push/squeeze1 [transitive, intransitive] to push something closely and firmly against something; to be pushed in this way press something/someone/yourself against somethingShe pressed her face against the window. press something to somethingHe pressed a handkerchief to his nose. press something togetherShe pressed her lips together. press against somethingHis body was pressing against hers.2 [transitive, intransitive] to push or squeeze part of a device, etc. in order to make it work press somethingto press a button/switch/key press something + adjectiveHe pressed the lid firmly shut. (+ adverb/preposition)Press here to open.She pressed down hard on the gas pedal.3 [transitive] press something into/onto something to put something in a place by pushing it firmlyHe pressed a coin into her hand and moved on.4 [transitive] press something to squeeze someone's hand or arm, especially as a sign of affection5 [intransitive] + adverb/preposition (of people in a crowd) to move in the direction mentioned by pushingThe photographers pressed around the celebrities.(figurative)A host of unwelcome thoughts were pressing in on him.
try to persuade6 [transitive] to make strong efforts to persuade or force someone to do something synonym push, urge press someoneIf pressed, he will admit that he knew about the affair. press someone for somethingThe bank is pressing us for repayment of the loan. press someone to do somethingThey are pressing us to make a quick decision. press someone into something/into doing somethingDon't let yourself be pressed into doing something you don't like.
point/claim/case7 [transitive] press something to express or repeat something with forceI hate to press the point, but you do owe me $200.She is still pressing her claim for compensation.They were determined to press their case at the highest level.
make flat/smooth8 [transitive] to make something flat or smooth by using force or putting something heavy on top press somethingpressed flowers (= pressed between the pages of a book) press something + adjectivePress the soil flat with the back of a spade.9 [transitive] press something to make clothes smooth using a hot iron synonym ironMy suit needs pressing.
fruit/vegetables10 [transitive] press something to squeeze the juice out of fruit or vegetables by using force or weight
metal11 [transitive] to make something from a material, using pressure press somethingto press a CD press something from/out of somethingThe car bodies are pressed out of sheets of metal.
bring/press charges against someone(law) to accuse someone formally of a crime so that there can be a trial in courtbring charges againstpress charges against
hit/press/push the panic button
to react in a sudden or extreme way to something unexpected that has frightened youThe government pressed the panic button yesterday as the economy plunged deeper into crisis.hit/push the panic buttonpress/push the panic button
press (the) flesh(informal) (of a famous person or politician) to say hello to people by shaking handspress fleshpress the flesh
press something home
to get as much advantage as possible from a situation by attacking or arguing in a determined wayto press home an attack/an argument/a pointSimone saw her opponent was hesitating and pressed home her advantage.press home
press someone/something into service
to use someone or something for a purpose that they were not trained or intended for because there is nobody or nothing else availableEvery type of boat was pressed into service to rescue passengers from the sinking ferry.press into service