Definition of reach verb from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//riːtʃ//
    ; NAmE NAmE//riːtʃ//
    Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they reach
    BrE BrE//riːtʃ//
    ; NAmE NAmE//riːtʃ//
    he / she / it reaches
    BrE BrE//ˈriːtʃɪz//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈriːtʃɪz//
    past simple reached
    BrE BrE//riːtʃt//
    ; NAmE NAmE//riːtʃt//
    past participle reached
    BrE BrE//riːtʃt//
    ; NAmE NAmE//riːtʃt//
    -ing form reaching
    BrE BrE//ˈriːtʃɪŋ//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈriːtʃɪŋ//
    Making calls
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  1. 1  [transitive] reach something/somebody to arrive at the place that you have been travelling to They didn't reach the border until after dark. The beach can only be reached by boat. I hope this letter reaches you.
  2. 2  [transitive] reach somebody to come to somebody’s attention The rumours eventually reached the President.
  3. level/speed/stage
  4. 3  [transitive] reach something to increase to a particular level, speed, etc. over a period of time The conflict has now reached a new level of intensity. Daytime temperatures can reach 40°C.
  5. 4  [transitive] reach something to arrive at a particular point or stage of something after a period of time He first reached the finals in 2014. His parents have not yet reached retirement age. The negotiations have reached deadlock.
  6. achieve aim
  7. 5  [transitive] reach something to achieve a particular aim synonym arrive at to reach a conclusion/decision/verdict/compromise Politicians again failed to reach an agreement. see also far-reaching
  8. with hand/arm
  9. 6  [intransitive, transitive] to stretch your hand towards something in order to touch it, pick it up, etc. + adv./prep. She reached inside her bag for a pen. He reached across the table to squeeze her hand. reach something + adv./prep. He reached out his hand to touch her.
  10. 7  [intransitive, transitive] to be able to stretch your hand far enough in order to touch something, pick something up, etc. (+ adv./prep.) ‘Grab the end of the rope.’ ‘I can't reach that far!’ reach something Can you reach the light switch from where you're sitting?
  11. 8[transitive] to stretch your hand out or up in order to get something for somebody reach something (down) for somebody Can you reach that box down for me? reach somebody (down) something Can you reach me down that box?
  12. be long enough
  13. 9  [intransitive, transitive] to be big enough, long enough, etc. to arrive at a particular point + adv./prep. The carpet only reached halfway across the room. reach something Is the cable long enough to reach the socket?
  14. contact somebody
  15. 10[transitive] reach somebody to communicate with somebody, especially by telephone Do you know where I can reach him? See related entries: Making calls
  16. be seen/heard by somebody
  17. 11[transitive] reach somebody to be seen or heard by somebody Through television and radio we are able to reach a wider audience.
  18. Word OriginOld English rǣcan, of West Germanic origin; related to Dutch reiken and German reichen.Extra examples A hand reached down to help her up the ladder. He had barely reached the door when he collapsed. He instinctively reached for his camera. He reached into his bag and took out a book. He reached out gingerly to touch it. Her skirt almost reached the ground. His hair reached halfway to his waist. I can’t reach the top shelf. I reached inside my pocket for a pen. Profits are expected to reach £2 billion this year. She had arranged her desk so that she could reach everything easily. She reached blindly for the light switch. She reached for the telephone and picked it up. Slowly he reached out and picked up the gun. The city’s population had nearly reached a million by 1920. The cost can easily reach six figures. The jury was unable to reach a verdict. Doctors cannot reach an accurate diagnosis if they do not have all the relevant information. Greater efforts are needed to reach the goal of universal education. Having reached your destination, you should record your exact time of arrival. Is the cable long enough to reach the power supply? It took them three hours to reach the opposite shore. It was almost midnight when I reached home. Politicians again failed to reach an agreement. The jury took two days to reach a verdict. We didn’t reach the border until the next day. When we reach the top we’ll have a rest. You can reach me at this number.Idioms
    something comes to/reaches somebody’s ears
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    somebody hears about something, especially when other people already know about it News of his affair eventually reached her ears.
    to try to be successful at something that is difficult
    Phrasal Verbsreach out to somebody
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: reach