Main definitions of camp in US English:

: camp1camp2

camp1

noun

  • 1A place with temporary accommodations of huts, tents, or other structures, typically used by soldiers, refugees, prisoners, or travelers.

    ‘the enemy camp’
    ‘a detention camp’
    ‘the shot woke the whole camp’
    • ‘Now, there's a 21st century twist on the Potemkin village: Potemkin refugee camps!’
    • ‘There were too few American troops on the ground and so police stations, ministries, army camps and government buildings were left wide open to the mobs.’
    • ‘Some have taken up residence in private homes while others have gone to abandoned villages or refugee camps.’
    • ‘Many neighborhoods, towns, villages, and refugee camps were badly damaged or destroyed.’
    • ‘The plan is still under discussion, but the idea is to move people temporarily to tent camps while workers clean and disinfect one neighbourhood at a time.’
    • ‘We are not a symbolic representation of war, of a refugee camp, or a shantytown.’
    • ‘Thousands of local residents face serious health problems in overcrowded refugee camps and temporary shelters.’
    • ‘In that misty dawn I rose from our tent in a crowded camp outside the town, with one of the worst hangovers I can recall.’
    • ‘For example, artillery crewmen could be asked to do a rotation at a POW camp or a refugee camp.’
    • ‘There are reports of some voting in refugee camps outside the city.’
    • ‘The people in the cities and surrounding refugee camps are desperate.’
    • ‘This is the first time a facility inside the camp was hit since Japanese troops were deployed there in January this year.’
    • ‘Those who managed to escape often turn to the refugee camps in neighboring Chad.’
    • ‘‘We are not going to seize scout camps and little pup tents,’ Ms Rydalch said.’
    • ‘Its reporters visited nearly 50 camps, ranging from major bases to relatively isolated outposts.’
    • ‘People are forced into overcrowded camps and public buildings, and spread of communicable diseases is facilitated.’
    • ‘Also, the conditions within refugee camps and other aid distribution centers are not conducive to methodical record-keeping.’
    • ‘The writings of young teenage boys and girls in different refugee camps and occupied towns are the most moving part of the book.’
    • ‘Over four million are in refugee camps in neighbouring countries.’
    • ‘Regrouping in camps diminishes resistance, facilitates extermination and makes it possible to camouflage it, to give it the appearance of a natural death.’
    bivouac, encampment, cantonment, barracks, base
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1North American A recreational institution providing facilities for outdoor activities, sports, crafts, and other special interests and typically featuring rustic overnight accommodations.
      ‘a summer camp for children’
      ‘drama camp’
      • ‘I agreed that she could return to the camp for the holiday period.’
      • ‘The Fun and Activity camps will be held from July 12 to 16 and from July 19 to 23.’
      • ‘UP to 60 Brazilian soccer coaches will conduct more than sixty soccer camps in Ireland this summer, in an attempt to introduce something of the Latin game to our style.’
      • ‘He has recently returned from a trip to America to help launch Camp Fiver, a recreational camp for underprivileged children in New York State.’
      • ‘The group also says these fees are important to help fund its other activities, from writing camps for kids in the Berkshires to readings on Indian reservations.’
      • ‘I personally think it sucks that they're building camps at some of the spots.’
      • ‘He allowed himself to be lulled asleep by the Principal's ideas of science camps and summer math programs.’
      • ‘The camp will involve many activities including various sports, relay games, mini-games and an aqua splash session in the swimming pool.’
      • ‘Benefits have come in the form of facilities at camps.’
      • ‘Activities like camps and trips cost extra and vary from group to group.’
      • ‘As well as Warminster there are plans to upgrade buildings at camps across the county, including Tidworth, Durrington and Bulford.’
      • ‘Besides the variety of activities the camps offer, there are friendships and memories to cherish for a lifetime.’
      • ‘The Leisure Centre will be running action-packed fun and activity camps again this summer.’
      • ‘Camps have opened their doors for fun and sun.’
      • ‘On that hotter-than-hell summer afternoon, the camp was serving pizza for lunch.’
      • ‘Facilities in the camp are still extremely basic and another 4 000 returnees live in the town itself.’
      • ‘Each camp typically includes a restaurant, store, and swimming pool.’
      • ‘Church, youth and school groups use the camp for recreational, educational and church-related activities.’
      • ‘Parents are welcome to join their wards during weekends and see for themselves the activities at the camps.’
      • ‘Summer will be here before you know it, and now is the time to start making plans for camps and other activities that will keep your children entertained.’
      • ‘Funding will permit the camp to install new washroom facilities and a ‘Challenge Ropes Course’.’
      • ‘Opened in September 1928 the camp still provides holidays for 1,000 Salford children every year.’
      • ‘Typically, the camps offer a daily programme of activities and events to keep children busy all day.’
      • ‘The activity camp is open to boys and girls from senior infants to sixth class.’
      • ‘But the town centres were busy and most hotels, holiday parks and camps reported a good number of bookings.’
      • ‘When Rielle woke up the next morning, the camp was bustling with activity.’
      • ‘She told me the camp was a vacation resort belonging to her family.’
      • ‘The £900 raised on the day was used to maintain the boats and to help with camps and other activities run by the group.’
      • ‘The introduction to fencing often occurs in schools, recreation camps and fitness centres in the form of class instruction.’
      • ‘The system works with youngsters in a variety of settings, including camps, schools, and residential treatment facilities.’
      • ‘The camp offers classes in drama, arts and crafts and storytelling.’
      • ‘A number of summer camps and their own swim camps took place during the school holidays as well as swimming lessons and Aquafit sessions on Saturdays’
      • ‘Work hard in school, sample lots of afterschool activities, and find out about summer courses or camps, as well as internship opportunities.’
      • ‘Even as a child, during the holidays I would find a way to go on holiday, stay at camps and hotels.’
      • ‘One of the activities in the camp includes interactive sessions with the parents.’
      • ‘The reconstruction of the camp as a stone building rather than a more realistic wooden frame complex adds to the fairy-tale setting.’
      • ‘The scouts continue with their activities during the summer and trips and camps are planned.’
      • ‘The camps offer a myriad range of courses covering music, art, dance, karate and more.’
      • ‘These residents were reluctant to return to the estate but may have been prepared to move into one of the recreation camps that were eventually set aside for the purpose.’
    2. 1.2 Temporary overnight lodging out of doors, typically in tents.
      ‘we pitched camp at a fine spot’
      ‘we made camp at a bend in the creek’
      • ‘Late that night they made camp in a field by the river.’
      • ‘They pitched camp near a stream, where they caught fish for supper, and the horses could graze on fresh, moist grass.’
      • ‘We had pitched camp at dusk, raising the tents beside the ruins of an old rest house on a bluff of rock named Maggu Chatti.’
      • ‘I suppose memories of their last show was still fresh on the minds of everyone as they pitched camp.’
      • ‘They made camp and watched for more than a week but nothing came.’
      • ‘Jahson had cleared up the camp, and no one would ever have known that humans had made camp there.’
      • ‘In the thick of this, well away from the road, they made camp and waited for the light of dawn.’
      • ‘We pitched camp about two kilometers out from Mount Crean on the Lashly Glacier.’
      • ‘They pitched camp in backyards, in the woods or on the beach.’
      • ‘But as they found a quiet spot and pitched camp for the night, an ominous character appeared on horseback’
      • ‘As we rode into the forest and made camp, I promised myself to really tell her how I felt and what I really was.’
      • ‘They rode out of town quickly, avoiding all people and continued riding until they made camp in a dense forest.’
      • ‘We had her secured in a tent when we made camp last night.’
      • ‘Philip once commented that he pitched camp to suit the needs of his baggage animals.’
      • ‘We had ridden over 22 miles when we finally made camp near Taylorsville on the South Anna River.’
      • ‘They hiked for the rest of the day and made camp just before sunset.’
      • ‘An acceptable site was eventually arrived at and we pitched camp.’
      • ‘She was only a few nights from the monastery when she pitched camp in a desolate swamp.’
      • ‘As we made camp well into our fourth night on the road, I curled up into a little ball, pretending to sleep until I was sure all the others were slumbering.’
      • ‘I made camp and a fire and laid my soldier uniform out for her to lie on.’
    3. 1.3 A facility at which athletes train during the off-season.
      ‘football tryout camps’
      • ‘The chance that Banks and Kent Graham will return and compete for the job in training camp should not be discounted.’
      • ‘Carla McGhee arrived at Connecticut Sun training camp with mixed feelings.’
      • ‘A small plaque lies before a tree planted in Korey Stringer's memory at Minnesota Vikings training camp.’
      • ‘Davis will need an outstanding offseason and training camp to regain his spot.’
      • ‘By the time training camp opens, cases are being made for every franchise in the league as a Super Bowl contender.’
      • ‘A startled, but later apologetic Shockey, ran off into the woods and returned to Giants training camp.’
  • 2The supporters of a particular party or doctrine regarded collectively.

    ‘his views were firmly rooted in the conservative camp’
    • ‘Scrappiness in both camps was keeping the supporters on the edge of their seats for all the wrong reasons.’
    • ‘Many of the contributors explain how Reagan influenced their shift from liberal or moderate politics into the conservative camp.’
    • ‘The inter-city rivalry between two large camps of supporters will add an edge to what promises to be an enthralling evening.’
    • ‘Both camps regard nature as a world in which the human being cannot meaningfully participate.’
    • ‘In this regard, the political camps ought to tackle the issue of changing the presidential election system only after they help state affairs run smoothly and efficiently.’
    • ‘Both camps ' business supporters claim to be advancing the best interests of corporate Sweden.’
    • ‘The election fever is sweeping through Zambia and it is not a surprise there is pushing and pulling amongst politicians both in the ruling party and the opposition camps.’
    • ‘Supporters of all camps acknowledge the need to attract young people into the party.’
    • ‘You have different camps in both parties, Kitty.’
    • ‘Regardless of the camp, each party will basically put its self-development as its first priority.’
    • ‘The day even saw minor clashes among female supporters of the three camps.’
    • ‘Partisan research studies have been produced that support both camps.’
    • ‘The party hopes the pro-democracy camp will win at least half of the 60 seats.’
    • ‘In this regard the situation clearly favors the conservative camp.’
    • ‘Both camps hope that the party can examine itself, and respond to the public's expectation for morally upright officials and improved government efficiency.’
    • ‘Even the good news was marred by signs that the anti-agreement camp within his own party is growing.’
    • ‘While they will surely attempt to show a semblance of unity in the run-up to May's poll, there can be little doubt that tensions between the two camps and their supporters will hit the headlines again soon.’
    • ‘Both the ruling and opposition camps should support it.’
    • ‘In this regard, the ruling camp should immediately stop interfering in the investigation in view of the law.’
    • ‘The protesters came from two different camps; one group supporting the minister's decision, the other opposing it.’
    faction, wing, side, group, party, lobby, caucus, bloc, clique, coterie, set, sect, cabal
    View synonyms

verb

[no object]
  • 1Live for a time in a camp, tent, or camper, as when on vacation.

    ‘parks in which you can camp or stay in a chalet’
    • ‘I would be camping at Kurow Holiday Park which sits right on the back door step of the mighty Waitaki River.’
    • ‘It is also estimated that some one-in-three adults have been camping or taken a caravan holiday at some time.’
    • ‘I think it's fate that whenever you set up a tent when you go camping, there is always something missing.’
    • ‘For most of our stay, we camped on the property of a man who hunts to provide meat a couple of times a week for his family.’
    • ‘Many had driven from across Germany, pitched tents on the grass and camped for the weekend.’
    • ‘He added that his biggest concern was for people camping in the local caravan park and on the school fields.’
    • ‘I keep dreaming I'm camping with this gorgeous woman, sometimes in army tents, sometimes in mountain tents, sometimes in wigwams.’
    • ‘If you're camping on tarmac, it helps to have a tent that will stay up with a minimum number of pegs’
    • ‘All I really knew was that we would be camping in a tent.’
    • ‘We were living in the woods, camping out in tents.’
    • ‘Hunters can stay safe by not camping in dry waterways.’
    • ‘I recommend this to anyone for your first day in any strange place, even if the rest of the week you plan on camping without a tent.’
    • ‘The first leisure visitors did so under the guise of hunting and normally camped in lean-tos or tents.’
    • ‘It is now a ghost town with only a few cottages still occupied, but there are interesting historic walks, a thirty bunk lodge, and plenty of space for tent camping.’
    • ‘Twenty years ago an enterprising Jack Jackson ran diving holidays from here, his visitors camping in the courtyard of the lighthouse.’
    • ‘Since disappearing, they had been camping in a tent in a field at Eldwick and had been visiting Mark's house to pick up some further provisions when they were seen.’
    • ‘Participants will still be welcome to arrive on Sunday, and those who camp may stay over Friday night if they wish.’
    • ‘The river bends inwards away from here, and they could have lit a fire and camped with their tents against the cliffs for protection against the winds.’
    • ‘With the other soldiers he camped in tents at the racetrack.’
    • ‘‘We've spent a few holidays camping out there with the girls,’ Frank Karreman says.’
    pitch tents, set up camp, pitch camp, encamp, bivouac
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Lodge temporarily, especially in an inappropriate or uncomfortable place.
      ‘we camped out for the night in a mission schoolroom’
      • ‘For more than three weeks, villagers have camped out in their village hall demanding the ouster of the mayor and new elections.’
      • ‘I backed my pickup up under a shade tree, camped out on the open tailgate, and drew flight patterns on a roughly sketched map of the area within my view.’
      • ‘Television crews from as far away as America and Japan camped out in Malmesbury and news helicopters circled over the town, looking for the outlaw pigs, which were soon nicknamed Butch and Sundance.’
      • ‘They camped out on York's pavements overnight to ensure the best view of the regal visitors.’
      • ‘Thousands of drenched and mud-covered concert goers who had camped out at Fairyhouse slowly made their way back home yesterday after braving heavy downpours over the weekend.’
      • ‘Scouts searched two buildings where insurgents have camped out.’
      • ‘Wellwishers began gathering in force in the centre of Windsor shortly after dawn, adding to the small but hardy band that camped out on pavements overnight to ensure a good view of the Guildhall.’
      • ‘An incident from the summer of 1997, when the miners camped out at Gorbatyi Bridge and demanded that the government pay back wages, could serve as an example of their apathy.’
      • ‘When the tickets went on sale last March they sold out in two hours, leaving an number of fans who had camped out overnight angry their efforts were in vain.’
      • ‘The Waterboys camped out at Windmill Lane, the studio made famous by U2, and promptly began to make some elbow room for themselves.’
      • ‘On the first night, over 40 tents are set up and homeless and poor people spend the night camped out in the park.’
      • ‘To research the book, Waters camped out in the Imperial War Museum near her flat.’
      • ‘We all camped out in the living room, but it was too hot to sleep well.’
      • ‘Guards camped out all night at every entrance to the estate to send off would-be gatecrashers.’
      • ‘And of course, there are dozen of reporters camped out right here in front of the federal prison.’
      • ‘If the cops camped out at the corner of Spadina and College, they could cover the costs of their salaries by ticketing bike-lane parkers.’
      • ‘Travellers who camped out at St Michael's Hospital claimed they were treated unfairly by residents, before they moved off the site.’
      • ‘They camped out at a local garage rock band's house and played noisy, careening rhythms to a small number of bemused punks at the old Multipurpose Rumpus Room.’
      • ‘Picasso camped out in the spare bedroom, between the wall and the nearby wardrobe, atop some luggage.’
      • ‘Reporters camped out in her mother's garden.’
    2. 1.2 Remain persistently in one place.
      ‘the press will be camping on your doorstep once they get onto this story’
      • ‘For the remaining minutes Banbridge camped on the Naas line and tried everything they knew to breach the Naas defence.’
      • ‘When we were first starting up, we virtually camped on the doorstep of a business until they said yes to us.’
      • ‘The press camped outside his house.’
      • ‘He should have gone up to London and camped on the doorstep until he got the document.’
      • ‘Remaining silent, they camped in the bush until the other group had left.’
      • ‘Poor old Amelia Morris had the press camping round the clock on the front lawn of her suburban home.’
      • ‘Kain's men had camped outside the syndicate building, waiting for their boss to return.’
      • ‘The press camping on my parents doorstep was a bit of a novelty for them.’

Phrases

  • break camp

    • Take down a tent or the tents of an encampment when ready to leave.

      • ‘They were nearly silent for the rest of that afternoon, even after they broke camp and continued on their way for the remainder of the day.’
      • ‘They set up the camp, cook meals and break camp, leaving the traveler to enjoy the trek without the physical hardship of toting heavy packs.’
      • ‘I immediately broke camp and headed for the Cimarron River Valley, southwest of Gunnison, on a tip from a local farmer who said it was one of his favorite places in the world.’
      • ‘Finally, on the morning of July 18 the regiment broke camp and boarded the transport Pennsylvania to ship out for the Philippines.’
      • ‘Afterwards we broke camp, and piled into the hummer again.’
      • ‘After days of preparation, they were finally ready to break camp for good.’
      • ‘In the morning they broke camp and continued riding.’
      • ‘They broke camp, and then mounted their horses.’
      • ‘The couple broke camp at first light and continued their trek.’
      • ‘We were more than eager to be up early the next morning, and wordlessly broke camp, and trudged along after Matt, peering through the thick air for a rooftop, a sure sign of the next rest stop to come.’

Origin

Early 16th century: from French camp, champ, from Italian campo, from Latin campus ‘level ground’, specifically applied to the Campus Martius in Rome, used for games, athletic practice, and military drill.

Pronunciation

camp

/kamp//kæmp/

Main definitions of camp in US English:

: camp1camp2

camp2

adjective

informal
  • 1Deliberately exaggerated and theatrical in style, typically for humorous effect.

    ‘the movie seems more camp than shocking or gruesome’
    • ‘It's retro kitsch, wonderfully camp, gleefully perverse and exaggerated and utterly great fun throughout.’
    • ‘Before every number, Stipe ripped a sheet of paper from a pad with camp theatrical flourish.’
    • ‘These shows are some distance from either the cheeky chappy style which made Paul Daniels a star, or the camp melodrama of American David Copperfield.’
    • ‘Indeed, Olivier had a peculiar prose style, both camp and grandiose.’
    • ‘His camp, squeaking, self-absorbed, Irish puppydog charm worked its magic on the voting audience.’
    • ‘It's hard to know where provocation ends and camp self-parody begins.’
    • ‘But the camp performer always knows that he is being sentimental and enjoys the indulgence.’
    • ‘The mannerisms of the male troupers were too deliberately camp to capture the nuances of the Kern stories they were supposed to be illustrating.’
    • ‘The troupe is led by an extremely camp performer in the Stuart Wagstaff mould.’
    • ‘She covers this with deft skill and a versatile voice that can sweetly caress or swoop with camp theatrical grandeur.’
    • ‘Featuring an ageing Las Vegas showgirl, brilliantly performed by Nadine Tyson, it mixed camp style and pathos with the glitz and energy of showbiz.’
    • ‘He is the hyper-active dynamo in a very strong cast, giving a showy performance full of camp malice.’
    • ‘Mother Clap's Molly House is a camp spectacle reminiscent of music hall and it has some shockingly funny one liners.’
    exaggerated, theatrical, actorly, affected, mannered, flamboyant, extravagant, overripe
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 (of a man or his manner) ostentatiously and extravagantly effeminate.
      ‘a heavily made-up and highly camp actor’
      • ‘When I got there, the nurse, a slightly camp guy from the Philippines, shook his head with an expression somewhere between horror and sympathy.’
      • ‘I don't if that the fact that all my gay friends are watching it says something about the demographic of the event's appeal or the fact that I just know a lot of camp gay men.’
      • ‘Rosenthal, for all his camp flamboyance at the Alternative Miss World, is married to a curator at the Prado museum in Madrid and has two daughters.’
      • ‘Nicholas, in his own effeminately camp style, made the waitress describe the contents of several of the desserts, and only chose something after much cogitation.’
      • ‘I've known some very camp gay men through friends and they can be a real laugh to be with if you don't get strung up on your own sexuality when you are in their world.’
      • ‘I have met, I believe, the two most affectedly camp people in the country, and I have the mental scars to prove it.’
      • ‘So far the woman has voted off four blokes - all of whom have been quite camp - and only one of them has turned out to be gay.’
      • ‘We are no strangers to men dressing as women, but they are generally either grossly exaggerated or come across as merely camp.’
      • ‘We went to Comptons and were joined by Scottish guy and camp bartender friend of Stephens.’
      • ‘This would make a sad camp man with a receding hairline the ultimate in coolness.’
      effeminate, effete, foppish, affected, niminy-piminy, mincing, posturing
      View synonyms

noun

informal
  • Deliberately exaggerated and theatrical behavior or style.

    ‘Hollywood camp’
    • ‘What's amazing about director Leonard Kastle's style is his ability to leap between camp and genuine moments of terror during the murder scenes.’
    • ‘With its abundant use of tiaras, leather boots, heavy makeup it was a romp that cleverly indulged in theatrical camp, yet steered clear of more obvious homosexual camp.’
    • ‘It is a dazzling performance layered with more than a hint of theatrical camp.’
    • ‘In the hands of less-assured actors, The Maids can slip into humourless camp.’
    • ‘It wears its queerness like a flashy Dolce and Gabbana blouse, with style and humor and camp - but an intentional lack of tragedy.’
    • ‘This lends an air of deliberate camp to a play that needs no such favours, and which would amuse with more subtlety in their absence.’
    • ‘The film deliberately plays for camp and kitsch, and then suddenly it becomes quite gothic.’
    • ‘It's all a far cry from the formality and overblown camp of Sketch.’

verb

[no object]informal
  • (of a man) behave in an ostentatiously effeminate way.

    ‘he camped it up a bit for the cameras’
    • ‘It was just wonderful, because he was camping it up, that's all.’
    • ‘If he is camping it up for the cameras, he is almost as good an actor as he is a chef.’
    • ‘Some camped it up, some got sleazy, others sat very far back in their cushions paralysed with fear.’
    posture, behave theatrically, behave affectedly, overact, overdo it, go overboard
    View synonyms

Origin

Early 20th century: of unknown origin.

Pronunciation

camp

/kæmp//kamp/