one1 W1S1 [wʌn] number
1.) the number 1
They had one daughter.
one hundred and twenty-one pounds
Come back at one (=one o'clock) .
Katie's almost one (=one year old) .
2.) one or two
a small number of people or things
= ↑a few
There are one or two things to sort out before I leave.
one or two of
One or two of us knew him quite well.
3.) in ones and twos
BrE alone or in pairs, rather than in large numbers or groups
Guests arrived in ones and twos.
one 2
one2 W1S1 pron plural ones
1.) used to mean someone or something of a type that has already been mentioned or is known about
'Have you got a camera?' 'No.' 'You should buy one' (=buy a camera) .
The train was crowded so we decided to catch a later one (=catch a later train) .
the one(s) (that/who/which)
The only jokes I tell are the ones that I hear from you.
this one/that one/these ones/those ones
I like all the pictures except this one.
2.) used to mean someone or something from a group that has been mentioned or is about to be mentioned
The children seemed upset. One was crying.
one of
This is one of my favourite books.
3.) used to talk about a particular person or thing in comparison with other similar people or things
one of
One of the men sounded furious, the other frightened.
She has two daughters. One is a primary school teacher, the other a musician.
4.) the one(s) who/that
the person or people who
I was the one who had been attacked, not Richard.
The only ones who will benefit are the shareholders.
5.) one by one
used when one person or thing in a group does something, then the next, then the next, especially in a regular way
One by one each soldier approached the coffin and gave a final salute.
6.) one after another/one after the other
if events happen one after the other, they happen without much time between them
One after another, tropical storms battered the Pacific coastline.
7.) (all) in one
if someone or something is many different things all in one, they are all those things
It's a TV, radio and VCR all in one.
8.) formal used to mean people in general, including yourself
One can never be too careful.
Great pictures make one think.
9.) I, for one, ...
used to emphasize that you believe something, will do something etc and hope others will do the same
I, for one, am proud of the team's effort.
10.) ... for one
used to give an example of someone or something
There were several other people absent that afternoon, weren't there? Mr Ashton for one.
11.) be one up (on sb)/get one up on sb
to have or get an advantage over someone
12.) put one over on sb informal
to trick someone
No one's going to put one over on me!
13.) be at one with sb/sth
a) to feel very calm or relaxed in the situation or environment you are in
She felt as she always did in these mountains: peaceful, without care, at one with nature .
b) formal to agree with someone about something
He was at one with Wheatley on the need to abandon free trade.
14.) informal used in particular phrases to mean 'an alcoholic drink'
How about a quick one at the pub?
have had one too many
(=have drunk too much alcohol)
(have) one for the road
(=have one last alcoholic drink before you leave a place)
15.) the one about ...
spoken a joke or humorous story
Have you heard the one about the chicken who tried to cross the road?
16.) as one
written if many people do something as one, they all do it at the same time
The whole team stood up as one.
17.) a difficult/hard/good etc one
a particular kind of problem, question, story etc
'What do you attribute your long life to?' 'Oh that's a difficult one'.
18.) one and the same
the same person or thing
Muhammad Ali and Cassius Clay are one and the same.
19.) not/never be one to do sth informal
to never do a particular thing, because it is not part of your character to do it
Tom is not one to show his emotions.
20.) not/never be (a great) one for (doing) sth informal
to not enjoy a particular activity, subject etc
I've never been a great one for watersports.
21.) one of us
spoken used to say that someone belongs to the same group as you, or has the same ideas, beliefs etc
You can talk in front of Terry - he's one of us.
22.) one and all
old-fashioned or formal everyone
Apologies to one and all.
23.) got it in one!
BrE spoken used to say that someone has correctly guessed or understood something immediately
'You're not painting the house again are you?' 'Got it in one!'
24.) little/young ones
spoken used by some people to mean 'children', especially young children
She's got four little ones.
25.) you are/he is a one
BrE old-fashioned used to say that someone's behaviour is amusing, strange or surprising
You are a one!
HINT sense 8
This is a very formal use. People usually say or write you instead of 'one': You can never be too careful.
one 3
one3 W1S1 determiner
[: Old English; Origin: an]
1.) used to emphasize a particular person or thing
One person I find very difficult is Bob.
If there's one thing I can't stand, it's people who bite their nails.
2.) one day/morning/year etc
a) on a particular day, morning etc in the past
One morning I was sitting at my desk when a policeman knocked at my door.
b) used to talk about a day, morning etc in the future which is not yet exactly known or decided
We should go out for a drink one evening.
One day she hopes to move to the South Coast.
3.) used to talk about a particular person or thing in comparison with other similar people or things
Why does my card work in one cash machine and not in another ?
4.) It's one thing to ... it's (quite) another to
used to say that the second thing mentioned is very different from the first, and is often much more difficult to do
It's one thing to say we have a goal; it's another to actually act on it.
5.) for one thing
used to introduce a reason for what you have just said
He couldn't bring himself to say what he thought. For one thing , she seldom stopped to listen. For another , he doubted that he could make himself clear.
6.) be one crazy woman/be one interesting job etc
spoken especially AmE to be a very crazy woman, be a very interesting job etc
You're one lucky guy.
7.) formal used before the name of someone you do not know or have not heard of before
= ↑a certain
He was accused of stealing a horse from one Peter Wright.
one 4
one4 adj [only before noun]
1.) only
Her one concern was to get to the door without being seen.
Claire is the one person I can trust.
2.) one and only
a) used to emphasize that someone is very famous
the one and only Frank Sinatra
b) used to emphasize that something is the only one of its kind
I even tried my one and only French joke on them.
one 5
one5 n [C usually plural] AmE
a piece of paper money worth one dollar
I don't have any ones.

Dictionary of contemporary English. 2013.

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