Definition of favour noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    (especially US English favor) noun
    BrE BrE//ˈfeɪvə(r)//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈfeɪvər//
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  1. 1  [countable] a thing that you do to help somebody Could you do me a favour and pick up Sam from school today? Can I ask a favour? I would never ask for any favours from her. I'm going as a favour to Ann, not because I want to. I'll ask Steve to take it. He owes me a favour. Thanks for helping me out. I'll return the favour (= help you because you have helped me) some time. Do yourself a favour (= help yourself) and wear a helmet on the bike. Express YourselfAsking for permission/​a favourYou are more likely to get what you want if you can ask for it politely. Here are some ways of asking whether you may do something: Would you mind if I opened the window? Could I possibly borrow your phone? I hate to ask, but could I please borrow your phone?(North American English) Do you happen to have a pair of gloves I could borrow for the evening? Would it be all right if I left five minutes early? Is there any chance that we could stay at your house the night before our flight? Would it be OK to leave my bag here?Responses: Yes, of course. Go ahead. That's fine. I'd rather you didn't, if you don't mind. I'd prefer it if you asked somebody else. If there's someone else you can ask, I'd be grateful.
  2. approval
  3. 2  [uncountable] approval or support for somebody/something The suggestion to close the road has found favour with (= been supported by) local people. The programme has lost favour with viewers recently. an athlete who fell from favour after a drugs scandal (formal) The government looks with favour upon (= approves of) the report's recommendations. She's not in favour with (= supported or liked by) the media just now. It seems Tim is back in favour with the boss (= the boss likes him again).
  4. better treatment
  5. 3[uncountable] treatment that is generous to one person or group in a way that seems unfair to others synonym bias As an examiner, she showed no favour to any candidate.
  6. party gift
  7. 4favors [plural] (North American English) = party favors
  8. sex
  9. 5favours [plural] (old-fashioned) agreement to have sex with somebody demands for sexual favours
  10. Word OriginMiddle English (in the noun sense ‘liking, preference’): via Old French from Latin favor, from favere ‘show kindness to’ (related to fovere ‘cherish’).Extra examples Although I am friends with the tennis ace, I don’t expect any favours from him on court. Artists sought the favour of wealthy patrons. As a personal favour to me, please don’t release my story to the press. Depth of training is looked upon with favour by many employers. Do yourself a favour and cut your credit cards in half. Early in his musical career he abandoned blues in favour of jazz. Environmental conservation generally works in favour of maintaining the status quo. He is strongly in favour of capital punishment. He needed another favour from her. He stood in high favour at the court of Lewis the Pious. He tried to curry favour with the teachers. Her political views have not found favour in recent years. I came here to ask you a big favour. I don’t expect any favours from my friends on the tennis court. I’ll ask Jane. She owes me a favour. In the Christian tradition, the world exists only as an act of divine favour. No one was willing to speak out in favour of their colleague. Rodrigo accepted the favours bestowed on him by the new king. She argued in favour of this policy. She had one last favour to ask her brother. She is too popular with the public to find much favour with the critics. Thanks very much. I’ll return the favour one day. The High Court found in favour of the plaintiffs. The bishop was said to have enjoyed the king’s favour. The committee came down in favour of setting up a national body. The golf tournament went in the Americans’ favour. The senior officials were punished and rapidly fell from favour. This argument found favour among advocates of multiculturalism. This did not meet with public favour. This idea has long since fallen out of favour. This piece of software has two points in its favour: it’s fast and inexpensive. Traditionally, vigilante groups have found greater favour on the political right. Why are we trying to court the favour of critics? an argument in favour of censorship It seems Tim is back in favour with the boss. She’s not in favour with the media just now. The government looks with favour upon the report’s recommendations. The show has lost favour with viewers recently. The suggestion to close the road has found favour with local people.Idioms
    the cards/odds are stacked in your favour
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    you are likely to succeed because the conditions are good and you have an advantage
    curry favour (with somebody)
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    (disapproving) to try to get somebody to like or support you by praising or helping them a lot He’s always trying to curry favour with the boss.
    (informal) used in reply to a question that you think is silly ‘Do you think they'll win?’ ‘Do me a favour! They haven't got a single decent player.’ to do something that is not helpful to somebody or that gives a bad impression of them You're not doing yourself any favours, working for nothing. The orchestra did Beethoven no favours.
      in favour (of somebody/something)
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    1. 1  if you are in favour of somebody/something, you support and agree with them/it He argued in favour of a strike. There were 247 votes in favour (of the motion) and 152 against. I'm all in favour of (= completely support) equal pay for equal work. Most of the ‘don't knows’ in the opinion polls came down in favour of (= eventually chose to support) the Democrats.
    2. 2in exchange for another thing (because the other thing is better or you want it more) He abandoned teaching in favour of a career as a musician.
    1. 1if something is in somebody’s favour, it gives them an advantage or helps them The exchange rate is in our favour at the moment. She was willing to bend the rules in Mary's favour.
    2. 2a decision or judgement that is in somebody’s favour benefits that person or says that they were right The court decided in Ms Smith’s favour and she received compensation for unfair dismissal.
    (formal) in a fair way They undertook to make their judgement without fear or favour. See related entries: Fear