American English

Definition of mile noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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  1. 1[countable] a unit for measuring distance equal to 1,760 yards or 1,609 meters a 20-mile drive to work an area of four square miles a mile-long procession The nearest bank is about half a mile down the street. We did about 30 miles a day on our cycling trip. The car must have been doing at least 100 miles an hour. My car gets 35 miles to the gallon. see also Air Miles™, mph, nautical mile
  2. 2miles [plural] a large area or a long distance miles and miles of desert There isn't a house for miles around here. I'm not walking—it's miles away.
  3. 3[countable] (informal) very much; far The two sides in the dispute are still miles apart. She's taller than you by a mile.
  4. 4the mile [singular] a race over one mile He ran the mile in less than four minutes. a four-minute mile
  5. Idioms
    be miles away (informal)
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    to be thinking deeply about something and not aware of what is happening around you
    give somebody an inch (and they'll take a mile) (saying)
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    used to say that if you allow some people a small amount of freedom or power they will see you as weak and try to take a lot more
    go the extra mile (for somebody/something)
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    to make a special effort to achieve something, help someone, etc.
    miles from anywhere (informal)
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    in a place that is a long way from a town and surrounded only by a lot of open country, ocean, etc. We broke down miles from anywhere.
    see, spot, tell, smell, etc. something a mile off (informal)
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    to see or realize something very easily and quickly He's wearing a wig—you can see it a mile off. After twenty years on the police force she could smell a liar a mile off.
    stand/stick out a mile
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    to be very obvious or noticeable It stood out a mile that she was lying.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: mile