Definition of loss in English:



  • 1The fact or process of losing something or someone.

    ‘avoiding loss of time’
    [count noun] ‘funding cuts will lead to job losses’
    • ‘The bank did not say how many job losses the branch closure programme would entail.’
    • ‘They have admitted the financial crisis could mean more job losses and ward closures.’
    • ‘I would like to transfer the business into a clean company that will not show heavy losses.’
    • ‘She said there would have to be job losses, but no decision had yet been made from which areas of the trust.’
    • ‘The closer you are to retirement the harder it will be to make up the losses.’
    • ‘Critics lost no time in dissecting the losses these terms entailed for the city.’
    • ‘Many firefighters at a local level will want to confront the cuts and job losses.’
    • ‘Farmers hoped to send their animals to early slaughter to avoid financial losses.’
    • ‘Any job losses will be dealt with through collective bargaining and on a voluntary basis.’
    • ‘In good years, profits from the second half more than cover losses from the first half.’
    • ‘Post Office chiefs insist drastic action is needed to stem huge financial losses.’
    • ‘It has a reserve built up from past profits that has so far coped with losses.’
    • ‘Profit warnings announced earlier in the year are now feeding through into job losses.’
    • ‘Both had posted losses throughout the session, but stabilized near the close.’
    • ‘He fears that the morale of the county will be unable to cope with further job losses.’
    • ‘If a company has no directors, customers cannot take action to recover their losses.’
    • ‘In later proceedings it was held that the applicant had not in fact suffered such losses.’
    • ‘The reason for the possible job losses is possible barrack closures at the Garrison.’
    • ‘He is now under fire for the losses suffered and the subsequent hit to the company's dividend.’
    • ‘His own school is facing job losses as it is in the process of moving from two forms of entry to one.’
    mislaying, misplacement, dropping, forgetting, overlooking
    deprivation, disappearance, losing, privation, forfeiture, waste, squandering, dissipation
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1An amount of money lost by a business or organization.
      ‘insurance can protect you against financial loss’
      [count noun] ‘we have incurred huge losses’
      [in combination] ‘loss-making industries’
    2. 1.2The state or feeling of grief when deprived of someone or something of value.
      ‘I feel a terrible sense of loss’
      • ‘Doesn't this invalidate people that are feeling other things such as grief, sadness, loss, anger right now?’
      • ‘Everyone feels a sense of loss and grief, only some feel it harder than others.’
      • ‘We are all subject to the pain of loss, grief, sadness and even plain disappointment.’
      • ‘Several of her poems are marked by pain, a sense of loss and nostalgia.’
      • ‘Nothing can replace this loss, and our grief is ever before us.’
      • ‘How are we to make sense of our shock and grief and loss in Phil's death?’
      • ‘She sniffed, and sighed from grief of her terrible loss of home and friends already.’
      • ‘All parents who have lost children at any age or in any circumstances and who feel the pain of loss and grief are welcome to attend.’
      • ‘We have all experienced some psychological trauma, loss or grief.’
      • ‘What is it that makes us think we have the right to view other people's pain, loss and grief?’
      • ‘You should be careful of people's deeply felt grief and sense of loss before you dismiss them as selfish cynics.’
      • ‘The centre now offers a group program dealing with grief and loss as well as training for men wishing to be involved in community work.’
      • ‘The process of conflict resolution requires the equal acknowledgement of the grief and loss of others.’
      • ‘The reading as well as the writing of poetry can help people suffering from grief and loss.’
      • ‘She highlighted very eloquently the pain and loss of personal grief.’
      • ‘The pain of loss and grief of the relatives of those killed has been widely covered and is sometimes too painful to bare.’
      • ‘Can you say something about your poems being so preoccupied with grief and loss, and the suffering brought to you by the suffering of another person?’
      • ‘The large crowds at the funeral ceremonies reflected the sense of loss and grief felt throughout the neighbourhood.’
      • ‘Then who speaks for those whose grief, loss and suffering is not known to us?’
      • ‘There would be an immense sense of grief and loss, thoughts of what might have been and cannot now be.’
      injury, hurt, pain, suffering, distress, anguish, trauma, torment, grief
      View synonyms
    3. 1.3[in singular]A person or thing that is badly missed when lost.
      ‘he will be a great loss to many people’
      • ‘He is a great loss to the Trien community and will be sadly missed by all who knew him.’
      • ‘He will be a great loss and will be sadly missed by everybody at the club.’
      • ‘He is a huge loss for the community and will be greatly missed by his cousins, friends and neighbours.’
      • ‘He was a true gentleman and he will be a great loss to his club, where he is rightly regarded as a legend, and indeed to Scottish football.’
      • ‘He is a loss to all who knew him and even to those, like us, who had not yet met him.’
    4. 1.4Physics A reduction of power within or among circuits, measured as a ratio of power input to power output.
      • ‘In addition to peak voltage limiting, the circuit can reduce the total circuit loss, including both switching and snubber losses.’
      • ‘There are other sources of power loss in a transformer, but those are much more complicated.’
      • ‘This new method not only reduces voltage and power loss in the switch path, but also lowers the cost and simplifies design.’


Old English los destruction of Germanic origin; related to Old Norse los breaking up of the ranks of an army and loose; later probably a back-formation from lost, past participle of lose.