American English

Definition of steal verb from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they steal
    he / she / it steals
    past simple stole
    past participle stolen
    -ing form stealing
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  1. 1[intransitive, transitive] to take something from a person, store, etc. without permission and without intending to return it or pay for it steal (from somebody/something) We found out he was stealing from us for years. I'll report you to the police if I catch you stealing again. steal something (from somebody/something) My wallet was stolen. Ihad my wallet stolen. Thieves stole jewelry worth over $10,000. It's a crime to handle stolen goods. (figurative) to steal someone's ideas Topic CollocationsCrimecommitting a crime commit a crime/a murder/a violent assault/a brutal killing/an armed robbery/fraud/perjury be involved in terrorism/a suspected arson attack/human smuggling/human trafficking engage/participate in criminal activity/illegal practices/acts of mindless vandalism steal somebody's wallet/purse/watch/cell phone rob a bank/a person/a tourist break into/burglarize a house/a home/an apartment/an office hijack a plane/ship/bus smuggle drugs/weapons/arms/people/immigrants launder (drug) money (through something) forge documents/certificates/passports take/accept/pay somebody/offer (somebody) a bribe run a phishing scam/an e-mail scam/an Internet scamfighting crime combat/fight crime/terrorism/drug trafficking/corruption prevent/stop credit-card fraud/child abuse/software piracy deter/stop criminals/burglars/thieves/shoplifters/vandals reduce/tackle/crack down on gun/violent/street/property crime foil a bank robbery/a terrorist plot help/support/protect the victims of crimeinvestigating crime report a crime/a theft/a rape/an attack/an incident to the police witness a crime/an attack/a murder/an incident investigate a murder/a homicide/a burglary/a robbery/the alleged incident conduct/launch/pursue/open an investigation (into…) investigate/reopen a criminal/murder case examine/investigate/find fingerprints at the crime scene/the scene of crime collect/gather forensic evidence/physical evidence uncover/discover new evidence/a fraud/a scam/a plot/a conspiracy/political corruption/a cache of weapons describe/identify a suspect/the culprit/the perpetrator/the assailant/the attacker question/interrogate a suspect/witness solve/crack the case ⇨ more collocations at justice
  2. 2[intransitive] + adv./prep. to move secretly and quietly so that other people do not notice you synonym creep She stole out of the room so as not to wake the baby. (figurative) A chill stole over her body.
  3. 3[transitive] steal something (in baseball) to run to the next base before another player from your team hits the ball, so that you are closer to scoring He tried to steal second base but was out.
  4. Idioms
    steal a glance/look (at somebody/something)
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    to look at someone or something quickly so that no one sees you doing it
    steal somebody's heart (literary)
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    to make someone fall in love with you
    steal a kiss (from somebody) (literary)
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    to kiss someone suddenly or secretly
    steal the show [no passive]
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    to attract more attention and praise than other people in a particular situation As always, the children stole the show. British and Australian actors stole the show at this year's awards.
    steal somebody's thunder
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    to get the attention, success, etc. that someone else was expecting, usually by saying or doing what they had intended to say or do
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: steal