American English

Definition of buy verb from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they buy
    he / she / it buys
    past simple bought
    -ing form buying
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    with money
  1. 1[transitive, intransitive] to obtain something by paying money for it buy (something) Where did you buy that dress? If you're thinking of getting a new car, now is a good time to buy. buy something from somebody I bought it from a friend for $10. buy somebody something He bought me a new coat. buy something for somebody He bought a new coat for me. buy something + adj. I bought my car secondhand. opposite sell
  2. 2[transitive] buy something (of money) to be enough to pay for something He gave his children the best education that money can buy. Five dollars doesn't buy much nowadays.
  3. 3[transitive] buy somebody to persuade someone to do something dishonest in return for money synonym bribe He can't be bought (= he's too honest to accept money in this way).
  4. obtain
  5. 4[transitive, usually passive] buy something to obtain something by losing something else of great value Her fame was bought at the expense of her marriage.
  6. believe
  7. 5[transitive] buy something (informal) to believe that something is true, especially something that is not very likely You could say you were sick, but I don't think they'd buy it (= accept the explanation).
  8. Idioms
    the best that money can buy
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    the very best We make sure our clients get the best that money can buy.
    (have) bought it (informal)
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    to be killed, especially in an accident or a war Joe finally bought it in a plane crash in Tunisia.
    buy the farm (informal)
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    to die
    to do something in order to delay an event, a decision, etc. The negotiators kept the gunman talking to buy time for the hostages.
    (buy) a pig in a poke
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    if you buy a pig in a poke, you buy something without seeing it or knowing if it is good enough Buying from a catalog can mean buying a pig in a poke.
    Phrasal Verbsbuy into somethingbuy somebodyoffbuy somebodyoutbuy somethingup
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: buy