Definition of lad in English:



  • 1informal A boy or young man (often as a form of address)

    ‘I read that book when I was a lad’
    ‘come in, lad, and shut the door’
    • ‘The baby is just over two weeks old - handsome little lad.’
    • ‘We still see Kenny, he stays at our house sometimes, so we still stay in touch - he's a great little lad.’
    • ‘While there might have been football and hurling there was very little for girls and for young lads who were not into physical sports.’
    • ‘A young lad of fourteen caught up with me and we walked to Bangor.’
    • ‘What does the poor lad have to talk about?’
    • ‘Sorry lads but there's no trouble here in Bolton.’
    • ‘Make up your excuses lads and lasses and make your way out on the double, because I am on my way there.’
    • ‘Will this be the season the local lad comes good?’
    • ‘I have to say that Nathan isn't generally regarded as a bad lad.’
    • ‘There were a few South Asian school age girls and some lads.’
    • ‘I've always kept in good shape and I'm still one of the fittest lads at the club.’
    • ‘It's where he woke up every morning as a young lad to the smells and noises from the brewery and the railway line.’
    • ‘Tonight was the parent's meeting at the junior school which my lad will be attending for the first time in September.’
    • ‘Years ago, before the house was a hotel, it was owned by the parents of Mickey, a lad Christy was at school with.’
    • ‘There were two different groups of young Germans, three young men in one group and two lads and two girls in another.’
    • ‘He was a nice friendly lad and a good worker and had many friends about town.’
    • ‘Poor lad, he hadn't a clue what to do next.’
    • ‘I think the lad has got genuine potential.’
    • ‘A worried looking lad with a red face appears at the door dressed only with a towel around his waist.’
    • ‘No amount of internal high-fiving or back-slapping will change that, lads.’
    • ‘Gally's a lovely lad and he's the type of guy who's prepared to do anything you ask of him.’
    • ‘Stub that fact out and extinguish that opinion immediately, my lad!’
    • ‘Thomas plays Baz Wainwright, a troubled lad who has serious problems at home that spill over into school.’
    boy, schoolboy, youth, youngster, juvenile, stripling, young fellow, junior, whippersnapper
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    1. 1.1ladsBritish A group of men sharing recreational, working, or other interests.
      ‘she wouldn't let him go out with the lads anymore’
      • ‘‘The lads did an extremely good job in containing the fire to the ground floor,’ said Mr Atkinson.’
      • ‘Last week was a fantastic win but the lads would have been confident anyway.’
      • ‘I'm close to all the lads on the team, have been for six or seven years.’
      • ‘‘The Leeds lads will have been motivated by having Terry as their new manager,’ adds Pearce.’
      • ‘Fans will be able to judge for themselves when the lads' debut album drops in the early summer of 2005.’
      • ‘A big thank you to all of the supporters who travelled to support the team, the lads really appreciated it.’
      • ‘Best wishes to the lads with this major step in their music careers.’
      • ‘All the Australian lads are brilliant swimmers because they all live by the sea but, coming from Salford, I'm not really an expert!’
      • ‘We are not a noisy team, but it gives the lads a real buzz to hear the support.’
      • ‘But in the first half especially our lads did ever so well.’
      • ‘‘The Mersey lads are full of confidence and playing really well,’ added Greenwood.’
      • ‘Six of the lads forming the team are under 23 and if we can get two more the team could enter a competition in that age group.’
      • ‘Once we'd boarded the team coach the lads began calling their loved ones.’
      • ‘The poor English lads look tired and are falling deeper and deeper, inviting trouble.’
      • ‘The crowd is rapturous, whistling and shouting for more, and by the side door the lads are practically mobbed.’
      • ‘Our lads can be proud of the way they played there today, we have the makings of a really good team.’
      • ‘As I pass through the various dressing rooms a few minutes later, I can hear the younger Real Madrid lads teasing Beckham in Spanish.’
      • ‘‘I want to put as much pressure as possible on the lads in the first team,’ said Nelsen.’
      • ‘As is the way of all great bands, the lads went their separate ways over the years.’
      • ‘But I thought the lads played very well.’
      • ‘‘I thought my lads did very well and I was pleased with their effort,’ said Sinnott.’
      • ‘Some of the lads weren't even out the showers when the chairman came in and told us the administrators would be in the following day.’
      • ‘Now we really have got two good players for every position, which makes it difficult for the lads who aren't in the team.’
      • ‘Together now for close on 38 years, the lads are still as popular as ever and you can bet your life that the venue will be well and truly packed.’
      group, set, crowd, lot, circle, coterie, in-crowd, clan, faction, pack, band, ring, fraternity, brotherhood, society, troop, company, team
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    2. 1.2British A man who is boisterously macho in his behavior or actions, especially one who is interested in sexual conquest.
      ‘Tony was a bit of a lad—always had an eye for the women’
      • ‘Teachers warned it was too early to say that "lad culture" was dead just yet.’
      • ‘A heavy social drinker is a good bloke, one of the lads.’
      • ‘Reggie is a bit of a lad.’
      • ‘They know he is a bit of a lad, but they like a president who gets things done.’
      • ‘In order to fit in with the lads, he finds himself going out on a Friday night club crawl.’
      • ‘The tour probably served the purpose of allowing lads and ladettes to say they had actually set foot in a real brewery.’
      • ‘Scarborough's players, we were given to understand, had been planning to bare their backsides in support of a new lads' mag.’
      • ‘It isn't paramilitaries but guys acting the lad till someone hits them a smack in the gob and that's all it is.’
      • ‘Lad culture has done nothing more than perpetuate petty hatred between the sexes.’
      • ‘Furthermore, I am not and have never been a lad.’
      • ‘Now I'm one of the lads, happy to share a pint down the pub.’
      • ‘That came out through an interview I did with Zoo magazine, which is kind of a lad's magazine.’
      • ‘Sutton's reputation as a bit of a lad who likes the rough and tumble ignores a few home truths.’
      • ‘Hooter is a bit of a lad with the gals; at least that's what Hooter thinks.’
      man, young man
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  • 2British A stable worker (regardless of age or sex)

    • ‘On hanging up his silks he became head lad to Mick Burke before serving his apprenticeship with Charlie Weld.’
    • ‘But I think I would want to come home to the yard, lads and horses - I just hope that dilemma may one day be reality!’
    • ‘My first memory was when I was 15 and went down with Bobby Oxley, the main travelling lad for Arthur Stephenson.’
    • ‘The two horses were really well up to the race and the two lads gave them beautiful rides.’
    • ‘I suppose the current consensus is AP McCoy, and he's a terrific lad, but he hasn't won the National.’
    • ‘Bob McGonagle, the lad, appeared to be fighting him as soon as he left the saddling area for the parade ring.’
    • ‘One lad to three horses was the norm when I started back in the 60s, and it has cost us to carry so many bodies, but it is the way I want to work.’
    • ‘Whilst the lad may be a decent rider, he is a very poor jockey.’
    • ‘Kandidate's effort was all the more meritorious for the fact that he dropped his lad and ran loose for a mile on the gallops yesterday morning.’
    • ‘The lad then gave me directions to go and visit Rummy at his own stables whenever I wanted and happily I did so on two more occasions before his death.’
    • ‘As travelling head lad to the late Gordon Richards, he had just watched Hallo Dandy win the 1984 Grand National.’


Middle English: of unknown origin.