Definition of acquaintance in English:

acquaintance

noun

  • 1A person's knowledge or experience of something.

    ‘the students had little acquaintance with the language’
    • ‘While awaiting the widening of 16th Avenue N.W., you can broaden your acquaintance with poetry at Annie's Book Co.’
    • ‘It's appalling to think that a book like this may enter classrooms and inflict itself on young minds with little or no acquaintance with art history.’
    • ‘I'm currently on leave, so I should obviously be using all this spare time renewing my acquaintance with children's telly, particularly if it's getting this risque.’
    • ‘Black manages to compress a good deal into a limited space, calling on his thorough acquaintance with a vast array of primary sources.’
    • ‘Sentimental souls are invited to renew their acquaintance with the Warrumbungle National Park during its 50 year celebrations next month.’
    • ‘Anyone who has any acquaintance with the Bible will know that prophets regularly used strong language when confronted with hypocrisy or decadence.’
    • ‘The result was Donovan's renewed acquaintance with the world of the bohemian café, a world of poetry and music, philosophy and social politics, meditation and art.’
    • ‘Some had experience of Frankish Gaul and hence some acquaintance with Roman institutions and culture.’
    • ‘It was a fine achievement and I hope the singers enjoyed singing it as much as I enjoyed the opportunity of renewing my acquaintance with this excellent piece.’
    • ‘Our first acquaintance with power is, presumably, our experience of the power of personal agency.’
    • ‘After graduating from Paris, Burman returned to India to renew his acquaintance with the tradition of the art and the culture of his native land.’
    • ‘It was a moment of collective acquaintance with history and the past.’
    • ‘Despite the title, this play adds little to our knowledge or appreciation of Beckett although assuming a fairly comprehensive acquaintance with his works.’
    • ‘Long acquaintance with a work is therefore essential.’
    • ‘Caresses marks my first acquaintance with the work of the Catalan playwright Sergi Belbel - and I am certainly richer for the introduction.’
    • ‘I left feeling a bit cheated, but in the following days renewed my acquaintance with the Shostakovich concerto - encouraged by the memory of an inspired performance.’
    • ‘Intuition represents knowledge by ‘direct acquaintance with things.’’
    • ‘Long acquaintance with her own profession makes her impatient with fantasists and phonies.’
    • ‘Next it brought an experimental acquaintance with grace and forgiveness.’
    • ‘Should the rest of us trust what we see on television when our acquaintance with a case is confined to that little bit of testimony that is billed as a confession?’
    familiarity, conversance, conversancy, contact, acquaintanceship
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    1. 1.1 One's slight knowledge of or friendship with someone.
      ‘I renewed my acquaintance with Herbert’
      ‘most men of her acquaintance were in uniform now’
      • ‘If you get some special facilities because of your acquaintance with the doctor, don't make it public - have regard for the feelings and sentiments of other patients.’
      • ‘His telling anecdotes draw on years of personal acquaintance with key figures, and alert attendance at arcane, cultish tech conferences.’
      • ‘As soon as the statement was issued to the press, however, anyone enjoying even the slightest acquaintance with the player recognised that the words were not his.’
      • ‘With the renewal of his acquaintance with her, Jean's life takes a new turn.’
      • ‘She has difficulty believing the rumours of her husband's acquaintance with the infamous Mrs. Erlynne, but yields to the rumours anyways in hope of finding true love.’
      • ‘Now, have you had opportunities, in the course of your acquaintance with Mr. Favreau, to watch him walk?’
      • ‘Now, because of her acquaintance with Moher, Zalie was looked at as if she were one of the most important people ever born.’
      • ‘It was the most amazing part of his acquaintance with her yet.’
      • ‘When his marriage is disrupted by the renewal of his acquaintance with Shimamoto, it comes back to haunt him.’
      • ‘Many shooters use nothing else, One young fellow of my acquaintance, an avid shooter and hunter, mentioned he had never owned a wood-stocked rifle.’
      • ‘If, during the course of the night, you happen to meet two philosophical ladies of your acquaintance, it is important that you conduct yourself respectably.’
      • ‘Early in his career he had made the mistake, at the outset of his acquaintance with a lady, of telling her that he loved her and exacting the same avowal in return.’
      • ‘After all, the ladies of your acquaintance belong to high society.’
      • ‘It was lovely to renew acquaintance with Gareth Edwards in particular, possibly the greatest ever scrum half, whose fine Welsh accent endears him.’
      • ‘One fellow London-dweller of my acquaintance said recently she was finally decamping from the city.’
      • ‘Very clever, Valda, though some professional magicians of my acquaintance manage this trick with much more aplomb and good humor.’
      • ‘I genuinely love the company of women, unlike certain misogynistic Lotharios of my acquaintance.’
      • ‘My acquaintance with her just before she entered government made the experience particularly alarming.’
      • ‘She despises George and is diverted by the renewal of her acquaintance with the rakish Judge Brack who offers the possibility of flirting, gossip and intrigue.’
      • ‘Over the five years of our acquaintance with her, Fanny avoids pregnancy when it would be professionally inconvenient.’
      association, relationship, contact, social contact
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  • 2A person one knows slightly, but who is not a close friend.

    ‘a wide circle of friends and acquaintances’
    • ‘His death evoked widespread regret and shock amongst his many friends and acquaintances.’
    • ‘Now they have and they are really enjoying meeting and greeting old friends and acquaintances.’
    • ‘An average day for her exhausts the topics of friends, acquaintances, drawing and books.’
    • ‘People who have had that sort of bad experience are reluctant to return and warn off their friends and acquaintances as well.’
    • ‘I have observed something completely different within my own circle of friends and acquaintances.’
    • ‘Friends and acquaintances would comment that we were more like sisters.’
    • ‘The rest of the male participants were thought to be friends, acquaintances and hangers on.’
    • ‘Most of the friends and acquaintances he contacted said they were not interested.’
    • ‘I leave behind a number of acquaintances and two close friends who have lived every moment of this ordeal with me.’
    • ‘Most of my friends and acquaintances are anti-war or at least uncomfortable about it.’
    • ‘Most people are content with having more acquaintances and very few friends.’
    • ‘He had big-name friends, acquaintances, mistresses and more book deals waiting.’
    • ‘And the news from business partners, friends and acquaintances in America is similar.’
    • ‘There were also several friends and acquaintances who knew Robert well.’
    • ‘All my friends and regular acquaintances are smarter than me on all sorts of different levels.’
    • ‘I'm finding that with a lot of my friends or acquaintances going back to school, I miss it.’
    • ‘The list seems to go on and is not just limited to my immediate circle of family, friends and acquaintances.’
    • ‘The people I called friends, more close acquaintances, left for university.’
    • ‘It's inevitable that as one moves from one place to another, it is easy to lose touch with friends and acquaintances.’
    • ‘To give an example from the purely personal level, an elderly female acquaintance of mine does not drink coffee.’
    • ‘In some ways it is not the close friends but the acquaintances I miss the most.’
    contact, associate, connection, ally, colleague
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    1. 2.1 Acquaintances considered collectively.
      ‘his extensive acquaintance included Oscar Wilde and Yeats’
      • ‘In such terms Mr Gradgrind always mentally introduced himself, whether to his private circle of acquaintance, or to the public in general.’
      • ‘He could have included elite journalists in that circle of acquaintance.’
      • ‘His varied acquaintance included Boswell, Bentham, Godwin, Paine, and Coleridge.’
      • ‘It is striking to realize how much of this material is personal-not subjective, but rather framed by her own family history or immediate acquaintance.’
      • ‘Djuna Barnes was one of the bohemian set in 1920 and 30s Paris, and her creative circle of acquaintance included Gertrude Stein.’
      • ‘So basically, you look at the family members, acquaintance, or a total stranger.’

Phrases

  • make the acquaintance of (or make someone's acquaintance)

    • Meet someone for the first time and become only slightly familiar.

      ‘they are anxious to make your acquaintance’
      • ‘It was a pleasure to have made your acquaintance and to have met your wonderful dedicated team.’
      • ‘Remember the name, as it's well worth making their acquaintance.’
      • ‘Harry and Dolly will be pleased to make their acquaintance again, too.’
      • ‘The entire executive would welcome the opportunity to make her acquaintance.’
      • ‘And I, it must be said, was particularly pleased to have made the reporter 's acquaintance.’
      • ‘Wherever he went, he made friends and, not surprisingly, both at home and abroad his sudden and tragic death has left a huge void for all to those privileged to make his acquaintance.’
      • ‘Mr. Holmes, I'm honoured to make your acquaintance.’
      • ‘Those of us who were fortunate to make his acquaintance during his brief stay in the city know only of his quiet courtesy and readiness to help others.’
      • ‘What a surreal pleasure to make Gibb 's acquaintance.’
      • ‘Each will have a special anecdote of their friend Michael and his memory will long be cherished by all who were indeed fortunate to make his acquaintance.’
      • ‘I am pleased to make your acquaintance, for I have always wished to meet a Master Bard.’
      • ‘And like most people I've encountered there, I don't recall the specifics of making his acquaintance.’
      • ‘John Raw has a liking for comic roles, and it is easy to see why on making his acquaintance.’
      • ‘I much look forward to making his acquaintance.’
      • ‘It's been marvellous to make his acquaintance and it's great that he's still on the end of a phone call.’
      • ‘Her gentle, good humoured and obliging nature, mild manner and unassuming disposition commended her to all fortunate enough to make her acquaintance.’
      • ‘He was held in the warmest regard by all who were indeed fortunate enough to make his acquaintance.’
      • ‘Venus lives with her husband in Vancouver, and we look forward to making her acquaintance.’
      • ‘Mark was seemingly intent on making his acquaintance with anyone from the opposite sex.’
      • ‘It was a pleasure and a delight to make his acquaintance…’
      get in formation, get in line, line up, take one's position, get in order, get into columns, get into rows
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Origin

Middle English (in the sense ‘mutual knowledge, being acquainted’): from Old French acointance, from acointier ‘make known’ (see acquaint).

Pronunciation

acquaintance

/əˈkwāntəns//əˈkweɪntəns/