American English

Definition of freeze verb from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they freeze
    he / she / it freezes
    past simple froze
    past participle frozen
    -ing form freezing
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    become ice
  1. 1[intransitive, transitive] to become hard, and often turn to ice, as a result of extreme cold; to make something do this Water freezes at 32°F. It's so cold that even the river has frozen. freeze something The cold weather had frozen the ground. + adj. The clothes froze solid on the clothesline. opposite thaw
  2. of pipe/lock/machine
  3. 2[intransitive, transitive] if a pipe, lock, or machine freezes, or something freezes it, it becomes blocked with frozen liquid and therefore cannot be used freeze (up) The pipes froze up last night, so we don't have any water. freeze something (up) Ten degrees of frost had frozen the lock on the car.
  4. of weather
  5. 3[intransitive] when it freezes, the weather is at or below 32° Fahrenheit or 0° Celsius It may freeze tonight, so bring those plants inside.
  6. be very cold
  7. 4[intransitive, transitive] to be very cold; to be so cold that you die Every time she opens the window we all freeze. Two men froze to death on the mountain. freeze somebody Two men were frozen to death on the mountain.
  8. food
  9. 5[transitive] freeze something to keep food at a very low temperature in order to preserve it Can you freeze this cake? These meals are ideal for home freezing.
  10. 6[intransitive] to be able to be kept at a very low temperature Some fruits freeze better than others.
  11. stop moving
  12. 7[intransitive] to stop moving suddenly because of fear, etc. I froze with terror as the door slowly opened. (figurative) The smile froze on her lips. The police officer shouted “Freeze!” and the man dropped the gun.
  13. computer
  14. 8[intransitive] when a computer screen freezes, you cannot move any of the images, etc. on it, because there is a problem with the system
  15. movie
  16. 9[transitive] freeze something to stop a movie or video in order to look at a particular picture Freeze the action there! see also freeze-frame
  17. salaries/prices
  18. 10[transitive] freeze something to hold salaries, prices, etc. at a fixed level for a period of time Salaries have been frozen for the current year.
  19. money/bank account
  20. 11[transitive] freeze something to prevent money, a bank account, etc. from being used by getting a court order which bans it The company's assets have been frozen.
  21. Idioms
    freeze your blood, make your blood freeze
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    to make you extremely frightened or shocked
    stop/halt somebody in their tracks, stop/halt/freeze in your tracks
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    to suddenly make someone stop by frightening or surprising them; to suddenly stop because something has frightened or surprised you The question stopped Anna in her tracks.
    Phrasal Verbsfreeze somebodyout (of something)freeze over
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: freeze