American English

Definition of ring noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



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  1. 1[countable] a piece of jewelry that you wear on your finger, consisting of a round band of gold, silver, etc., sometimes decorated with precious stones a gold ring A diamond glittered on her ring finger (= the finger next to the little finger, especially on the left hand). see also engagement ring, signet ring, wedding ring
  2. circle
  3. 2[countable] an object in the shape of a circle with a large hole in the middle a key ring a ring of keys curtain rings
  4. 3[countable] a round mark or shape She had dark rings around her eyes from lack of sleep. After the kids' bath, there was a ring of scum around the tub.
  5. for performance/competition
  6. 4[countable] a closed area in which animals or people perform or compete, with seats around the outside for the audience a boxing ring a circus ring The next competitor rode into the ring. see also bullring
  7. group of people
  8. 5[countable] a group of people who are working together, especially in secret or illegally a spy ring a drug ring
  9. Idioms
    run rings around somebody (informal)
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    to be much better at doing something than someone else I used to beat my son at chess but now he runs rings around me.
    throw your hat into the ring
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    to announce officially that you are going to compete in an election, a competition, etc.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: ring