Main definitions of live in English

: live1live2

live1

verb

  • 1no object Remain alive.

    ‘the doctors said she had only six months to live’
    ‘both cats lived to a ripe age’
    • ‘People are now living four to five years longer than in the 1970s, and young people are taller than previous generations.’
    • ‘Pensioners are living longer.’
    • ‘Scientists said yesterday they believe they have found a formula which will lead to cats and dogs living longer.’
    • ‘A young cancer sufferer with only weeks to live spent his last days raising money to fight the killer disease.’
    • ‘He has been given a 20 per cent chance of survival and doctors say he might have three to six months to live.’
    • ‘In other words, women are living longer knowing they have breast cancer.’
    • ‘Only McKinlay survived, living to the age of 95 when he died in Glasgow in 1983.’
    • ‘Though the boy had died instantly on impact, the man lived, and remained in critical condition at a New Jersey hospital.’
    • ‘In one Scottish study of terminally ill cancer patients, those given vitamin C lived four times as long as those who weren't given it.’
    • ‘In September 2000, she was diagnosed with bone cancer and given six months to live.’
    • ‘In January he was given six months to live but survived longer than doctors predicted.’
    • ‘An earlier study found that actors who won Oscars lived an average of four years longer than the competition.’
    • ‘They gave him three or at best four years to live, leaving him in a quandary about the ethics of standing again for parliament.’
    • ‘That cat is going to live to be 20 and shows every indication of getting meaner by the minute.’
    • ‘By the following morning doctors had told Lorraine that she had a rare form of cervical cancer and only six months to live.’
    • ‘Peter's mother was called as he was expected to have only twenty four hours to live.’
    • ‘The Battle of Britain claimed 544 allied lives and nearly half of the survivors never lived to see the final victory in 1945.’
    • ‘We should celebrate the fact that people are living longer and remain in good health.’
    • ‘Some patients die within one year of diagnosis, whereas others live longer than six years.’
    • ‘We can live without breathing for only a few minutes, yet we give it very little thought.’
    1. 1.1 Be alive at a specified time.
      ‘he lived four centuries ago’
      • ‘She lived at such an exciting time in Dundee's history.’
      • ‘It is also instructive to remember that he lived at a time when the United States was undergoing a renewed interest in nation-building.’
      • ‘An isolated population is a group of individuals who are descended from a founding population who lived some time ago.’
      • ‘It's not just about some guy who lived centuries ago.’
      • ‘The words of his mother would probably arouse jealous feelings among parents living a century and a half ago.’
      • ‘He lived a long time ago.’
      • ‘The Archer lived four and a half thousand years ago, about the time of the first construction at Stonehenge three miles from his grave.’
      • ‘He was a soldier who lived centuries ago in India.’
      • ‘My tastes are definitely different from what I would have liked, if I had lived five centuries ago.’
      • ‘They are postcards from a very distant past, putting faces on people who lived centuries ago.’
      • ‘Ninety per cent of all scientists who have ever lived are alive today.’
      • ‘Great oaks and trees that lived centuries ago held their broken branches, still fashioned to the ground by decaying roots.’
      exist, be alive, be, have being, have life
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2 Spend one's life in a particular way or under particular circumstances.
      ‘people are living in fear in the wake of the shootings’
      with object and adverbial ‘he was living a life of luxury in Australia’
      • ‘Instead of enjoying the fact that we can live comfortably, we spend our time looking to see who is living just that little bit more comfortably than us.’
      • ‘I, for one, would not produce a child that would have to live under these circumstances.’
      • ‘If we learn to live thriftily and remember the importance of helping our neighbours then we can find ways to adjust.’
      • ‘People have been living under these pitiful circumstances for decades.’
      • ‘Most vets and cat experts agree that indoor cats live longer, healthier lives.’
      • ‘There are 291 million people living below the poverty line in sub-Saharan Africa.’
      • ‘He lived well and spent freely, renting flats in Chelsea and Brighton, employing servants, owning race horses and running a Rolls-Royce.’
      • ‘Seniors need supportive environments to maintain good health and remain living independently.’
      • ‘As many as one in four single women pensioners now live in poverty.’
      • ‘It is a home equipped with the latest technology to enable vulnerable people to remain living independently in their own homes for as long as possible.’
      • ‘Most tell us they are keen to remain living independently in their own homes for as long as possible with the necessary social services support to help them do that.’
      • ‘Forty years after the War on Poverty began, about 30 percent of black children are still living in poverty.’
      • ‘Although there's no cure, cats can live quite healthy lives for a while after infection.’
      • ‘Those who could left the country; those who remained lived under the threat of torture and violent death.’
      • ‘One million children are still living in poverty in Britain, despite the government's pledge to reduce child poverty.’
      • ‘Why are the numbers of women living with HIV increasing faster than the number of men?’
      • ‘I'm sure many aircrews lived under the same circumstances at that time.’
      • ‘He personally lived frugally and spent the research funding entrusted to him with the same care.’
      • ‘‘The residents there all live in fear, and so would I,’ he added.’
      • ‘Do you think living beyond our means is a modern malady?’
      pass one's life, spend one's life, lead one's life, have a life, have a lifestyle
      experience, spend, pass, lead, have, go through, undergo
      View synonyms
    3. 1.3 Supply oneself with the means of subsistence.
      ‘they live by hunting and fishing’
      • ‘He lived by gambling professionally for over a decade.’
      • ‘They lived off their own fertile land, happy and contented.’
      • ‘If you make up your mind to live from writing, it is prudent to make certain that your work is good, he added.’
      • ‘They live by hunting and gathering.’
      • ‘We lived from subsistence farming, growing sweet potatoes, corn, some sugarcane, and ginger.’
      survive, make a living, earn one's living, eke out a living
      View synonyms
    4. 1.4 Survive in someone's mind; be remembered.
      ‘only the name lived on’
      • ‘This massacre will forever live in our minds.’
      • ‘His words have lived with me ever since.’
      • ‘He will live on in our memories.’
      • ‘In any Championship is something that lives forever in the minds and hearts of every one involved.’
      • ‘Songwriter and singer Ollie Cole has an impeccable ear for a good melody and this one lives long in the mind.’
    5. 1.5 Have an exciting or fulfilling life.
      ‘he couldn't wait to get out of school and really start living’
      • ‘In other words, the blues is about having lived whereas the violin draws heavily on a technical ability that can be gained in a practice room.’
      • ‘Get out there and start living, you never know how much longer it is all going to last.’
      • ‘The voice is calling us to leave our foolish fears behind, to take risks, to trust, to begin to really live.’
      • ‘I have the energy of a 30-year-old and I want to get out there and live!’
      • ‘Maybe you should start living instead of just watching everyone else.’
      • ‘I think I wanted a TV to distract me from the fact I was breathing, not living!’
      enjoy oneself, enjoy life, have fun, be happy, live life to the full
      View synonyms
  • 2no object , with adverbial Make one's home in a particular place or with a particular person.

    ‘I've lived in New England all my life’
    ‘they lived with his grandparents’
    • ‘He later moved to Germany and then Italy where he lived for three years.’
    • ‘We had been friends since kindergarten; she lived across the street from me.’
    • ‘After living there for six months, Mark and I got married and a year later moved to East Harlem.’
    • ‘Later on I overheard him saying that this was his first Bonfire night in the UK as he'd only lived here for six months.’
    • ‘Leopards are not the only mammals in which daughters live close to their mothers.’
    • ‘Police were alerted by a resident living in the flats opposite after the alarm was activated.’
    • ‘Rubbish on spare land in Burnley is causing anger among residents living nearby.’
    • ‘Scurvy is still seen, very occasionally, among old people living alone who neglect their diet.’
    • ‘Although both children now have jobs, they choose to remain living at home.’
    • ‘In 1903, Jack London, the novelist and journalist, spent a year living among the people of the slums of the east end of London.’
    • ‘South African citizens living abroad at the time of the elections will not be allowed to vote.’
    • ‘In the past up to four generations have traditionally lived under the same roof.’
    • ‘In 1993 he moved to Sweden where he lived and worked for four years, mostly in the building trade.’
    • ‘His parents spent weeks living at hospital as he recovered from his surgery and still have to take him for check-ups on a yearly basis.’
    • ‘She recently emerged from spending a year living among a closed Buddhist community on Holy Island.’
    • ‘She has been living in Britain for nine years and is studying at Portsmouth University.’
    • ‘The lucky ones have grandparents living locally who are willing to help out on a regular basis.’
    • ‘Did you or you parents ever live in a house of their own?’
    • ‘I lived there for six months, and found it to be a pleasant rural village.’
    • ‘He was just a divorced man living alone in a really big house.’
    reside, have one's home, have one's residence, be settled
    View synonyms

Phrases

  • as I live and breathe

    • Used, especially in spoken English, to express one's surprise at coming across someone or something.

      ‘good Lord, Jack Stone, as I live and breathe!’
      • ‘‘Well, well,’ she said, ‘Malak Harr, as I live and breathe.’’
      • ‘Dawn Tinsley, as I live and breathe…’
      • ‘Well, well, as I live and breathe, it's Nellie.’
      • ‘‘Well, as I live and breathe… if it ain't Hallie Lennox, ‘he said in an unmistakable Savannah drawl.’
  • be living on borrowed time

  • live and breathe something

    • Be extremely interested in or enthusiastic about a particular subject or activity and so devote a great deal of one's time to it.

      ‘they live and breathe Italy and all things Italian’
      • ‘He lives and breathes pantomime and every year puts heart and soul into his productions.’
      • ‘When you're in this business you live and breathe it.’
      • ‘I lived and breathed gymnastics throughout my childhood and only stopped training in my twenties.’
      • ‘When you live and breathe your product, it's hard to realize that customers aren't as passionate about it as you are.’
      • ‘He admits to being a man who lives and breathes his job.’
      • ‘He lives and breathes wine, tasting the products of his competitors and those from other countries.’
      • ‘He lived and breathed mathematics and philosophy.’
      • ‘You can see he lives and breathes the sport.’
      • ‘This is a woman who has lived and breathed politics since her teens.’
      • ‘If you want to work in the music industry, you have to live and breathe music.’
  • live and let live

    • proverb You should tolerate the opinions and behavior of others so that they will similarly tolerate your own.

      • ‘Whatever happened to the concept of live and let live?’
      • ‘Soon after the Great War, the majority of Americans turned away from concern about foreign affairs, adopting an attitude of live and let live.’
      • ‘Stating that she was devastated by the arson attack, she said that all she wanted to do was live and let live and she hoped that she could do that in a different part of the city.’
      • ‘Monika's philosophy in life is to live and let live.’
      • ‘In this neck of Los Angeles, people live and let live.’
      • ‘Our father always taught us live and let live.’
      • ‘Perhaps this is asking too much and my view too utopian but I appeal to all involved to live and let live.’
      • ‘Isn't it time we all learned to live and let live?’
      • ‘We all have different interests, so live and let live!’
      • ‘I hope that the Council will agree to live and let live.’
  • live by one's wits

    • Earn money by clever and sometimes dishonest means, having no regular employment.

      • ‘I remained in Pittsburgh, memorizing every inch of it, and made some effort to continue going to school while living by my wits, exploring that world of rivers and ethnic neighborhoods cupped within a green circle of hills.’
      • ‘His background was much like that of his colleagues: poor, orphaned and living by his wits, he had enlisted.’
      • ‘During the next fifteen years he ‘worked’ in and around Queensland and New South Wales mainly living by his wits.’
      • ‘‘If you ask what he does for a living, I have to answer that he lives by his wits’, the sociologist James Coleman once remarked.’
      • ‘They didn't kill anyone and lived by their wits.’
      • ‘Mimes and jugglers swarmed among the tables, followed by young comedians with mirthless eyes, living by their wits, like dancing bears and philosophers.’
      • ‘Like a kid who has to live by his wits, but might get jumped any minute for being too smart for his own good, he knows the only strategy that's really going to save him in the end is authenticity and wisdom.’
      • ‘As an impecunious artist myself, I have indeed had to learn to live by my wits, and by whatever sparse and sporadic income I can glean from my paintings.’
      • ‘With all due respect, sir, living by one's wits in the park suits me just fine.’
      • ‘But as I was at the time (and for that matter at all times) living by my wits, with no secure academic position to fall back on, I swallowed hard and decided to follow my freelance fates.’
  • live dangerously

    • Do something risky, especially on a habitual basis.

      • ‘After having lived dangerously for several years, I really did not want to involved in this type of case.’
      • ‘He doesn't live dangerously, but puts others in terrible danger!’
      • ‘City were living dangerously but as the clock ticked closer to 90 minutes they looked to have weathered the worst of the storm.’
      • ‘And more and more Americans are living dangerously, moving to regions in this country highly vulnerable to natural disasters.’
      • ‘This is one girl who likes living dangerously.’
      • ‘We lived dangerously for about 20 minutes but we got through that and the game had levelled itself out,’ he recalled.’
      • ‘Are you trying to be insulting or do you like living dangerously?’
      • ‘Derby are still living dangerously, just four points ahead of third-bottom Manchester City, after losing 2-1 at home to Arsenal.’
      • ‘These are some of the most beautiful places to live, but living here is living dangerously.’
      • ‘Having braved the elements once I decided to live dangerously.’
  • live for the moment

    • Live or act without worrying about the future.

      • ‘His brother John said: ‘He was just a happy-go-lucky person, who lived for the moment and was everybody's friend.’’
      • ‘They are the carefree ones - the dare-devils who live for the moment and leave the future to look after itself.’
      • ‘I'm constantly trying to teach myself to take each day as it comes and to live for the moment.’
      • ‘In other words, it made some people live for the future and others live for the moment.’
      • ‘He lives for the moment, instead of dwelling on what might be, and what has been.’
      • ‘I'm just living for the moment, not daring to think about what the future holds.’
      • ‘She was a lot of fun, popular, and lived for the moment.’
      • ‘I have learned to live for the moment from all this and I have learned that nothing is trivial, nothing should be taken for granted.’
      • ‘So there's something wonderful about an exhibition which urges you to relax and live for the moment.’
      • ‘Shouldn't I just live for the moment and make the best of what I do have?’
  • live in hope

    • Be or remain optimistic about something.

      • ‘Up to that stage we had still lived in hope that were was some reason why she was still alive and hadn't been in touch.’
      • ‘His mother still lives in hope of one day finding out what became of her 11-year-old son.’
      • ‘He lives in hope that he can find more people willing to walk a financial tightrope so that others can tread the boards.’
      • ‘I live in hope, but will no doubt end up in despair!’
      • ‘‘We have been disappointed too many times to expect action being taken but you live in hope,’ he said.’
      • ‘However, one lives in hope that future years may actually witness some inspirational figures.’
      • ‘We ask everyone to join with us in praying for Abigail and live in hope for the future.’
      • ‘With the council telling me a year ago they had no money for widening the road or putting in sleeping policeman, I do not live in hope.’
      • ‘I fear he will not bow to my pressure but I live in hope.’
      • ‘We have been living in hope since she went missing and we were praying this was not Leanne.’
  • live in the past

    • 1Have old-fashioned or outdated ideas and attitudes.

      • ‘‘I say to those who want to live in the past - you stay in the past, we are moving on,’ said Mr Duncan Smith.’
      • ‘Those of us who argued from the start that the single currency was misconceived, and that membership would be a disaster, were dismissed by the Prime Minister as xenophobes who were living in the past.’
      • ‘Mrs Barnie continued: ‘I understand the parish council has their own rules, but I think they are living in the past.’’
      • ‘It would be wrong to assume that Christians are all fuddy-duddies living in the past who are completely against embracing the power of advertising.’
      • ‘There was a BBC discussion about Time zones today - with the thread that unless we synchronised with the rest of Europe we were living in the past and that trade and the economy suffered.’
      • ‘The Scottish Football Association are living in the past and they do not have any concept of equality.’
      • ‘Those who wish to live in the past and apply outdated labels to all Northern Ireland fans are the real bigots.’
      • ‘The Minister is still living in the past and as a result we are not gaining the jobs we should have.’
      • ‘Policy-makers will be accused of living in the past and using the wrong instruments to stimulate the Scottish economy.’
      • ‘He says they are living in the past by what he calls ‘banging on’ about nominal interest rates 13 years ago.’
      1. 1.1Dwell on or reminisce at length about past events.
        • ‘Many people live in the past, over and over again, and they never catch up with the present.’
        • ‘She needed to stop living in the past and stop wallowing in past sorrows.’
        • ‘Yet the greatest obstacles to achieving are a lack of self belief, living in the past and a desire to be perfect.’
        • ‘Later in the book it mentions people's habit of living in the past all the time instead of concentrating on the present and the future.’
        • ‘Sometimes people waste their own time by living in the past.’
  • live in sin

    • dated, informal Live together as though married.

      • ‘In late 1984 I was living in sin in the Latrobe Valley with a girl of catholic upbringing.’
      • ‘Soon marriage may be non-existent given the freedom we have to live in sin with our partners.’
      • ‘Since when was it defamatory to accuse someone of not living in sin, as it used to be called?’
      • ‘It was perhaps more of a stigma for the children that mother was living in sin than it was for the parents.’
      • ‘He had to have a metal plate inserted in his skull and afterwards he ran off with a local woman and lived in sin with her.’
      • ‘A wedding immediately for two who are living in sin!’
      • ‘She gave up the Victorian ideals of marriage and lived in sin with her soulmate, who happened to be married to someone else.’
      • ‘A great idea for anyone who, like me, is getting married but has been living in sin for years and so has a bottom drawer full of towels, bedding, frying pans and cut glass.’
      • ‘Roisin's religious background burdens her with an unforgiving priest who considers her to be living in sin.’
      • ‘Back when my wife and I were college room-mates living in sin, we had a cockatiel that really, really liked her.’
    • dated, informal

      see sin
  • live it up

    • informal Spend one's time in an extremely enjoyable way, typically by spending a great deal of money or engaging in an exciting social life.

      • ‘I feel like I should be living it up, having an exciting life.’
      • ‘She survives on £50 a week state hand-outs while he lives it up in style after winning £1.5 million on the Lottery.’
      • ‘They spent this week living it up in Cape Town instead of acclimatising to altitude.’
      • ‘They and the whole class they represent will spend the rest of the summer living it up at a whirl of social events.’
      • ‘I thought ‘young people today’ spent all their dosh on mobile phones, gadgets and living it up.’
      • ‘Most eighteen-year-olds I knew were in college, partying, and living it up.’
      • ‘I'm not a great one for living it up till the early hours but I love breakfast meetings.’
      • ‘They have lived it up and spent their way all throughout the eighties, never saving a dime.’
      • ‘By rights, I should be a millionaire, living it up on some island somewhere.’
      • ‘But she denied her kids had been abandoned as she lived it up on boozy nights in Turkish bars and clubs with friends.’
      live extravagantly, live in the lap of luxury, live in clover
      View synonyms
  • live off (or on) the fat of the land

    • Have the best of everything.

      • ‘After establishing herself in her parent's house ‘living on the fat of the land,’ Katherine began gathering information about her friends' and family's business affairs.’
      • ‘It is also too simplistic to think of all monks as living off the fat of the land and benefiting from the labour of others.’
      • ‘Since Rachel was busy living off the fat of the land (read: her mother) she told me she could drive me to school until my dad decided I was responsible enough to own a car myself.’
      • ‘It could be said that he lives off the fat of the land.’
      • ‘Check the long lines at stands operated by nocturnal vendors, men literally living off the fat of the land, for clear indication of how many people confront-on a nightly basis-the outlawed practice of eating far too near bedtime.’
      • ‘But there are ways to live off the fat of the land without bleeding it dry.’
      • ‘Thanks to the ingenuity of these contraptions' designers and purveyors (people who, one might say, live off the fat of the land), the toils of Sisyphus have been transformed into a healthful pastime.’
      • ‘I wished that I was her, and that I had naturally curly hair and that I was an artist, living off the fat of the land, as it were, because it seemed totally alien to me that your family would ever support your own artistic inclinations.’
      • ‘As the play opens under a setting sun we see the care and love the two men have for each other, epitomised by George's tale of a small farm where they can both ‘live off the fat of the land’.’
      • ‘The rank and file, I'm sorry to say, have lived off the fat of the land put there by our union forefathers and foremothers.’
      lead a very comfortable life, be very rich, want for nothing, live off the fat of the land
      View synonyms
  • live off the land

    • Live on whatever food one can obtain by hunting, gathering, or subsistence farming.

      • ‘Often relocated to disadvantaged areas, the Ojibwa faced poverty and bare subsistence through living off the land and/or farming.’
      • ‘Richard and Sarah moved to Tuscany planning to grow their own vegetables and live off the land, hoping to harvest olives to make olive oil.’
      • ‘During the early 1850s he repeatedly crossed over the mountains and disappeared for months at a time, exploring and living off the land.’
      • ‘They have been living off the land there ever since, joined by a slow but steady stream of family and friends whose faces now look out from the pictures dotted around the display.’
      • ‘Enroute, Gen. Sherman's troops were cut off from other Union forces and lived off the land.’
      • ‘In the century that followed, the Dutch established settlements and devised means to live off the land.’
      • ‘The soldiers learn how to catch food and live off the land.’
      • ‘Some 90 percent of the population live off the land, mostly as subsistence farmers.’
      • ‘For countless generations, our people lived off the land.’
      • ‘At one time Native people were more or less self-sufficient, living off the land - trapping, fishing, hunting, logging - or working for the railway company in various departments.’
  • live out of a suitcase

    • Live or stay somewhere on a temporary basis and with only a limited selection of one's belongings, typically because one's occupation requires a great deal of traveling.

      • ‘‘I went through a spell when I was always on the go, living out of a suitcase,’ she says.’
      • ‘Alex spoke about the strain of touring and being away from home for long periods of time, especially the hassles of living out of a suitcase for months on end.’
      • ‘Michael is living out of a suitcase at the moment.’
      • ‘Her parents told her she had to think about buying a home instead of living out of a suitcase.’
      • ‘I hate flying, airports and living out of a suitcase.’
      • ‘Unfortunately, by this point I was getting tired of living out of a suitcase and I didn't enjoy the city as much as I might have done.’
      • ‘He spent so much time in recent years criss-crossing the Atlantic, living out of a suitcase and seeing much of the world through the car window.’
      • ‘At the end of the season we normally have a holiday, but to be honest it would be nice to have two weeks where we weren't living out of a suitcase.’
      • ‘She just needed time to adjust, after living out of a suitcase for seven years.’
      • ‘Since 1995, I have more or less lived out of a suitcase.’
  • live one's own life

    • Follow one's own plans and principles independent of others.

      • ‘I enjoy living my own life, going where I want to go and doing what I want to do.’
      • ‘Frances, naturally, wants to live her own life, not her mom's.’
      • ‘On the whole, people are happy to let you get on with living your own life.’
      • ‘She is a widely travelled, disciplined woman, a formidable figure in public life committed to living her own life, listening to her own heart and not to anyone else's.’
      • ‘Since I have done this course, however, I have got my confidence back and want to live my own life again.’
      • ‘If readers get one thought from this book, it is that you have to live your own life and make the choices that are right for you.’
      • ‘A good rule to follow is to live your own life and let others do likewise.’
      • ‘So for the last decade or more, I've lived my own life, never wanted any of the things that the people around me rated as important, and just got on with my own thing.’
      • ‘You have to walk your own path, or you can't live your own life.’
      • ‘Just because you've hooked up with someone else doesn't mean you can't continue living your own life!’
  • live rough

    • Live and sleep outdoors as a consequence of having no proper home.

      • ‘While homelessness is increasing nationally, Waterford has only a handful of people living rough on the streets, according to a number of charitable agencies.’
      • ‘Afterwards Matthew went to various friends' houses, but I later found out he was living rough for at least a month.’
      • ‘He was a drug-addicted down and out living rough.’
      • ‘She says up to 1,000 children are now living rough, sleeping under hedges and bridges and begging to survive, many of them glue sniffing.’
      • ‘A man who was living rough in Swindon has been jailed for eight weeks after a court heard how he threw two computer monitors on the floor at a bail hostel.’
      • ‘Vulnerable people living rough in Lancaster face a waiting list for emergency accommodation.’
      • ‘The new clinic is being built to aid the 500 homeless children living rough in the city.’
      • ‘At the age of 10, he was living rough with his older sister and 9-year-old brother after being abandoned in Sydney by their mother.’
      • ‘I came across people living rough in caravans and junkyards.’
      • ‘It is now believed that he may be living rough in the South London area.’
  • live to fight another day

    • Survive a particular experience or ordeal.

      • ‘Hopefully the club itself will survive and live to fight another day.’
      • ‘The boxers' relatives and friends pay the admission fees, buy food and gym apparel, and the gym lives to fight another day.’
      • ‘I'll live to fight another day on health care, environmental concerns and sensible gun legislation.’
      • ‘Leeds United live to fight another day - thanks to a dubious penalty which gave them a priceless 2-1 victory over Manchester City.’
      • ‘The library was facing the axe in a council bid to save cash, but the public fought back to force a U-turn and the library lived to fight another day.’
      • ‘He's had a fantastic year and will live to fight another day.’
      • ‘In the end, both teams somehow lived to fight another day.’
      • ‘‘I would buy an old house, do it up and sell it on and live to fight another day,’ he said.’
      • ‘‘I'll live to fight another day and I'll be there again,’ he added positively.’
      • ‘If you are able to survive a bad or indifferent season, you live to fight another day.’
  • live to regret something

    • Come to wish that one had not done something.

      ‘those who put work before their family life often live to regret it’
      • ‘It will cost us money, but if we hand this problem on to the next generation we will live to regret it.’
      • ‘Some people commit minor offences when they are young and live to regret it.’
      • ‘It was thoroughly distasteful and I bet he is living to regret it now.’
      • ‘Engage any railway buff in a conversation about old lines and you might live to regret it.’
      • ‘Sadly, many women made the mistake of opting for the lower married woman's stamp and lived to regret it.’
      • ‘If we don't let the police do their job we may all live to regret it.’
      • ‘So if the government fails to take this opportunity, it may live to regret it.’
      • ‘As soon as I'd accepted the dare I knew I would live to regret it.’
      • ‘Did you live to regret it or was it the best thing you've ever done?’
      • ‘And if you so much as tell one single soul about this, you will live to regret it.’
  • live to tell the tale

    • Survive a dangerous experience and be able to tell others about it.

      • ‘They have both looked down the barrel of a gun - and lived to tell the tale.’
      • ‘Nelson fought the Battle of Trafalgar from the deck of his flagship, HMS Victory, close to the Rock in 1805 but never lived to tell the tale.’
      • ‘I will be scarred for life and this has caused us both physical and mental damage but I suppose we were lucky to live to tell the tale.’
      • ‘There are not many who can say they lived through the reign of Queen Victoria, World War I, the 1916 rising, the War of Independence, World War II and Hiroshima and lived to tell the tale.’
      • ‘I sense she still can't believe how lucky she is to have lived to tell the tale.’
      • ‘These days you're not a big wave surfer until you've climbed aboard a 60-footer and actually lived to tell the tale - which not everyone winds up doing.’
      • ‘Thankfully, people survive cancer and live to tell the tale.’
      • ‘They seemed overwhelmed by the sheer charisma of a man who has defied the world's most powerful nation for forty years and lived to tell the tale.’
      • ‘She has seen it all, soldiering on through addiction, sexual abuse and destructive relationships - and has lived to tell the tale.’
      • ‘Not many of the British servicemen lived to tell the tale of the horrendous captivity that followed - thousands were starved, beaten or worked to death in slave labour camps.’
  • live under a rock

    • informal Lack basic knowledge of current events or popular culture.

      ‘in case you have been living under a rock, America is heading toward a presidential election’
  • live with oneself

    • Be able to retain one's self-respect as a consequence of one's actions.

      ‘taking money from children—how can you live with yourself?’
      • ‘If something happens to him, I'm not sure I'll be able to live with myself.’
      • ‘I would not be able to live with myself if I did not own up to what I have done.’
      • ‘That's the only way I've been able to live with myself over the last four years, by forgetting it ever happened.’
      • ‘If he got hurt she would never be able to live with herself.’
      • ‘But I don't think he'll ever be able to live with himself for taking our daughter's life.’
      • ‘I didn't really feel I would be able to live with myself if I'd gone into that broadcast and said nothing because I was frightened to say what I believe in.’
      • ‘What the world at large deems success might not feel like success deep in your heart, and you need to be able to live with yourself.’
      • ‘I cringed through the entire twenty minutes, and I'm pretty sure the presenters are never going to be able to live with themselves, let alone admit to other people what they do for a living.’
      • ‘I would have never been able to live with myself if anything had happened to you.’
      • ‘His wife dissuaded him, however, telling him that he would never be able to live with himself if he concluded so sordid a deal.’
  • long live ——!

    • Said to express loyalty or support for a specified person or thing.

      ‘long live the Queen!’
      • ‘Cue a fanfare, followed by a rousing rendition of ‘the king is dead, long live the king’.’
      • ‘Long live the movement for global democracy.’
      • ‘The evil queen is dead, long live King Geoffrey.’
      • ‘Long live freedom - use your vote at the next Elections!’
      • ‘Industry is dead, long live the new information economy.’
      • ‘Long live any artist who can take the time to produce an album that represents the music they love.’
      • ‘There was an amazingly diverse audience at the show, proving that Celtic music is not just for old folk from the old country - long live the fiddle!’
      • ‘I just want to say, long live India and long live Indian cricket.’
      • ‘Differences exist - long live the differences!’
      • ‘No longer will the Internet be seen as a place to buy things cheaper - long live the rich.’
  • where one lives

    • informal At, to, or in the right, vital, or most vulnerable spot.

      ‘it gets me where I live’
      • ‘These are songs that will move you, and touch you right where you live.’
      • ‘Our readership as a whole is extremely important, and once in a great while a reader reaches out and touches me right where I live.’
      • ‘It is rare for me to encounter a criticism that hits me where I live.’
      • ‘It hits them where they live because the executives can be held personally responsible for the damage to the company.’
      • ‘The decisions we make on these issues are going to affect you where you live.’
  • you (or we) live and learn

    • Used, especially in spoken English, to acknowledge that a fact is new to one.

      • ‘Answering the suggestion that he would have landed at least one of the penalties, he added ‘hindsight's a great thing… you live and learn’.’
      • ‘Oh well, we live and learn - and I've learned that life is better being a shrewd saver, rather than a bonkers borrower!’
      • ‘I don't know… you live and learn, maybe there are people who go around just assaulting young fellas.’
      • ‘There's a lot of things I wouldn't have done if I had to do it again, but you live and learn.’
      • ‘I thought it was better odds than the lottery, but you live and learn.’
  • you haven't lived

    • Used, especially in spoken English, as a way of enthusiastically recommending something to someone who has not experienced it.

      ‘you haven't lived until you've tasted their lobster ravioli’
      • ‘However, you haven't lived until you have witnessed the New Year firework displays that Disney produces.’
      • ‘I know that some people may find it hard to understand, but in my mind if you haven't been in a helicopter you haven't lived.’
      • ‘You haven't lived until you've had Japanese Ice Cream!’
      • ‘And when in Glasgow, never miss having tea at the Willow Tea Rooms, or you haven't lived.’
      • ‘Seriously, if you haven't tried a nice chilled gazpacho, you haven't lived.’

Phrasal Verbs

  • live something down

    • Succeed in making others forget something embarrassing that has happened.

      • ‘And yes, the situation is hilarious and I will never live it down… my sister won't let me forget!’
      • ‘I was never, ever allowed to live the incident down by my housemates, who took great delight in reciting it to everyone who came round for the rest of the year.’
      • ‘One guy left his house keys in my bedroom one Christmas Eve and never lived it down since.’
      • ‘Let's just hope I get it right or I'll never live it down!’
      • ‘It had taken two full years for me to live that episode down.’
      • ‘If people have made mistakes, they should be able to live them down.’
      • ‘He'd never live it down if he turned up at the park wearing purple.’
      • ‘She didn't get to the Olympics and has never been able to live it down.’
      • ‘My boyfriend would never let me live it down if we lost.’
      • ‘As time went by, the incident became a memory, but the crew chief never really lived it down.’
  • live off (or on)

    • 1Depend on (someone or something) as a source of income or support.

      ‘if you think you're going to live off me for the rest of your life, you're mistaken’
      • ‘He lives off investments and money from his wife's life insurance policy.’
      • ‘Both of them are still living off his parents' money.’
      • ‘The majority of the population continues to live off subsistence agriculture, in villages or the slums that have sprung up around major urban centres.’
      • ‘They had brought no possessions, and as islanders who had lived off fishing and farming, they had no real professional skills.’
      • ‘This country has lived on somebody else's money - whether it has come from Asia, or America, or Europe - for too long.’
      • ‘Instead, they continued living off their parents.’
      • ‘It's tempting to spend all your money and live off the state, or simply emigrate.’
      • ‘In 1988, he was taken to court for rates still owed on his last pub and revealed that he was living on dole money.’
      • ‘Her days as a single mother living on income support must now seem like a distant memory.’
      • ‘It is one of the poorest countries in the world, landlocked with poor transport facilities and most of the population living on subsistence farming.’
      1. 1.1Have (a particular amount of money) with which to buy food and other necessities.
        • ‘Many people in rural areas are living on incomes well below what most people enjoy.’
        • ‘The scheme is administered by the health boards, who pay rent supplements to tenants living on low incomes in private rented accommodation, to help them with their weekly rent.’
        • ‘We lived off his monthly income of $986, plus housing allowance, for a few months before I got a part-time job.’
        • ‘I think it's a disgrace that elderly people are forced to live on such a low income.’
        • ‘The poorest 20 percent were living on a weekly income of less than $266.’
        • ‘She told me the money she lives on isn't enough to cover the bills.’
        • ‘Relative poverty means someone living on an income of less than 60% of the average income or €164 per week.’
        • ‘‘Too many elderly people are living on a low income because rate increases have been much higher than pension increases,’ he said.’
        • ‘One quarter of single parent families and pensioners are living on an income below the poverty line.’
        • ‘Some people are simply not earning enough money to live on and must make stark choices between eating or heating.’
      2. 1.2Subsist on (a particular type of food)
        • ‘It is a simple life: they live on fish, and there are few predators.’
        • ‘Dales farmers are being encouraged to swap sheep for herds of traditional types of cattle like blue greys and short horns that can survive the harsh winters living off the rough grasses.’
        • ‘We've been here two days living off food we find.’
        • ‘The calf must have survived by living off straw in the barn.’
        • ‘She survived for a few years by living off of food scraps reluctantly donated by the citizens.’
        • ‘Maybe they caught fish, or perhaps lived on the animals on the mountain side.’
        • ‘For weeks they slept under banana trees and lived on scavenged food.’
        • ‘They live off begged and stolen food, in a room blackened by the smoke of the struggling stove.’
        • ‘The terrified man was so intent not to be discovered that he refused to travel far for food and often lived off a diet of twigs and berries.’
        • ‘There is some debate as to whether early hominids were scavengers living off the remains of animals brought down and killed by other beasts, or whether these groups were hunters in their own right.’
        subsist on, feed off, feed on, rely for nourishment on, thrive on, depend on
        View synonyms
      3. 1.3(of a person) eat, or seem to eat, only (a particular type of food)
        ‘she used to live on bacon and tomato sandwiches’
        • ‘She lives on cake and soup, which she heats up on a little ring right there in her room.’
        • ‘He lived on fast food, and cartons and unfinished takeaways lay in every corner of his home.’
        • ‘We're living off pate and dips.’
        • ‘In his whole life he had never experienced such complex food; living off ready-meals for the last years seemed to have made his mouth accustomed to blandness.’
        • ‘To their dismay they found out that many of them failed to take greens, leafy vegetables, pulses and cereals, and instead lived on fast food and colas.’
        • ‘Some folks here at work tried low carb, living on bacon for several weeks.’
        • ‘Cooking natural ingredients from scratch is far cheaper than living off processed foods.’
        • ‘Exclusive reliance on the car is the equivalent of living on fast food burgers - there should be no surprise if we get sick.’
        • ‘Being born and raised in California and living off of Mexican food was going to make my life a bit interesting over here.’
        • ‘For some time, the patient has been living off junk food, in particular pizza with cold iced drinks.’
  • live out

    • (of an employee or student) reside away from the place where one works or studies.

      • ‘I'm looking for a job as a housekeeper or nanny to live in or live out.’
      • ‘Would you prefer a nanny who lives out?’
      • ‘Most students on four-year courses live out in their final year.’
      • ‘If you're in halls and you plan to live out next year, you should start looking in the February or March before.’
      • ‘The Chalet has two staff, who live out.’
  • live together

    • (especially of a couple not married to each other) share a home and have a sexual relationship.

      • ‘Your relationship changed quite drastically when you started living together.’
      • ‘The couple had been living together for three years and were planning to buy a house.’
      • ‘They were seen together so often in New York that close friends considered them a couple, though they never lived together.’
      • ‘The couple were unmarried and lived together for nineteen years.’
      • ‘The couple had lived together for only ten days and were planning to get married.’
      • ‘In England and Wales over two million couples currently live together without being married.’
      • ‘It's really important that couples living together get the legal protection they need.’
      • ‘The couple was living together and the girl wanted to continue the relationship.’
      • ‘They'd known each other their entire lives, and living together was a natural progression for them.’
      • ‘At one time, a couple living together without being married was regarded as shameful.’
  • live up to

    • 1Fulfill (expectations)

      • ‘Maybe it's just an overproduced theatrical event that didn't live up to all the hype.’
      • ‘There is no question Martin has failed to live up to his advance billing.’
      • ‘James already has accomplished the near-impossible by living up to the hype that followed him into the league.’
      • ‘And in the first half, York lived up to their billing as favourites.’
      • ‘When you have children, it becomes all about living up to their expectations.’
      • ‘Essex, living up to its reputation, performed especially well in comparison to its East of England neighbours.’
      • ‘I had heard about this wonder boy and he lived up to all I had heard.’
      • ‘Did they find the country lived up to their expectations?’
      • ‘When I was a kid, the circus never really lived up to my expectations.’
      • ‘The red pepper and goat's cheese tart lived up to expectations.’
      measure up to, match up to, come up to, reach, satisfy, fulfil, achieve, meet, equal, be equal to, be on a level with, compare with, admit of comparison, bear comparison with
      View synonyms
      1. 1.1Fulfill (an undertaking)
        ‘the president lived up to his promise to set America swiftly on a new path’
        • ‘He cites no international obligation that the U.S. has not lived up to.’
        • ‘Of the ones I know, or know of, there's about ten who have actually lived up to what they said they'd do.’
        • ‘He completed his Cabinet less than a month after he became president-elect and lived up to his diversity vow.’
        • ‘‘The seller didn't live up to his promises,’ he says.’
        • ‘He has not lived up to his promise to fully disclose the identities of his top money-collectors who bundle millions of dollars in campaign contributions.’
  • live with

    • 1Share a home and have a sexual relationship with (someone to whom one is not married)

      • ‘Barry knew of the relationship but continued to live with Amanda in the hope that the affair would end.’
      • ‘His position was not harmed by the fact that he lived with the party leader's daughter.’
      • ‘He married four times, and at one stage was living with one woman in London and another in the country, at weekends.’
      • ‘He came to England but couldn't stand it so she decided she had to go and live with him in Cape Town.’
      • ‘It's impossible to know how they would act if they were stuck with living with these blokes in real life.’
      • ‘Every man has to learn on his own how to live with a woman.’
      • ‘He said that he lived with his partner and her children, one of whom is disabled, and they treat him as their father.’
      • ‘Katie, we learn, lived with Paul for nine years until things started to go wrong.’
      • ‘It made me feel rather lonely, despite the fact that I was living with Scott.’
      • ‘For many years he has lived with Jane in a house that they share in Islington.’
    • 2Accept or tolerate (something unpleasant)

      ‘our marriage was a failure—you have to learn to live with that fact’
      • ‘Chris is now free from the chronic pain and limitations that he was told he would have to learn to live with.’
      • ‘The people of Fulford need to accept that their properties are near a road and learn to live with the traffic.’
      • ‘It had happened a long time ago and there was nothing he could do about it except learn to live with the nightmares.’
      • ‘If one of you leaves then the decision is made and you have to learn to live with it.’
      • ‘I only hope he can learn to live with the guilt once he realises what he's done.’
      • ‘It seems that, for now, Americans will just have to learn to live with aggressive bees.’
      • ‘As the months ticked by, the question became more irritating, but he had to learn to live with it.’
      • ‘It is a problem he has learned to live with and rugby and the exercise involved has helped him cope.’
      • ‘In the years since, Anne-Marie and her family have learned to live with epilepsy.’
      • ‘Maybe Thomson learned to live with criticism and simply found the best way of dealing with it.’
  • live for

    • Regard as the purpose or most important aspect of one's life.

      ‘Tony lived for his painting’
  • live in

    • (of an employee or student) reside at the place where one works or studies.

  • live something out

    • 1Do in reality that which one has thought or dreamed about.

      ‘your wedding day is the one time that you can live out your most romantic fantasies’
      • ‘They can claim they are protecting the religion, when they are really living out their violent fantasies of revenge.’
      • ‘You spend every possible moment living that dream out, and soon it begins to take over your everyday life.’
      • ‘He had these fantasies, and unlike many people, he's lived them out.’
      • ‘She's living out her dream.’
      • ‘I'm sure they would've been a lot happier if they were living out their dream onstage with a decent performer.’
    • 2Spend the rest of one's life in a particular place or particular circumstances.

      ‘he lived out his days as a happy family man’
      • ‘He could have lived out his years proud to have served his country and regarded as a hero from America's last ‘good’ war.’
      • ‘I knew that the rest of my life would be lived out in group homes, or foster homes, or worse, staying at my grandmother's place.’
      • ‘All of these men would have lived out their lives in impotent obscurity had their families remained in England.’
      • ‘I imagine it's a great relief to him to be living his life out on a remote Pacific island.’
      • ‘Down in Texas, at a shabby nursing home called Mud Creek Shady Rest, a fat wreck of a man is living out his final days.’
      • ‘We've always had itchy feet but I can see us living our days out in Turkey.’
      • ‘That horse lived out his life in comfort in a warm barn with more straw and oats than he could use.’
      • ‘Galileo's sentence was to renounce his theory and to live out the rest of his days in a pleasant country house near Florence.’
      • ‘Butler was given a house by one of his wealthy admirers up there, and lived out the last three or four years of his life in this kind of subdivision, at the end of a cul-de-sac.’
      • ‘He lived out the last quarter-century of his existence in the place he loved best, though still remembering the Italy, Egypt and India of his youth.’
  • live through

    • Survive (an unpleasant experience or period)

      ‘both men lived through the Depression’

Origin

Old English libban, lifian, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch leven and German leben, also to life and leave.

Pronunciation

live

/lɪv//liv/

Main definitions of live in English

: live1live2

live2

adjective

  • 1Not dead or inanimate; living.

    ‘live animals’
    ‘the number of live births and deaths’
    • ‘Some people buy live trees that are balled in burlap instead of a cut tree.’
    • ‘Any new ingredients in these products are tested on live animals.’
    • ‘Each year, Hong Kong imports 1.6 million live pigs from the mainland.’
    • ‘All 18 who were infected in the 1997 outbreak had been in close contact with live animals in markets or on farms.’
    • ‘Carnivorous animals will eat live insects and some will eat mice and rats.’
    • ‘The EU yesterday banned the import of live birds, poultry meat and feathers from Romania for at least six months.’
    • ‘Nearby was a cage full of live rabbits and when questioned the teenagers could not provide a satisfactory answer as to how the animals came to be there.’
    • ‘The best way to prevent head lice spreading is to check your whole family's scalps regularly and treat them as soon as live lice are found.’
    • ‘Unaffected countries have already banned imports of live birds and meat.’
    • ‘Vacuuming removes mite allergen from carpets but is inefficient at removing live mites.’
    • ‘For example, a dead tree is not an eyesore, it's a home - there's more life in a dead tree than a live tree.’
    • ‘Dried turtle meat, six live turtles and an undetermined number of explosives were recovered on the boat.’
    • ‘Hundreds of children have been visiting Roves Farm near Swindon to take part in the nativity with a cast of live animals.’
    • ‘Several diseases cause rings of dead grass with live green grass in the center.’
    • ‘I will not have for a pet anything that requires being fed other live animals.’
    • ‘The veterinarians look at the live birds, checking for any that may be sick or injured.’
    • ‘Three hundred people staged a rally at Dover yesterday over the export of live animals.’
    • ‘They can also locate small heat sources, such as a liferaft in the open sea, or a live body in an expanse of snowy hillside.’
    • ‘Is it better to be a live slave than a dead hero or heroine?’
    • ‘Furthermore, is it ethically right for drug developers to use live subjects to test their developmental medicines?’
    living, alive, having life, breathing
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 (of a vaccine) containing viruses or bacteria that are living but of a mild or attenuated strain.
      • ‘A live, attenuated influenza virus vaccine is nearing approval in the United States.’
      • ‘To avoid human infection, farmers should wear latex gloves when handling both infected animals and the live vaccine.’
      • ‘A live weakened virus vaccine is effective in preventing some of these diseases.’
      • ‘These children show few adverse reactions to routine vaccinations, including live vaccines.’
      • ‘If he or she has recently received another live vaccine, you should delay vaccination for at least three weeks.’
      • ‘Safety issues with the live flavivirus vaccines need to be recognised and addressed.’
      • ‘Is this because it was simply oral, or was it because it was a live vaccine?’
      • ‘The particular make up of the MMR live vaccine means that many more children are being affected.’
      • ‘An inactivated polio vaccine will replace live oral polio vaccines for all ages.’
      • ‘The six victims inoculated with the attenuated live virus vaccine developed symptoms similar to those of yellow fever.’
    2. 1.2 (of yogurt) containing the living microorganisms by which it is formed.
      • ‘The labeling is voluntary, so a container of yogurt could have live cultures but not show the seal.’
      • ‘A plain live yoghurt with some added fresh fruit would be a better option.’
  • 2Relating to a musical performance given in concert, not on a recording.

    ‘there is traditional live music played most nights’
    ‘a live album’
    • ‘However, I suspect that this band really come into their own with live performance.’
    • ‘We were treated to live vocals from a soprano, baritone, alto and tenor.’
    • ‘Do you attach any importance to what the press say about your music and your live performances?’
    • ‘As a former musician myself, I love live music and especially jazz.’
    • ‘A live musical performance demands our attention and alters our perceptions of time and space.’
    • ‘These musicians will perform a live holiday music show from a boxcar stage.’
    • ‘You can dance the night away or just relax and enjoy the live music performed by the superb nine-piece Art Lester Band.’
    • ‘Most of the evening performances were a blend of live music and spoken word performances.’
    • ‘There was also a live concert of indigenous music and a lavish banquet.’
    • ‘So many people in the club seemed oblivious to the fact that there was actually live music being played.’
    • ‘Although she has a preference for live music and performance Caroline has a very successful recording career on the Scorpus label.’
    • ‘Dinner will be served at 6pm and the evening can be spent listening to live traditional music in the village.’
    • ‘Though it took many years to establish the technique of sound on film, live music accompanied public performances.’
    • ‘Added to that, his company is passionate about the relationship between live music and dance in performance.’
    • ‘The performance features two live musicians and five performers who do the work of about 10.’
    • ‘The first live music on the stage was a band called the Duets, a lady and gent who had many fans around the square to hear their songs.’
    • ‘In 1910, a bandstand was erected for the then popular live brass band music.’
    • ‘The performance features six exceptional dancers with live music by the UK's leading tango ensemble.’
    • ‘As music teachers, we also must promote and encourage attendance at live performances.’
    • ‘In addition to the live music, local DJs will also be performing.’
    1. 2.1 (of a broadcast) transmitted at the time of occurrence, not from a recording.
      ‘live coverage of the match’
      • ‘Those who couldn't squeeze into the hall could hear the lecture blasted across the campus on speakers, or go home and view the live webcast.’
      • ‘It costs money to go to a football match, why not to watch a live broadcast?’
      • ‘This tape is a collection of 10 skits from the original live broadcasts of the show.’
      • ‘Right after that the government pulled the plug on further live broadcasts from the cathedral.’
      • ‘Hundreds more were watching by live webcast and listening in by audio conference.’
      • ‘Traditional broadcasters, with a live webcast of their output, were joined by new internet based stations.’
      • ‘Wearing a green coat and matching headscarf, she made two live broadcasts from just outside the city.’
      • ‘The main argument being used against live telecasts is that they will slash attendances on cold winter nights.’
      • ‘My friends are soccer fanatics but they seemed to enjoy the live telecast, once I had explained the rules.’
      • ‘Crowded round a radio listening to the live broadcast from Parliament, we all felt that a change was going to come, something old was dying.’
      • ‘Bob agreed that he and Jim would take part in a live broadcast for Country Magazine.’
      • ‘This will be the first occasion on which a live broadcast will be made in Parliament.’
      • ‘As I removed my earpiece after a live broadcast on Tuesday, a man who'd been listening approached me.’
      • ‘It presents not only sound but also pictures, and the news can be transmitted instantly in live coverage.’
      • ‘But every effort is made, says Ian, to create the illusion that the broadcasts are live.’
      • ‘It may not be very long before we will be able to watch anything via live webcast, though likely for a price.’
      • ‘Now, we have the regular live telecasts of even Italian and Spanish league football.’
      • ‘As yet there's no title, but the band previewed one song, Knives Out, in a live webcast in December.’
      • ‘The performer had been asked to tone his act down after rehearsal but had ignored this request during the live broadcast.’
      • ‘This was an historic event, the second ever live telecast out of Ireland.’
      in the flesh, personal, in person, actual
      View synonyms
  • 3(of a wire or device) connected to a source of electric current.

    • ‘The gang are expert at disabling alarms and have often cut through live junction boxes to do so.’
    • ‘It is the second time the workman has stared death in the face after striking a live cable with a shovel in Bradford on Avon eight years ago.’
    • ‘The tree brought down electrical and BT lines, with a live cable setting the tree alight.’
    • ‘The impact of the crash snapped the pole in two, with the upper half landing on his roof, leaving live cables dangling next to his property.’
    • ‘Meanwhile, Antony, the thinker, had cleverly skewered a piece of Cheddar onto the end of a bare live electrical wire.’
    • ‘The crews also secured live electricity cables as falling trees and branches brought down overhead wires.’
    • ‘One accident involving a live electrical wire in his path while he was cutting grass nearly killed him.’
    • ‘Remember which wire is live and have your helper turn the power back off, checking with the tester to be sure.’
    • ‘Would the wires still be live once they weren't connected up to the box?’
    • ‘The base housed the live electrical wires.’
    • ‘He died as a live electric wire fell down into river.’
    • ‘The cable was certainly live when we got there, but it may have been tripped further down the line.’
    electrified, charged, powered, connected, active, switched on
    View synonyms
    1. 3.1 Of, containing, or using undetonated explosive.
      ‘live ammunition’
      • ‘I would not have been surprised if she had used it with live ammo and despatched the squabbling members of her family.’
      • ‘The stove was located two rooms away from the ammunition room, which had plenty of live ammo.’
      • ‘A 9mm pistol containing eight live bullets was discovered hidden under a pile of clothes in a different wardrobe.’
      • ‘Not only is this stretch of land corrugated and unmarked, it is also a live minefield.’
      • ‘On Friday, police said they found two backpacks containing live bombs that had not exploded.’
      • ‘A Royal Navy bomb disposal team arrived this morning and confirmed the object was a live mortar bomb.’
      • ‘A live bomb travelled more than 20 miles through south Essex in the rush-hour before being discovered.’
      • ‘Nothing replaces live training with live ammunition with the whole unit in the field.’
      • ‘In the middle of the night we were ordered to assemble in full battle order with live ammo.’
      • ‘A loaded Smith and Wesson revolver and four live rounds of ammunition were found hidden in a box under a bed.’
      • ‘A sports day at a school turned tragic when a starter's pistol turned out to have a live bullet in it.’
      • ‘The missile was successfully tested on November 30 last year while carrying a live warhead.’
      • ‘She was thrown down a mineshaft, and as she lay broken at the bottom a live grenade was tossed down on her.’
      • ‘It normally fired airgun pellets and the modification turned it into a prohibited weapon as live bullets could be fired from it.’
      • ‘People came into our house to shelter and told us that the army was shooting live rounds.’
      • ‘By this time I was shaking since I had no live bullets in my gun and not knowing what was going on.’
      • ‘These live bombs leak contaminants and pose an explosive threat to fishers and divers.’
      • ‘When the revolver was examined it was discovered that all but two of the gun's chambers contained live bullets.’
      • ‘How many other divers have encountered live munitions while pursuing their sport.’
      • ‘He then set up two devices, each comprising a sawn-off shotgun barrel and live ammunition.’
      unexploded, explosive, explodable, active
      View synonyms
    2. 3.2 (of coals) burning or glowing.
      • ‘He would bank the furnace fires and close the draft to insure live coals the next morning.’
      • ‘Nobody wished to retain money, everybody dropped it like a live coal.’
      • ‘The rice wine felt like live coal slipping down my throat.’
      • ‘The batter is poured into a banana-leaf-lined container and baked in a clay oven on live coals.’
      • ‘A live coal from the altar has touched his lips, and they are purified.’
      hot, glowing, red hot, aglow, smouldering
      View synonyms
    3. 3.3 (of a match) unused.
      • ‘The joss stick had been stuck in a box of live matches.’
      • ‘One Mum who was playing with live matches with her toddler daughter!’
    4. 3.4 (of a wheel or axle in machinery) moving or imparting motion.
      • ‘Well it's American and it's got a live axle so it's bound to be no good, right?’
      • ‘Most lay the blame for its lack of handling on the live rear axle.’
    5. 3.5 (of a ball in a game) in play, especially in contrast to being foul or out of bounds.
      • ‘The ball becomes live when it leaves the referee's or umpire's hands on a jump ball.’
      • ‘A player may leave the playing area to play a live ball.’
      • ‘Burress then picks up the ball and drops it again, and the Falcons proceed to pick up what should be a live ball.’
      • ‘The ball was still live and the pitcher threw it out of play.’
      • ‘Now for the coup de grace: a pair of Offaly hands would wrap themselves around the next live ball.’
  • 4(of a question or subject) of current or continuing interest and importance.

    ‘the future organization of Europe has become a live issue’
    • ‘This is a particularly live issue in changes of job duties, the contractual scope of which is vital to decisions on redundancy payments.’
    • ‘Here is a chance at least for the younger generation to make known its views on this live subject.’
    • ‘There is a question of trust and it is a live issue and we have to deal with it.’
    • ‘The issue has been a live issue for a number of years now.’
    • ‘Obesity has become a politically live issue in recent years.’
    • ‘As to the second point, is there a live question of discretion in this application?’
    • ‘Food safety and pollution are very live issues.’
    • ‘Now, they must have been live issues, because we find more than traces of them.’
    • ‘None-the-less, concern to give local communities effective control over policing remains a live issue.’
    • ‘So it was a live issue and a real issue for the jury to consider.’
    • ‘The movement of families from older estates to the new ones is also a very live issue and that is happening on a regular basis.’
    • ‘The question has been a live one long before it entered the deep entrails of the European Union's legislative process.’
    • ‘That is a live question because of the proposed abolition of the Compensation Court of New South Wales.’
    • ‘So the question of the process of reasoning that a trial judge is supposed to go through also became a very live question.’
    • ‘Whether or not there was a default in payment of rent for these premises remains a live issue.’
    • ‘That, I submit, was a live issue for the jury when considering this appellant's case.’
    • ‘They knew that Vietnam is still a live issue among a certain generation.’
    • ‘The place of faith within politics looks likely to remain a live issue as the case for Turkish EU membership is made.’
    • ‘Mr O'Dwyer, however, emphasised the issue was still live and would have to be dealt with.’
    • ‘That led to the preliminary question, and therefore, your Honour, it remains a live question.’
    topical, current, of current interest, contemporary
    View synonyms

adverb

  • As or at an actual event or performance.

    ‘the match will be televised live’
    • ‘Their midday encounter was being shown live on the big screen, just behind the court.’
    • ‘I also remember watching his resignation speech live, another great performance.’
    • ‘Glasgow's Proms in the Park will be broadcast live, in its entirety on BBC Radio Scotland.’
    • ‘The songs have been recorded live in studios and computers have not been used to arrange the music.’
    • ‘The entire BBC Local Radio network in England will broadcast the funeral live.’
    • ‘Millions more watched the event live on TV and listened to the national radio.’
    • ‘Even though I'd only written my first song then, I'd been playing live for years.’
    • ‘John will also report live from the major events in the political calendar.’
    • ‘Thousands will relish the chance to see them perform together live on stage at Buckingham Palace.’
    • ‘Each programme from the daytime schedule is broadcasting live from a different venue throughout the day.’
    • ‘If enacted, either bill could prevent you from hearing your favorite band or DJ live.’
    • ‘This man is a singer of tremendous ability and well worth hearing live.’
    • ‘What do you prefer - playing live or recording spectacular music in the solitude of a recording studio?’
    • ‘Kian described it as the moment the band has all been waiting for, getting up on stage and performing live.’
    • ‘Charlie sent a personal message and a signed photograph to brave Jasmine and free tickets have been arranged for her to see the band play live.’
    • ‘The game will be screened live on Sky TV with a 6.05 pm kick off.’
    • ‘There's something about seeing sport live that makes a difference.’
    • ‘We just can't wait to be back on-stage performing live and especially at home in Ireland.’
    • ‘You also allowed it to be broadcast live on television and on radio here.’
    • ‘The race will be televised live around the world.’

Phrases

  • go live

    • (of a system) become operational.

      • ‘The new Cambridge Journals Online system went live in October 2000.’
      • ‘After the system has gone live, the consultants continue to train the users while they're doing their jobs.’
      • ‘In almost every case, the client would be better off waiting until the application goes live before testing, rather than testing an incomplete ensemble of code and components.’
      • ‘The University of Liverpool today unveiled a new supercomputer cluster which is expected to be one of the World's 100 most powerful systems when it goes live next month.’
      • ‘Six months later, in June 2001, our new Web site went live.’

Origin

Mid 16th century: shortening of alive.

Pronunciation

live

/līv//laɪv/