Definition of wide in US English:



  • 1Of great or more than average width.

    ‘a wide road’
    • ‘The group was surprised to find a strong water current flowing through a wide chasm where the road had been.’
    • ‘The wide road linking Killipalam to Karamana is a case in point.’
    • ‘In the ‘town’ of Santo Antonio, the wide roads are empty but for groups of schoolchildren wandering arm in arm.’
    • ‘The driver has a very good position behind the wheel, and it is surprisingly easy to place this long, wide car on the road.’
    • ‘The last couple of miles is an auto-pilot cruise back down the Nidderdale Way on a wide stone track with dry stone walls each side.’
    • ‘The roads are still wide, though traffic density is much lower.’
    • ‘Why should the chosen few have this enormously wide road to themselves?’
    • ‘I was getting a little too comfy with the wide roads, uninterrupted power and active phone lines of Ahmedabad.’
    • ‘The finely tailored jacket featured wide lapels and side belt with turn-ups prominent on the classic cut pants.’
    • ‘The roads are mainly wide and well surfaced - just don't look over the edge!’
    • ‘The roads are wide - we are zipping down a three-lane highway - and empty of traffic.’
    • ‘But on the plus side, my bed was so wide that you could barely see from one side to the other, due to the natural curvature of the Earth's surface.’
    • ‘Otherwise they will not need so many one-ways even on wide roads.’
    • ‘All I wanted was a two column template, centered, with wide margins on each side. Kind of like this.’
    • ‘Even today, the post office at Node in the eastern corner of the county is not much more than a wide spot in the road.’
    • ‘No large buildings could be constructed on top of the tunnel itself, just on either side, so this quiet backstreet feels unnaturally wide.’
    • ‘Hardly any of the roads at present are wide enough and one-way systems would have to be introduced, restricting parking to just one side of the road.’
    • ‘He said the need for flyovers and wide roads in the City would be brought to the notice of the Chief Minister and Deputy Chief Minister.’
    • ‘It is located in a wide basin on the road linking India with Central Asia.’
    • ‘Elaborate apartments over a century or two old crumble either side of the wide avenue.’
    broad, extensive, spacious, open, vast, spread out, outspread
    baggy, loose, capacious, roomy, ample, full, generous, generously cut, commodious, voluminous, oversize
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    1. 1.1 (after a measurement and in questions) from side to side.
      ‘it measures 15 cm long by 12 cm wide’
      ‘how wide do you think this house is?’
      • ‘With kitchen shears or knife, cut sides toward centre in 1-inch wide strips.’
      • ‘The expedition also found rings of plankton organisms that measured 10 km wide.’
      • ‘Built in 1935, it has eight-foot wide verandahs on three sides of both storeys.’
      • ‘Walking along lines 1m wide, a measurement was taken at each 0.5m step.’
    2. 1.2 Open to the full extent.
      ‘wide eyes’
      • ‘Gleebeck seemed pleased by the comparison, his little face splitting open in a wide grin, but he shook his head.’
      • ‘It soars above a boundary fence to take in the smallest view - this room whose wide window is as open as the day.’
      • ‘Her eyes were slightly wide with fear, her hands trembling just a little.’
      • ‘The boy underneath me was staring at me with wide eyes full of fear.’
      • ‘Apparently, he was greatly amused by the awe written on her face, from her wide eyes to her open mouth.’
      • ‘Everyone's eyes were wide when they opened, but Ricky rushed right up to the dogs.’
      • ‘With those big, savage eyes all wide and open, providing a glimpse of the wild tundra cats from whom she's descended.’
      • ‘Lyissa looked at me, and this time her eyes were wide and open, without hidden secrets shining in them.’
      • ‘She gave him a wide grin as she opened the door to the passenger seat.’
      • ‘That's all I can say, he's got a wide grin and full cheeks, not chubby, just open.’
      • ‘We both had identical gray, charcoal rimmed eyes, now wide with shock.’
      • ‘Though Amy has an open face and wide eyes, she seems more world-weary than naïve.’
      • ‘With open arms and a wide smile, he declared, ‘A new home, for the lady of the house.’’
      • ‘She pushed herself up into a sitting position and looked at Emily with wide eyes full of fear.’
      • ‘Brooke shows his teeth in a wide smile and opens the cottage door for her.’
      fully open, gaping, agape, wide open, yawning
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    3. 1.3 Considerable.
      ‘tax revenues have undershot Treasury projections by a wide margin’
      • ‘The application is now in daily use and is exceeding the client's performance expectations by a wide margin.’
      • ‘Africa, though it's not a nation, topped the list by a wide margin.’
      • ‘It was obviously clear within the first twenty seconds, let alone five minutes, that I had lost, and by a wide margin.’
      • ‘Evan wasn't even sure what point Alex had been trying to get to, but he felt confident he'd missed it by a wide margin.’
      • ‘But this is to miss the point by such a wide margin that it amounts to yet another deliberate deceit.’
      • ‘That proposition won by a wide margin overall and garnered more than half the female vote.’
      • ‘In restaurants and malls, however, caregiving by mothers exceeded that of fathers by a wide margin.’
      • ‘Nobody has won both Iowa and New Hampshire by such wide margins and gone on to lose the nomination.’
      • ‘Needwood Spirit has been at the top of his form in recent weeks and has gained a brace of victories at Carlisle, his latest success being achieved by a wide margin.’
      • ‘Weekend breaks seldom exceed expectations by such a wide margin.’
      • ‘The ban on what opponents call partial birth abortion is likely to pass by a wide margin when it comes up for a vote scheduled in the Senate.’
      • ‘But the hourly fee fails by a wide margin to cover attorney's office fees.’
      • ‘The afternoon game was against Albuquerque, who had lost the morning game to Great Falls by a wide margin.’
      • ‘In both he had not exceeded the limits by a wide time margin.’
      • ‘Better to lose by a wide margin as then no one incident, or player, can be identified as the ‘reason’.’
      • ‘Yes we can talk about the billions of trees planted annually around the world, and yes we can talk about how growth exceeds harvest by a wide margin.’
      • ‘But at this point, political analysts expect the Conservatives to fail by a wide margin.’
      • ‘But not by the wide margin that many pundits were predicting.’
      • ‘Just as the Bank of England has a target for inflation and has to write a letter to the chancellor if it misses it by a wide margin, the new rule seeks to establish credibility.’
      • ‘Despite the wide margin separating the teams at the finish, this was a well-contested game for a period.’
  • 2Including a great variety of people or things.

    ‘a wide range of opinion’
    • ‘I have a wide variety of clients, ranging from a top scientist under pressure to a teenager with eating disorders.’
    • ‘If you scan the newspapers you'll probably see, week to week, a wide variety of opinions put forward.’
    • ‘Chester has wide variety of eating establishments, covering a whole range of culinary areas.’
    • ‘Today a wide range of fresh varieties such as plum, cherry and vine tomatoes are readily available.’
    • ‘They published a wide variety of opinions in the Economic Weekly.’
    • ‘The pub has a wide variety of customers, with ages ranging from 20 to 70 years.’
    • ‘It can be easily molded into a wide variety of shapes, which are then fired in a kiln and transformed into solid silver.’
    • ‘Fuchsias come in wide varieties ranging from tall shrubs to very fragile greenhouse specimens.’
    • ‘There is a wide variety of plants, ranging from mosses to grasses and astute insect eaters.’
    • ‘In fact conservatives hold a wide variety of opinions about such secondary formal matters.’
    • ‘After the meal, they had sat in the front room and the conversation had ranged over a wide variety of topics.’
    • ‘The discussions ranged over a wide variety of subjects, but it was the philosophy of medicine that attracted the largest numbers.’
    • ‘We have always been a wide variety of different shapes and sizes.’
    • ‘There's a wide range of these things, set up for a wide variety of purposes.’
    • ‘He rated the media coverage of the election campaign as providing extensive information and a wide variety of opinions.’
    • ‘The colorful, long-lasting blossoms of this wide variety of mums range from one to six inches across.’
    • ‘A wide range of grape varieties is grown at least passably well, which has distracted from the question of what the district does best.’
    • ‘The practice supports a wide variety of clients across the region, ranging from small local firms to national organisations.’
    • ‘The distribution of mutational effects was assumed to be gamma, which allows a wide variety of shapes.’
    • ‘People literally come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and hues.’
    comprehensive, ample, broad, extensive, large, large-scale, vast, immense, far-ranging, wide-ranging, expansive, sweeping, encyclopedic, exhaustive, general, all-inclusive, all-embracing, universal, catholic, compendious, cross-disciplinary, interdisciplinary, multidisciplinary
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    1. 2.1 Spread among a large number of people or over a large area.
      ‘the business is slowly gaining wider acceptance’
      • ‘Gitt, incredibly, replied that his ideas have wide acceptance among scientists.’
      • ‘It gained wide recognition among bloggers.’
      • ‘This proposal has got wide acceptance among women who came to attend the meeting.’
      • ‘The language papers with wide readership in rural areas have responded admirably to the hardships faced by farmers in their own way.’
    2. 2.2in combination Extending over the whole of.
      ‘an industry-wide trend’
  • 3At a considerable or specified distance from a point or mark.

    ‘Bodie's shot was inches wide’
    • ‘Her shot was wide but Gallagher was there to pick up the loose ball.’
    • ‘A minute later and again Eynsford breached the visitors' defence but the final shot was wide.’
    off target, off the mark, wide of the mark, wide of the target, inaccurate, off course, astray, nowhere near, out
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    1. 3.1Baseball (of a pitch) outside.
      ‘the ball was wide of the plate’
      • ‘The first pitch was wide of the plate, but the umpire called it a strike.’
      • ‘It wasn't a perfect first pitch. The ball bounced just wide of the plate.’
    2. 3.2Baseball (of a throw) to either side of a base.
      ‘forced a wide throw to first’
      • ‘Tejada made a high and wide throw to first that allowed a run to score, and Trot Nixon followed with a two-run double.’
      • ‘But then Weaver made a crucial mistake, making a wide pickoff throw to first base.’
    3. 3.3 (in field sports) at or near the side of the field.
      ‘he played in a wide left position’
      • ‘That this has improvement has come since he has been tucked into the centre of midfield from a wide right position may not be a coincidence.’
      • ‘He has been getting in some great positions either behind their midfield or out wide and he has been a good supply line for us recently.’
      • ‘With a wide midfielder and full-back to double up on the exposed full-back this tactic should generate the crosses needed to threaten.’
      • ‘He tirelessly states that he is a front player, and not the wide midfielder that he has been forced to impersonate at times for both Leeds and England.’
      • ‘Most of his 40 appearances last season were as cameos from the substitutes bench, invariably filling in a wide midfield role.’
  • 4Phonetics

    another term for lax


  • 1To the full extent.

    ‘his eyes opened wide’
    • ‘His mouth at times opened so wide it practically split his jaw.’
    • ‘So I got all adventurous, opened the kitchen door wide, and took a good, deep lungful of fresh air.’
    • ‘Lori has this habit of wearing her coat open wide even when it's freezing out, showing off her ample bosom.’
    • ‘At the moment of death my father opened his eyes wide.’
    • ‘Ros and I went in and opened the windows wide straight away.’
    • ‘I took my munchies back to the car, opened the windows wide, and sat there watching the world go by.’
    • ‘Flowers open wide in full sun, and with the central yellow anthers, the effect is striking.’
    • ‘The bronze whaler shark is the guy who slowly swims up through the centre of this meatball, jaws open wide and chomping.’
    • ‘With a toothy smile, the North Carolina senator opens his arms wide and wraps an equally sunny Kerry in a bear hug.’
    • ‘I open my windows wide, and let the gentle breeze into my room.’
    • ‘You'd think any mother would be delighted when her son toddles toward her, arms and grin open wide.’
    • ‘In the skit, whenever our character had to speak we just stepped forward and opened our mouths wide while Matt did all the talking.’
    • ‘Last week he showed us this technique where you have to make your jaw all loose and keep your mouth open wide so you don't strain so many muscles.’
    • ‘There was a Chinese guy, who's bag I assume it was, taunting it by opening his mouth really wide and moving his arms up and down, but the bird was having none of it.’
    • ‘It showed a boy curled up behind a couch, the latest Potter release open in his lap, his eyes open wide.’
    • ‘Home to eat lunch and make iced coffee - open all the windows wide, listen to the noises floating up from the street.’
    • ‘And he even opened his arms wide in such a moving gesture, as though he were ready to abandon himself to his fate.’
    • ‘And the second thing is, Lindy walked into the room the other day and he opened his arms wide to reach out to her.’
    • ‘This takes me along little used country lanes where I can drive slowly and have the window open wide.’
    • ‘He needed a dentist urgently, but a tiger won't hop up on the chair and open wide for the drill.’
    fully open, open wide, gaping, agape, yawning, cavernous
    fully, to the fullest extent, to the furthest extent, as far as possible, as much as possible, all the way, completely
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  • 2Far from a particular point or mark.

    ‘a shot that went wide to the right’
    • ‘Avenue continued to press forward but were snatching at long-range efforts, most of which drifted wide of the target.’
    • ‘This game started in lightning fashion and it was Colt who made the first real scoring chance in the opening minute but shot wide of the target.’
    • ‘Derry had a chance to respond immediately but Burke's free drifted wide.’
    • ‘Kerry should have got one back within five minutes when Tarmey was through but instead of squaring the ball to a team mate he went for glory and shot wide.’
    • ‘Toner rattled the underside of the bar moments later before Bell fired wide from an acute angle on 89 minutes.’
    • ‘Two Tinryland shots went agonisingly wide of the mark.’
    • ‘Hayden also saw a goal effort go narrowly wide in the 25th minute.’
    • ‘On 11 minutes, the visitors thought that they had taken the lead but a cracking effort went inches wide of the target.’
    • ‘But after muscling through the defence, Murphy shot just wide of the post.’
    • ‘McManus scorned a second chance before Sutton flung himself headlong and only narrowly headed wide.’
    • ‘Almost immediately he had a half chance but after good work by Gorman he shot well wide of the target.’
    • ‘McMahon had two good opportunities to add to his tally and claim a hat-trick but fired wide on both occasions.’
    • ‘Australia might still have snatched it but Burke's late penalty drifted inches wide of the upright.’
    • ‘The big Canadian cut inside and, with a typically scrappy attempt, sent a deflected shot spinning wide of the left-hand post.’
    • ‘Pond then made a great run into the box himself but his attempted cross flew wide of the goal.’
    • ‘He tried his luck with a kick from close range but his goal effort went wide of the target and it was a let off for the home side.’
    • ‘On the restart, Meath looked to end the game as a contest, only for Sheridan to blaze his shot just wide of the target.’
    • ‘They upped the tempo somewhat but were guilty of ballooning some bad balls wide of their intended mark.’
    • ‘Parks cottoned onto the theme, threading a penalty attempt of his own wide of target.’
    • ‘Sutton directed a free header wide of the target, and with 12 minutes left, the visitors scored a third.’
    off target, wide of the mark, wide of the target, off course, inaccurately, astray
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    1. 2.1 At or near the side of the field; toward the sideline.
      ‘he will play wide on the right’
      • ‘ORs hit back straight away when Tom Jones scored wide in the corner to take the home side through to the next round.’
      • ‘The ball had been switched from side to side before finally Stark was given the scoring pass wide on the right.’
      • ‘Some nice first time football leaves Ballack wide on the left, from where he strokes a cross in.’


  • A ball that is judged to be too wide of the stumps for the batsman to play, for which an extra is awarded to the batting side.

    • ‘The batsmen were also helped by some wayward bowling with 61 extras, including 40 wides, being conceded.’
    • ‘I worked on that because in crucial matches it's very important not to bowl no-balls and wides.’
    • ‘India lost to Zimbabwe in an earlier game because they bowled too many wides and no balls and today was no different.’
    • ‘Blignaut lost his cool immediately, the next ball swinging way down the leg side for four wides.’
    • ‘Instead, the bowlers bowled a few wides and no-balls, in addition to the batsmen being lucky with a few edges.’


  • wide awake

    • Fully awake.

      • ‘When the rest of the camp is asleep, the children stay wide awake.’
      • ‘Despite being dog tired, I was wide awake, listening for any inexplicable noises or voices.’
      • ‘It disrupts the sleep cycle so that sufferers sleep during the day and are wide awake at night.’
      • ‘By this time I was aware that I was feeling different - energetic, wide awake.’
      • ‘One and a half hours to go and I am dead tired and wide awake.’
      • ‘I was wide awake yet my conscious brain was refusing to accept that someone unseen was touching my face.’
      • ‘Within half an hour, the moment has passed, and I'm wide awake again.’
      • ‘At 3.30 I was still wide awake and feeling incredibly bad tempered.’
      • ‘I am incensed, I am livid, I am wide awake at 3.20 in the morning Thursday writing this email.’
      • ‘Despite the exertions of a late Friday night, it was quickly evident that the troops were wide awake early on Saturday.’
      fully awake, conscious, open-eyed, not asleep, sleepless, unsleeping, insomniac
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  • wide open

    • 1Fully open.

      ‘the door was wide open’
      • ‘Many golfers with directional problems contact the ball with the clubface wide open.’
      • ‘The entire Phelps family returned from church services that morning to find the doors of their house standing wide open.’
      • ‘At first he cannot move, his eyes are wide open.’
      • ‘Above, the ancient door of massive timber in good preservation, being wide open, I walked in.’
      • ‘Devan was entering the military with her eyes wide open.’
      • ‘Victoria stared at her mother with her jaw wide open.’
      • ‘The wallet of the eventual buyer will also have to fall wide open.’
      • ‘The way he seemed to be squinting with his eyes wide open.’
      • ‘American paddlefish can often be seen swimming around with their very large mouths wide open.’
      • ‘I stared at my sister, eyes wide open.’
    • 2Vulnerable, especially to attack.

      • ‘A court-appointed expert found the electronic systems wide open to tampering by hackers.’
      • ‘But complementary therapies throw themselves wide open to criticism from the more conservative elements of the medical profession by making huge claims.’
      • ‘As with so many issues, this leaves them wide open to manipulation by those who have their own agenda to push.’
      • ‘It is a particularly sensitive time for advertising, an industry so inherently trivial that it is wide open to accusations of insensitivity and crassness.’
      • ‘Publishing would leave me wide open to credible allegations that I was motivated by revenge, thus impugning my professional integrity.’
      • ‘Once again the national media were operating off the philosophy that if a person has been involved in controversy they are wide open for attack.’
      • ‘She held her arms out to her sides, leaving her torso wide open for attack.’
      • ‘This left my stomach and chest wide open for attack, and he lunged forward.’
      • ‘Once it does, his body is left wide open for an attack.’
      • ‘The figures are wide open to abuse and manipulation through the use of financial engineering techniques including reinsurance, future profits and contingent loans.’
    • 3(of an issue or a contest) completely unresolved or unpredictable.

      • ‘The contest was wide open at the break, but the Borderers made full use of the wind in the second half to eventually seal a deserved win.’
      • ‘So the future is very wide open I think in terms of outcomes for this presidency.’
      • ‘The third race on day one is the Smurfit Champion Hurdle which is a wide open contest this year.’
      • ‘The race seems wide open, with a whole host of possible outcomes.’
      • ‘The straw poll of parliamentary party members last week showed no clear winner emerging leaving the contest wide open.’
      • ‘In a wide open contest it may pay to invest an each way wager on the Donnie Hasset trained Peace Leader.’
      • ‘After recent years where one or two teams have dominated the league, it is welcoming to see a genuine three horse title race, and the surprise results that have blown the contest wide open.’
      • ‘This contest is now wide open and there is a great deal at stake!’
      • ‘With Andrew gone, the game is now wide open for any of the remaining three contestants to win the €100,000 prize.’
      • ‘Boanerges has good prospects of getting back on top tomorrow and is awarded the nap vote in a wide open contest.’


Old English wīd ‘spacious, extensive’, wīde ‘over a large area’, of Germanic origin.