English

Definition of just adverb from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

      

    just

     adverb
    adverb
    BrE BrE//dʒʌst//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//dʒʌst//
     
     
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  1. 1  exactly This jacket is just my size. This gadget is just the thing for getting those nails out. Just my luck (= the sort of bad luck I usually have). The phone's not working. You're just in time. just like… She looks just like her mother. just what… It's just what I wanted! just as… It's just as I thought. (British English) It's just on six (= exactly six o'clock).
  2. 2  just as… at the same moment as The clock struck six just as I arrived.
  3. 3  just as good, nice, easily, etc. no less than; equally She's just as smart as her sister. You can get there just as cheaply by plane.
  4. 4  (only) just | just after, before, under, etc. something by a small amount I got here just after nine. I only just caught the train. Inflation fell to just over 4 per cent.
  5. 5  used to say that you/somebody did something very recently I've just heard the news. When you arrived he had only just left. She has just been telling us about her trip to Rome. (especially North American English) I just saw him a moment ago. British/​Americanalready / just / yet Already and yet are usually used with the present perfect tense, but in North American English they can also be used with the simple past tense:I already did it. Did you eat yet? However, this is much more common in spoken than in written English and some Americans do not consider it acceptable, even in speech. The present perfect is more common in North American English and almost always used in British English:I’ve already done it. Have you eaten yet? Just is mostly used with the perfect tenses in British English and with the simple past in North American English:(British English) I’ve just had some bad news. (North American English) I just got some bad news.
  6. 6  at this/that moment; now I'm just finishing my book. I was just beginning to enjoy myself when we had to leave. I'm just off (= I am leaving now).
  7. 7  just about/going to do something going to do something only a few moments from now or then The water's just about to boil. I was just going to tell you when you interrupted.
  8. 8  simply It was just an ordinary day. I can't just drop all my commitments. This essay is just not good enough. I didn't mean to upset you. It's just that I had to tell somebody. This is not just another disaster movie—it's a masterpiece. Just because you're older than me doesn't mean you know everything.
  9. 9  only just (for something) I decided to learn Japanese just for fun. just (to do something) I waited an hour just to see you. There is just one method that might work. ‘Can I help you?’ ‘No thanks, I'm just looking.’ (= in a shop/store)
  10. 10(informal) really; completely The food was just wonderful! I can just imagine his reaction.
  11. 11used in orders to get somebody’s attention, give permission, etc. Just listen to what I'm saying, will you! Just help yourselves.
  12. 12used to make a polite request, excuse, etc. Could you just help me with this box, please? I've just got a few things to do first.
  13. 13could/might/may just used to show a slight possibility that something is true or will happen Try his home number—he might just be there.
  14. 14used to agree with somebody ‘He's very pompous.’ ‘Isn't he just?’
  15. Word Origin late Middle English: via Old French from Latin justus, from jus ‘law, right’.Idioms
    could/might just as well…
     
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    used to say that you/somebody would have been in the same position if you had done something else, because you got little benefit or enjoyment from what you did do The weather was so bad we might just as well have stayed at home.
     because of the possibility of something happening You'd better take the keys in case I'm out. You probably won't need to call—but take my number, just in case. In case (= if it is true that) you’re wondering why Jo’s here—let me explain…
    it is just as well (that…)
     
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    it is a good thing It is just as well that we didn't leave any later or we'd have missed him.
    I, etc. would just as soon do something
     
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    used to say that you would equally well like to do something as do something else that has been suggested I'd just as soon stay at home as go out tonight.
    1. 1  almost; very nearly I've met just about everyone. ‘Did you reach your sales target?’ ‘Just about.’
    2. 2  approximately She should be arriving just about now.
    suddenly, without warning or explanation
    just a minute/moment/second
     
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     (informal) used to ask somebody to wait for a short time ‘Is Mr Burns available?’ ‘Just a second, please, I'll check.’
    1. 1  at this moment Come and see me later—I'm busy just now.
    2. 2  during this present period Business is good just now.
    3. 3  only a short time ago I saw her just now.
    4. 4(South African English, informal) later; in a short period of time
    done or arranged very accurately or carefully He liked polishing the furniture and making everything just so.  at that moment Just then, someone knocked at the front door.
    just the ticket (British English also just the job)
     
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    (informal, approving) exactly what is needed in a particular situation
    not now but probably quite soon I can't give you the money just yet.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: just