American English

Definition of write verb from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they write
    he / she / it writes
    past simple wrote
    past participle written
    -ing form writing
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  1. 1[intransitive, transitive] to make letters or numbers on a surface, especially using a pen or a pencil In some countries children don't start learning to read and write until they are six. write in/on/with something Please write in pen on both sides of the paper. I haven't got anything to write with. write something Write your name at the top of the paper. The teacher wrote the answers on the board. The “b” had been wrongly written as a “d.”
  2. book/music/program
  3. 2[transitive, intransitive] to produce something in written form so that people can read, perform, or use it, etc. write something to write a novel/a song/an essay/a computer program, etc. Who was “The Grapes of Wrath” written by? Which opera did Verdi write first? write something about/on something He hopes to write a book about his experiences one day. She had to write a report on the project. write (about something) I wanted to travel and then write about it. He writes for the “The New Yorker.” (= works as a writer) No decision has been made at the time of writing. write somebody something She wrote him several poems.
  4. a letter
  5. 3[intransitive, transitive] to put information, a message of good wishes, etc. in a letter and send it to someone Bye! Don't forget to write. Can you write and confirm your reservation? I'm writing to inquire about language classes write to somebody She wrote to him in France. write something (to somebody) I wrote a letter to the Publicity Department. write somebody something I wrote the Publicity Department a letter. write that… She wrote that they were all fine. write somebody Write me while you're away. write somebody that… He wrote me that he would be arriving Monday. write doing something They wrote thanking us for the present.
  6. state in writing
  7. 4[transitive, intransitive] to state the information or the words mentioned write that… In his latest book he writes that the theory has since been disproved. write of something Ancient historians wrote of a lost continent beneath the ocean. + speech “Of all my books,” wrote Dickens, “I like this the best.”
  8. check/form
  9. 5[transitive] to put information in the appropriate places on a check or other form write something (out) to write out a check write somebody (out) something I'll write you a receipt. The doctor wrote her a prescription for more antibiotics.
  10. computing
  11. 6[transitive, intransitive] write (something) to/onto something to record data in the memory of a computer An error was reported when he tried to write data to the file for the first time.
  12. of pen/pencil
  13. 7[intransitive] to work correctly or in the way mentioned This pen won't write.
  14. Idioms
    be written all over somebody's face
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    (of a feeling) to be very obvious to other people from the expression on someone's face Guilt was written all over his face.
    have something/somebody written all over it/somebody (informal)
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    to show clearly the quality mentioned or the influence of the person mentioned It was a performance with star quality written all over it. This essay has got Mike written all over it.
    nothing (much) to write home about (informal)
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    not especially good; ordinary The team's performance was nothing to write home about.
    not worth the paper it's written/printed on
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    (of an agreement or official document) having no value, especially legally, or because one of the people involved has no intention of doing what they said they would
    that's all she wrote (informal)
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    used when you are stating that there is nothing more that can be said about something or that something is completely finished We were doing well but we ran out of money and that's all she wrote.
    Phrasal Verbswrite awaywrite back (to somebody)write somethingdownwrite in (to somebody/something) (for something)write somebody/somethinginwrite something into somethingwrite off/away (to somebody/something) (for something)write somethingoffwrite somebody/somethingoff (as something)write somethingoutwrite somebodyout (of something)write somethingup
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: write