American English

Definition of bull noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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  1. 1[countable] the male of any animal in the cow family a bull neck (= a short thick neck like a bull ) compare bullock, cow, ox, steer
  2. 2[countable] the male of the elephant, whale, and some other large animals compare cow
  3. 3[countable] (finance) a person who buys shares in a company, hoping to sell them soon afterward at a higher price compare bear
  4. 4[countable] an official order or statement from the pope (= the head of the Roman Catholic Church) a papal bull
  5. 5[uncountable] (slang) nonsense That's a load of bull!
  6. 6[countable] = bull's-eye see also cock and bull story
  7. Idioms
    a bull in a china shop
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    a person who is careless, or who moves or acts in a rough or awkward way, in a place or situation where skill and care are needed You're not going to go storming in there like a bull in a china shop, are you?
    like waving a red flag in front of a bull
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    something that is likely to make someone very angry
    shoot the breeze/bull (informal)
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    to have a conversation in an informal way synonym chat We sat around in the bar, shooting the breeze.
    take the bull by the horns
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    to face a difficult or dangerous situation directly and with courage Nora decided to take the bull by the horns and organize things herself.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: bull