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



    BrE BrE//juːs//
    ; NAmE NAmE//juːs//
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  1. 1  [uncountable, singular] the act of using something; the state of being used A ban was imposed on the use of chemical weapons. The software is designed for use in schools. I'm not sure that this is the most valuable use of my time. The chapel was built in the 12th century and is still in use today. The bar is for the use of members only.
  2. 2  [countable, uncountable] a purpose for which something is used; a way in which something is or can be used I'm sure you'll think of a use for it. This chemical has a wide range of industrial uses. see also single-use
  3. 3[uncountable] use (of something) the right or opportunity to use something, for example something that belongs to somebody else I have the use of the car this week.
  4. 4[uncountable] the ability to use your mind or body He lost the use of his legs (= became unable to walk) in an accident.
  5. Word OriginMiddle English: the noun from Old French us, from Latin usus, from uti ‘to use’; the verb from Old French user, based on Latin uti.Extra examples After a while she regained the use of her fingers. Can you find a use for this old table? Could this old coat be of use to you? Don’t throw that box away—I’m sure I could put it to some use. Drug use in this age group is on the increase. Guests have free use of the hotel pool. He made full use of the opportunity to travel. Holding a lavish party was not the best use of scarce funds. I don’t recommend the use of chemicals in home gardens. I have no use for my golf clubs any more. If side effects occur, discontinue use. Is it any use to you? It’s no use running—the train has already gone. It’s of no practical use to me. Only half the land was fit for immediate use. She lost the use of her legs in a car accident. Since his stroke he hasn’t had the use of his left hand. The CD is intended for use as background music. The expression went out of use some time ago. The layout of the furniture makes optimum use of the space available. The phone is in constant use. The prints remain on file for future use. The product has several potential uses. The study showed that 75% of people favoured/​favored the use of ID cards. There is a high risk of developing side effects from prolonged use of the drug. They denied us use of the college library. This antiseptic is for external use only. This herb has a variety of uses. This model has been designed for greater ease of use. This phone number is only for use in an emergency. This room is now ready for use. This software is no longer in common use. Water was reserved for drinking or medicinal uses. We gave them the use of our house while we were away. We made use of the car while you were away. What use is a mouse without a computer? What’s the use of denying it? You can’t justify the use of violence. a campaign to encourage wider use of public transport a style of writing with an excessive use of metaphor a technology which came into use at the end of the last century an article with a judicious use of examples an efficient use of resources fire extinguishers for home use for the exclusive use of club members lifetime use of cigarettes the daily use of a deodorant the fair use of copyrighted material the first country to ban the use of antidepressants in children the full use of your mental faculties the sustainable use of natural resources Commercial activity on the site will constitute a change of use. He lost the use of his legs in an accident. I’m not sure that this is the most valuable use of my time. I’m sure you’ll think of a use for it. She’ll be able to put her languages to good use in the new job.Idioms
    be no use (to somebody) (formal be of no use)
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     to be useless You can throw those away—they're no use to anyone.
    be of use (to somebody)
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    (formal) to be useful Can I be of any use (= can I help)?
    come into/go out of, etc. use
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    to start/stop being used When did this word come into common use? These pesticides are gradually going out of use.
    have no use for somebody
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    to dislike somebody I've no use for people who don't make an effort.
    have no use for something
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    to not need something Living underground and having little use for eyes, moles are virtually blind.
    have its/their/your uses
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    (informal, often humorous) to be useful sometimes I know you don't like him, but he has his uses.
    it’s no use (doing something), what’s the use (of doing something)?
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     used to say that there is no point in doing something because it will not be successful or have a good result What's the use of worrying about it? It's no use—I can't persuade her.
    make use of something/somebody
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     to use something/somebody, especially in order to get an advantage We could make better use of our resources. You should make use of your contacts.
    put something to good use
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    to be able to use something for a purpose, and get an advantage from doing so She'll be able to put her languages to good use in her new job.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: use