Definition of effect noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//ɪˈfekt//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ɪˈfekt//
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  1. 1  [countable, uncountable] effect (on somebody/something) a change that somebody/something causes in somebody/something else; a result the effect of heat on metal dramatic/long-term effects to learn to distinguish between cause and effect the beneficial effects of exercise Modern farming methods can have an adverse effect on the environment. Her criticisms had the effect of discouraging him completely. Despite her ordeal, she seems to have suffered no ill effects. I can certainly feel the effects of too many late nights. ‘I'm feeling really depressed.’ ‘The winter here has that effect sometimes.’ I tried to persuade him, but with little or no effect. Language BankconsequentlyDescribing the effect of something One consequence of changes in diet over recent years has been a dramatic increase in cases of childhood obesity. Many parents today do not have time to cook healthy meals for their children. Consequently/As a consequence, many children grow up eating too much junk food. Many children spend their free time watching TV instead of playing outside. As a result, more and more of them are becoming overweight. Last year junk food was banned in schools. The effect of this has been to create a black market in the playground, with pupils bringing sweets from home to sell to other pupils. Which Word?affect / effect affect verb = ‘to have an influence on somebody/​something’:Does television affect children’s behaviour? It is not a noun. effect noun = ‘result, influence’:Does television have an effect on children’s behaviour? effect verb is quite rare and formal and means ‘to achieve or produce’:They hope to effect a reconciliation. see also greenhouse effect, knock-on, network effect, side effect
  2. 2  [countable, uncountable] a particular look, sound or impression that somebody, such as an artist or a writer, wants to create The overall effect of the painting is overwhelming. The stage lighting gives the effect of a moonlit scene. Add a scarf for a casual effect. He only behaves like that for effect (= in order to impress people). see also sound effect, special effects
  3. 3effects [plural] (formal) your personal possessions synonym belongings The insurance policy covers all baggage and personal effects.
  4. Word Originlate Middle English: from Old French, or from Latin effectus, from efficere ‘accomplish’, from ex- ‘out, thoroughly’ + facere ‘do, make’. Sense (3), ‘personal belongings’, arose from the obsolete sense ‘something acquired on completion of an action’.Extra examples Any delay in delivery of materials will have a knock-on effect throughout the production process. Giving up smoking had a magical effect on his stamina. Guests are requested to deposit any valuable personal effects at the hotel reception. He didn’t seem to have suffered any ill effects from his fall. Heavy taxation has a disincentive effect. His comment was intended to calm the situation but it had the opposite effect. How soon will the effects of the drug wear off? I am interested in documenting the effects of international events on ordinary people. I found that by adding white I could achieve the desired effect. It’s a policy that will have a chilling effect on free speech. She uses animal sounds to startling effect in her music. Some laws from the 18th century are still in effect. That is precisely the effect I was aiming at. The air conditioning came on, to little effect. The bank has cut interest rates with immediate effect. The border closure meant, in effect, that no trade took place between the countries. The deterrent effect of the death penalty has long been questioned. The dramatic effect was heightened by her black dress and dead white face. The drug exerts a powerful effect on the brain. The drug has well-documented inhibitory effects on sexual function. The dry weather had an adverse effect on the potato crops. The full effects of the new tax have not yet been felt. The medicine started to take effect after a few minutes. The new regulations come into effect next month. The plague struck London again with devastating effect. There was no discernible effect on cell growth. They told us to go away, or words to that effect. We had problems with mosquitoes, but this spray had the desired effect. Women feel the effects of alcohol more quickly than men. a face cream designed to combat the effects of age drugs which mimic the effects of hormones key historical concepts such as cause and effect policies to reduce emissions of gases which cause the greenhouse effect the crippling effect of sanctions on the economy the serious health effects which result from obesity to minimize the effects of economic change ‘I feel really depressed.’ ‘The winter here has that effect sometimes.’ Despite her ordeal, she seems to have suffered no ill effects. I took the medicine with dramatic effect. It’s not always easy to distinguish between cause and effect. She stressed the beneficial effects of exercise. The management changes had little or no effect on output. The purpose of the lesson was to study the effect of heat on metal.Idioms
    bring/put something into effect
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     to cause something to come into use The recommendations will soon be put into effect.
     to come into use; to begin to apply New controls come into effect next month.
    1. 1used when you are stating what the facts of a situation are In effect, the two systems are identical. His wife had, in effect, run the government for the past six months. By asking for these particular qualifications, you are, in effect, excluding most women from applying.
    2. 2(of a law or rule) in use These laws are in effect in twenty states.
    1. 1to start to produce the results that are intended The aspirins soon take effect.
    2. 2to come into use; to begin to apply The new law takes effect from tomorrow.
    to the effect that…, to this/that effect
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    used to show that you are giving the general meaning of what somebody has said or written rather than the exact words He left a note to the effect that he would not be coming back. She told me to get out—or words to that effect.
    to good, great, dramatic, etc. effect
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    producing a good, successful, dramatic, etc. result or impression
    not producing the result you intend or hope for We warned them, but to no effect.
    with immediate effect, with effect from…
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    (formal) starting now; starting from… The government has cut interest rates with effect from the beginning of next month.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: effect