American English

Definition of bearing noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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  1. 1[uncountable] bearing on something the way in which something is related to something or influences it Recent events had no bearing on our decision. Regular exercise has a direct bearing on fitness and health. Her comments didn't have much bearing on the subject.
  2. 2[singular] the way in which you stand, walk, or behave Her whole bearing was alert. a man of upright, military bearing
  3. 3[countable] (technology) a direction measured from a fixed point using a compass They took compass bearings on the tower.
  4. 4[countable] (technology) a part of a machine that supports a moving part, especially one that is turning see also ball bearing
  5. Idioms
    get/find your bearings
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    to make yourself familiar with your surroundings in order to find out where you are or to feel comfortable in a place He paused at the top of the hill, trying to get his bearings.
    lose your bearings
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    to become lost or confused
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: bearing