American English

Definition of call verb from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they call
    he / she / it calls
    past simple called
    -ing form calling
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  1. 1[intransitive, transitive] to telephone someone I'll call again later. call somebody/something I called the office to tell them I'd be late. My brother called me from Spain last night.
  2. describe somebody/something
  3. 2[transitive] to describe someone or something in a particular way; to consider someone or something to be something call somebody/something + noun I wouldn't call German an easy language. Are you calling me a liar? He was in the family room, or the den, or whatever you want to call it. You owe me ten dollars and forty-three cents. Let's just call it ten dollars. call somebody/something + adj. Would you call it blue or green? Thesaurusregardcall find consider see viewThese words all mean to think about someone or something in a particular way.regard to think of someone or something in a particular way:He seemed to regard the whole thing as a to say that someone or something has particular qualities or characteristics:I wouldn't call German an easy language.find to have a particular feeling or opinion about something:You may find his story hard to believe.consider to think of someone or something in a particular way:Whom do you consider (to be) responsible for the accident?regard or consider?These two words have the same meaning, but they are used in different patterns and structures. In this meaning, consider must be used with a complement or clause: you can consider somebody/something to be something or consider somebody/something as something, although very often the to be or as is left out:He considers himself an expert. They are considered a high-risk group.You can also consider that somebody/something is something and again, the that can be left out. Regard is used in a narrower range of structures. The most frequent structure is regard somebody/something as something; the as cannot be left out:I regard him a close friend.You cannotregard somebody/something to be somethingorregard that somebody/something is something. However, regard (but not consider in this meaning) can also be used without a noun or adjective complement but with just an object and adverb (somebody/something is highly regarded) or adverbial phrase (regard somebody/something with suspicion/jealousy/admiration).see to have an opinion of something:Try to see things from her point of view.view to think of someone or something in a particular way:How do you view your position within the company? View has the same meaning as regard and consider but is slightly less frequent and slightly less formal. The main structures are view somebody/something as somebody/something (you cannot leave out the as) and view somebody/something with something.Patterns to regard/consider/see/view somebody/something as something to regard/consider/see/view somebody/something from a particular perspective to find/consider somebody/something to be something generally/usually/often regarded/considered/seen/viewed as something to regard/consider/view somebody/something favorably/unfavorably
  4. give name
  5. 3[transitive] to give someone or something a particular name; to use a particular name or title when you are talking to someone call somebody/something + noun They called their daughter Hannah. His name is Hiroshi but everyone calls him Hiro. What do they call that new fabric? call somebody We call each other by our first names here. see also called
  6. ask/order by telephone
  7. 4[transitive] to ask someone or something to come quickly to a particular place by telephoning call somebody/something to call the fire department/the police/a doctor/an ambulance The doctor has been called to an urgent case. I'll call a taxi for you. call somebody something I'll call you a taxi.
  8. ask/order someone to come
  9. 5[transitive, intransitive] call (somebody) to ask someone to come by shouting or speaking loudly Will you call the kids in for lunch? Did you call?
  10. 6[transitive, usually passive] + adv./prep. (formal) to order someone to come to a place Several candidates were called for a second interview. The ambassador was called back to Washington by the president. He felt called to the priesthood (= had a strong feeling that he must become a priest).
  11. 7[transitive] to order someone to come into a court to give evidence call somebody Call the next witness! call somebody as something Seventeen people were called as witnesses. call somebody to do something He was called to testify at the trial.
  12. meeting/strike, etc.
  13. 8[transitive] call something to order something to happen; to announce that something will happen to call a meeting/an election/a strike
  14. shout
  15. 9[intransitive, transitive] to shout or say something loudly to attract someone's attention I thought I heard someone calling. call (out) to somebody (for something) She called out to her father for help. call (something) out He called out a warning from the kitchen. call something Did someone call my name? + speech “See you later!” she called.
  16. describe yourself
  17. 10[transitive] call yourself + noun to claim that you are a particular type of person, especially when other people question whether this is true You call yourself a friend? So why won't you help me, then? She has no right to call herself a feminist.
  18. of bird/animal
  19. 11[intransitive] to make the cry that is typical for it
  20. in sports
  21. 12[transitive] to make an official decision about a play or shot call something The umpire called a foul ball. call somebody/something + adj. The serve was called out. The umpire called the runner safe.
  22. predict
  23. 13[transitive] call something to predict the result of a future event, especially an election or a vote The presidential race is still too close to call (= the candidates are doing equally well and it is impossible to guess who will win). Wow! You called it! How did you know that would happen?
  24. cancel
  25. 14[transitive] call something to stop or cancel a game The game was called because of rain.
  26. visit
  27. 15[intransitive] (old-fashioned) to make a short visit to a person or place call on somebody Miss Crane called on Mrs. Alcott this afternoon. call to do something He was out when I called to see him.
  28. coin
  29. 16[transitive, intransitive] call (something) to say which side of a coin you think will face upward after it is thrown to call heads/tails
  30. in dances
  31. 17[intransitive, transitive] call (something) to shout out the steps for people performing a square dance
  32. in cards
  33. 18[transitive, intransitive] call (somebody/something) (in a game of poker) to bet the same amount of money as the previous player, and so force the player to show his or her cards
  34. Thesauruscallcry out exclaim blurt (out)These words all mean to shout or say something loudly or to shout or say something loudly to attract someone's attention:I thought I heard someone calling.cry out (something) to shout something loudly, especially when you need help or are in trouble:She cried out for help. I cried out his name.exclaim to say something suddenly and loudly, especially because of a strong emotion:“It isn't fair!” he exclaimed angrily.blurt (out) to say something suddenly and without thinking carefully enough:He blurted out the answer.Patterns to call/cry out/exclaim/blurt out (something) to somebody to call/cry out for somebody/something to cry out/exclaim/blurt out in/with something to call/cry out/exclaim/blurt out suddenly to call/cry out/exclaim/burst out loudlyIdioms
      bring/call somebody/something to mind (formal)
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    1. 1to remember someone or something synonym re‧call She couldn't call to mind where she had seen him before.
    2. 2to remind you of someone or something synonym re‧call The painting brings to mind some of Picasso's early works.
    call somebody's bluff
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    to tell someone to do what they are threatening to do, because you believe that they will not be cruel or brave enough to do it
    call something into play (formal)
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    to make use of something Chess is a game that calls into play all your powers of concentration.
    call something into question
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    to doubt something or make others doubt something synonym question His honesty has never been called into question.
    call it a day (informal)
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    to decide or agree to stop doing something After forty years in politics I think it's time for me to call it a day (= to retire).
      call it quits (informal)
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    1. 1to agree to end a contest, disagreement, etc. because both sides seem equal
    2. 2to decide to stop doing something
    call somebody names
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    to use insulting words about someone
    call the shots/tune (informal)
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    to be the person who controls a situation
    call a spade a spade
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    to say exactly what you think without trying to hide your opinion
    call somebody to account (for/over something)
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    to make someone explain a mistake, etc. because they are responsible for it
    call somebody/something to order
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    to ask people in a meeting to be quiet so that the meeting can start or continue
    he who pays the piper calls the tune (saying)
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    the person who provides the money for something can also control how it is spent
    (be/get called) on the carpet (informal)
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    called to see someone in authority because you have done something wrong I got called on the carpet for being late.
    the pot calling the kettle black (saying) (informal)
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    used to say that you should not criticize someone for a fault that you have yourself
    what-d'you-call-him/-her/-it/-them, what's-his/-her/-its/-their-name
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    used instead of a name that you cannot remember I spoke to what's-his-name, you know, Sue's math teacher.
    Phrasal Verbscall at…call somebody awaycall backcall for somebodycall for somethingcall somethingforthcall incall somebodyincall somethingincall somebody/somethingoffcall somethingoffcall on/upon somebodycall somebody outcall somebodyupcall somethingup
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: call