American English

Definition of block noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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    solid material
  1. 1[countable] a large piece of a solid material that has flat, square sides a block of ice/concrete/stone a butcher's block (= for cutting food on) see also building block, cinder block
  2. streets
  3. 2[countable] a group of buildings with streets on all sides She took the dog for a walk around the block.
  4. 3[countable] the length of one side of a piece of land or group of buildings, from the place where one street crosses it to the next His apartment is three blocks away from the police station.
  5. amount
  6. 4[countable] a quantity of something or an amount of time that is considered as a single unit a block of shares a block of text in a document The three-hour class is divided into four blocks of 45 minutes each.
  7. that stops progress
  8. 5[countable, usually singular] something that makes movement or progress difficult or impossible synonym obstacle Lack of training acts as a block to progress in a career. see also roadblock, stumbling block, writer's block
  9. in sports
  10. 6[countable] a movement that stops another player from going forward
  11. 7the blocks [plural] = starting blocks
  12. building
  13. 8[countable] a building, especially part of a group of buildings, that is used for a particular purpose a cell block
  14. for punishment
  15. 9the block [singular] (in the past) the piece of wood on which a person's head was cut off as a punishment
  16. Idioms
    a chip off the old block (informal)
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    a person who is very similar to their mother or father in the way that they look or behave
    go on the block
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    to be sold, especially at an auction (= a sale in which items are sold to the person who offers the most money)
    have been around the block (a few times) (informal)
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    to have a lot of experience
    I'll knock your block/head off! (informal)
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    used to threaten someone that you will hit them
    a/the new kid on the block (informal)
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    a person who is new to a place, an organization, etc. Despite his six years in politics, he was still regarded by many as the new kid on the block.
    put/lay your head/neck on the block
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    to risk losing your job, damaging your reputation, etc. by doing or saying something It's not a matter that I'm prepared to put my head on the block for.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: block