Definition of point in English:

point

noun

  • 1The tapered, sharp end of a tool, weapon, or other object.

    ‘the point of his dagger’
    ‘a pencil point’
    • ‘It takes almost no force for one of these points or edges to cause a laceration.’
    • ‘I dropped my tool on its point, which blunted it, so the left side is less worked and detailed than the right side.’
    • ‘Nothing with a sharp point was allowed within a mile of the young girl as she grew up.’
    • ‘With the point of a sharp knife, make four or five slits in each drumstick.’
    • ‘The blade shined as if it had never been used, and the point was as sharp as the day it was made.’
    • ‘The man abruptly stopped as he felt the sharp point of an arrow in the back of his neck.’
    • ‘You will experience a pain similar to if you had just stepped on the point of an icepick with your heel.’
    • ‘A lieutenant stood at the right of the line, the point of his sword upon the ground, his left hand resting upon his right.’
    • ‘The needle was roughly rounded and well-pointed, and the point was still quite sharp.’
    • ‘The defendant claimed his father had had a carving knife and had become aggressive and he had felt the point of the weapon in his back.’
    • ‘Small children and sharp points don't go together.’
    • ‘In a blink of an eye, the point of her blade was protruding from the back of his armor.’
    • ‘A shattered window contains thousands of incredibly sharp edges and dagger-like points.’
    • ‘Kim winced as the sharp point of the needle pierced the vein in her arm.’
    • ‘The hooks have very sharp points which is just what one needs to make sure the hooks go in and stay in.’
    • ‘The point of a sharp knife should feel little resistance when pushed into the potato.’
    • ‘Wig pins are small and usually have a sharp point at one end to help the pins penetrate the wig piece.’
    • ‘Needle points are specifically designed to pierce a particular fabric type.’
    • ‘At the far end of these instruments is a screw or a sharp point for piercing right through the cork.’
    • ‘While writing, focus on the point of the pen and move your eyes with its movements.’
    tip, sharp end, tapered end, end, extremity
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    1. 1.1Archaeology A pointed flake or blade, especially one that has been worked.
      • ‘At Teviec in Brittany a male burial had two flint points embedded in his spine.’
      • ‘Four specimens appear to be products of failed attempts to create points from very thin flakes.’
      • ‘The rich material culture includes flint and bone projectile points, fishing equipment, and decorated bone and stone.’
    2. 1.2Ballet
      another term for pointe
      • ‘He's astonished by the way dancers on point don't wobble.’
      • ‘Dressed in a tutu, she dances on point.’
      • ‘Ballet's use of point shoes is not intended to cripple the dancer's feet.’
    3. 1.3Boxing The tip of a person's chin as a spot for a blow.
      ‘Andrews caught him on the point’
      • ‘She concentrated hard to gather her wits, and when Frank paused, slammed a right uppercut to the point of his chin.’
      • ‘I caught him on the point and knocked him backward.’
      • ‘Harry hit him on the point of his chin.’
    4. 1.4 The prong of a deer's antler.
      ‘a fine buck of eight points’
      • ‘There is a stuffed deer in the Nature House at the Nature Park, a small buck with two points on each antler.’
      • ‘Since then the head has been examined by experts and is found to have antlers with 16 points.’
      • ‘His antlers have seven points.’
      • ‘Eight-point bucks almost certainly will remain plentiful.’
  • 2A dot or other punctuation mark, in particular a full stop.

    • ‘Footnote numbering in the text should be placed after the full point at the end of a sentence.’
    • ‘Every punctuation point had better be right.’
    • ‘When elements are removed from inside a word or phrase, but nothing is taken from the end, a full point is often omitted.’
    1. 2.1 A decimal point.
      ‘fifty-five point nine’
      • ‘Six point nine percent, that's a nine-year high.’
      • ‘I undid my seat belt and hopped out of the car in my usual two point nine seconds.’
      • ‘Ninety-nine point nine percent of the people were interested and enthusiastic and the attitude was very favourable.’
      • ‘He sold off his company at the peak of the boom, and cashed out for a reported three point five billion dollars.’
      • ‘All our households across the country use about one point eight trillion litres of water.’
    2. 2.2 A dot or small stroke used in Semitic languages to indicate vowels or distinguish particular consonants.
      • ‘Before the Babylonian system of punctuation was discovered, it was believed that the Tiberian system of vowel points was the only one the Jews had ever invented.’
      • ‘The vowel is sometimes written; and at others it is expressed by the point above the consonant.’
    3. 2.3 A very small dot or mark.
      ‘the sky was studded with points of light’
      • ‘Millions of points of light scatter across the sky and are reflected in the waters below.’
      • ‘For example, the human eye should be able to tell apart two points of light an inch apart at a distance of about a 100 metres.’
      • ‘Small yellow dots, which look like points of light, appear on the black ground.’
      • ‘It was a gorgeous evening, and the city shone from a million points of light.’
      • ‘The feeble point of light to the right of the star is the newly found cold companion.’
      • ‘Five points of light appeared, all focused around each one of his finger tips.’
      • ‘From that terracing came a continual glinting of points of light as innumerable cigarettes were lit.’
      • ‘Even with a good pair of binoculars, stars still appear as points of light.’
      • ‘Thru a small telescope you may be able to make out the fact that it is actually a disk and not a point of light.’
      • ‘She glanced up at the sky studded with the millions of tiny points of light not seen from the city and marveled, as always, at the vastness.’
      • ‘When he closed his eyes he could see two points of light, far away for now but rushing towards him nonetheless.’
      • ‘The points of light are collected and used to reconstruct a 3D digital image.’
      • ‘There are new frontiers in the thousands of points of light in the heavens above our precious blue planet.’
      • ‘This was made of stone, beneath a sky dark and featureless except for faint points of light that might be stars.’
      • ‘The trusty chandelier is also an ideal way to increase the number of points of light.’
      • ‘The cut surface of the rind is of a moist delicate pink colour and is studded with small yellow points formed by the drops of exuding juice.’
      • ‘Who among us wouldn't want to be compared to one of these mysterious, attractive points of light?’
      • ‘Sparkling drops of dew were bright points of light upon her skin.’
      • ‘Most wonderfully, he knew that the points of light were stars, and he knew how far away they were.’
      • ‘The first displays were very primitive using only points of light created in the laboratory.’
      pinpoint, dot, spot, speck, fleck, mark
      View synonyms
  • 3A particular spot, place, or position in an area or on a map, object, or surface.

    ‘turn left at the point where you see a sign to Appleford’
    ‘the furthermost point of the gallery’
    ‘the check-in point’
    • ‘These bridges are long because they cross rivers at the point where they empty into the sea.’
    • ‘Information is gathered from a multitude of sources including surface observation points, ships, buoys and aircraft.’
    • ‘It was a mountainous country but also one with several points of easy entry for English armies and settlers.’
    • ‘Everywhere we went we saw collection points for money and provisions.’
    • ‘Soldiers were positioned at strategic points in the city and at election rallies where huge crowds gathered.’
    • ‘Using your fingers to apply pressure to specific points on your body can ease symptoms.’
    • ‘Pedestrians should also remember to use the official crossing points at busy junctions.’
    • ‘However, enhanced controls at points of entry into the country continue to remain in place.’
    • ‘The site is located at a point between two major river systems, the Mersey and Dee, with open access to the Irish Sea.’
    • ‘By sunset, she'd looped back to one of the highest points in the park, not far from where we'd started.’
    • ‘It said that the investigators conducted 783 tests at screening points and other areas of airport security.’
    • ‘Most of the smuggling cases detected previously at border control points had involved lorries instead of coaches.’
    • ‘The council is also proposing to close a gap in a nearby pedestrian guardrail to stop people crossing at a dangerous point.’
    • ‘Being one of the highest points in the area, it is considered to be a sacred grove.’
    • ‘Our children need and deserve an official and recognisable safe crossing point along this road.’
    • ‘Our facility has been designated as a drop off point for relief supplies.’
    • ‘Acupuncture treatment is administered at specific points or sites on the body.’
    • ‘Cleeve Hill is the highest point on the Cotswold hills at about 300 m. above sea level.’
    • ‘People can hand in their unused glasses and sunglasses at a number of collection points in the area.’
    • ‘In the park's early days, pine trees were planted on the higher points of the park.’
    place, position, location, site, spot, area, locality, locale
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    1. 3.1 A particular moment in time or stage in a process.
      ‘from this point onwards the teacher was completely won over’
      • ‘Of particular note is the visual montage that comes at the halfway point of the film.’
      • ‘At some point during that long night they took a decision - and headed north.’
      • ‘He levelled the game at the midway point in the second half.’
      • ‘I think the lowest point was when the insurance company sent in forensics experts to check if the fire was arson.’
      • ‘Additional percussion is also provided by the chorus which claps specific patterns at certain points in the music.’
      • ‘From the point of conception onwards, parents are now viewed as a risk factor in their children's lives.’
      • ‘There are three points in this process at which learning can potentially play a role.’
      • ‘At some point, the decision about whether or not to stay in acting has to be faced.’
      • ‘Doctors said she probably died at the point of going limp in the pool.’
      • ‘We haven't even reached the halfway point in the season yet and you're tipping us for disaster.’
      • ‘At one point in the night we went for over forty minutes without a single customer.’
      • ‘This type of system is in common usage worldwide but up until this point had not been available in Ireland, the bank said.’
      • ‘He got winded at a couple of points in the fight.’
      • ‘The road was closed for three hours at one point and only reopened fully at midnight.’
      • ‘Not until the midway point did the president acknowledge that he had an opponent in the coming election.’
      • ‘Up until this point, my main focus had been on getting to the event and getting there on time.’
      • ‘There comes a point in the refurbishment process where the law of diminishing returns come into play.’
      • ‘Up until this point almost all swords were heavy and required more strength than skill to maneuver.’
      • ‘At what point does a good idea become compromised by the thought of how best to make money?’
      • ‘Many people do not notice a problem with their vision until this point, or assume a poor vision is part of getting older.’
      time, stage, juncture, period, phase
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    2. 3.2usually the point The critical or decisive moment.
      ‘when it came to the point he would probably do what was expected of him’
      • ‘He talks and talks, but when it comes to the point he either does nothing or he's just evasive.’
      • ‘Conversation ceases to resolve the internal contention between characters, words fail and the conflict comes to the point.’
      • ‘When it came to the point, little economic or social and no military action was taken.’
      decisive moment, critical moment, moment of truth, point of no return, crunch, crux, zero hour
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    3. 3.3the point of The verge or brink of (doing or being something)
      ‘she was on the point of leaving’
      • ‘The other motorist slowed down just when she was on the point of braking, allowing her the right of way.’
      • ‘They were on the point of collapse from thirst.’
      • ‘They'll take a photo of us looking in different directions and try to make out that we're on the point of breaking up.’
      • ‘Sometimes, however, you only realise how valuable an object is when you are on the point of losing it.’
      • ‘Once-common bird species like the skylark and lapwing are on the point of disappearing.’
      • ‘On the point of giving up, I noticed a small dust covered bottle at the back of a drawer which had a few bright purple tablets in it.’
      • ‘The police had now regrouped and were on the point of pinning down the huge bald man.’
      • ‘If I read this latest letter correctly, I am on the point of losing the right to drive.’
      • ‘The club last night appeared to be on the point of calling in the receivers.’
      • ‘But often the outcry over the loss of a rural post office only starts when it has closed or is on the point of closing.’
      • ‘I was on the point of leaving when the postman called bearing an invoice from the bicycle suppliers.’
      • ‘I was on the point of approaching but I didn't have the courage in case he told me to clear off.’
      • ‘He was not on the point of death, nor even in the process of dying.’
      • ‘His feet were blistered and his legs were on the point of collapse.’
      • ‘The national companies were in financial crisis and the ballet was on the point of closure.’
      • ‘This had a serious impact on morale and many teachers were on the point of leaving their jobs.’
      • ‘Relief was clear because the tour had seemed on the point of foundering.’
      • ‘As he stood there on the point of committing suicide, he felt a hand on his arm.’
      • ‘It is patently obvious that the health service is on the point of collapse.’
      • ‘It was obvious he was on the point of collapse.’
      just about to, on the verge of, about to, going to, on the brink of, ready to, all set to
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    4. 3.4usually with modifier A stage or level at which a change of state occurs.
      ‘local kennels are full to bursting point’
      • ‘The company appears to be on target to hit a cashflow break-even point by the end of the year.’
      • ‘The lads were at mutiny point by now and we reached the top of the climb not a moment too soon.’
      • ‘You just want to lie and luxuriate in it, to soak up the sound until you reach bursting point.’
      • ‘The Festival reaches climax point on Sunday with something for all the family.’
      • ‘The breakeven point in our budget though looks remarkably close to the market value of my South London home.’
      • ‘The company has slipped back into the red just three months after crowing that it had reached break-even point.’
      • ‘Boil until setting point is reached and then preserve in small sterilised jars.’
      level, degree, stage, pitch, extent, height
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    5. 3.5British with modifier A socket in a wall for connecting a device to an electrical supply or communications network.
      ‘a power point’
      • ‘The rear garden is in lawn and has a timber shed with electrical points and plumbing for utilities.’
      • ‘There is also a purpose-built storage shed with power points and wall units.’
      • ‘You should always seek professional advice before having an outside power point installed.’
      • ‘We were in a metal box with gas bottles, connected to an electrical hook-up point.’
      • ‘This meant that there was electric light in the kitchen, but no power point for a radio.’
      • ‘I keep my freezer and my fridge out there, trailing extension leads to the power points in the kitchen.’
      • ‘All waste is recycled, within reason, and even cars can be recharged at power points dotted around the complex.’
      • ‘Mounting your access point on the wall, away from your desktop, will improve your network's speed.’
      • ‘Upstairs, all three bedrooms have television points or telephone facilities.’
      • ‘Instead, electrical plug points have been helpfully provided in every compartment.’
      • ‘Power points are in place and there are internet connections in all rooms.’
      • ‘Each apartment has a balcony or a patio with decking, as well as a basement storage compartment with electrical points.’
      • ‘A fast wireless access point means you can connect your laptop to the machine and roam around the house.’
      • ‘All units will be wired for an alarm and have telephone and television points in the lounge and master bedroom.’
      • ‘One of the garages has automatic doors while both are heated and fitted with power points.’
      • ‘The larger room has a television point and plenty of space for a study desk or additional storage units.’
      • ‘There is gas-fired central heating throughout and television and telephone points in all rooms.’
      • ‘There is also a potting shed and a large workshop with electric points.’
      • ‘The drawings also show electrical points for television equipment, speakers and telephones in the pool surround.’
      • ‘It has built-in double wardrobes as well as telephone and television points.’
    6. 3.6 (in geometry) something having position but not spatial extent, magnitude, dimension, or direction, for example the intersection of two lines.
      • ‘By joining all the points of tangency we construct a line ABC, which is an output expansion path.’
      • ‘By joining the points of intersection between price and amount of X consumed at that price, we trace out a demand curve.’
      • ‘Every point on these lines has the same properties as the end-point on the N border.’
      • ‘The points of intersection of the three lines located the centers of mass.’
      • ‘The arrow in Fig.4A denotes the point of intersection used for sensitivity analyses.’
  • 4A single item or detail in an extended discussion, list, or text.

    ‘the main points of the Edinburgh agreement’
    • ‘None of them was concerned with the specific point which arises in this case.’
    • ‘However, it is important to make some specific points clear.’
    • ‘The Court grants special leave to appeal on the two points which I just indicated.’
    • ‘He has written to me courteously and in great detail, explaining technical points about the way his site works.’
    • ‘Bulleted lists of key points at the end of each chapter provide an excellent review for students.’
    • ‘Similarly, it is better to paraphrase points made above, rather than repeat them word for word.’
    • ‘He gives a summary of some of the main points which were discussed.’
    • ‘The main points of interest on the three deck levels are the railings, lifeboat davits and companionways.’
    • ‘Some may not care, but many people I know are signing up without reading or understanding the implications of the above three points.’
    • ‘Curiously, there is no attempt to integrate these points into the main body of the text.’
    • ‘You should keep the following points particularly in mind, and may wish at this point to look again at the Claim Questionnaire.’
    • ‘Vary your tone of voice to punctuate important points, and keep it moving to capture interest.’
    • ‘And what would be the main points of similarity between these two great cities?’
    • ‘We will just retire for a moment to consider these points.’
    • ‘One of the key points is increasing resident participation.’
    • ‘The guidelines aren't specific enough on some points.’
    • ‘It has already warned that the housing market is beginning to cool so the impact of the new rules is likely to be the main point of interest.’
    • ‘Again, ideas on this matter vary between cultures, but a few general points seem clear.’
    • ‘This study came under sharp criticism on many points, including its lack of rigorous controls.’
    • ‘He was reluctant to be drawn into any detailed discussion of this point.’
    detail, item, particular, fact, thing, piece of information, idea, argument, consideration, factor, element, aspect, regard, respect
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    1. 4.1 An argument or idea.
      ‘he made the point that economic regulation involves controls on pricing’
      • ‘He made the point that intelligent bowlers did not chuck every ball.’
      • ‘There are, however, counter-arguments to many of the above points.’
      • ‘Indeed, the police made the point that the victim could have been ‘any one of us on a night out’.’
      • ‘He made some very valid points in his argument.’
      • ‘We will use some examples of this sort of work to illustrate our points.’
      • ‘He/she who needs to resort to violence to prove a point, has a poor argument.’
      • ‘Mr Davie made the point that the low paid and many elderly people are particularly hard hit by double figure rises in council tax.’
      • ‘Two particular points in your article do not stand up to any scrutiny.’
      • ‘Some of Jonathan's points cross over with some of my research interests.’
      • ‘If we sold it for more than we paid into it, we could prove our point.’
      • ‘At the time, I had no idea what his point was, and I didn't particularly care.’
      • ‘He also made the point that farmers are not aware of the Social Welfare entitlements they might have.’
      • ‘The district auditor has made the point that he is independent of the council.’
      • ‘Although some points have since been challenged and corrected, the basis of his studies remains unchanged.’
      • ‘They put their ideas and points across very eloquently.’
      • ‘He forcefully articulated his points, which were punctuated with statistics and figures.’
      • ‘Several made the point that with inflation remaining low, it was not enough to sit on your investments.’
      • ‘Surely, there is a limit to the amount of times you can repeat yourself, just to prove a point?’
      most important fact, main point, central point, essential point, essence, nub, focal point, salient point, heart of the matter, keynote, core, pith, marrow, meat, crux
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    2. 4.2usually the point The significant or essential element of something being planned or discussed.
      ‘it took her a long time to come to the point’
      ‘some speakers rambled and never seemed to get to the point’
      ‘that's not the point’
      • ‘Whatever its deficiencies, the point was that it was inclusive, not divisive.’
      • ‘Surely the point is that rules and guidelines like this are to be applauded whatever the source.’
      • ‘Anyway, the point is that this method cannot be universally relied upon.’
      • ‘More broadly, the point is that political philosophy is only one part of politics.’
      • ‘The time in New York is five hours behind the time in London, and so on, but that's not the point.’
      • ‘I think the point is that you need to be not only strategic but tactical as well.’
      • ‘Supposedly, the point is that the public can see the people behind the public persona.’
      • ‘To understand the point of the arts, you really have to imagine a society where everything to do with the arts is taken away.’
      • ‘The whole point of the Oslo process was to settle differences in a peaceful manner.’
      • ‘The point is that he had the opportunity to change the rules and he left it too late.’
      • ‘The whole point of the new system was to maximize the lord's profits, and to do so in as rational a way as possible.’
      • ‘The architect later wrote to say that yes, the cement would probably outlast all of them, but that was not quite the point.’
      • ‘On the subject of Betty's harrowing death, again he seems to miss the point.’
      • ‘The whole point of a conservation area is to conserve, not to dig it up whenever it is convenient.’
      • ‘So regardless of who gets put in charge, the point is that someone needs to be in charge.’
      • ‘He has been having a quiet tournament, but the point is that he has not been trying to take centre stage.’
      • ‘To argue that the world of 1919 was worse than that of 1914 is to miss the point.’
      • ‘Grant says the point is that no one knows what it's like to be Lauren or what's going on inside her head.’
      • ‘The whole point of her character was that she was a tough survivor.’
      • ‘The whole point in this particular case was that she was not simply doing the duties of a merchandiser.’
      subject, subject matter, theme, issue, matter, talking point, question, concern, argument, discussion, thesis, text, concept, field, area, keynote, leitmotif
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    3. 4.3in singular, usually with negative or in questions Advantage or purpose that can be gained from doing something.
      ‘there was no point in denying the truth’
      ‘what's the point of having things I don't need?’
      • ‘What's the point in discussing that if we both know the answers inside out?’
      • ‘There is no point in denying the language in Shakespeare is problematic.’
      • ‘Joanna sees no point in lying about her age but she wouldn't hesitate having cosmetic surgery if she felt she needed it.’
      • ‘But if the replacement works just as well then what was the point of the decision in the first place?’
      • ‘There's really no point in showing mainstream movies that are better viewed on the big screen.’
      • ‘There's no point in being the most skilful player, if you can't keep yourself on the field of play.’
      • ‘There is absolutely no point in fighting the election unless we take all of these factors on board.’
      • ‘There's no point in splashing out on expensive designer gear if your skin is as rough as sandpaper.’
      • ‘His attitude to mathematics was very much as an applied mathematician who saw no point in the study of the subject in its own right.’
      • ‘There seems little point in criticising the approach that others take to the dilemma.’
      • ‘What's the point of having two features that do the same thing?’
      • ‘There is no point in moaning about it.’
      • ‘There's no point in being an artist if your goal is to produce the same thing for your entire career.’
      • ‘There is no need to stock up on supplies - and no point buying a gas mask.’
      • ‘There's no point in trying to take them for money because they don't have any.’
      • ‘There's no point in buying a new dishwasher just as you're about to move house.’
      • ‘Is there any point inviting comments when planning objections are submitted?’
      • ‘It's not that I even really understand the point of using conditioner anyway.’
      • ‘The Board say that there is no point testing or treating anyone who has eaten these products if they are well.’
      • ‘What is the point of drawing up plans if they're not going to be adhered to?’
      purpose, aim, object, objective, goal, intention, end, design, reason, use, utility, sense, motive, value, advantage
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    4. 4.4mass noun Relevance or effectiveness.
      • ‘His remarks were always full of point, clearness, and good sense.’
      • ‘As well as giving point to the subject, experience of algebraic representation is crucial if pupils are to understand and use precise algebraic language.’
      • ‘I am therefore exceedingly unwilling that any thing, however slight, which my illustrious friend thought it worth his while to express, with any degree of point, should perish.’
    5. 4.5 A distinctive feature or characteristic, typically a good one, of a person or thing.
      ‘he has his good points’
      • ‘There have been no problems settling into the West Lothian town, even if some of the area's finer points have escaped him so far.’
      • ‘There seemed to be good and bad points about every single one of them.’
      • ‘The spacious master bedroom is on the top floor and should prove a key selling point.’
      • ‘A simple, elegant arbor is the focal point at one end of the garden.’
      • ‘They may want to create rich characters that have good points as well as bad ones.’
      • ‘It's positive points are much more plentiful than its negative ones.’
      • ‘The reception rooms, large garden and garage are likely to prove key selling points.’
      attribute, characteristic, feature, trait, quality, property, aspect, facet, side
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  • 5(in sports and games) a mark or unit of scoring awarded for success or performance.

    ‘he kicked a penalty goal to put Bangor eight points ahead’
    • ‘His side were in complete control and at one stage led by seventeen points.’
    • ‘The loss of two points even at this stage in the season could well be vital.’
    • ‘City lie in tenth place in Division Three, just three points of the play-off positions and just five points off third place.’
    • ‘Leitrim led by six points at half-time.’
    • ‘Did you set out to get as many points as possible during qualifying?’
    • ‘This was close fight and would have been even tighter without the points deducted.’
    • ‘It was just so disappointing to lose the playoff by a single point.’
    • ‘Given greater composure, they could have scored more tries and thus gained a bonus point.’
    • ‘He also chipped in with two splendid points at vital stages of the game.’
    • ‘Four minutes later he stroked his second point majestically with the outside of his right boot.’
    • ‘They established a lead at the top of the table which at one stage reached thirteen points.’
    • ‘Argentina took an early lead but trailed by a point at the break.’
    • ‘To score 17 points in a game, and still lose, is a very bitter pill to swallow.’
    • ‘The winner is the one who is left with the most points from the remaining three judges.’
    • ‘They played extremely well and were unlucky to be beaten by a single point.’
    • ‘He was captain of the basketball team and set a school record by scoring 22 points in a game.’
    • ‘Belgium are currently on top on 14 points with Croatia and Scotland next in line on 11 points each.’
    • ‘Indeed they fell further behind and trailed by 11 points with just five minutes remaining.’
    • ‘If they can garner 19 points in the process they will also seal the championship.’
    • ‘He kicked two vital points from play when they were needed most.’
    1. 5.1 A unit used in measuring value, achievement, or extent.
      ‘the shares index was down seven points’
      • ‘Rates are down some 2 percentage points compared to the end of last year.’
      • ‘The quarter percentage point rise alone is unlikely to push your finances over the edge.’
      • ‘Health insurers say the average rise in premiums dropped a couple of percentage points from a year ago.’
      • ‘His gains averaged just three percentage points.’
      • ‘The party is also down four percentage points on the 1991 local elections.’
      • ‘Outperformance of the benchmark was a handsome 7.1 percentage points per year.’
      • ‘The polls had a margin of error of four percentage points.’
      • ‘Feeling relieved that your premiums inched up only a few percentage points?’
      • ‘However, the final poll on election day was wrong by about 1.5 to 2 percentage points.’
      • ‘In the first four weeks, his blood pressure dropped 20 points and he lost five pounds.’
      • ‘In August, the retail trade business climate indicator rose 2.2 points compared to July.’
      • ‘The figure represents an increase of 7.7 percentage points from last year.’
      • ‘The Bank of England started to lift the rate in November last year and it has since gone up by 1.25 percentage points.’
      • ‘Today's figures represent a net decline of seven points for the President in the past three days.’
      • ‘However, the news isn't all good: gross margins slipped by 0.3 percentage points year on year.’
      • ‘Last year one child did not achieve level four in English, dragging the mark down by four percentage points.’
      • ‘That trend was kept up until a week ago when, during that period, the Brady bonds gained three to four percentage points.’
      • ‘By contrast, the prices of new houses and apartments have risen by only a few percentage points so far this year.’
      • ‘Eight of the previous 10 rate cuts the Fed has made this year have been by half a percentage point.’
      • ‘His vote has fallen by up to 10 percentage points over the last couple of weeks.’
    2. 5.2 An advantage or success in an argument or discussion.
      ‘she smiled, assuming she had won her point’
      • ‘Napoleon won his point that bishops and clergy should be paid salaries by the state.’
      • ‘I felt then like I would never go back to work until we had won our point.’
      • ‘I could go on, but I think I've made my point.’
    3. 5.3 A unit of credit towards an award or benefit.
      ‘points were allocated according to the inadequacy of the existing accommodation’
      • ‘He moved on to study for a B.A. and has completed 54 points towards his degree - more than half way.’
      • ‘I wouldn't let a few points off of my credit score keep me from purchasing a home.’
      • ‘This was below the passing level of 60 points and even lower than the 58 points assessed last year.’
      • ‘For every special initiative they are credited with further points.’
      • ‘If she receives the required points, Deirdre hopes to study Forensic Science.’
      • ‘Then let your child trade his earned points for privileges, like extra playtime.’
      • ‘The You, Your Computer and the Net course is worth 30 points towards an Open University degree.’
      • ‘Whenever possible, travelers look for hotels that offer a generous points program.’
    4. 5.4 A percentage of the profits from a film or recording offered to certain people involved in its production.
      • ‘Because he is a producer as well as an actor you can be sure he has points in the film.’
      • ‘All the cast and crew will be paid when the film gets sold, and core cast and crew have points in the film should it return a profit.’
      • ‘The percentage involvement reflects a hierarchy, so the director of photography has more points than the clapper loader.’
    5. 5.5point of (in piquet) the longest suit in a player's hand, containing a specified number of up to eight cards.
      • ‘If the Elder has at least four cards in a suit, he may make a declaration. For example, ‘Point of four’.’
      • ‘The number of cards in the suit is announced (e.g. ‘point of 5’) and it scores this number.’
    6. 5.6 A unit of weight (2 mg) for diamonds.
      • ‘A 100 point diamond might cost three times as much as a 50 point diamond.’
      • ‘The point system provides a convenient – and more impressive – way of describing diamonds that are less than one carat.’
      • ‘Even a one-point difference in a diamond's weight can dramatically affect its value.’
    7. 5.7 A unit of varying value, used in quoting the price of stocks, bonds, or futures.
      • ‘On Wednesday, the Dow surged by 500 points, its second-biggest one-day gain in history.’
      • ‘It seems hard to believe that just a short year ago the Nasdaq was over 5,000 points and climbing.’
      • ‘A supreme court defeat would wipe four or five points off the price of the bond in a day.’
      • ‘When message boards first took off in the mid 90s, postings like that could send stock up or down several points in a day.’
      • ‘The blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial Average closed the day just 6 points higher at 10,887.’
    8. 5.8Bridge A value assigned to certain cards (4 points for an ace, 3 for a king, 2 for a queen, and 1 for a jack, sometimes with extra points for long or short suits) by a player in assessing the strength of their hand.
      ‘in Acol it is permissible to open with only twelve points’
      • ‘On each deal, there is a target score which depends on the number of high card points held.’
      • ‘After a claim, the claiming player's tricks are exposed and the card points are counted.’
      • ‘The result of the hand depends on the number of card points won by the opponents.’
      • ‘Each card has a point value, and points are counted for combinations held in the hand before it is played.’
      • ‘Usually it is permitted to look at your side's tricks, to check how many card points you have.’
  • 6Each of thirty-two directions marked at equal distances round a compass.

    • ‘She licked the pad and pressed it onto the glass next to the compass point.’
    • ‘It had a huge screen, curved around four seats, each facing in the way of their own compass points, it seemed.’
    • ‘Turn the map until the North point on the compass card points East or West of the lubber line.’
    • ‘Arrayed around it like points on the compass rose were sections of the house.’
    • ‘I hardly take note of the geometrical dimensions of the table or its spatial location with respect to the points of the compass.’
    1. 6.1 A direction towards the horizon corresponding to the direction marked on a compass.
      • ‘Having taken in the view from all points of the compass, I was about to leave when I spotted some pay phones.’
      • ‘At various distances and points of the compass, he could see other men holding red and white striped poles.’
      • ‘The wind appeared to blow from all points of the compass at once, a trick of which Dublin winds have the secret.’
      • ‘After missing a couple of early sighters, Carter kicked goals from all points of the compass.’
      • ‘Ordinary pilgrims from all points of the compass purchase religious amulets and books.’
    2. 6.2 The angular interval between two successive points of a compass, i.e. one eighth of a right angle (11° 15ʹ).
    3. 6.3points — Unspecified places considered in terms of their direction from a specified place.
      ‘they headed down Highway 401 to Ontario and points west’
      • ‘He hit the road for points east.’
      • ‘We would rent out our house in Ireland and use that income to explore North America, then buy a camper van and travel down to Mexico, and all points south.’
      • ‘Passengers for points west could go through without stopping to change cars.’
  • 7A narrow piece of land jutting out into the sea.

    ‘the boat came round the point’
    in names ‘Blakeney Point’
    • ‘I'm just taking the canoe around the point for a little paddle.’
    • ‘I elect to stay outside and swim round the point, making a circuit back to the boat through an archway in the cliff.’
    • ‘I walked alone south along the beach toward Cape Point.’
    • ‘We'll go back around the point and into that last small bight we passed on our way here.’
    • ‘We walked up the curving beach below Malibu Creek and paddled out at the top of the point.’
    promontory, headland, head, foreland, cape, peninsula, bluff, ness, horn, bill
    View synonyms
  • 8usually pointsBritish A junction of two railway lines, with a pair of linked tapering rails that can be moved laterally to allow a train to pass from one line to the other.

    ‘the train gave a lurch as it passed over the points’
    • ‘A preliminary investigation into the accident has blamed loose points near the station as the likely cause of the derailment.’
    • ‘The line could be extended to Skipton, and beyond, by the simple addition of a set of points at Embsay Junction.’
    • ‘The crash was caused by a faulty set of points.’
    • ‘The first train to pass over the points was the 7am service to Glasgow.’
    • ‘Because of the vibration of the trains passing over points, bolts may loosen slightly over time.’
    • ‘The points changed direction just after the first three carriages passed over them.’
  • 9Printing
    A unit of measurement for type sizes and spacing (in the UK and US 0.351 mm, in Europe 0.376 mm).

    • ‘Using 10-point font size for the main text the printing area should be 12.2 x 19.3 cm.’
    • ‘Because monitors display at different resolutions, 12-point type on one screen could approximate 14-point type on another.’
  • 10Cricket
    A fielding position on the off side near the batsman.

    • ‘Players noted for their agility, acceleration and throwing accuracy will often field in the infield positions such as point, cover and mid-wicket.’
    • ‘He hit straight to Clarke at point, took off for a single, tried to stop and gave up before a stump was knocked from the ground.’
    • ‘I also field at point.’
    • ‘You will usually find the best fielder in the team fielding at point.’
    1. 10.1 A fielder at the point position.
      • ‘Point does not chat with cover-point.’
      • ‘The point all the while must keep his face towards the batter.’
    2. 10.2Ice Hockey Either of two areas to the left and right of the net, just inside the blue line where it meets the boards.
      • ‘She skated in from her position at the point to collect a pass in the right circle.’
      • ‘Usually the players at the two points are the defensemen.’
      • ‘He was robbed of what looked a certain goal when he moved in from the point was stopped by a big block.’
    3. 10.3Basketball A position at the front of the court, usually manned by the guard who sets up the team's defence.
      • ‘Typically, shooting guards are taller than point guards and more athletic.’
      • ‘Feature of the game was a whopping 28 points from point guard Karen Mealey.’
      • ‘A good point guard knows how to control the pace or tempo of the game.’
  • 11usually points(in a motor vehicle) each of a set of electrical contacts in the distributor.

    • ‘The distributor should be completely dismantled and the points examined.’
    • ‘If the points need to be replaced you must remove the flywheel.’
    • ‘I cleaned the points and the bike is now rideable.’
  • 12A small leading party of an advanced guard of troops.

    • ‘They were advancing slowly in three points across the Realm, wiping out anything that stood against them.’
    • ‘He sent three of his men ahead as a ‘point’.’
    1. 12.1North American mass noun The position at the head of a column or wedge of troops.
      ‘he walked point and I took the tail’
      • ‘I know the layout of the town best, so I'll ride point.’
      • ‘Who wants to walk point today?’
    2. 12.2North American
      short for point man
  • 13usually pointsThe extremities of an animal, typically a horse or cat, such as the face, paws, and tail of a Siamese cat.

    ‘a pure white dog with black points’
    • ‘The dorsal stripe is the color of the horse's points.’
    • ‘The mask, legs and tail should all show clear tabby markings which should be the same colour on all points.’
    extremity, furthermost part, limit, margin, edge, border, boundary, periphery
    View synonyms
  • 14Hunting
    A spot to which a straight run is made.

    • ‘The hounds turned again, and the fox made his point which proved to be Glenn Gorse.’
    • ‘These marshy channels are the invariable point of any hunted boar.’
    1. 14.1 A straight run.
      ‘our fox made his point to Moorhill’
      • ‘My maternal grandfather was 84 when he died, having ridden a five-mile point to hounds barely six weeks before.’
      • ‘There was much gnashing of teeth, as there were but eight riders with them, and it was a point of eight miles.’
      • ‘The hounds made an eight mile point in a little over 45 minutes.’
  • 15usually pointshistorical A tagged piece of ribbon or cord used for lacing a garment or attaching a hose to a doublet.

    • ‘He began to untruss his points.’
    • ‘He accommodated the friar with his assistance in tying the endless number of points.’
  • 16A short piece of cord at the lower edge of a sail for tying up a reef.

    • ‘The top-sails are always reefed with points.’
    • ‘I was paying attention to getting the points tied in and the main halyard stowed.’
    • ‘The eye of one point is put through the hole in the reef-hand.’
  • 17mass noun The action or position of a dog in pointing.

    ‘a bird dog on point’
    • ‘She can hold a point for what seems like an eternity.’
    • ‘She exhibits classic English setter style on point with a nice running gait.’
    • ‘Some dogs tend to exhibit signs of jealousy on seeing another dog on point.’
  • 18Music
    An important phrase or subject, especially in a contrapuntal composition.

    • ‘It is almost as if the conductor/composer had changed the orchestration at points.’
    • ‘Stokowski changes gear at points as if he decided tempos needed geared up.’

verb

  • 1no object Direct someone's attention towards something by extending one's finger or something held in one's hand.

    ‘the lads were nudging each other and pointing at me’
    • ‘I was primed to sit on my couch with a finger pointing at the TV, a hand over my mouth, and a look of both horror and euphoria on my face.’
    • ‘‘The office is down that way,’ he pointed down a hallway.’
    • ‘‘Go stand over there,’ her father directed, pointing at one of the flowerpots.’
    • ‘‘There you go, again,’ he said, his finger pointing at the pictures.’
    • ‘He opens a candy bar, shoves it into his mouth, and points towards the table.’
    • ‘Her arm was held out with one slender finger pointing towards the door.’
    • ‘The stick-like finger pointing at the page was shaking so much it hardly marked the place at all.’
    • ‘Carol looked to see what her finger was pointing at.’
    • ‘This time it was Rachel who stopped them, a finger pointing at a small doll in the window.’
    • ‘He pointed down the hallway to her right where one of the staircases were.’
    • ‘When he saw that he had caught my attention he pointed towards the girl's bathroom, which was on the right.’
    • ‘The referee rightly pointed to the spot and Addingham players sniffed a comeback.’
    • ‘If you met me you would probably just point and laugh and I wouldn't blame you.’
    • ‘One 1927 ad shows fingers pointing at the shoulders of a man wearing a dark suit.’
    • ‘He had managed to distract the man's attention by pointing at something behind his back.’
    • ‘Trent flung his arm out, pointing at the buffalo.’
    • ‘She pointed straight ahead of them, but over to the right a bit.’
    • ‘Before he left the room, Roth pointed down the hall towards the bathroom.’
    • ‘She noticed a pair of children pointing at her and nudging each other.’
    • ‘He turned his attention to me, pointing at me carefully.’
    1. 1.1with adverbial Indicate a particular time, direction, or reading.
      ‘a sign pointing left’
      • ‘There are lots of arrows pointing in different directions.’
      • ‘He sees a sign pointing the way to a toilet down the corridor.’
      • ‘At one point, I realise I am heading at right angles to the direction a tourist sign is pointing.’
      • ‘They all now came down to a brown old sign that pointed in two directions.’
      • ‘A Scottish cycle route sign pointed the way and we decided to take some pictures.’
      • ‘At Castle Place the Coney Island sign is pointing in the wrong direction which must be very confusing for visitors.’
      • ‘We reverse down another road and see a sign for the Forest but it's pointing in another direction entirely.’
      • ‘The earth's magnetic field now points south, meaning that a compass needle points north.’
      • ‘The twigs formed a large arrow pointing in the direction of the signal tree.’
      • ‘There are a few pathetic road signs pointing in the general direction and some small signs at the outlet village.’
      • ‘A Scottish Rights of Way Society sign points the direction and a track leads through a gate above the waters of the Callater Burn.’
      • ‘Consumer spending indicators are pointing down.’
    2. 1.2with object Direct or aim (something) at someone or something.
      ‘he pointed the torch beam at the floor’
      • ‘It is tempting to try a few long exposure shots provided you don't have an unwary fellow-guest pointing his flash light at you.’
      • ‘When we see a dramatic sky, we tend to point the camera up, excluding the ground entirely, but this is to overlook the potential of the event.’
      • ‘‘Back away,’ Floyd directed, pointing a large stick of chalk at Kyle.’
      • ‘Both soldiers pointed their weapons at me.’
      • ‘Two men burst into the crowded shop and one pointed the weapon at staff and customers.’
      • ‘Then he pointed the gun straight up in the air and pulled the trigger.’
      • ‘He was pointing his finger up at her.’
      • ‘He is pictured pointing his weapon at his colleague.’
      • ‘I pointed the light into the vent again, but still saw nothing.’
      • ‘He had pointed the weapon at the man and his son and then fled in a pickup.’
      • ‘He pointed the microphone at the crowd for the final chorus.’
      • ‘The soldiers quickly took cover, pointing their weapons from behind street corners built of honey-coloured stone.’
      • ‘There's a truck parked on a hill pointing its lights at me.’
      • ‘‘We had better go and see if anyone's been hurt,’ Cate said, pointing the torch back up towards the bombsite.’
      • ‘The man smiled, and pointed his gun up into the air.’
      • ‘The constable told the man to stop, but the man kept coming, and pointed the weapon at him, so he shot him in the leg.’
      • ‘Someone pointed a flashlight straight to the sky, enticing moths to flutter through the beam.’
      • ‘As soon as the pair saw him, they pointed a sawn-off double barrelled shotgun and a handgun at him.’
      • ‘But as I walked through the door carrying Jasmine in her carry cot I was grabbed by a masked man who pointed a gun straight at my head.’
      • ‘He feared for his own life when the gunman pointed the weapon at him and pulled the trigger.’
      aim, direct, level, train
      View synonyms
    3. 1.3with adverbial of direction Face or be turned in a particular direction.
      ‘two of its toes point forward and two point back’
      • ‘All of them are virtually black, and their tall, narrow, hefty bodies make them look like crude cannons, pointing in every direction as if fearing attack from all sides.’
      • ‘The poles were pointing outward at an angle to stop any invaders from coming closer.’
      • ‘Many of last year's perennials still have dead flower stalks pointing skyward.’
      • ‘Menwith Hill alone has around 30 radio receivers pointing in different directions, indicating it is receiving data from many different satellites.’
      • ‘At night, you could see four searchlights pointing directly upwards to indicate the corner of the neutral zone.’
      • ‘Four giant white spotlights were illuminated from the top of each gantry, pointing upwards towards the sky.’
      • ‘Seconds later, a thunderous explosion sounded and cattle that were pointed towards water now bolted away from the explosion.’
      • ‘Stand erect with feet slightly wider than shoulder width, toes pointing slightly outward.’
      • ‘The jury foreman said: ‘The gun was pointing in the direction of the police officer.’’
      • ‘Now just turn your body all the way through the ball and try to stop in the position you see here, with your arms fully extended and the club pointing at your belly button.’
      • ‘They're finishing off the security system, which includes an elaborate set of cameras pointing in every direction.’
      • ‘My feet are set about shoulder width, the toes pointed slightly outward.’
    4. 1.4with object (of a dog) indicate the presence of (game) by standing rigid while looking towards it.
      • ‘Both dogs found and pointed a group of about seven or eight birds.’
      • ‘If one dog points game the other dog must back the first dog.’
      • ‘The judges will not only base their classification on the number of times a dog points game, but rather on the overall quality of the points.’
  • 2no object, with adverbial Cite a fact or situation as evidence of something.

    ‘he points to several factors supporting this conclusion’
    • ‘He pointed rightly to the fact that the business of the Company had been preserved, as had over a hundred jobs.’
    • ‘He points to the second world war when the only incidence of panic was when people were isolated.’
    • ‘He points to better management as the means of turning good technology into a strong business.’
    • ‘He also points to the potential role that community finance institutions can play.’
    • ‘The competition watchdog pointed towards store sales and improved terms for suppliers as it outlined remedies for the possible takeover.’
    • ‘He points to the fact that people are still coming forward to risk their lives for this experiment.’
    • ‘As evidence some critics pointed to the fact that he opposes requiring employee stock options to be recorded as expenses.’
    • ‘James was pointing to the fact that the relationship between mind and body is not just one way.’
    • ‘As proof, we point to the fact that the same author also wrote six books predicting the end of the world.’
    • ‘He pointed to the fact that despite the majority of seats there is still no minister here.’
    • ‘But critics point to the fact that the clubs do benefit from public money, at least indirectly.’
    • ‘He rightly points to the fact that debate is the meat of scientific endeavour.’
    • ‘He points to the fact that in the judgment which we have given we have not doubted the verdict of the jury.’
    • ‘Many commentators point to the fact that he was as much a political as a spiritual leader.’
    • ‘His detractors have pointed at these disappointments as evidence of his shortcomings.’
    • ‘Rodgers points to this as evidence his committee must be doing something right.’
    • ‘They point to the plans for increased public spending as an indication of what might lie ahead.’
    1. 2.1point to (of a fact or situation) indicate that (something) is likely to happen or be the case.
      ‘everything pointed to an Eastern attack’
      • ‘There are many facts pointing to sweeping climatic changes in the Earth's distant past.’
      • ‘It also points to the fact that work by women has been neglected on the stage of one of our foremost theatres.’
      • ‘For the next few weeks at least all the directional indicators are pointing to blood in the hencoop.’
      • ‘This points to adaptive design as a strategy potentially running across most of what we do.’
      • ‘We don't know for sure but recent evidence points to a Jacobite safe house in Stirling.’
      • ‘He did not concede that the evidence pointed ineluctably to a single conspiracy.’
      • ‘The physical evidence pointed strongly to his guilt.’
      • ‘That she is even a potential leadership contender points to the mess of the current party.’
      • ‘This new inside knowledge points to a high degree of manipulation by the government.’
      • ‘Currency movements are notoriously difficult to predict, but signs point to further weakening of the dollar.’
      • ‘So much in the past points to censorship being too harsh.’
      • ‘The evidence points to a political gesture in which doctrine is only a pretext.’
      • ‘The fact that the gun turret has fallen off points to this being the point of collision.’
      • ‘It said evidence pointed overwhelmingly to MMR as the most effective and safest way of protecting children from measles, mumps and rubella.’
      • ‘And everything is pointing to the fact that he has already forgotten about me and has a new girlfriend.’
      • ‘This points also to the fact that we should not only write ourselves into the text, but also into the action.’
      • ‘Forecasts point to a worsening situation in the third and fourth quarters of this year.’
      • ‘Better yet, several key indicators point to further job gains.’
      • ‘He argued that the court had chosen to ignore evidence pointing beyond doubt to the innocence of the nurses.’
      • ‘It all points to disruption on rather a large scale and uncertainty at least in the medium term.’
      indicate, suggest, be evidence of, evidence, signal, signify, denote, be symptomatic of, be a sign of, be a symptom of, reveal, manifest
      View synonyms
    2. 2.2with object Give force or emphasis to (words or actions)
      ‘he wouldn't miss the opportunity to point a moral’
      • ‘She leant across the table and pointed her remarks with her knitting needles.’
      • ‘The wealth of illustrative material drawn from the political and commercial history of the world with which he pointed his arguments, gave them a touch of human interest.’
      • ‘He points his words with barbs of humor to make them stick.’
      • ‘The Coroner, in pointing the moral, condemned the sale at hucksters' shops of cheap, pernicious cigarettes and said the case should be a warning to boys addicted to cigarette smoking.’
  • 3with object Extend (the toes or feet) in line with the leg by tensing the foot and ankle in such a way as to form a point.

    ‘reach up with your arms and point your toes’
    • ‘I'm also getting used to relaxing my legs and not pointing my toes so hard.’
    • ‘Dancers long complained that the laces dug into their arch the more they pointed their foot.’
    • ‘Brendon is the first one to stir, sitting up and stretching, pointing his leather-booted toes.’
    • ‘Avoid pointing your toes when stretching or exercising.’
    • ‘Imagine pointing your toe and contracting your calf as hard as you can, then dropping your heel off the edge of a step and stretching it out.’
    • ‘Diligently pointing their feet, they march onstage and take their places at the barre.’
    • ‘They're busy cleaning their brushes, clearing their throats, sharpening their pencils, shining their saxophones and pointing their toes.’
    • ‘It is feasible to design a pair of boots that restrict rotation of the foot to the inside or outside, but still allow total mobility in pointing the toe.’
    • ‘She lay on her bed and did some exercises, stretching out her legs and feet and pointing her toes.’
    • ‘For example, alphabet exercises can be done by pointing your toes and drawing the alphabet in the air.’
    • ‘Corrina lifted her feet out of her shoes and, pointing her left foot like a ballerina might, she ran her foot lightly up and down Aaron's leg.’
    • ‘I pointed my toes and my body became a stiffened arch.’
    • ‘From this position, flick your foot until your toes lift off the floor slightly, pointing your toes as they lift.’
  • 4with object Fill the joints of (brickwork or masonry) with smoothly finished mortar.

    ‘the bricks have been poorly pointed’
    • ‘They painted and pointed all the walls and completed the electrical fittings.’
    • ‘Paddy Geraghty and myself used to point that wall when I was employed in the wood many years ago.’
    • ‘Even if the client provides the materials the cost is likely to be more because of the labour involved in mixing the concrete and pointing the wall.’
    • ‘Ideally you should point the brickwork after the bricks have been laid long enough for the mortar to start to set.’
    • ‘The brickwork was being pointed up and painters were carefully applying fresh coats of white paint to doors and lintels.’
  • 5with object Give a sharp, tapered point to.

    ‘he twisted and pointed his moustache’
    • ‘Shape the sticks into batons by shaving off the square corners and pointing the ends.’
    • ‘Anthony would make the best devil, if we pointed his beard and gelled his hair.’
    • ‘They painted by hand and pointed the tips of their brushes by moistening the tips between their lips.’
  • 6with object Insert points in (written text of Semitic languages).

    • ‘Some manuscripts are pointed with what looks like the Land of Israel system written with Tiberian symbols.’
    • ‘This variety of reading arises chiefly from the different modes of pointing the Hebrew words.’
    • ‘The method of pointing the texts which was ultimately accepted was developed by a group of scholars called the Masoretes.’
    1. 6.1 Mark (Psalms) with signs for chanting.
      • ‘This effect probably owes something to her experience of churchgoing, from which she would have learnt the Anglican practice of ‘pointing’ psalms.’
      • ‘I have found this discussion very interesting with solid guidance for pointing the psalms and choosing psalm tones.’
      • ‘Any system of pointing the psalms is bound to receive criticism, as, by its nature, it implies a subjective interpretation of the words.’

Phrases

  • at all points

    • In every part or respect.

      ‘he turned to her, neat at all points, ready for anything’
      • ‘There is no desire - we want, we are discouraging it at all points.’
  • beside (or off) the point

    • Irrelevant.

      ‘Eliot's arguments are wholly beside the point’
      • ‘That his Social Security proposal wasn't going anywhere was almost beside the point.’
      • ‘It's also rubbish, boring and largely made-up, but that is beside the point.’
      • ‘I don't support the occupation myself, but that's beside the point.’
      • ‘What happens to the fans in a particular city is beside the point.’
      • ‘The case naturally provoked a lot of commentary, much of it beside the point.’
      • ‘Perhaps you won't love it with such disturbing ardour as me, but that's beside the point.’
      • ‘Whether we believe in capital punishment is beside the point, presumably those running these prisons think it's a fine idea.’
      • ‘But any such intuition is utterly beside the point, irrelevant as well as impolite.’
      • ‘Frankly, this sort of literary speculation is largely beside the point.’
      • ‘The fact that the law has not been used for 12 years is beside the point.’
      irrelevant, immaterial, unimportant, not to the point, neither here nor there, nothing to do with it, not pertinent, not germane, off the subject, inapposite, inconsequential, incidental, pointless, out of place, wide of the mark, unconnected, peripheral, tangential, extraneous, extrinsic
      View synonyms
  • case in point

    • An instance or example that illustrates what is being discussed.

      ‘the ‘green revolution’ in agriculture is a good case in point’
      • ‘The air pollution caused by smoking autos and scooters is a case in point.’
      • ‘Christmas shopping, an activity rife with tragic overtones, is a case in point.’
      • ‘This remarkable piece of documentary theatre is a case in point: it is both reflective and incisive.’
      • ‘A few cases in point: Two men attacked a British executive on the subway.’
      • ‘The Royal Museum that houses the first cloned sheep named Dolly, the National Gallery of Scotland along with quite a few national museums are paradigmatic cases in point.’
      • ‘What is now happening on the Shankill Road is a classic example of the case in point.’
      • ‘The distances between producer and consumer, suppliers and manufacturers are increasing everywhere - owers from Kenya and shoes from Taiwan are cases in point.’
      • ‘South Africa, the continent's most successful big economy, is the most important case in point.’
      • ‘Alas, this principle is applied more generally as governments assume control of the delivery or standard of services of one sort or another: currently the National Health Service and the railways are cases in point.’
      • ‘Just a case in point, the Cathedral that you see behind me is now open for mass every Sunday.’
      example, instance, case, representative case, typical case, illustration, specimen, sample, exemplar, exemplification, occasion, occurrence
      View synonyms
  • make one's point

    • Put across a proposition clearly and convincingly.

      ‘he sat back, satisfied he had made his point’
      • ‘But I must not have made my point clearly, because the sense in which he offers the statement is different from what I mean.’
      • ‘Also, I clearly didn't make my point well enough, for which I apologize.’
      • ‘That was an example of having a specific humor idea and neatly making your point by skillfully editing the news clips of the day.’
      • ‘Perhaps, if he had reverted to the Irish language, he might have been able to make his point more clearly.’
      • ‘And I think that they make their point very clearly.’
      • ‘So it was necessary to step it up a notch, because if you didn't get arrested and didn't even get harassed, you obviously weren't making your point.’
      • ‘Respond first to what was said before making your point.’
      • ‘Then I explained to them about their incapacity to find a resonant moral language for making their point without calling upon the deep resources of classical Christian pacifism.’
      • ‘These guys mean business, and they are also quite good with the theatrics involved in making their point to a defendant.’
      • ‘Rather than getting into a shouting match, he recommends taking three deep breaths, changing your environment or making your point assertively but calmly.’
  • make a point of

    • Make a special and noticeable effort to do (a specified thing)

      ‘she made a point of taking a walk each day’
      • ‘The best I could do was to make a point of always speaking courteously to travelers.’
      • ‘So he makes a point of always getting up and walking over to just in front of the last guest spot on the couch and standing there during the performance.’
      • ‘When someone phones up with a job offer I make a point of not making a note of their name or telephone number and of not jotting down the content and deadline details in my diary.’
      • ‘Now there are the rest of you who are making a point of not voting.’
      • ‘They're making a point of what kind of clothes he wears.’
      • ‘Regardless of all this, I make a point of always having a good book with me.’
      • ‘The driver will invariably be making a point of not seeing the pedestrian, sometimes even turning the head away to look at the opposite side of the road.’
      • ‘Most parents make a point of actively discouraging their offspring from forming any relationship with a motorbike.’
      • ‘Most political reporters make a point of not saying how they vote.’
      • ‘I make a point of not discussing various matters on this site.’
      make an effort to, go out of one's way to, place emphasis on, put emphasis on
      View synonyms
  • on point

    • 1Relevant and appropriate to what is happening or being discussed.

      ‘none of the above comments are on point’
    • 2Extremely good, attractive, or stylish.

      ‘her outfit was on point’
      ‘Janet's vocals were on point’
  • point the finger

    • Openly accuse someone or apportion blame.

      ‘I hope that the committee will point the finger at the real culprits’
      • ‘It's very easy to point the finger and accuse a famous person of being in the wrong.’
      • ‘It accused Defra of deliberately ignoring deer and pointing the finger at badgers instead, even though a TB-infected badger had never been found in Cumbria.’
      • ‘In an interview with a Sunday newspaper, he denied any blame and pointed the finger at senior commanders.’
      • ‘And the would-be organiser is pointing the finger of blame firmly at ‘anti-royalist’ members of Rochdale Council.’
      • ‘I don't want politicians blaming each other and pointing the finger at each other on the international stage.’
      • ‘However, in contrast, my argument is that we need to be cautious about where we lay blame rather than pointing the finger at easy scapegoats.’
      • ‘Expect to see them pointing the finger at SDLP MPs and accusing them of undermining the national project.’
      • ‘According to the psychologists involved parents are taught to explain to their children how their behaviour affects other people rather than pointing the finger of blame at them.’
      • ‘He said he wasn't pointing the finger of blame at Council officials or anyone else, just saying there was a problem there and it was the Council's responsibility to address it.’
      • ‘Over-fishing and seals have been blamed, while others point the finger at traditional waters getting warmer and pushing fish away.’
      blame, accuse, denounce, inform against, blacken the name of
      View synonyms
  • the point of no return

    • The point in a journey or enterprise at which it becomes essential or more practical to continue to the end rather than turn back.

      • ‘Analysts claim that the Scottish Executive's own promises are themselves indicative of the problem which has brought North Sea fish stocks close to the point of no return.’
      • ‘This is the point of no return, where matter is sucked into the black hole itself, where the gravitational pull is so great that not even light can escape - giving the black hole its name.’
      • ‘Given that, and your background and the work you are doing right now, some believe we're at the point of no return, or possibly quite close to it.’
      • ‘More importantly, we have now passed the point of no return.’
      • ‘With the policies of pre-emption being much debated, perhaps it is unfashionable to bring up a crisis that is rapidly reaching the point of no return.’
      • ‘With climate changes now near the point of no return, big sections of the Artic and Antarctic ice floes are breaking off, drifting into the oceans and melting.’
      • ‘The world economy, it seems, has by now passed the point of no return, and we are set upon the road to a single integrated global economy, regardless of the wishes of governments and citizens.’
      • ‘For thousands of African slaves this was the point of no return.’
      • ‘One of the biggest problems in American culture is our society's tendency to embrace youth and glamorize youth to the point of no return, in the same breath.’
      • ‘The democratic activists are beyond the point of no return.’
  • point of sailing

    • A sailing boat's heading in relation to the wind.

      ‘adjust the centre board according to point of sailing’
  • point taken

    • A response indicating that the speaker recognizes the validity of someone's idea or argument.

      ‘point taken, but I stand by my view’
      • ‘I know only too well, that were it not for our patients, doctors and nurses would not have jobs. Point taken.’
      • ‘Point taken about the pressure factor, but I can't help feeling that the studying philosophy can afford the student useful tools when it comes to interpreting philosophical texts.’
      • ‘Point taken, but I don't think legislating against it works.’
      • ‘Point taken, however there were different circumstances.’
      • ‘If you're correcting me about using the phrase wrongly, point taken.’
  • take someone's point

    • Accept the validity of someone's idea or argument.

      • ‘Everybody expected Davis to take his point but the youngster had other ideas and blasted to the net to leave the Rags victorious.’
      • ‘I take your point entirely, and I agree with you about what the process of inspection is about and the rectification of any sort of deficiency in the process is admirable.’
      • ‘I take your point about their relative ease in front of the camera, but then these are people who like, and are used to, living their lives and washing their dirty linen in public.’
      • ‘I take your point that this is not a definition of art, but it's a working definition of art.’
      • ‘We take his point that it is a partnership with private enterprise that has been suggested, but this does not alter this paper's view that the council should be responsible for the efficient management of its own buildings.’
      • ‘I entirely agree with his last two sentences, and I take his point, but I disagree with the rest.’
      • ‘But I'm not sure that I take your point about the equivalence of Japanese and English syllables in scansion.’
      • ‘I do take his point about the need for openness - this Government accepts that.’
      • ‘I take your point that neither is mutually exclusive, but recognising that neither is mandatory on a particular police service, in that context, should we not just go for best practice, if it is not mandatory in any event?’
      • ‘I take your point, I was going with what I observed rather than something I'd read.’
  • to the point

    • Relevant and appropriate to what is happening or being discussed.

      ‘his evidence was brief and to the point’
      • ‘More to the point, if I made a copy of a cassette, the copy would be inferior to the original.’
      • ‘More to the point, I wonder how much those coffee addicts spend on their habit in a week?’
      • ‘More to the point, this marks a subtle shift in the nature of what a computer is.’
      • ‘The chapters are brief and to the point, making the book easy to read, and to put down and pick up.’
      • ‘Why is she phoning me and more to the point, why is she phoning me at 9 in the morning?’
      • ‘If the safety of teenage girls is the objective, then money spent on taxis home is more to the point.’
      • ‘That means a long car journey and, more to the point, an argument about what music to play.’
      • ‘More to the point still, is this potential to anger particularly strong in the media?’
      • ‘In fact, more to the point, why stand for election to something you only want to destroy?’
      • ‘More to the point, would Ansel Adams have used digital cameras if he were alive today?’
      relevant, pertinent, apposite, germane, applicable, apropos, appropriate, apt, fitting, suitable, material, connected, related, linked
      View synonyms
  • up to a point

    • To some extent but not completely.

      • ‘England will be prepared to gamble on him, up to a point.’
      • ‘I think it is important that they have a different vision of how America advances its goals in the world, up to a point.’
      • ‘Well, my fears seem to have been realised up to a point.’
      • ‘To be fair they were quite entertaining, up to a point.’
      • ‘It makes a certain amount of sense, up to a point, in a ‘look on the bright side’ sort of way.’
      • ‘The cars are more experienced at aiming to miss cyclists than you are at aiming to miss cars, trust the local drivers - up to a point.’
      • ‘You can even choose your ethnic identity up to a point.’
      • ‘Well, I like funny-shaped buildings up to a point, and this one would make, I reckon, an excellent motor museum.’
      • ‘There is no doubt that virtual reality is a valuable tool that can save time and money, but designers and industry chiefs trust virtual cars only up to a point.’
      • ‘He said the council would cover a shortfall - up to a point.’
      partly, to some extent, to a certain extent, to some degree, to a certain degree, in part, somewhat, partially, not totally, not entirely, not wholly
      View synonyms
  • win on points

    • Win by scoring more points than one's opponent (as awarded by the judges and/or the referee) rather than by a knockout.

      • ‘A mind-blowing battle ended with a deserved Frazier win on points.’
      • ‘He could not win by a knockout, he could not win on points against the tireless Darcy assault, all he could do was dig in and try to survive for 20 rounds.’
      • ‘The first and last time they met was 12 years ago as super middleweights at a leisure centre in Gloucester, when Curtis won on points.’
      • ‘In September he successfully defended his Oriental Flyweight title against the Japanese boxer Hitoshi Misako, again winning on points over 12 rounds.’
      • ‘All three judges controversially saw the former winning on points - a verdict the latter has always refused to accept.’

Phrasal Verbs

  • point something out

    • 1Direct someone's gaze or attention towards, especially by extending one's finger.

      ‘I pointed out a conical heap of stones’
      • ‘Every once in a while, I'd stop him and gaze into store windows, pointing different things out.’
      • ‘One would be hard pressed to point out a single fat man among these thousands.’
      • ‘The Manager was walking by so I called him over and pointed it out.’
      • ‘She pointed out which room was his and then called for the nearest servant.’
      • ‘Then there was time for standing around outside the dome and pointing things out in the sky.’
      • ‘He points out areas recently cleared of abandoned cars and rubbish.’
      • ‘Quinn lifted a hand to her chin, and stayed in that same stony position for a few moments before lifting a finger as if to point something out.’
      • ‘He pointed out the seat and I made my way towards it, my bag swinging in my hands.’
      • ‘As we left, he pointed out the tree which is directly in front of the pub door.’
      • ‘After we cleaned off the detritus, I spotted several small fossils embedded in the rock and pointed them out to Zack.’
      • ‘As they drove, she played tour guide and pointed out spots of interest in Dover.’
      • ‘He pointed out matching areas around the mouth and eyebrows as well as the nose and jaw line.’
      • ‘Opening to a marked page he pointed a paragraph out using his finger.’
      • ‘A passenger found the box cutter and pointed it out to crew members.’
      • ‘He only survived because he was swept into a ditch and a man spotted him and pointed out a route to safety.’
      • ‘God doesn't extend a hand from the sky and point them out to you.’
      • ‘He saw the two towers of the World Trade Cener and appreciated Jabbar pointing them out.’
      • ‘That way, apparently, the parents stare at your fingers while you point things out more than they listen to what you're saying.’
      • ‘The children are amazed to see that each of them has a part in creating a beautiful object - multicolored and varied-and they take great pride and ownership in the tapestry, looking hard to find their ribbon and pointing it out to others.’
      identify, recognize, single out, pick out, spot, choose, select, point out
      identify, show, designate, call attention to, draw attention to, direct attention to, indicate, specify, detail, mention, refer to, allude to, touch on
      View synonyms
      1. 1.1reporting verbSay something to make someone aware of a fact or circumstance.
        with clause ‘she pointed out that his van had been in the car park all day’
        with direct speech ‘‘Most of the people round here are very poor,’ I pointed out’
        • ‘As Councillor Ralph Berry rightly points out, vandalism can knock the heart out of a community.’
        • ‘She also points out that these children benefit from the family support brothers and sisters can offer.’
        • ‘As Dan points out, this is a recipe for identity theft, and in no meaningful way can be said to increase security.’
        • ‘She points out that he disappeared for 14 years without saying a word to Sharon.’
        • ‘Many commentators have rightly pointed out that such a ' bill of rights' would be a legal minefield.’
        • ‘Most crimes, he points out, are committed by a very few persistent offenders.’
        • ‘However, the report also points out that much progress has been made, locally and nationally.’
        • ‘Unlike film and TV, he points out, on stage you have to get it right each time.’
        • ‘Oily fish, such as mackerel or trout, is one of the easiest things possible to cook, points out Annie.’
        • ‘He points out that the 1990s saw a cluster of unusually destructive floods in Scotland.’
        • ‘I must point out here that I don't have problem with directors appearing in films.’
        • ‘He pointed out that there was never any suggestion of violence or threats towards the victim.’
        • ‘As she points out, most working men's clubs could not operate without women.’
        • ‘He points out that substantial funding is being poured in to the police areas worst affected by violent crime.’
        • ‘Michael says isolation can be a problem for single parents, but points out that help is available.’
        • ‘We have so many contradictory feelings when we meet people, he points out.’
        • ‘We sent out a notice to all 500 finance directors in the NHS trusts pointing out what was going on.’
        • ‘He pointed out that on those occasions' police directed motorists to the car park.’
        • ‘She points out that clothes can help people feel better about themselves.’
        • ‘He points out that one very important aspect of his training for his new job was in customer care.’
        identify, show, designate, call attention to, draw attention to, direct attention to, indicate, specify, detail, mention, refer to, allude to, touch on
        View synonyms
  • point something up

    • Reveal the true nature or importance of something.

      ‘he did so much to point up their plight in the 1960s’
      • ‘If you notice anything very funny when around and about, or write something that you think deserves consideration for the award, then do feel free to point it up to me.’
      • ‘Although excellent entertainment for dyed-in-the-wool fans, the sameness of this series was pointed up when a really imaginative director was put to work on one of them.’
      • ‘Whenever any important motif appears, he points it up almost pedantically.’
      • ‘Unfortunately, those differences were not pointed up by the authors or editor.’
      • ‘Pointing up the severity of the challenge the aviation industry is currently facing, he said that at this moment, some routes were loss-making.’
      emphasize, highlight, draw attention to, accentuate, underline, underscore, turn the spotlight on, spotlight, foreground, lay emphasis on, put emphasis on, stress, give prominence to, play up, focus attention on, accent, bring to the fore
      View synonyms

Origin

Middle English: the noun partly from Old French point, from Latin punctum ‘something that is pricked’, giving rise to the senses ‘unit, mark, point in space or time’; partly from Old French pointe, from Latin puncta ‘pricking’, giving rise to the senses ‘sharp tip, promontory’. The verb is from Old French pointer, and in some senses from the English noun.

Pronunciation

point

/pɔɪnt/