American English

Definition of prison noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    jump to other results
  1. 1[countable, uncountable] a building where people are kept as a punishment for a crime they have committed, or while they are waiting for trial synonym jail He was sent to prison for five years. She is in prison, awaiting trial. to be released from prison a maximum-security prison the prison population (= the total number of prisoners in a country) the problem of overcrowding in prisons Ten prison officers and three inmates needed hospital treatment following the riot. Topic CollocationsCriminal Justicebreaking the law break/violate/obey/uphold the law be investigated/arrested/tried for a crime/a robbery/fraud be arrested/indicted/convicted on felony charges/on charges of rape/fraud be arrested on suspicion of arson/robbery/shoplifting be accused of/be charged with murder/homicide/four counts of fraud face two charges of assault and battery admit your guilt/liability/responsibility (for something) deny the allegations/claims/charges confess to a crime be granted/be refused/be released on/skip/jump bailthe legal process stand/await/bring somebody to/come to/be on trial take somebody to/come to/settle something out of court face/avoid/escape prosecution seek/retain/have the right to/be denied access to legal counsel hold/conduct/attend/adjourn a hearing/trial sit on/influence/persuade/convince/advise a jury stand/appear/be brought before a judge plead guilty/not guilty to a crime be called to/take/put somebody on the stand/the witness stand call/subpoena/question/cross-examine a witness give/hear the evidence against/on behalf of somebody raise/withdraw/overrule an objection reach a unanimous/majority verdict return/deliver/record a verdict of guilty/not guilty convict/acquit the defendant of the crime secure a conviction/your acquittal lodge/file an appeal appeal (against)/challenge/uphold/overturn a conviction/verdictsentencing and punishment sentence somebody to 5 years in prison/2 years' probation carry/face/serve a seven-year/life sentence receive/be given the death penalty be sentenced to ten years (in prison/jail) carry/impose/pay a fine (of $3,000)/a penalty (of 14 years' imprisonment) be imprisoned/jailed for drug possession/fraud/murder do/serve time/ten years be sent to/put somebody in/be released from jail/prison be/put somebody/spend 13 years on death row be granted/be denied/violate (your) parole ⇨ more collocations at crime GrammarschoolWhen a school is being referred to as an institution, you do not need to use the:When do the children finish school?When you are talking about a particular building, the is used:I’ll meet you outside the school.Prison, jail, court, and church work in the same way:Her husband spent three years in prison. She drove by the prison every day.
  2. 2[uncountable] the system of keeping people in prisons the prison system The government insists that “prison works” and plans to introduce a tougher sentencing policy for people convicted of violent crime.
  3. 3[countable] a place or situation from which someone cannot escape His hospital room had become a prison.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: prison