Definition of straight in US English:



  • 1Extending or moving uniformly in one direction only; without a curve or bend.

    ‘a long, straight road’
    • ‘At the end of the straight section, the road bends to the right and appears to go down slightly.’
    • ‘There is a mistaken belief that it is a straight road, while in fact there is a slight bend.’
    • ‘It is visible down a straight approach road for nearly half a mile.’
    • ‘As a result, two of the remaining races will be divided to make up a six-race programme which will be staged entirely on the straight course.’
    • ‘Even when driving down a perfectly straight road, it is necessary to turn the steering wheel from time to time.’
    • ‘As the bus pelts towards Paramaribo past scattered dwellings on a dead straight road, I'm reminded of home.’
    • ‘Once here, they invented straight roads, central heating, Latin lessons and a lasting tourist industry in Bath.’
    • ‘The road is now straight, a highway surrounded by farms and the occasional factory.’
    • ‘In fact, almost the whole way from Kiev we encountered few cars along the wide, forest-lined, straight road.’
    • ‘Commuters are attracted to areas where house prices are still relatively low and the road is straight.’
    • ‘Two cars start off at the same point on a straight highway facing opposite directions.’
    • ‘Kneel on all fours with arms straight and wrists in line with shoulders.’
    • ‘Martin had brought them back into the City via Westgate road again, because it was a nice straight route that he liked despite its ups and downs.’
    • ‘There are straight stretches and sharp bends and that is why there are so many fatalities on that road.’
    • ‘It appears he negotiated a corner but crashed as he turned onto a straight section of road.’
    • ‘He says because it is a long straight road motorists are ignoring the speed limit.’
    • ‘I'll be pedalling along, quietly making time along a fairly straight length of road, and be thinking to myself.’
    • ‘What name is given to the effect that causes a straight stick to appear bent when we put part of its length under water?’
    • ‘Police regard the village as a speeding hot spot because of the long, straight roads in the area.’
    • ‘The roads were straight and empty, and coconut trees still dominated the landscape.’
    • ‘Newark Road is a long straight road so drivers can build up a lot of speed driving down it, so we need traffic-calming measures to slow them down.’
    • ‘What surprises me is how often they appear beside a straight piece of road.’
    • ‘As a result, trails often meander instead of following straight courses.’
    unswerving, undeviating, linear, direct, as straight as an arrow, uncurving, unbending
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    1. 1.1 (of hair) not curly or wavy.
      • ‘She watched as the rain rinsed off Evelyn's layers of make-up and her straight hair became frizzy curls.’
      • ‘His hair was naturally straight and it ended at around his neck area.’
      • ‘Opening the door he saw a young woman, the same age as Maggie, but with dark, straight hair, and dark eyes.’
      • ‘Her long, straight hair fell over her shoulders in a smooth curtain to her waist and framed her face with a startling effect.’
      • ‘I have naturally straight hair, but lately it started to curl more than I'd like it to.’
      • ‘Her straight hair is tied in a ponytail and her eye shadow looks fresh.’
      • ‘I threw my head back and laughed, letting my long, straight hair fall down my back.’
      • ‘She was certainly pretty, with straight hair down to her lower back, perfectly brushed.’
      • ‘She admits to feeling jealous of her younger brother's darker skin, thick straight hair and wide brown eyes.’
      • ‘My hair was straight and hung about two inches over my shoulders; not long and shiny like my sister's locks.’
      • ‘The girl on the left had straight hair, unlike the other girl's, which was wavy.’
      • ‘With her thick, straight hair and tanned skin, she really could be Olivia's sister.’
      • ‘I have long, straight hair and I don't want it to be curly so please keep that in mind.’
      • ‘I see a lot of girls in the media with beautiful faces and long, straight hair.’
      • ‘My hair was straight naturally, so I usually didn't do anything with it; I liked it the way it was.’
      • ‘Some stylists are great with, say, thick full hair but have no idea how to do thin straight hair.’
      • ‘After a quick survey of the room, she saw that she was one of a handful of women whose hair was straight rather than curly.’
      • ‘The biggest problem with having thin, straight hair is its evident lack of volume.’
      • ‘Her hair was straight and had two braids that went from her temples to the back of her head.’
      • ‘Her hair was naturally straight so there was no reason to brush it.’
      • ‘The men wear their long straight hair in braids and wear blue ponchos and white pants.’
      • ‘In the doorway stood a thin lady with straight hair to her shoulders.’
    2. 1.2 (of a garment) not flared or fitted closely to the body.
      ‘a straight skirt’
      • ‘She wore a straight black skirt that reached to the floor and a white blouse with silver buttons.’
      • ‘Choose jackets, tailored suits and shirtwaist dresses with straight, classic cuts.’
      • ‘I have trouble finding jeans that have a straight leg and high waist.’
      • ‘Women wear a straight black skirt with a slit through which can be seen layers and layers of white lace.’
      • ‘The straight black skirt made her legs longer and her hips curvier; it showed her figure.’
      • ‘Denise reappeared, wearing a straight blue skirt, trying to compose herself but still looking very embarrassed.’
      • ‘Some wear navy printed straight skirts with embroidered shoes and embroidered scarves on their heads.’
      • ‘Other jackets and pants have a completely new and fuller body shape, where trousers are full, very long and straight and are worn loose at the waist.’
      • ‘Sally suggests putting together a pair of straight trousers with a biggish top and a belt slung around loosely.’
      • ‘This consisted of a white fitted shirt, a blue straight skirt which came just above the knee and a blue sweatshirt and tie.’
      • ‘She was wearing a simple gray T-shirt and jeans that weren't flared, but weren't straight either.’
      • ‘The waitresses wear authentic Thai clothes and look elegant in their long straight skirts and blouses in silks of every hue of the rainbow.’
      • ‘They wore satin dresses with scalloped bodices and straight skirts and carried cream and cerise roses.’
      • ‘There was apparently to be a return to popularity of the three-quarter tunic buttoning down the back and the straight skirt.’
      • ‘The bride, given in marriage by her father Sean, looked radiant in a white satin, long sleeved straight dress, with a long train.’
      • ‘We selected a basic straight skirt, but skirts this season have detailing you might want to consider.’
      • ‘They come pleated in long styles as well as straight and swinging styles and skirt suits are back.’
    3. 1.3 (of an aim, blow, or course) going direct to the intended target.
      ‘a straight punch to the face’
      • ‘She wasn't tall enough or strong enough to keep me on a straight course, so she did her best to keep me from crashing into things instead.’
      • ‘The path's course discourages visitors from taking a straight route to the pavilion.’
      • ‘They showed strong inclinations to remain on a straight course, requiring constant input to turn or tilt.’
      • ‘The tip of the weapon should form a straight trajectory to a point on the target.’
      • ‘The sword came in a straight uppercut, simple, yet deadly as it cut a gash up his side.’
      • ‘Reduced to a crawl, it wandered in circles, unable to set a straight course.’
      • ‘Here you should go down for a couple of hundred metres and then turn left at the wooden shack to carry on the essentially straight route.’
      • ‘A while ago she had begun to worry about how far it was when he finally turned off his straight course.’
      • ‘The driver shouted as he changed his straight course and headed directly at Mac.’
      • ‘The tip of his knife drew a line from the base of the palm following a straight course up.’
      • ‘She bent down and pushed low branches out of her way, trying to keep to a straight course.’
      • ‘McHale-Roe opted for straight punches to counter Siberry's tactic which was to aim hooked body punches.’
      • ‘They are weird stubby boats, and you have to do a lot more work to propel and keep them on a straight course through the water.’
      • ‘Why is it that when you stop paddling a kayak, it turns sharply instead of maintaining a straight course?’
      • ‘I have been quite intrigued by the discussion about using a GPS to hold a straight course to escape cloud.’
      • ‘They are open to body blows in the midriff and lack the ability to throw straight punches.’
      • ‘Use a line of tiles or lights or other markings on the ceiling to help you set a straight course.’
      • ‘He set a straight course for Sabrina, who was sitting on one of the controller's chairs.’
      unswerving, undeviating, linear, direct, as straight as an arrow, uncurving, unbending
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    4. 1.4Geometry (of a line) lying on the shortest path between any two of its points.
      • ‘The formula also applies to configurations in which one or two of the touching circles are replaced by straight lines.’
      • ‘He produced a number of formulas for triangles, two sides of which were straight lines and the third was the arc of a circle.’
      • ‘So the dots all lie along straight lines passing through the centre of the system of circles.’
      • ‘One finds more precise straight lines in geometry than in kinematics.’
      • ‘On this is an arrangement of straight lines, circles and semi-circles.’
      • ‘In Euclidean geometry, light travels on straight lines.’
    5. 1.5 (of an arch) flat-topped.
      • ‘A flat arch, also known as jack or straight arch, extends straight across an opening with no curvature, creating a horizontal emphasis.’
      • ‘Each of the four straight arches is flanked on either side by an engaged Doric column and surmounted by an entablature.’
      • ‘Some new longitudinal walls were made of yellow clay bricks with concrete straight arches for the doors.’
  • 2Properly positioned so as to be level, upright, or symmetrical.

    ‘he made sure his tie was straight’
    • ‘In order to cast it, the arm has to be straight and the fingers flexed.’
    • ‘She walked up to me and straightened the already straight collar of my tuxedo jacket.’
    • ‘The black tie was straight and positioned perfectly, giving him an overall very professional appearance.’
    • ‘The goal is to make your spine mostly straight and aligned while you rest.’
    • ‘I dressed with care, making sure my tie was straight and my shirt-tail was tucked into my slacks.’
    • ‘Taking a deep breath she checked her skirt was straight, brushed one strand of hair behind her ear and exhaled.’
    • ‘Even his tie, blown to one side by a slight wind, was back to its normal straight position.’
    • ‘Your back should be reasonably straight and upright.’
    • ‘His cherry-red bow tie was perfectly straight, his white shirt immaculately ironed.’
    • ‘At the end of the three-hour operation, his vertebral column looked straight.’
    • ‘Experienced masons keep their string lines taut to help them lay straight courses.’
    • ‘Before each journey: check that the car seat straps are straight and properly adjusted to allow for the thickness of your child's clothes.’
    level, even, true, in line, aligned, square, plumb, properly positioned
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    1. 2.1predicative In proper order or condition.
      ‘it'll take a long time to get the place straight’
      • ‘It took eight solid hours of cleaning to get the place straight.’
      • ‘I was pretty tired by evening - unpacking and trying to get the house straight had really taken it out of me, so instead of staying up to watch Big Brother, I went to bed early.’
      • ‘My maid is coming in the morning and I need to get the place straight so she can actually clean.’
      in order, tidy, neat and tidy, neat, shipshape, shipshape and bristol fashion, in apple-pie order, orderly, spick and span, organized, arranged, sorted out, straightened out, trim, spruce
      View synonyms
  • 3Not evasive; honest.

    ‘a straight answer’
    ‘thank you for being straight with me’
    • ‘People were straight with me that day, but suddenly I was fair game for the media.’
    • ‘But this is one time when no one should accept not getting a straight answer.’
    • ‘The younger woman kept silent, wishing her mother would just give her a straight answer for a change and stop lecturing.’
    • ‘The only way to truly find out why would be to ask all the coaches how they voted and even then it might be hard to get a straight answer.’
    • ‘It was straight, forthright and honest, and, once the situation was resolved, there were no grudges and no problems.’
    • ‘They can't even explain why they wouldn't give me a straight answer.’
    • ‘I have a lot of respect for him because he was always straight with me.’
    • ‘He knew that he hadn't been exactly straight with David about the idea that he was dead.’
    • ‘A The straight answer is that it's possible, but very unlikely.’
    • ‘Long ago, I promised myself that I would always give my children a straight answer whenever they asked anything of me.’
    • ‘He was asked a very specific question and he gave a very straight answer to what the question was.’
    • ‘What we need is honesty and more straight talking about the choices we face as a country, about the real costs of what is proposed or the actual costs of the state's retreat.’
    • ‘But the people he deals with are all evasive to the point that he can't get a straight answer.’
    • ‘Poor old George is really struggling because he always tries to give straight answers even when the truth is better left unsaid.’
    • ‘They refused to give straight answers to many of his questions, often citing reasons of national security.’
    • ‘I don't think that they gave a straight answer to any of the questions they were asked by either Brokaw or each other.’
    • ‘By contrast, in the run-up to the war, he appeared to be straight, direct and sincere.’
    • ‘Rosemary asked him what the problem was but she could not get a straight answer from him.’
    • ‘Like the president, he believes in eye contact and straight talk.’
    • ‘Whilst not everyone will agree with what he says, they will respect his conviction, his honesty and his straight talking.’
    • ‘But one thing I did notice: in interviews, Clarke is refreshingly good at giving a straight answer.’
    honest, direct, frank, candid, truthful, sincere, forthright, straightforward, plain-spoken, plain-speaking, plain, blunt, downright, outspoken, straight from the shoulder, no-nonsense, unequivocal, unambiguous, unqualified, unvarnished
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    1. 3.1 Simple; straightforward.
      ‘a straight choice between nuclear power and penury’
      • ‘A straight biography would have been a more obvious project to undertake.’
      • ‘He said on Friday that if he had been given a straight choice between the Scotland job and the Leicester one, he would have taken the latter.’
      • ‘But give me a straight choice between this and the economics of the jungle that is fair trade, and I will choose the present system.’
      • ‘In the eyes of our leaders there is a straight choice to be made by everyone.’
      • ‘This time, the message was simple and straight: You too will grow old one day.’
      • ‘On the issue of the replacement, the coach said it was not as simple as making a straight swap.’
      • ‘Italy usually leaves non-meat eaters with a straight choice between pasta and pizza.’
      • ‘I wasn't going to be doing any watching so I thought it best to put it in simple, straight terms.’
      • ‘Disruption is inevitably compounded by having to rearrange the team to change positions and adjust tactics, rather than make a straight swap.’
      • ‘In both cases, a straight choice is being made between doing something and paying somebody else to do it for you while you do something more lucrative.’
      • ‘If two teams end level for second place there will be a straight play-off.’
      • ‘Sceptics point out that the poll only offered a straight choice between Whitehall and regional rule, and left out the option of more local control.’
      • ‘For now it seems like a straight choice: pay more in tax for a better service for all, or pay more privately to ensure your personal health.’
      • ‘They're the ones that people in the industry know and recognise as the straight journalism courses.’
      • ‘It seems to me he was asked a very straight and simple question that he then chose to overly complicate.’
    2. 3.2 (of a look) bold and steady.
      ‘he gave her a straight, no-nonsense look’
      • ‘She fixed Anna with a straight look, one she knew would be understood.’
      • ‘The straight looks and answers she gives when asked about her ambitions leave no doubt that she thinks the sacrifice was worth it.’
    3. 3.3 (of thinking) clear, logical, and unemotional.
      • ‘The book combined good writing with straight thinking, and it would be a success, he predicted.’
      • ‘With a little bit of focussed and straight thinking, it could be more suitable for what is essentially a children's band on this channel.’
      logical, rational, clear, lucid, sound, coherent, unemotional, dispassionate
      View synonyms
    4. 3.4 Not addicted to drugs.
      • ‘She tells The National Enquirer in an exclusive story that she did crack with the actor on many occasions, but while she's been straight since last August, the movie star's drug use persists.’
  • 4attributive In continuous succession.

    ‘he scored his fourth straight win’
    • ‘Andy Newsome converted and Malton looked to be heading towards a fourth straight win.’
    • ‘For the second straight year, she won the most individual gold medals at the world's major championship.’
    • ‘In fact, this was Clyde's seventh straight win over Stirling in the space of just 18 months.’
    • ‘Nestlé Rowntree registered their fifth straight win as they thrashed Wilberfoss 5-0.’
    • ‘However, in a mad final scramble, the Vipers were able to hold on to win their fourth straight Stampede Challenge title.’
    • ‘In Minneapolis, Mark Buehrle won his third straight start with a five-hitter as Chicago beat Minnesota.’
    • ‘Five goals from Darren Todd helped Fulford to their sixth straight win as they beat Heworth 7-1.’
    • ‘He offered his party the hope of winning a third straight election - an unprecedented achievement for the Labour Party.’
    • ‘Morecambe go in search of a sixth straight win on Saturday when Fleetwood roll into Woodhill Lane.’
    • ‘Without Jardel, they failed to win their tenth straight title.’
    • ‘After losing the first game, the Warriors responded by taking three straight games, winning the match.’
    • ‘Speaking of United, their form continues to improve, with a fourth straight Premiership win.’
    • ‘Bruges would then become the first club ever to win 14 straight matches at the beginning of a Belgian league season.’
    • ‘Their third win in five games, looks to have ensured safety from relegation, as is the case for Cross Keys after a third straight win.’
    • ‘A run of seven straight wins was followed by three defeats going into yesterday's match.’
    • ‘The cycling great, who just won his seventh straight Tour de France, says that's simply not true.’
    • ‘Florida won its sixth straight game and remained one game behind Philadelphia in the National League wild-card race.’
    • ‘They have strung together seven straight wins which has propelled them to the top of Division One.’
    • ‘The Washington Nationals won their sixth straight baseball game last night.’
    • ‘The New York Islanders came close to tying the record, winning four straight Cups in the early Eighties.’
    • ‘It was a result that also gave the coach, in charge of his native Brazil in 2002, a record 10th straight win in World Cup finals.’
    • ‘The Blues dominated the first-half, looking for their fifth straight win in succession at Vicarage Park.’
    • ‘Game Three is Monday at Miami, where they have won 16 straight games.’
    successive, in succession, consecutive, in a row, one after the other
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    1. 4.1 Supporting all the principles and candidates of one political party.
      ‘he generally voted a straight ticket’
      • ‘In New Hampshire the belief has always been that the option to vote straight ticket benefited the party in the majority, so much so that Democrats have been trying to abolish it for years, without success.’
      • ‘This is the kind of thing which keeps people voting straight ticket.’
  • 5(of an alcoholic drink) undiluted; neat.

    ‘straight brandy’
    • ‘That makes it more difficult for employees to hide beer, wine, or straight liquor in a Styrofoam cup or shaded glass.’
    • ‘Grey and Flanagan nodded and watched as O'Hara proceeded to pour not just a shot, but a full glass of straight whisky.’
    • ‘He said that since the shutdown, bartenders cannot serve straight alcohol.’
    • ‘I didn't want to just order a beer - how classic - or a glass full of straight vodka.’
    • ‘By the age of 14 Annie was drinking straight vodka, smoking cannabis on a daily basis and almost never going to school.’
    • ‘She orders straight vodka because she remembers a magazine ad that made it look crisp and tasty.’
    • ‘Before he can order, a straight shot of whiskey is dropped in front of him.’
    • ‘Five minutes later had me at the side of the school opening the bag and taking a huge gulp of straight vodka.’
    • ‘Vodka is always drunk straight, accompanied by pickled or salty food.’
    • ‘Holding the bottle by the neck she took her first sip; it tasted of blackberries, but mostly of straight liquor.’
    undiluted, neat, unmixed, unadulterated, pure, unblended, uncut
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  • 6(especially of drama) serious as opposed to comic or musical; employing the conventional techniques of its art form.

    ‘a straight play’
    • ‘She saw her first straight play at the age of nine.’
    • ‘The West End is also suffering from the lack of successful straight plays.’
    • ‘You know, I was hired to be the straight woman for all these funny people.’
    • ‘He has played comedy roles and straight roles and done voiceovers.’
    • ‘Though the subject matter is somewhat similar, this is a straight drama, devoid of comic moments and Seventies retro.’
    • ‘It is a subject familiar to us from screwball farces, and one from which a straight drama could also be drawn.’
    • ‘Trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, Howard performed in straight plays on both sides of the Atlantic.’
    • ‘This part of the film develops slowly, and is predominantly a straight drama.’
    • ‘Without that it would be pretty drab and dull, like a straight play.’
    • ‘He had been seen in one variety programme, one straight play and once on the panel of ‘What's my line?’’
    • ‘It isn't every day a London theatre presenting a straight play gets an audience like this one seems to be attracting.’
    • ‘It's a great experience as there is a lot more latitude but I actually prefer dramas and straight thrillers.’
  • 7informal (of a person) conventional or respectable.

    ‘she looked pretty straight in her school clothes’
    • ‘They were very good people and very straight, honest people.’
    • ‘They're so straight, some of these people, that you can see how stressed they are when it comes to asking for cannabis.’
    • ‘They are straight, decent guys; unassuming and happy to take whatever slings and arrows are on the pitch.’
    respectable, upright, upstanding, honourable, honest, on the level, decent, right-minded, law-abiding
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    1. 7.1 Heterosexual.
      • ‘It's far too easy to grow up as a gay man convinced that the best thing all round is to be straight.’
      • ‘We simply don't share any characteristics other than our sexuality, any more than straight people do.’
      • ‘The last event drew between 30 and 40 straight people, out of a crowd of about 150.’
      • ‘You know, it's a huge audience: a lot of straight people, a lot of teenagers, a lot of gay people, too.’
      • ‘It's ridiculous, because it doesn't work for straight people.’
      • ‘One reader even suggested that an organization should be founded to encourage other straight people to do the same.’
      • ‘In the meantime, Gray was working hard to convince a straight person in her life that it was OK to attend.’
      • ‘I don't usually tell people I'm straight when I'm in gay clubs; it seems bad manners, somehow.’
      • ‘Privileged straight people rarely ever believe you if you tell them that so many kids get kicked out for being gay.’
      • ‘But let's face it - straight people have the option to get married.’
      • ‘We had a whole bunch of straight people, who felt just as much a part of the night as anyone else.’
      • ‘My children have grown up seeing no difference between gay and straight people.’
      • ‘The fact is that gay people can serve their country just as bravely as straight people can, and thousands of them have.’
      • ‘I spend most of my life in the company of straight people.’
      • ‘That's what jealous straight people will do to spoil our happiness.’
      • ‘I don't really care what it's called, but if non-religious straight people can get married, so should gays.’
      • ‘Now, it's not uncommon for straight people to benignly refer to gays as queer without offending anyone.’
      • ‘Do heterosexuals make a conscious decision to be straight?’
      • ‘I mean, I love being me and part of that is being bi, and I presume straight people feel the same about their straightness.’
      • ‘I'm sick of hearing homophobic straight people talking about fags.’
      • ‘And gay people are no more immune to this accusation than are straight people.’
      • ‘The fact of the matter is that gay people are just like straight people.’
      • ‘As you'd expect, it's more common for people to think gay men are straight than vice versa and that's often happened to me.’


  • 1In a straight line; directly.

    ‘he was gazing straight at her’
    ‘keep straight on’
    • ‘It is not proper for young people to look straight into the eyes of a respected elder; they should instead cast their eyes downward.’
    • ‘Her heart almost skipped a beat as she saw him turn around and look her straight in the eye, his face beaming with a somewhat demure smile.’
    • ‘Follow the road straight on through the village passing the church on your left then follow Bankwell Road straight on.’
    • ‘I looked straight at my screen all day, but was distracted by a faint sniff sniff sniff coming from a nearby desk.’
    • ‘The bolt left the crossbow with a whistle, straight towards its intended target.’
    • ‘Immediately after the causeway, head right through a gate and follow the lakeside path straight on then through woodland to reach a lane across your path.’
    • ‘I looked straight at the shop assistant behind the check-out.’
    • ‘Just after my first pitstop my steering developed a problem which meant that whenever I was driving straight it was pulling to the left.’
    • ‘To stretch your hamstrings, sit on the floor with your legs straight in front of you.’
    • ‘As the prisoners filed out, the guard looked straight at us.’
    • ‘‘I looked him straight in the eye and asked him if he expected me to fish the money out of the ocean,’ she recalled.’
    • ‘Everyone waited and watched as the person just rode straight on at a fast pace, never stopping to look at them or anything.’
    • ‘Well, you've got to look them straight in the eye and tell them why they shouldn't quit.’
    • ‘There's a roar and a billowing cloud of dust as the silver off-roader pulls into the drive and hurtles straight at me, scattering pebbles.’
    • ‘My therapist then paused from her writing, and looked me straight in the eye.’
    • ‘He leaned back against the counter, sitting with his legs straight in front of him.’
    • ‘I don't know how everyone else uses their computer but I sit with my hands on the keyboard and looking straight at the monitor.’
    • ‘On her third visit the vivid blue eyes looked straight at her.’
    • ‘He can look you straight in the eye when he says this.’
    • ‘He looks straight at the camera and forces you, the viewer to take note of him.’
    • ‘The lid fell down with a great force straight on to my hand.’
    • ‘He picked up his bit of paper but before he could read anything, looked straight at Mario, and was promptly overcome by a fit of the giggles.’
    • ‘But most of the houses opened straight on to the road with only a single step to delineate their territory.’
    • ‘She poured the rubbing alcohol straight on the wound, and let a scream escape her lips as it stung terribly.’
    • ‘This time she didn't jerk away, just looked straight at him with steady tears streaming down her face.’
    • ‘She didn't say anything but looked straight at me before turning around and walking towards the door.’
    • ‘He is still a charming talker who looks you straight in the eye as he languidly spins out his stories about growing up in Mexico, which he considers his spiritual home.’
    • ‘Follow the riverside path straight on across fields to reach a road just to the right of Bolton Bridge across the River Wharfe.’
    right, directly, squarely, full, plumb
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    1. 1.1 With no delay or diversion; directly or immediately.
      ‘after dinner we went straight back to our hotel’
      ‘I fell into bed and went straight to sleep’
      • ‘He was referred straight to Leeds General Infirmary and had an operation to correct the fault.’
      • ‘After Saturday's game the manager was straight on the phone looking for loan players - but the injuries have eased.’
      • ‘Miss Reilly was straight out of college, all pebble glasses, big hair and tie-dyed clothes.’
      • ‘I can only imagine it would be really superb straight out of the oven.’
      • ‘I was straight on the phone to book tickets for one of the early previews.’
      • ‘She finally exploded, sending me straight to the principal's office.’
      • ‘Yet again we were straight on to the telephone explaining the issue and giving guidance for remedial action.’
      • ‘I couldn't follow his flawed logic and I ordered him to drive straight there.’
      • ‘At the end of the job, after working for 24 hours without a break in order to finish the job, they decided to drive straight back to the Midlands.’
      • ‘And, unlike many, it is ready to use straight from the box, thus avoiding frustrating delays.’
      • ‘I got straight on to the Keighley cleansing manager, who said the posters shouldn't have been removed.’
      • ‘It's as if they know that I spend my weekends sitting in my pajamas eating Cocoa Puffs straight from the box.’
      • ‘I grabbed my bag and walked out of the bathroom, looking down, and ran straight into an assistant principal.’
      • ‘Scoop the mixture into the cake tin, smooth the top level and put straight into the oven.’
      • ‘It's so rare I buy new clothes it seems a shame to put them straight in the cupboard.’
      • ‘Just order all the personal information you want straight from the data miners themselves.’
      • ‘He walked straight to the bar and ordered a double-whiskey.’
      • ‘Vinaya was sitting on the kitchen table drinking milk straight from the carton.’
      directly, right, by a direct route, without deviating, in a beeline
      right away, straight away, without delay, immediately, directly, at once, as soon as possible, a.s.a.p.
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    2. 1.2archaic At once; immediately.
      ‘I'll fetch up the bath to you straight’
      right away, straight away, without delay, immediately, directly, at once, as soon as possible, a.s.a.p.
      at once, right away, now, right now, that minute, this minute, that very minute, this very minute, that instant, this instant, immediately, instantly, in a flash, like a flash, directly, on the spot, forthwith, without further ado, without more ado, promptly, quickly, without delay, then and there, there and then, here and now, a.s.a.p., as soon as possible, as quickly as possible, with all speed
      View synonyms
  • 2In or into a level, even, or upright position.

    ‘he pulled his clothes straight’
    ‘sit up straight!’
    • ‘Before he was even able to stand up straight he pulled her over towards an awaiting wagon.’
    • ‘Harry pulled the child's legs out straight and pushed his robes aside so that he could remove the dressings on his cut again.’
    • ‘I pull my navy jumper straight and flex my fingers, ready to type.’
    • ‘Stifling a cry of pain, she stiffly moved herself into a better position holding her arms straight as possible.’
    • ‘Mark stood, shaking his long navy blue pant leg straight before walking forward and pulling out my chair.’
    • ‘Planes had to fly level and straight to maximise chances of hitting the target.’
  • 3Correctly; clearly.

    ‘I'm so tired I can hardly think straight’
    • ‘When we are emotionally upset and complain that we can no longer think straight we are in fact quite correct.’
    • ‘So often she had been too drugged to think straight or she had been kept too busy to think.’
    • ‘Or has he skewed the party's judgment so much that it can't think straight any more?’
    • ‘Europeans have to think straight, to talk honestly and recognise their commonality.’
    logically, rationally, clearly, lucidly, coherently, cogently, unemotionally, dispassionately
    View synonyms
    1. 3.1 Honestly and directly; in a straightforward manner.
      ‘I told her straight—the kid's right’
      • ‘I think just tell them straight that you cannot take up their job offer.’
      • ‘You need to tell him straight and not make excuses; it's not your fault that you like another person and it's not as if you used to be going out with him, so it won't be so bad telling him. Just say I'm sorry, I don't feel the same.’
      frankly, directly, straight out, candidly, honestly, forthrightly, outspokenly, plainly, point-blank, bluntly, flatly, roundly, straight from the shoulder, with no holds barred, without beating about the bush, without mincing words, unequivocally, unambiguously, in plain english, to someone's face
      View synonyms
  • 4Without a break; continuously.

    ‘he remembered working sixteen hours straight’
    • ‘Imagine working for five years straight on a book and getting no income until year six, when you put the book on sale and all the cash starts rolling in as your effort pays off.’
    • ‘The adrenaline is running through your body for almost eight hours straight and when you are done you crash, and you crash hard.’
    • ‘I looked at my watch and was startled to see I had slept for twenty-four hours straight.’
    • ‘To finish the book she sat at her typewriter for seven weeks straight.’
    • ‘At the first US checkpoint, the soldiers said they'd been there for thirty hours straight.’
    • ‘Who'd want to type for two hours straight only to get a fifteen-minute break?’
    • ‘After all, as things were going back home, he hadn't slept for three days straight.’
    • ‘The way it is now I'd have to work four more hours a day for six whole days straight to get together enough for a month's rent.’
    • ‘I skated for about two hours straight, and had a lot of fun doing it; I like skating, and it's been years since I went.’
    • ‘He has been worked to the bone by Riley all week and hasn't had any sleep for almost four days straight.’
    • ‘When my back and knees allow it, I will dance for many hours straight.’
    • ‘We talked for several hours straight, had a good time, and then he drove me home.’
    • ‘Last night, I read for three hours straight, which I've never done before.’
    • ‘All I can think about right now is getting back into bed and sleeping for two weeks straight.’
    • ‘When the feeling or mood is right, I'll film two days straight without a break.’
    • ‘It really makes up for being in the hospital for the past 27 hours straight.’
    • ‘He was found fast asleep in the corner the next morning and continued to sleep for two days straight.’
    • ‘Then I came back, raced home from the airport Sunday afternoon and worked for eight hours straight.’
    • ‘She would sometimes work ten hours straight on the weekends then take an hour off and work a little more.’
    • ‘Once while shooting a television show, he worked for 37 hours straight.’
    • ‘We left the system on continuously for several days straight without any problem.’
    in succession, in a row, at a time, successively, consecutively, running, on end, one after the other, continuously, without a break, without interruption
    View synonyms


  • 1A part of something that is not curved or bent, especially a section of a racetrack.

    ‘he pulled away in the straight to win by half a second’
    • ‘He kept his horse against the far rails all the way up the straight for a popular win in the Stanley Racing Handicap.’
    • ‘She ran an excellent bend to enter the straight in third position and hung on to finish in 23.25 secs.’
    • ‘I twist the throttle and with a tinny burble the bike leaps forward and sweeps around the first right-hand curve and into the straight.’
    • ‘His ride petered out as the horses came into the straight.’
    • ‘The field bunched up turning into the straight with over four furlongs to run and a host of horses were in with a chance.’
    • ‘There are larger run-off areas, longer straights, the track is wider and overtaking is possible.’
    • ‘We jogged the corners of the track and sprinted the straights.’
    • ‘Players can choose to specialise in outdoor motocross tracks with their long straights and sweeping turns, or hit the massive jumps for the stadium-based supercross series.’
    • ‘Woodbine, with big, sweeping turns and a long straight, is the perfect track for European horses.’
    • ‘It's known for being quite a sandy surface, with a lot of straights and then junctions at the end of those.’
    • ‘For example, the finishing straight at Cheltenham is uphill, which tests a horse's stamina.’
    1. 1.1archaic A form or position that is not curved or bent.
      ‘the rod flew back to the straight’
  • 2(in poker) a continuous sequence of five cards.

    • ‘You can make pairs, triples, four-of-a-kinds, or straights.’
    • ‘Aces are normally high, but can be low in straights.’
    • ‘The next person with a straight can guess a card.’
    • ‘Some players do not count straights or flushes at all in this game.’
    • ‘Each royal flush is 7 points, a straight flush is 6 points, straights are 4 points, and 4-of-a-kinds are 2 points.’
  • 3informal A conventional person.

    1. 3.1 A heterosexual person.
      • ‘Like straights, gays have interpersonal issues with family, friends, coworkers and neighbors that are not related to homophobia.’
      • ‘Automakers are also targeting gay and lesbian consumers through ads that mean one thing to gays and another to straights.’
      • ‘When I used to go out to the gay bars in Canterbury with Stephen, you would find me chatting and laughing with the straights and the lesbians, while Stephen went off with his gay friends.’
      • ‘Giving marriage to gays doesn't mean taking it away from straights, any more than giving the vote to women meant taking it away from men, or letting blacks at the front of the bus meant that whites could no longer ride there.’
      • ‘I used my column in an uphill battle to educate gays and straights about the horrible realities of AIDS.’
      • ‘Maybe straights will buy it because it's funny and different.’
      • ‘‘There is no difference on average between the economic status of gays and lesbians and straights,’ Badgett says.’
      • ‘Despite these shocking cases, the overwhelming majority of straights serve with distinction and deserve America's gratitude for defending democracy.’
      • ‘A lot of straights are confused about what to think about homosexuality, but it doesn't help matters that a lot of gays seem to be equally confused.’
      • ‘Less homophobia does not mean gays will become like straights.’
      • ‘Neither does it permit gay employers or shopkeepers to discriminate against straights, or adulterers or swingers to discriminate against monogamists.’
      • ‘Marriage is not governed by any religious authority for straights and should not be for gays.’
      • ‘There are no field studies that show conclusively or even indicate that homosexuals tend to raise and nurture their younger relatives more that straights do.’
      • ‘Nobody knows what makes someone gay, lesbian, bisexual or straight.’
      • ‘I have heard both gays and straights say that bisexuals can exercise heterosexual privilege and live a straight life, enjoying all the rights that gays don't have.’
      • ‘The show received wide acclaim from lesbians and straights alike.’
      • ‘Attempting to turn gays straight is no less ludicrous than attempting to turn straights gay.’
      • ‘I don't think they were interested in alienating straights as much as they were in demonstrating our unstoppable ability to enjoy ourselves.’
      • ‘They don't respect the sexuality of gays and lesbians the same way they do that of straights.’
      • ‘I've had a lot of straights come up to me and say, ‘We didn't know this was going on.’’


  • get something straight

    • Make a situation clear, especially by reaching an understanding.

      • ‘Conveniently for him, it absolves journalists from having any responsibility for getting their facts straight in the first place.’
      • ‘After eight funerals in less than three years I am currently pondering my feelings on death and the grieving process; I'll get back to you when I've got it straight in my head.’
      • ‘So let's just get the facts straight about the whole refugee and asylum seeker situation.’
      • ‘It would be a service to the debate if he got his facts straight.’
      • ‘Get all the facts straight in your head and think about it clearly.’
      • ‘Therefore, please, through your newspaper, let's get the facts straight and clear so that everyone will know the correct position.’
      • ‘So it was a way of everybody getting their stories straight before talking to the police, in your view?’
      • ‘It's good to know that they've finally got their priorities straight.’
      • ‘Just 35 percent of the respondents thought the press got their facts straight, compared with 45 percent previously; 56 percent said news coverage was inaccurate altogether.’
      • ‘Beatrix Potter always got her facts straight and so should all other authors.’
      • ‘After four decades on this globe, I'm finally getting my priorities straight.’
      • ‘I believe he's probably got the story straight, since he's in charge.’
  • go straight

    • Live an honest life after being a criminal.

      • ‘The court heard he had previous convictions for burglary and robbery, but had gone straight since his last release from prison in 2000.’
      • ‘As for Simpson, Taylor said he had stolen cars as a young man but had since then gone straight, apart from stealing an engine in the mid-nineties.’
      reform, mend one's ways, turn over a new leaf, make a fresh start
      View synonyms
  • a straight face

    • A blank or serious facial expression, especially when trying not to laugh.

      ‘my father kept a straight face when he joked’
      • ‘Somehow he manages to get that out with a straight face; how he does this, I will never know.’
      • ‘What normal sane person could mouth such phrases with a straight face?’
      • ‘When I heard this, it was a strain for me to keep a straight face, because seriously, the idea is laughable!’
      • ‘But I'm having a hard time keeping a straight face, thanks to the first book I'm trying to review.’
      • ‘Sophia was able to keep a straight face for about ten seconds before bursting into laughter.’
      • ‘What is truly stunning is that he can make such a claim with a straight face.’
      • ‘In fact, he says it was all he could do to keep a straight face.’
      • ‘Crawford managed to keep a straight face while he said all this.’
      • ‘We honestly don't know how he can say these things with a straight face.’
      • ‘He somehow managed to keep a straight face when he told her the fake name.’
      • ‘He said it with such a straight face that the nurse believed him, and she nearly burst a blood vessel.’
      • ‘It is hardly believable that a human could continue to say the things he does with a straight face.’
  • the straight and narrow

    • The honest and morally acceptable way of living.

      ‘he's making a real effort to get back on the straight and narrow’
      • ‘The need to make a living keeps us on the straight and narrow, doesn't it?’
      • ‘Teenage tearaways have been warned to get back on the straight and narrow or have strict restrictions placed on their day-to-day lives.’
      • ‘So I kept to the straight and narrow for a long, long time.’
      • ‘I thought you were on the straight and narrow and committed to high principles and morality, not like last year.’
      • ‘Who could I find to help me back on the straight and narrow?’
      • ‘I'll always be the one who enticed their precious little boy away from the straight and narrow, away to a life of sin and perversion.’
      • ‘Now he has been ordered to complete an 18-month rehabilitation order to get himself back on the straight and narrow.’
      • ‘Just the day before he died, he told us about the new life he longed for, his plans to start up his own business and settle down with a nice girl who would keep him on the straight and narrow.’
      • ‘Over the last few weeks I've been slowly getting my life back on the straight and narrow after a year or so of hedonistic debauchery.’
      • ‘And that means that it's important to have police officers, of course, on the straight and narrow.’
      • ‘Alan has also been working with Tameside Council to set up a pilot scheme for young offenders to help them get back on the straight and narrow.’
  • straight (or right) away

    • Immediately.

      ‘the clerk recognized her straight away’
      • ‘Are graves filled in straight away after the burial?’
      • ‘If you don't tell us straight away about any changes, you may not be getting all the money you are entitled to, or you could be building up an overpayment which you may have to pay back.’
      at once, right away, now, right now, that minute, this minute, that very minute, this very minute, that instant, this instant, immediately, instantly, in a flash, like a flash, directly, on the spot, forthwith, without further ado, without more ado, promptly, quickly, without delay, then and there, there and then, here and now, a.s.a.p., as soon as possible, as quickly as possible, with all speed
      at once, straight away, now, right now, that minute, this minute, that very minute, this very minute, that instant, this instant, immediately, instantly, in a flash, like a flash, directly, on the spot, forthwith, without further ado, without more ado, promptly, quickly, without delay, then and there, there and then, here and now, a.s.a.p., as soon as possible, as quickly as possible, with all speed
      View synonyms
  • straight up

    • 1informal Unmixed; unadulterated.

      ‘a dry Martini served straight up’
      • ‘This is a vodka to be drunk straight up, and one that is good for the martini drinker.’
      undiluted, neat, unmixed, unadulterated, pure, unblended, uncut
      View synonyms
    • 2informal Truthfully; honestly.

      ‘tell your friends straight up how you feel’
      • ‘Well, I guess you should just tell them straight up that you're gay and that you don't (and will never) find them attractive.’
      • ‘Well, let me tell you straight up: I've never changed my mind about the war.’
      • ‘She had asked him straight up if there was anything going on between the two co-stars and he denied it.’
      • ‘Straight up, I didn't laugh once during this entire flick!’
  • straight out (or off)

    • informal Without hesitation or deliberation.

      ‘If you're not going to help me, just say so straight out’
      • ‘Tell him straight off and wait a few days until he comes to you with a reasonable explanation for his behavior.’
      • ‘Every time anyone ever calls me about magazines I just tell them straight off that I am not interested and hang up.’
      • ‘I tell them straight out how I feel about animal testing and they have all felt the same way.’
      • ‘If you're considering voting for them, you should ask your candidate straight out about this.’


Middle English (as an adjective and adverb): archaic past participle of stretch.