- 1any of the hard white structures in the mouth used for biting and chewing food I've just had a tooth out at the dentist's. to brush/clean your teeth tooth decay She answered through clenched teeth (= opening her mouth only a little because of anger). The cat sank its teeth into his finger. Topic CollocationsPhysical AppearanceA person may be described as having:eyes (bright) blue/green/(dark/light) brown/hazel eyes deep-set/sunken/bulging/protruding eyes small/beady/sparkling/twinkling/shifty eyes piercing/penetrating/steely eyes bloodshot/watery/puffy eyes bushy/thick/dark/raised/arched eyebrows long/dark/thick/curly/false eyelashes/lashesface a flat/bulbous/pointed/sharp/snub nose a straight/a pointy/a Roman/an aquiline nose full/thick/thin/pouty lips dry/chapped/cracked lips flushed/rosy/red/ruddy/pale cheeks soft/chubby/sunken cheeks white/perfect/crooked/protruding teeth a large/high/broad/wide forehead a strong/weak/pointed/double chin a long/full/bushy/wispy beard a full/thin goatee a long/thin/bushy/droopy/handlebar/pencil mustachehair and skin pale/fair/olive/dark/tanned skin dry/oily/smooth/rough/leathery/wrinkled skin a dark/pale/light/sallow/ruddy/olive/swarthy/clear complexion deep/fine/small/facial wrinkles blonde/blond/fair/(light/dark) brown/(jet-)black/auburn/red/ginger/gray hair straight/curly/wavy/frizzy/spiky hair thick/thin/fine/bushy/thinning hair dyed/bleached/soft/silky/dry/greasy/shiny hair long/short/shoulder-length/cropped hair a bald/balding/shaved head a receding hairline a bald patch/spot a side/center partbody a long/short/thick/slender/ (disapproving) scrawny neck broad/narrow/sloping/rounded/hunched shoulders a bare/broad/muscular/small/large chest a flat/round/swollen/bulging stomach a small/tiny/narrow/slim/slender/28-inch waist big/wide/narrow/slim hips a straight/bent/arched/broad/hairy back thin/slender/muscular arms big/large/small/manicured/calloused/gloved hands long/short/fat/slender/delicate/bony fingers long/muscular/hairy/shapely/ (informal) (often disapproving) skinny/spindly legs muscular/chubby/ (informal) (disapproving) flabby thighs/calves big/little/small/dainty/wide/narrow/bare feet a good/slim/slender/hourglass figure be of slim/medium/average/large/athletic/stocky build see also baby tooth, buck teeth, false teeth, wisdom tooth
- 2a narrow pointed part that sticks out of an object the teeth on a saw The teeth of the cog should fit into these grooves. Idioms
- 1to bite your teeth tightly together She gritted her teeth against the pain. “Stop it!” he said through gritted teeth.
- 2 to be determined to continue to do something in a difficult or unpleasant situation It started to rain harder, but we gritted our teeth and kept going.
- 1despite problems, opposition, etc. The new policy was adopted in the teeth of fierce criticism.
- 2in the direction that a strong wind is coming from They crossed the bay in the teeth of a howling gale.
nounjump to other results
having many weapons
armed to the teethjump to other results
to show your teeth in an aggressive and threatening way The dog bared its teeth and growled.
bare your teethjump to other results
if you do something by the skin of your teeth, you only just manage to do it He escaped defeat by the skin of his teeth.
by the skin of your teeth (informal)jump to other results
to do something that gives you your first experience of a particular type of work She cut her teeth on local radio.
cut your teeth on somethingjump to other results
(of a baby) to grow a new tooth
cut a toothjump to other results
used to say that you should punish someone by doing to them what they have done to you or to someone else They advocate a justice system that works on the principle of an eye for an eye.
an eye for an eye (and a tooth for a tooth) (saying)jump to other results
to fight in a very determined way for what you want The residents are fighting tooth and nail to stop the new development.
fight tooth and nailjump to other results
to become very enthusiastic about something that you have started to do so that you are unlikely to stop until you have finished
get the bit between your teeth (informal)jump to other results
to put a lot of effort and enthusiasm into something that is difficult enough to keep you interested Choose an essay topic that you can really get your teeth into.
get your teeth into something (informal)jump to other results
used when you are saying that you want something very much I'd give my eyeteeth to own a car like that.
give your eyeteeth for something/to do something (informal)jump to other results
to feel very angry and upset about something, especially because you cannot get what you want He'll be gnashing his teeth when he hears that we lost the contract. The news caused great wailing and gnashing of teeth.
gnash your teethjump to other results
grit your teethjump to other results
to like food that contains a lot of sugar
have a sweet tooth (informal)jump to other results
(of an organization, a law, etc.) to be powerful and effective
have teeth (informal)jump to other results
in the teeth of somethingjump to other results
to disappoint someone greatly or fail to give them help when they need it
kick somebody in the teeth/stomachjump to other results
a great disappointment; something that hurts someone or something emotionally The job losses are a kick in the teeth for the union.
a kick in the teeth (informal)jump to other results
to say something that is not true at all The witness was clearly lying through his teeth.
lie through your teeth (informal)jump to other results
old or too old This originally referred to the fact that a horse's teeth appear to be longer as it grows older, because its gums shrink.
long in the tooth (humorous)jump to other results
(of a sound or taste) to make someone feel physically uncomfortable Just the sound of her voice sets my teeth on edge.
set somebody's teeth on edgejump to other results