Definition of lookout in English:



  • 1A place from which to keep watch or view landscape.

    • ‘The steady climb and particularly the final stairway to the fire lookout might give shaky legs to those with vertigo.’
    • ‘It begins at an easy gradient and gradually climbs to a lookout giving excellent views north and south along the coast.’
    • ‘Then he made his way to the lookout post, with some anger in him.’
    • ‘Either side of the gates was a tall lookout tower, the same colour as the walls and with a golden, cone-shaped roof.’
    • ‘The view from the lookout was a breathtaking panorama of the harbour and the sea beyond.’
    • ‘It is worth stopping and looking at the view from the lookout on the right - a vista of mountains and right through to the sea at Tahunanui.’
    • ‘Within it are staircases and skylights that connect the main auditorium with underground classrooms, and a lookout tower which houses the museum.’
    • ‘About ten minutes further along the track there is a path to a lookout and a stone seat.’
    • ‘Keiko watched patiently as the soldier one hundred metres away from their spot continued his patrol on the walls and entered the lookout tower adjoining the city walls.’
    • ‘There she saw a bit of a lookout post in the forest… high up.’
    • ‘The view to port and starboard along the river from my lookout in the crow's nest was picture perfect.’
    • ‘Black smoke filled the air outside and Juan watched from the lookout point with satisfaction.’
    • ‘Andree climbed down from the lookout point and walked over to Rolf and Isaac.’
    • ‘After metal detectors and searches, I was let in through two gigantic automated gates, watched from a lookout tower.’
    • ‘Back on the beach, a teenage boy sat up on the lookout tower.’
    • ‘Water slapped over the decks, rode up the windows and playfully splashed the lookout tower.’
    • ‘He and Rolf climbed down from the lookout point and onto the ground.’
    • ‘From a lookout hut, we watched a royal albatross father trying hard to land, flying with slim wings three metres long in a circle, four or five times.’
    • ‘Many hours later found me sitting in my favorite lookout spot, watching the sunlight shimmer on the water.’
    • ‘From the lookout area, the view embraces the valley’
    observation post, lookout point, lookout station, lookout tower, watchtower, tower, post
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    1. 1.1A person stationed to keep watch for danger or trouble.
      ‘they acted as lookouts at the post office’
      • ‘It is believed the man, who has not been named, was acting as a lookout for other workers.’
      • ‘Guss and Dante looked up to the tower the lookout had called from, and then out across the plains.’
      • ‘He had tried to persuade me to go with him, to act as a lookout for him, in return for half of what he got - but I was too afraid - I refused, thinking he'd drop the idea.’
      • ‘Jesi was to act as a lookout for us, since he assumed she was the least psychically able of all of us.’
      • ‘So we will still post guards, and lookouts, but we need to start cooking food for dinner.’
      • ‘One minute they're playing video games, the next they're acting as lookouts for patrols of militia men.’
      • ‘While her partner acts as a lookout, she slips box after box of perfume into a bag.’
      • ‘We believe there was a child of five acting as a lookout, so parents need to take more responsibility for their children and make sure they know where they are.’
      • ‘He would have to get better guards and lookouts.’
      • ‘A lookout would ensure that no guards could surprise the craftsmen during their 12-hour shifts.’
      • ‘He said the two lads acted as lookouts as he did the robbery and he gave them £400 each.’
      • ‘The appellant continued to act as a lookout throughout.’
      • ‘The lookout spots a traveling party and men are dispatched to capture and bring them back.’
      • ‘The witness denied under cross-examination that she had exaggerated what she heard at the toilet or that she and the other boy had acted as lookouts.’
      • ‘He was so severely hurt by using the brick that he decided to act as a lookout while the other man stole a television set and a PlayStation computer game.’
      • ‘The boy claimed to have been acting as a lookout for his two friends, whom he said had set out to ‘beat people up’ and go ‘jacking’, a slang term for stealing cars.’
      • ‘The lookouts in the towers began to climb down but were struck down by a firestorm raining down upon them.’
      • ‘The storm raged all night and three lookouts were posted.’
      • ‘Other members of the gang acted as lookouts while one of the men walked into the office and out of the store with the cash.’
      • ‘A third man who was armed with a handgun acted as the lookout.’
      watchman, guard, watch, sentry, sentinel, night watchman, scout, picket
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    2. 1.2archaic A view over a landscape.
      • ‘A few hundred meters from the entrance, there is a fine lookout over the plain.’
      • ‘You'll see a beautiful hemlock stand, a fine lookout and acidic Bat Lake.’
      view, vista, panorama, prospect, bird's-eye view, sweep, outlook, aspect
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    3. 1.3informal A person's own concern.
      ‘everyone's life is his own lookout’
      • ‘If he does go off to London every now and then on business, that's his lookout. My idea is he always ought to take Mrs. Culpepper with him.’
      • ‘If she is violating any part of their custody order, your son can petition the court for enforcement, but again, that's his lookout and not yours.’
      • ‘If you can't behave like a decent person and you continue to get banned then that's your lookout!’
      problem, concern, business, affair, responsibility, worry, difficulty
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    4. 1.4British informal [in singular]Used to indicate whether a likely outcome is good or bad.
      ‘“What if he gets sick?” “It's a bad lookout in that case.”’
      • ‘If Erik's secrets cease to be Erik's secrets, it will be a bad lookout for a goodly number of the human race!’
      • ‘It is a bad lookout, boys - a very bad lookout. There, don't talk about it any more. I do not want to make your mother unhappy.’
      • ‘When a trust feels under pressure to set its own standards of political correctness from fear of an employment tribunal (self censorship) it is a bad lookout for medicine.’
      outlook, prospect, view of the future, future
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