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



    BrE BrE//ˈwaɪə(r)//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈwaɪər//
    Electronics, How machines work
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  1. 1  [uncountable, countable] metal in the form of thin thread; a piece of this a coil of copper wire a wire basket The box was fastened with a rusty wire. see also barbed wire, high wire, tripwire
  2. 2  [countable, uncountable] a piece of wire that is used to carry an electric current or signal overhead wires fuse wire The telephone wires had been cut. Wordfinderbattery, charge, conduct, connect, electricity, generate, insulate, power, switch, wire see also hot-wire See related entries: Electronics, How machines work
  3. 3the wire [singular] a wire fence Three prisoners escaped by crawling under the wire.
  4. 4[countable] (informal, especially North American English) = telegram We sent a wire asking him to join us.
  5. see also wiry
    Word OriginOld English wīr; of Germanic origin, probably from the base of Latin viere ‘plait, weave’.Extra examples Behind the wire, the prisoners were exercising. Cool the cakes on a wire rack. Don’t place carpets over electrical wires. Don’t touch that wire. It’s live. He disconnected the wire from the clock. I found myself tripping over a tangle of wires and cables. One man rode a bicycle along the high wire as the climax to the act. Surely the wires shouldn’t show like that? The electrician ran a wire from the kitchen to the bedroom. The wire was attached to a pin in the plug. The wire was stretched between two poles. There were wires trailing everywhere. They cut the perimeter wire and escaped. Watch out for bare wires. We got in under the wire. Where does this wire go? a fence topped with razor wire coils of barbed wire overhead electricity wires the flow of electrical current down a wire wire coat hangers a spider’s web of unsightly overhead wires a wire rack/​basketIdioms (informal) to become confused about what somebody has said to you so that you think they meant something else We seem to have got our wires crossed. I thought you were coming on Tuesday.
    go, come, etc. (right) down to the wire
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    (informal) if you say that a situation goes down to the wire, you mean that the result will not be decided or known until the very end
    a person who is lively and full of energy See related entries: Energetic
    pull strings (for somebody) (North American English also pull wires)
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    (informal) to use your influence in order to get an advantage for somebody
    (informal, especially North American English) at the last possible opportunity; just in time The files arrived just under the wire and we made the deadline.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: wire