’
  • 10(of an electric circuit) having a break in the conducting path.

    • ‘This is an example of an open circuit, a gap in the loop preventing charge carriers from moving, thus preventing current.’
    • ‘A fingerprint is disposed to close the open circuit by making contact and thereby serving as a ‘temporary’ back electrode.’
    • ‘In an open circuit, the free charges would simply remain on the electrodes and a voltage could be measured.’
    • ‘No or low output voltage means the transformer winding has open or shorted winding.’


  • 1Move (a door or window) so as to leave a space allowing access and vision.

    ‘she opened the door and went in’
    [no object, in imperative] ‘‘Open up!’ he said’
    • ‘Finally he relented and led her to the cell, opening the door and allowing her to enter.’
    • ‘Some had been seen to calmly walk into houses, open fridge doors, then remove the assorted goodies hidden within.’
    • ‘He stepped forward and opened the door, allowing Jane to pass through into the building.’
    • ‘After repeated attempts the officers were able to smash a window and open the car door.’
    • ‘It's very important to ventilate: open bedroom windows so it's not fuggy from the night before.’
    • ‘By opening windows, doors, and vents on the lower floors you increase the ventilation in your house.’
    • ‘He opened the door to allow one person in, and went back with them to help them retrieve their luggage.’
    • ‘She opened his door, moving quietly as she stepped over a teddy bear on the floor.’
    • ‘A number of prisoners overpowered the officer and opened the door that allowed them onto the courtyard.’
    • ‘We simply opened the doors and windows so the coastal breeze cooled the building at night.’
    • ‘Staff said they were not allowed to open doors despite the blazing sunshine outside.’
    • ‘Residents had reported two youths acting suspiciously in the area and trying to open doors and windows.’
    • ‘He walked into his room and shut the door and opened the window as wide as it went.’
    • ‘Always open bedroom windows at least once a day.’
    • ‘She turned her stereo on high, locked the door, and opened the window, letting the city noises in.’
    • ‘‘The gates can only be opened from the inside,’ he muttered.’
    • ‘Olivia opens the door moving aside so I can see into the room.’
    • ‘She ran out of the bathroom into her room, locked the door, and opened the window.’
    • ‘Moments later, Rob opened the door and allowed the others back into the room.’
    • ‘Neighbours wrote that the smell gets so bad they cannot open their windows and doors.’
    unfasten, unlatch, unlock, unbolt, unbar
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1[no object](of a door or window) be moved to leave a space allowing access.
      ‘the door opened and a man came out’
      • ‘She got the elevator moving and was still upset at Noah when the doors opened before their floor.’
      • ‘The rear window even opens independently of the boot.’
      • ‘When he heard the door open he moved slightly and Emily rose rubbing her sleepy eyes.’
      • ‘The door opened, allowing many of the gathered ceremonial officers to glance at the guest.’
      • ‘The tailgate window opens separately if you press an exterior switch.’
      • ‘My window suddenly opened quickly, knocking me back to the ground in surprise.’
      • ‘After a couple of seconds the door opened and a man's face appeared behind the door.’
      • ‘A small window in the door opened abruptly and a face with an annoyed expression appeared.’
      • ‘The door opened and I entered the dark corridor, closing the door behind me.’
      • ‘It is understood both children were on the rear seat of the coach when the door opened, allowing them to fall out.’
      • ‘There was this figure peering out of the front left window as the door opened.’
      • ‘He heard a flush and the click of the bathroom door opening.’
      • ‘I assume all doors in public places open outwards, for fire safety reasons.’
      • ‘She was about to walk over to her window and balcony when the door opened and Hazel walked in.’
      • ‘A window opened and a girl around the age of eleven or twelve poked her head out the window.’
      • ‘After a minute, the door opened, and a pretty face popped out of the door.’
      • ‘There was a low click and the gate slowly opened with a horrible squeaking sound.’
      • ‘The gates slowly opened with a loud creak.’
      • ‘The door opened with a slight creak and I allowed myself into his room.’
      • ‘The door opens and he is escorted out into the room next door.’
    2. 1.2Undo or remove the lid, cover, or fastening of (a container, package, letter, etc.) to get access to the contents.
      ‘he opened a bottle inexpertly, spilling some of the wine’
      ‘can we open the presents now?’
      • ‘He opens the envelope and removes a yellow card and a blue one.’
      • ‘Something tells me the shoplifters have no problem opening these packages.’
      • ‘The people in charge of the post room called the police, who proceeded to gingerly open the package.’
      • ‘When you open a can of food but don't use it all, empty the rest of the contents into another container and put it in the fridge.’
      • ‘He opened the box and removed five hundred dollars in cash and a handful of fake passports.’
      • ‘I take numerous pills and every container I open comes with a pamphlet warning of possible side effects.’
      • ‘I couldn't resist, I had to open one of the containers to see for myself.’
      • ‘When we opened the letter, it said I was selected as a member of the National Junior Team!’
      • ‘We opened a bottle of champagne to celebrate.’
      • ‘We will be able to gauge the degree of caution that needs to be exercised when each container is opened.’
      • ‘After a while she was cajoled into opening the letter.’
      • ‘Sitting down beside me he carefully opened the box and removed a small brown brick.’
      • ‘Then the envelope was opened to reveal the actual chosen card.’
      • ‘He calmly reached into his pocket with his free hand and removed a bottle of pills, which he opened.’
      • ‘He opened a container on his counter and took out some fat buttermilk biscuits.’
      • ‘She must have struggled to open the container for the pills.’
      • ‘Arriving at the till the woman asked me to open my container so she could check what was inside it.’
      • ‘He opened a can of beer and stretched out on the floor.’
      • ‘She then opened the container and one by one removed the six items and placed them on the counter.’
      • ‘Madison opens the unsealed envelope and removes the single sheet of paper inside.’
      unwrap, undo, untie, unseal
      uncork, broach
      View synonyms
    3. 1.3Part the lips or lids of (one's mouth or eye)
      ‘she opened her mouth to argue’
      • ‘There is nothing random or left to chance when an ambassador opens his or her mouth.’
      • ‘A student knows whether they like the professor or not before that professor even opens his or her mouth on the first day of class.’
      • ‘He is doing much better after surgery and opened his eyes for the first time on Sunday.’
      • ‘What is the first thing you see when you open your eyes in the morning?’
      • ‘He opened his mouth in glee and looked up, hoping to drink the rain water.’
      • ‘I had barely opened my mouth to hurl expletives before he said something else.’
      • ‘He opened his eyes and saw the burglar, who was about 5ft 6in and wearing a hooded top.’
      • ‘As I opened my eyes, I saw a quite big spider disappearing over the edge of my pillow.’
      • ‘He opened his eyes when I spoke but he was not in great shape.’
      • ‘What was going through his head when he decided to open his big fat mouth and blurt out something that was so unexpected?’
      • ‘I remember wanting to scream, but I couldn't open my mouth, couldn't even open my eyes.’
      • ‘He opened his eyes, looked up, and before him stood a large rotund figure smiling down at him.’
      • ‘He opened his eyes and, having watched her for a while, he asked her what she was doing.’
      • ‘Her eyes flashed and she opened her mouth to say more, then snapped it shut, and looked away.’
      • ‘I remember opening an eye one groggy morning to notice a big black spot on the wall.’
      • ‘It was at this point that I opened my eyes, coming out of the dream and finding myself awake in my bedroom.’
      • ‘She opened her mouth, trying to speak, but no words came out.’
      • ‘I opened my eyes and the first things I looked at were my hands.’
      • ‘Before I could open my mouth to say ‘good evening’ he launched into his sales pitch.’
      • ‘You open your mouth to say something, but only one thing comes out.’
    4. 1.4[no object](of the mouth or eyes) have the lips or lids parted.
      ‘her eyes slowly opened’
      • ‘Her eyes opened slowly, and the world around her was bathed in pale shades of blue.’
      • ‘Her eyes opened slowly and she had to blink a few times to adjust her eyes to the lights that were still on around her in the room.’
      • ‘I slowly sat up as my eyes opened to sunlight that was filtering through the blinds.’
      • ‘His eyes hadn't opened at all in a couple of weeks.’
      • ‘My eyes slowly opened to see a bright fluorescent light and a ceiling like you would see in an office building.’
      • ‘Suddenly her eyes opened wide in shock.’
      • ‘Josh's eyes opened slowly, and he blinked a couple of times before he turned his gaze to me.’
      • ‘She could feel her eyes slowly opening, and all she saw was red for a moment.’
      • ‘Casey's eyes opened wide, her mouth spitting out words before she could think.’
      • ‘He still wouldn't look at her, though his eyes slowly opened to gaze back at his reflection.’
      • ‘Jessie's eyes slowly opened, but they quickly closed as a cold gust of air blew into her face.’
      • ‘In a moment, he was still again, his eyes opening slowly with tears trickling from them.’
      • ‘When it touched his eyelids, he groaned in annoyance, his eyes slowly opening.’
      • ‘Jessie's eyes slowly opened, having a hard time adjusting to the darkness around her.’
      • ‘His grip on me tightened and his eyes opened slowly, the sleepiness evident in them.’
      • ‘Her eyes slowly opened and a small smile played on her lips as she picked up her pen and began writing.’
      • ‘Then her eyes opened slowly and she tried to lift her head and look around.’
      • ‘She heard him groan in protest as his eyes slowly opened, adjusting to the light of the room.’
      • ‘Mitch coughed, as his eyes opened and he brought a fist up to cover his mouth.’
      • ‘My eyes opened slowly and I looked around, trying to figure out exactly where I was.’
    5. 1.5[no object]Come apart; lose or lack its protective covering.
      ‘old wounds opened and I bled a little bit’
      • ‘Old wounds opened as he remembered the sting of refused sanctuaries and broken friendships.’
      • ‘A wound had opened that could not heal, at least, not one that she could do anything about.’
      • ‘But many more wounds will be opened before the government can stabilise this deeply tortured nation.’
      • ‘His side had not recovered from the night in the palace, and the wound had opened again, blood pouring out.’
      • ‘Old wounds were opening again and I was finding it impossible to heal them.’
      • ‘He opened all the wounds all over again because I realized I never got over my first love.’
    6. 1.6[no object](of a room, door, or window) give access to.
      ‘the kitchen opened into a pleasant sitting room’
      • ‘This leads into a double utility room with a patio door that opens onto a private, paved garden overlooking the coast.’
      • ‘Big doors open onto a plant-filled terrace where a jazz band plays on Saturday evenings.’
      • ‘At the back of the hall, glass-panelled double doors open onto the kitchen.’
      • ‘Stone and redbrick steps lead to arched double doors which open onto the communal hallway.’
      • ‘Members of the same household often sleep in separate dwellings, but their doors open onto a communal space where cooking and social interaction take place.’
      • ‘This room features full-length windows and patio doors opening onto a private balcony.’
      • ‘The hotel room had French doors opening onto a little balcony that overlooked a regular street.’
      • ‘This bright room has a large bay window with double doors opening onto a patio.’
      • ‘The flat has a large living/dining room with doors opening onto the garden.’
      • ‘Go to the door that opens onto the parking lot and the voting room is on the right.’
      • ‘The downstairs cellar room had a door that opened onto the beach.’
      • ‘All the rooms at this level have French doors opening onto a huge terracotta patio that can hold up to 300 people.’
      • ‘From the hall, a set of glass doors open onto to the main reception rooms.’
      • ‘Even the children's rooms, located directly above the dining room and adjacent kitchen, have doors, not windows, that open onto French balconies.’
      • ‘Corner doors open onto the main meeting room.’
      • ‘Sliding doors from the living room open onto a balcony.’
      • ‘To the left, double doors open onto a reception room with a bay window at the front.’
      • ‘The front door opens onto the living room, which has an open fireplace and timber flooring.’
      • ‘A low semicircular wrought iron door opens onto a long and narrow room.’
      • ‘The front door opens onto a central passage and four rooms of nearly equal size.’
      give access, give on to, lead, be connected, communicate with
      View synonyms
    7. 1.7Cause evacuation of (the bowels).
      • ‘These pains are typically sharp and knife-like due to the fissure opening up each time your bowels are opened.’
      • ‘The earliest symptom is often bleeding of fresh, red blood from the anal passage when the bowels are opened.’
      • ‘The pain may be mild or severe, and may be made either better or worse by opening the bowels, passing wind or eating.’
      • ‘It can cause sharp pain, especially when opening the bowels.’
  • 2Unfold or be unfolded; spread out.

    [with object] ‘the eagle opened its wings and circled up into the air’
    ‘the tail looks like a fan when it is opened out fully’
    [no object] ‘the flowers only open during bright weather’
    • ‘It grows to 150 cm and opens its clear white blooms at the same time as forsythia.’
    • ‘The Organ Pipe cactus opens its blossoms only during the cooler evening hours.’
    • ‘It looks like a flower that opens all of it's petals at once.’
    • ‘The bird opened its wings and began flapping furiously.’
    • ‘Georgina opened her fan and started flapping it angrily in front of herself.’
    spread out, unfold, unfurl, unroll, straighten out
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1[with object]Part the covers of (a book or file) to read it.
      ‘she opened her book at the prologue’
      • ‘Alex looked at the blank cover for a while before opening the book and smiling.’
      • ‘I flipped open my Algebra book and glanced at the chapter we were supposed to read and do the exercises from.’
      • ‘The pupils were crushed together and had barely enough space to open a book in front of them.’
      • ‘She opens the book at a random page and starts reading aloud.’
      • ‘She opened the file and read through a bit of it.’
      • ‘I opened my Economics book to study for a test I had the next day, but it was futile.’
      • ‘He shifts his specs down his nose, opens his book and reads in an exaggerated manner.’
      • ‘Rodrigo opens a newspaper, looking for dancers' advertisements.’
      • ‘As I opened my book and was about to start reading some one decides to start talking to me.’
      • ‘Mrs. Marchmill opened one of the books, and saw the owner's name written on the title-page.’
      • ‘I walked over to the living room and sat on the chair, opening my book again and reading.’
      • ‘Before I opened the book, I had a good indication about what to expect after looking at the front cover.’
      • ‘I opened the book at a random page and read the first quote that my eyes looked upon.’
      • ‘There are 107 illustrations, the print is good, and the book can be opened flat without the spine creasing.’
      • ‘But you can't open a paper these days without seeing stories about the uselessness of boys.’
      • ‘I opened the book and looked at the handwriting on the first page.’
      • ‘The break also allowed me time to read a book I purchased some months age but did not open.’
      • ‘She opens the journal with her father's name on it.’
      • ‘You turn the book over, open the cover, go to the first page and begin again.’
      • ‘Walking into a book shop, Carl opens a volume of Pride and Prejudice, to find it contains hundreds of pages of the first sentence, repeated over and over.’
    2. 2.2[no object]Become wider.
      ‘the path opened out into a glade’
      • ‘Eventually, after a particularly tortuous twist, the path opened out.’
      • ‘The path opened out onto a small field, with a thick, dark forest beyond it that was always a good hiding place.’
      • ‘Once you are through the sand dunes, another smaller bay opens out.’
      • ‘From the Cardrona hotel the valley opens out and willows grow beside the little Cardrona River.’
      • ‘Just when you think you've gone the wrong way, the sea becomes visible ahead and the path opens out on to a glorious pebbled beach.’
      • ‘After a little way the road opens out and there's a grass verge you can walk on.’
      • ‘The river starts life in the magnificent hills of Glen Affric, before opening out into a wide and sparkling salmon stream.’
      • ‘After half a mile of climbing, the path levelled and the landscape opened out, there were drifts a couple of feet deep at gaps and gateways.’
      • ‘After that time the sea looms into view as the river opens out.’
      • ‘A low exit down through the hole soon enlarges from flat-out to hands and knees and opens out into The Canyon.’
      • ‘Every now and then the path opens out to another viewing point accessible by road, and the crowds return.’
      • ‘For the last and lovely couple of miles, the valley opens out and the flow is wide and the scene has an almost Scottish look.’
      broaden, become wider, make wider, open up, open out, spread, expand, extend, enlarge, stretch
      View synonyms
    3. 2.3[no object, with adverbial](of a prospect) extend into view.
      ‘stop to marvel at the views that open out below’
      • ‘Then, at Goose How, the views open towards Kentmere and the Horseshoe of hills beyond.’
      • ‘Then, as the highway approaches Three Rivers, the view opens to encompass the snow-covered Sierra.’
      • ‘At Cypress Hills Interprovincial Park, hike a challenging trail to a viewpoint where the prairie opens before you with a great view.’
      • ‘After two hours through narrow mountain roads, hangover complaints, and a final long curve to the west, South Park opens out in front of us like a book.’
      • ‘Then the vast sandy expanse of Mason's Bay opens out ahead.’
      • ‘As I climb higher, a woodland panorama opens up below me.’
      • ‘As the road bends left again the spread of the Kentmere Horseshoe opens out ahead.’
      • ‘As a new dawn breaks, Western Europe opens out in front of me.’
      • ‘On one side is a sheer drop and on the other is a slope with a view that starts in the clouds but opens up to reveal the entire Alpine Valley, including the Matterhorn.’
      • ‘Gradually Rosedale opened to view and we dipped into North Dale which is hidden from the fray but spacious.’
      • ‘It is only at the last minute that the vista opens out.’
    4. 2.4Nautical [with object]Achieve a clear view of (a place) by sailing past a headland or other obstruction.
      ‘we shall open Torbay shortly’
      • ‘As soon as we opened the head-land to the westward of us, a sudden squall took the boat.’
      • ‘At length we opened the Bay of New York.’
  • 3Make or become formally ready for customers, visitors, or business.

    [with object] ‘she raised $731 by opening her home and selling coffee and tea’
    [no object] ‘the shops didn't open until 10’
    • ‘The few city centre shopkeepers that had bothered to open waited forlornly for customers.’
    • ‘The bars open here at 8am, and that's roughly when the drinking starts.’
    • ‘Smithfield market opened at midnight instead of 6am to cope with the demand for beef.’
    • ‘The market opens 9am to 5pm Monday to Saturday with half day closing on Wednesdays.’
    • ‘More than 60 people were waiting to buy their tickets when the box office opened at 8am.’
    • ‘The Mayor Street store opens at 8am and closes after 6.30 pm.’
    • ‘We found a restaurant and ate breakfast and then walked the mall until it opened.’
    • ‘The farm shop I use has a queue every day before it opens.’
    • ‘The market opens at about 10 pm each and every Saturday.’
    • ‘The revamped store officially opened on Monday.’
    • ‘Staff at the William Hill betting shop in London's Earls Court wore pyjamas as they opened for business at 7am.’
    • ‘The Credit Union will now open at 8pm on Friday evenings instead of 7pm.’
    1. 3.1[with object]Ceremonially declare (a building, road, etc.) to be completed and ready for use.
      ‘the Queen opened the power plant on 17 October 1956’
      • ‘He then officially opened a new Parish Office, which is located in the former mortuary of the Church.’
      • ‘The formal business of officially opening the premises is then expected to take place.’
      • ‘The Duke also spoke to gym members before he opened the building in front of local dignitaries and pool users.’
      • ‘This afternoon the Queen will open the new Wellcome Wing of the Science Museum in London.’
      • ‘Pocklington Canal was opened in 1818 and was a vital transport link for the market town.’
      • ‘The Margaret Pyke Centre was opened by the Duke of Edinburgh in November 1969.’
      • ‘A new dock built to refit Britain's Trident submarines has been officially opened at Devonport.’
      • ‘The refurbished Community Centre was formally opened on Sunday afternoon.’
      • ‘On the same day in 1932 the New Shakespeare Memorial Theatre was opened by the Prince of Wales.’
      • ‘It is understood that the flyover is set to be formally opened later this week, possibly by a Government Minister.’
      • ‘The Queen opened the new City Hall this morning on the South Bank.’
      • ‘Princess Anne proved to be a popular visitor when she opened the new Wharfedale Hospital yesterday.’
      • ‘The new hospital will be officially opened, possibly by the Princess Royal herself, in the summer.’
      • ‘The eight storey library next to the National Museum was opened in 1967.’
      • ‘In 1884 the State Opera House was opened in Budapest with its own ballet company attached.’
      • ‘The East Lancashire Railway was opened in 1846 to link Manchester with Bury and Rossendale.’
      • ‘It was designed by Sir Edwin Cooper and was formally opened by King George V and Queen Mary in 1924.’
      • ‘Milltown will have it's new Community Centre opened by the President.’
      • ‘It is hoped that the visitor centre will be opened by the Queen before the Commonwealth Games.’
      • ‘In 1987 he opened the new Manx Pathology Laboratory named after himself.’
    2. 3.2[with object]Make possible access to or passage through.
      ‘the President announced that his government would open the border’
      • ‘The US Department of Agriculture said Wednesday the border could be opened in March.’
      • ‘Each new piece of technology opens more avenues to explore.’
      • ‘The acquisition opens up new avenues when it comes to player recruitment.’
      • ‘We're going to have nothing but trouble if the border is opened.’
      • ‘This development is pushing boundaries and opening up new avenues for exploration.’
      • ‘So while borders are being opened to indiscriminate trade, small producers are being regulated out of existence.’
      • ‘He believed firmly that the future growth of the French economy depended on opening its frontiers and increasing international trade.’
      • ‘And on the way back, the bridge opened to let a sailing boat through.’
      • ‘These stones can be viewed in the archeological tunnels that have been opened in the past few years.’
      • ‘The prospect of further rises in interest rates on top of this week's increase opens the way to speculation about how much we will be paying by the end of this year.’
      • ‘The decision opens the previously protected areas to development.’
  • 4Formally establish or begin (a new business, movement, or enterprise)

    ‘she began to teach and opened her own school’
    ‘we opened up a branch in Madrid’
    • ‘He was apprenticed to Robert Gillow of Lancaster, then opened a business in London about 1760.’
    • ‘The good news is that an ambitious young chef has opened a rather upmarket restaurant.’
    • ‘He lost his job in advertising last year and decided to try opening a small business.’
    • ‘He opened his own medical clinic in Brisbane and built his first MGB racing car under the house.’
    • ‘The only credentials they had to open a business were their self-taught skills.’
    • ‘It opened its first manufacturing plant in 1974, before which its shoes had been made in Japan.’
    • ‘After he retired from the tailoring business in 1989 he opened the Casa Belmondo restaurant in Royton.’
    • ‘When two young Glaswegian girls open a bright yellow café in the middle of York, you know it has to be something special.’
    • ‘The programmes helped them open boutiques or join garment companies as fashion designers.’
    • ‘By 1919 the postmaster had spread his wings and opened a general store on the Beach Rd corner.’
    • ‘In 1974 he opened his own business employing 12 people and bought a studio in Covent Garden.’
    • ‘I would hope, over the coming years, to open a further five or six units around Ireland.’
    • ‘People asked her if she was crazy, opening a business with the economy being the way it was.’
    • ‘There are a number of things that a new business owner should plan for and think about before opening the business.’
    • ‘Annan opened the conference and pleaded for more money to help with spread of the disease.’
    • ‘He was majoring in business and planned on opening his own business of some sort when he finished university.’
    • ‘The business was opened about four years ago by husband and wife team Chris and Lorraine Robinson.’
    • ‘Expanding your business can mean opening another restaurant across town.’
    • ‘More privatization has been allowed, and people have begun to open stores and businesses.’
    • ‘The possibilities of opening a London office are also being explored.’
    • ‘He was appointed to the newly created post of student medical officer when the University of Keele was opened in 1954.’
    • ‘The two building firms behind the venture are also in talks with a restaurant operator as to opening a business on the ground floor of the building.’
    • ‘John, her husband, joined her in 1957, and they expanded the practice, opening a further surgery in Hayley Green.’
    • ‘My wife had opened a home business wherein she watched children.’
    1. 4.1[no object](of an enterprise, meeting, or event) begin or be formally established.
      ‘two new restaurants open this week’
      • ‘A business club which opened in Bradford more than 60 years ago has been forced to shut.’
      • ‘On a similar note, Glasgow has a brand new music venue opening.’
      • ‘The roast chicken pie has been most popular seller since the Glasgow shop opened for business a week ago.’
      • ‘In the nine years since his business opened, O'Malley says his revenues have increased about 30 percent each year.’
      • ‘It's always good to see new businesses opening in Baltinglass, especially ones that provide a new range of services.’
      • ‘The new venture opens with a variety of menus.’
      • ‘The new restaurant opened in December.’
      • ‘One of the companies involved is MessageCare, a small Sydney business that opened in March.’
      • ‘Shell's refinery opened for business in 1984, and the company has been a part of the town ever since.’
      • ‘The Stockport showroom opened for business earlier this month and hopes to sell both new and pre-owned cars.’
      • ‘The company was one of Scotland's first inward investors, opening for business in Newhouse in 1948.’
      • ‘Despite election fever, there is time for other things and two remarkable new enterprises have just opened in New York.’
      • ‘We have had over three million visitors since we first opened and are adding to that all the time.’
      • ‘The shop has been hugely popular since it first opened, with customers flocking in to try the different flavoured pasties on offer.’
      • ‘The church-led project opened in August last year but closed in February when it failed to attract enough visitors.’
      start trading, open for business, be ready for customers, be ready for visitors, admit customers, begin business, set up shop, put up one's plate
      begin, start, initiate, set in motion, launch, get going, get under way, get the ball rolling, set the ball rolling, start the ball rolling, get off the ground
      View synonyms
    2. 4.2Take the action required to begin using.
      ‘they have the £10 necessary to open a savings account’
      ‘click twice to open a file for the software selected’
      • ‘Decide how much of your money you can afford to tie up and how much you might need to access, and then open accounts that meet both needs.’
      • ‘It might just be worth opening an account to trade in these last couple of weeks.’
      • ‘After your friend receives the file, a password is required to open and execute the file.’
      • ‘If you do not have a telephone betting account you will be required to open one in order to collect your prize.’
      • ‘In Germany it is possible to buy small gold bars and coins and open gold accounts in bank branches.’
      • ‘Add any new address that you want to keep receiving to the new rule by opening Rules Wizard and clicking Modify.’
      • ‘Title bars have menus which are opened with right mouse clicks in the title area.’
      • ‘Many banks offer a savings account paying a competitive rate of interest on regular savings, provided the customer also opens a specific current account with the bank.’
    3. 4.3[no object](of a piece of writing or music) begin.
      ‘the chapter opens with a discussion of Anglo-Irish relations’
      • ‘Each chapter opens with a section on general community ecology.’
      • ‘The piece opens with a yearning, lyrical duet.’
      • ‘Chapter one opens by speaking to all readers about nurses in the twenty-first century.’
      • ‘Every chapter opens with a beautiful poem about Mary written by the author.’
      • ‘Chapter 33 opens with the harvesting of the barley and the gathering of the season's apples and nuts.’
      • ‘Every chapter opens with the colorful evocation of a particular scene, with plenty of contemporary detail to flesh out the text.’
      • ‘This story opens with him writing, but he is soon interrupted by a call to supply the book for an opera.’
      • ‘Part II opens with a chapter on the relationship between writing and social organization.’
      • ‘As Chapter III opens, Gulliver and his captors have become great friends.’
      • ‘The album opens with three pieces consisting of nothing more than voice and guitar.’
      • ‘The piece opened with an ensemble dance on a sloping lawn at the park's south end.’
      • ‘Each chapter opens with an overview in the form of a bulleted list of paragraphs, and each concludes with a literature cited section.’
      • ‘The great Broadway show The Music Man opens with the musical number ‘You Gotta Know the Territory!’’
      • ‘The first chapter opens with the collapse of Nero's regime and his subsequent suicide.’
      • ‘The astonishing first chapter opens in 1950.’
      • ‘The Chapter opens with a discussion of the general principles governing a bank's liability.’
      • ‘Each chapter opens with a ‘primer’ that familiarizes the reader with the topics covered in the upcoming chapter.’
      • ‘Told in short, often barely scene-long chapters, it opens with a young man's death leap into the sea.’
      • ‘The piece opens with a solo tenor singing to a relatively straightforward piano accompaniment.’
      • ‘The piece opens with Sal attempting to buy a peach.’
    4. 4.4[no object](of a process) start to develop.
      ‘a new and dramatic phase was opening up’
      • ‘A great opportunity is opening up before the environmental movement.’
      • ‘A completely new political and social phase is opening up in Italy.’
      • ‘Today a new political era is opening up.’
      • ‘A struggle for the re-division of the world has opened up and this process dominates politics.’
    5. 4.5(of a counsel in a law court) make a preliminary statement in (a case) before calling witnesses.
      ‘Bernard had opened the case’
      [no object] ‘Comyn opened for the plaintiff’
      • ‘Certainly there are a number of States where it is the practice for the defence to open their case.’
      • ‘Miss Freeborn opened her case by saying it was necessary further to interview Ms U and the Appellant.’
      • ‘It cannot realistically be suggested that counsel's error in opening the case had any influence upon the course of the trial.’
      • ‘Mr McKendrick then opened the defence case and the panel heard evidence from the defendant himself and from his mother.’
      • ‘She made this remark while opening her case to the jury.’
    6. 4.6Cricket
      another term for open the batting below
      • ‘I would like to see a batting order of Sehwag and Gilchrist opening, with Ponting, Lara and Tendulkar making up the middle-order for the team.’
      • ‘I remember him hooking Freddie Trueman for six when he opened for Australia.’
      • ‘Who should open for the Indian cricket team?’
    7. 4.7Bridge Make (the first bid) in the auction.
      ‘West opened 2NT’
      [no object] ‘do not open with fewer than twelve points’
      • ‘I opened one heart, and the opponents messed up the ensuing auction and defence.’
      • ‘We opened spades, and they bid clubs.’
      • ‘I don't want to tell you to open at the one level every time you have four points and your partner can't open.’
  • 5Make available or more widely known.

    ‘new technologies open up thousands of different opportunities’
    • ‘It began opening up public sector pensions to private pension funds and made people work longer for worse pensions.’
    • ‘Don't get me wrong, I love the new possibilities for communication that the Web opens up.’
    • ‘By working together for a better future for all the communities in West Cork the new partnership opens up services to communities throughout the area.’
    • ‘By then, the women-in-ships program had begun and the aviation community was opening up more jobs to women.’
    • ‘He said the farmers need the business community to open up a market for their product.’
    • ‘The main ambition of the club is to take people from all walks of life and teach them public leadership, thus opening up a whole new avenue for its members.’
    • ‘On the other hand, the war opened up new possibilities for using military channels as a means to organize resistance.’
    • ‘This opens up many options on both the maneuver and fire support side.’
    • ‘Edward enjoyed the solitude so much that he and Marie began opening up their land to other artists.’
    • ‘Some countries are embracing change by opening up their communications industries to new players.’
    • ‘This opened up opportunities for her to speak in public and do community work.’
    • ‘This will open up a space in the unit, and we can then authorize to fill the unit.’
    • ‘The advent of pay and play public golf courses has opened up the game to many more people today and rightly so.’
    • ‘These questions have begun to open up new lines of enquiry and to revitalize old ones.’
    • ‘The improved facilities will also be opened up to the wider community outside school hours.’
    1. 5.1[no object]Become more communicative or confiding.
      ‘he was very reserved and only opened out to her slowly’
      • ‘To feel safe and secure in your relationship, you'll have to open up and communicate how you feel.’
      • ‘Grace enjoys her work with Gemma, but has a difficult time getting Jack to open up.’
      • ‘At other times he appeared to be opening up to the public.’
      • ‘How do you get a victim of bullying to open up and admit it?’
      • ‘They began to open up to me and confide all sorts of personal stories.’
    2. 5.2Make (one's mind) more receptive or sympathetic.
      ‘open your mind to what is going on around you’
      • ‘I will concede that foreign travel isn't for everyone but I'm firm in my belief that travel really opens one's mind and helps nurture a respect for the international community.’
      • ‘It's time for people to start to open their minds a little and experience.’
      • ‘All I ask for is that you open your minds a little bit, and admit that maybe your way might not be right.’
      • ‘Your students' minds will be opened to how far art and design reach into our daily lives.’
      • ‘So anyway, my point is that society, or at least part of it, seems to be opening their minds a little.’
    3. 5.3Make someone vulnerable to.
      ‘the process is going to open them to a legal threat’
      • ‘The question is, what type of risks does each course of action open us up to?’
      • ‘Never be completely honest, especially with your partner because revealing everything opens yourself up to being vulnerable.’
      • ‘Companies are very concerned that this opens them up to whole new levels of liability that, prior to the Internet, they were not going to have to worry about.’
      • ‘However, while defining your market by more than what you make gives you more opportunity, it also opens you to more competition.’
      • ‘This factor opens NATO to new criticisms that did not exist in 1997 and 1998.’
      • ‘Does this open him to charges of conspiracy to commit torture?’
      • ‘It's opened him up to all these attacks which are awkward to answer.’
      • ‘The House of Commons was opened to almost universal derision.’
      • ‘This decision would open him to attacks that he had broken his earlier pledge to adhere to the spending ceilings.’
      • ‘Arguing against minimum wage laws because they harm small businesses or lead to rising prices opens us up to just the kind of counterargument so vividly pointed out in this story.’
  • 6Break the conducting path of (an electric circuit)

    ‘the switch opens the motor circuit’
    • ‘A circuit breaker ‘trips’ its switch to open the circuit, and the circuit is reconnected by closing the switch manually.’
    • ‘If a fuse is in the supply circuit, it will do its job and blow out, opening the circuit and stopping the current flow.’
    • ‘When this disc is turned it activates a metal tongue which alternately closes and opens the electric circuit.’
    1. 6.1[no object](of an electric circuit or device) suffer a break in its conducting path.
      ‘the problem was caused when a switch opened at the substation’
      • ‘The normally closed alarm circuit will open if a fault occurs in either of the input power supplies.’
      • ‘If the demand for electrical current exceeds the safety level, a fuse opens once and must be replaced to reconnect the circuit.’
      • ‘The motor circuit will open if an over-temperature condition develops.’


  • 1[mass noun] Outdoors or in the countryside.

    ‘guests were sitting in the open on the terrace’
    • ‘She had decided not to step into the open, instead remaining where she was to consider what she had just seen.’
    • ‘Suddenly, I burst open into the open, squeaking to a halt just short of going over the edge.’
    • ‘He jammed the pistol against the man's back and dragged him away from the ship and into the open.’
    • ‘As the gun aimed down at him he leapt from behind the computer and out into the open again.’
    • ‘He stepped away from the rock, out into the open.’
    • ‘One day, he rode out into the wild open on his stallion following a glorious female voice.’
    • ‘It was hard to run, but somehow they all managed to get out of the house and into the open.’
    • ‘She began to lead the stunned girl from the hut and out into the open.’
    1. 1.1Not subject to concealment; made public.
      ‘we have never let our dislike for him come into the open’
      • ‘I'd like to use the panel to help bring that conversation more out into the open.’
      • ‘All these rumours were starting and I think Andy just wanted to get it out into the open and thought it was the right time to do so.’
      • ‘The effect of legal action is to drag the tobacco companies into the open, which is precisely where they don't want to be.’
      • ‘It was only when I started asking questions that the whole thing came out into the open.’
      • ‘The court was told that the sexual relationship came out into the open following a family argument.’
      • ‘If Britain is to be part of that process, the matter has to be brought out into the open and openly debated.’
      • ‘I think it is high time we had the debate and brought the issue into the open.’
      • ‘Alternatively, even nastier hidden stuff would be drawn out into the open.’
      • ‘The tragedy is that innocent French civilians had to pay such a high price for bringing everything into the open.’
      • ‘We have to re - examine how we talk about sex and bring it into the open for rational, mature discussion.’
      • ‘For how else are society's dark secrets to be brought out into the open?’
      • ‘Unless all of this is brought into the open, it is going to imperil the future.’
      • ‘Perhaps it came more out into the open when I went to Glasgow High School.’
      • ‘I think it did me some good to get some deeply buried thoughts and experiences out into the open.’
      • ‘They need to get these issues into the open and expose Labour's weaknesses.’
      • ‘A challenger must come into the open and secure swift support across all wings of the party against the incumbent.’
      • ‘He hated the idea of a clandestine affair and wanted to bring everything into the open.’
      • ‘The discontent that had been brewing within the Workers' Party soon came out into the open.’
      • ‘Differences between right and left are likely to spill into the open after the election.’
      • ‘It is very much in their interest to see that the affair does not come out into the open.’
  • 2A championship or competition with no restrictions on who may compete.

    ‘his victory in the 2003 Australian Open’
    • ‘The new formula will be adopted by all four Grand Slam tournaments - Wimbledon, the US, the French and the Australian Opens.’
    • ‘He went on to win a further two Wimbledon titles and also won the US Open and two Australian Opens.’
    • ‘He has already made plans to be at the Open at St Andrews in July.’
    • ‘You don't win three U.S. Opens without having some ability to handle pressure.’
    • ‘She beat elder sister Venus in the championship matches at the French and US Opens and Wimbledon last year.’
    • ‘US Opens are not that pretty to watch - or to compete in, one imagines.’
    • ‘He won the Virginia Open four times and played in two U.S. Opens.’
    • ‘The US and Australian Opens are played on various artificial hard courts.’
    • ‘Then she hit it big again in 2001, winning the Australian and French Opens and re-emerging as the top tennis player in the world.’
    • ‘He reached three more grand slam finals, including the Australian and US Opens, but never tasted victory again on the big stage.’
    • ‘He played 28 Opens, British and US, and finished sixth or better in half of them, a remarkably consistent record.’
    • ‘He would go on to win two grand-slam titles - the US and French Opens - and be a Wimbledon finalist on two occasions.’
    • ‘She had won 17 tournaments worldwide including two Grand Slam events, the 2000 Wimbledon and US Opens.’
    • ‘I knew I needed to change a lot of my golf game if I was going to be able to play in US Opens.’
    • ‘The British Amateur Open is to take place in June-July, and the US Open in August.’
    • ‘He is the only man to win six British Opens.’
    • ‘He has already decided to compete in the 2005 senior British and Welsh Opens.’
    • ‘He has already held all four major titles at once, taking the 2000 US and British Opens and PGA Championship plus the 2001 Masters.’
    • ‘The American has won the last three Australian Opens he has competed in, missing out only in 2002 while recuperating from wrist surgery.’
    • ‘But he was bothered by his performance at the Australian and US Opens, where he felt his serve wasn't accurate enough.’
  • 3An accidental break in the conducting path for an electric current.

    • ‘If an open exists in a conductor, then the portions on either side of the open will appear bright on the x-ray.’
    • ‘An open in a wire prevents the propagation of a signal past the open.’


  • be open with

    • Speak frankly to.

      ‘I had always been completely open with my mother’
      • ‘If he considered our conclusion to be in contradiction with his own view, or the public's opinion, he should have been open with us and spoken with us.’
      • ‘We had always been able to be open with each other so I didn't understand why he had closed himself up like he had.’
      • ‘Be open about everything, and you'll find your partner being open with you.’
      • ‘I have a lovely audience of a similar type all over the world and I've always been open with them.’
      • ‘At the end of the day, BAA have nothing to gain from hiding information from the public domain, which is why we have always been open with our data, in order for the information to be used in external reports and publications.’
      • ‘She was open with her parents, who tried to help her.’
      • ‘She's always been open with me about this, and I've always been supportive of her work.’
      • ‘I was always open with her, and she was open with me.’
      • ‘He told me at the end of his submissions that he has always answered letters and been open with the position.’
      • ‘And what if this parent is just an acquaintance, and not really a friend I can be open with about it all?’
  • an open book

    • A person or thing that is easy to understand or about which everything is known.

      ‘her mind was an open book to him’
      • ‘We must be an open book to one another in marriage.’
      • ‘A lot about my life has been an open book.’
      • ‘Her face was an open book to anyone who knew how to read her.’
      • ‘Paradoxically, she is an intensely private person, yet lives her life like an open book.’
      • ‘His all-business assistant kept her life very private, while Jon's life was an open book to her.’
      • ‘Why, my dear fellow, I've read you like an open book.’
      • ‘Once they find out what I do, they become an open book.’
      • ‘Only to close friends am I an open book.’
      • ‘Their personal life, it would be fair to say, is not an open book.’
      • ‘This conspiracy is, of course, an open book to God.’
  • in open court

    • In a court of law, before the judge and the public.

      ‘judgement was delivered in open court’
      • ‘As convictions and sentences are pronounced in open court, such information is in the public domain.’
      • ‘We have a case in Arkansas decided this spring of this year where a lawyer lied to a federal judge under oath in open court and was only suspended and not disbarred.’
      • ‘In such a case, the judge should state this in open court when passing sentence.’
      • ‘Here we have come to a situation where inadvertently the Crown Prosecutor has opened that aspect in open court.’
      • ‘I think there is no need to certify for counsel, as we have been in open court as the Court of Disputed Returns.’
      • ‘The attack by the judge on the integrity of the defendant in open court in front of the jury was, to my mind, wholly exceptional.’
      • ‘The order, as formalised, does not reflect the reasons of the court, the order pronounced in open court by the judges making the order, or the intent of the judges.’
      • ‘That Act does not specifically empower clerks or court administrators to attend in open court and remand or adjourn cases on the record as happened here.’
      • ‘Currently, both the Supreme Court and the High Court are able to deliver their judgments in open court or through the registrar.’
      • ‘The terms of the order were not explained to the defendant by the magistrates in open court.’
  • open the batting

    • Play as one of the pair of batsmen who begin a side's innings.

      • ‘Has anyone ever opened the batting, kept wicket and captained in the same Test?’
      • ‘‘I opened the batting, kept wicket and bowled,’ he says.’
      • ‘Rosalie Birch opens the batting at club and country but is prepared to go in at No. 6.’
      • ‘Bill Brown, who opened the batting for Australia, is the only survivor of that 1934 match.’
      • ‘Curry opened the batting and belted 75 in no time at all.’
  • open the door to

  • open the (or a) way

    • Remove an obstacle or hindrance to allow progress.

      ‘if we win then it will open the way for improved pay’
      ‘this opened the way to a career in government’
      • ‘If people ate less meat and demanded it was produced in a way that was sustainable, it would open a way for the small guys to get back in the game.’
      • ‘This study opens the way to future experiments.’
      • ‘It is the first time that the Government has indicated that the article needs to be re-examined, and opens the way towards full reform of the law.’
      • ‘Our team uses hexagonal pixels to develop much better methods of curve detection than is possible with square pixels, and this has opened the way for much quicker and more accurate shape identification.’
      • ‘Their appearance has opened a way for the small business and home users to print high quality labels with small number of copies.’
      • ‘Regulation will open the way for increasingly restrictive interventions by the state.’
  • open someone's eyes

    • Cause someone to realize or discover something.

      ‘the letter finally opened my eyes to the truth’
      • ‘He had intended to try his hand at a little matchmaking, to try and get them to open their eyes and realize that they were perfect for each other.’
      • ‘Tragically, we often fail to open our eyes and realize this country of ours is teaming with unappreciated natural beauty and diversity.’
      • ‘When he stops shooting they open their eyes and realize that the bullets didn't make it through.’
      • ‘Someone has to open our eyes and ears and help us to discover what lies beyond our own perception.’
      • ‘If you can only open your eyes, you will realize that I am addressing you not them.’
      • ‘The least we can do is to realize the nature of that machine and open our eyes.’
      • ‘The obtuse authoritarian administration has finally opened its eyes and realized that it must do something to address long-standing public rancor.’
      • ‘As they open their eyes new leaders realize many of the gurus, experts, coaches, academics, and authorities, they listen to are charlatans who do not live what they talk and write about.’
      • ‘I think that the Japanese people need to open their eyes and realize that they do not live in this world alone.’
      • ‘The culture they discover will open their eyes to new things and allow them to appreciate the British way of life.’
      inform, make aware, notify, tell, advise, let know, illuminate, open someone's eyes, apprise
      View synonyms
  • open fire

    • Begin to shoot.

      ‘troops opened fire on crowds armed with staves and knives’
      • ‘Distracted by this new threat, the infantry began to open fire on the oncoming cars.’
      • ‘Once he had cut the others free, Richard and I began opening fire on the others who were firing from the car.’
      • ‘And then U.S. troops that are in this area began opening fire on what I assume was the firing point.’
      • ‘Just as the southern dismounted squad hears metal on metal, a BMP opens fire, launching round after round of 30 mm toward the Bradley platoon.’
      • ‘He would have danced a jig, but he still had the Watch on his tail and they were beginning to open fire.’
      • ‘An armed robber with a Mini - 14 opens fire, shooting several people.’
      • ‘Right-wing and media commentators have denounced the trial for setting a dangerous precedent that will cause American soldiers to think twice before opening fire in a war zone.’
      • ‘The first group opens fire on a convoy's flank, initiating the battle, and then withdraws, drawing the convoy's attention toward it.’
      • ‘Wielding an assault rifle he began to open fire on us, and the other dozen men followed suit.’
      • ‘The two boxcars with machine turrets and the open artillery boxcar began to open fire.’
  • with one's eyes open

    • see eye
      • ‘We accepted our obligations with open eyes, mindful of the sacrifices that had been made and those to come.’
      • ‘‘We really do have to enter this debate with open eyes - one system is not better or worse than the other,’ he said.’
      • ‘Some southerners still like to call what resulted the ‘War of Northern Aggression,’ but the truth is that the South started it knowingly and with open eyes.’
      • ‘I tried to look at the future with open eyes, but sometimes it really did sting realizing how everything could change in a few years.’
      • ‘Wifey is encouraging me to approach it with open eyes.’
      • ‘We will face these threats with open eyes and we will defeat them.’
      • ‘So decisions are made with open eyes, with a clear consciousness of the benefits and the risks for Bulgaria.’
      • ‘For that matter, why would anyone want to stay in a hotel room, however suavely appointed, when there's a city out there that begs to be experienced with open eyes, mouth and pockets?’
      • ‘We should do this with open eyes and pay the bills as a tax payer.’
      • ‘Economic reality is too unpleasant to be faced with open eyes.’
      deliberately, intentionally, consciously, wittingly, with full knowledge, in full awareness, with one's eyes open, on purpose, by design, calculatedly, premeditatedly, studiedly, wilfully, purposefully, willingly
      View synonyms
    • Fully aware of the possible difficulties or consequences.

      ‘I went into this job with my eyes open’
      • ‘I walked into this conversation with my eyes open.’
      • ‘I would go into the relationship with my eyes open at the very least.’
  • with open arms

    • With great affection or enthusiasm.

      ‘schools have welcomed such arrangements with open arms’
      • ‘There are those who welcome them with open arms and others who pretend they have to go somewhere five minutes before the doorbell rings.’
      • ‘Neighbour Chris did not say as much, but gave the impression that not everybody in the area had welcomed the new arrival with open arms.’
      • ‘And if there is one place that can welcome them with open arms, it is the church.’
      • ‘The team of volunteers are a friendly bunch, and they would welcome any new helpers with open arms.’
      • ‘Although many tourists were trying to leave, those that chose to stay were welcomed with open arms.’
      • ‘Lot welcomes the strangers with open arms, as is customary for the times.’
      • ‘People of his class and calibre would be welcomed with open arms in any, and every, other county in the country.’
      • ‘Councillor Latty welcomed the original application with open arms.’
      • ‘As a member of the executive of Athletics Ireland, I welcome this development with open arms.’
      • ‘However some of those who have ventured into the countryside say they have not exactly been welcomed with open arms.’
      • ‘Anyone who can walk for the Club on this occasion and help raise much needed funds will be welcomed with open arms.’
      • ‘No, I will continue on this path, and I will go where it takes me with open arms and an open mind.’
      • ‘They were welcomed with open arms by the local prince and his subjects.’
      • ‘In 1969, when it arrived in East Kilbride, the company was welcomed with open arms.’
      • ‘Stars support exiting team members and welcome new members with open arms and enthusiasm.’
      • ‘With their friendly disposition and infectious enthusiasm, the lads are welcomed with open arms by locals of all ages.’
      • ‘The community, seeing the whole affair as a great miscarriage of justice, will welcome them back with open arms.’
      • ‘The people of Canada are great travellers who, in most cases, are welcomed with open arms wherever they go.’
      • ‘The South Americans are also sending over their footballers and the Spaniards are welcoming them with open arms.’
      • ‘The small villages away from the coast are resplendent with tapas bars and cafés that will welcome families with open arms.’

Phrasal Verbs

  • open up

    • Begin shooting.

      ‘the enemy artillery had opened up’
      • ‘At the same time, American artillery opened up on other, less sensitive rebel strong points.’
      • ‘When their entreaties were ignored, an infantry charge was ordered, the artillery opening up behind it.’
      • ‘Men who went over-the-top in trenches stood little chance when the enemy opened up with their machine guns.’
      • ‘US tanks and artillery opened up, flattening houses where insurgents were thought to be hiding.’
  • open something up

    • 1Accelerate a motor vehicle.

      ‘Sam took me back on the motorway to open her up’
      • ‘The engineer on the throttle slowly opened it up and the machine sniffed, then slowly the piston arm came down, up again.’
      • ‘The ignition key was turned, the motor purred then, as the throttle was opened up, the motor roared and the bows lifted and we skimmed across the smooth gin clear water heading for Miller Creek.’
      • ‘After putting on life vests, Ronnie started the motor and we moved off slowly as the throttle was opened up.’
      • ‘I put the trim one notch above dead even, and opened the throttle up all the way.’
    • 2(of a player or team) create an advantage for one's side.

      ‘he opened up a lead of 14–8’
      • ‘You have to provide guile, craft and quality service through to your frontmen to open teams up at this level.’
      • ‘You definitely enjoy watching some of the teams that open it up a little bit more but you have a huge respect and appreciation for the teams that always seem to win.’
      • ‘We're not playing with enough confidence and we don't seem to be getting into the right areas of the field to be able to open teams up.’
      • ‘He can score in bunches, and that opens things up for his teammates.’
      • ‘Mobley's ability to create shots for himself and others should open things up considerably for PG Steve Francis, who has been facing more and more double-teams.’
      • ‘You have a lot more power plays and you get ahead and the other teams have to open it up.’
      • ‘After apparently holding the Keighley attack at bay with some sterling defence, referee Mr McDonagh awarded a penalty for off-side. Harrison duly obliged to open a gap up at 6-10.’
      • ‘He has played a more balanced game this season, but the team needs him to be more aggressive on offense because he opens things up for his teammates.’
      • ‘We're going to open the game up and have five basketball players on the floor and all are going to do the same.’
      • ‘Davis' presence also will help open things up for a downfield passing game.’


Old English open (adjective), openian (verb), of Germanic origin; related to Dutch open and German offen, from the root of the adverb up.